Environment & Ecology News

TAU researchers take underwater journey to study how sponge species vanished

Researchers from Tel Aviv University (TAU) embarked on an underwater journey to solve a mystery: Why did sponges of the Agelas oroides species, which used to be common in the shallow waters along the Mediterranean coast of Israel, disappear? Today, the species can be found in Israel mainly in deep habitats that exist at a… Read More

TAU study finds “environmentally-friendly” disposable tableware has negative effects on marine animals

A new Tel Aviv University study compares the effects of two types of disposable dishes on the marine environment — regular plastic disposable dishes and more expensive bioplastic disposable dishes certified by various international organizations — and determines that the bioplastic dishes had a similar effect on marine animals as regular plastic dishes. Moreover, the… Read More

Water vapor in the atmosphere may be prime renewable energy source

The search for renewable energy sources, which include wind, solar, hydroelectric dams, geothermal, and biomass, has preoccupied scientists and policymakers alike, due to their enormous potential in the fight against climate change. A new Tel Aviv University study finds that water vapor in the atmosphere may serve as a potential renewable energy source in the… Read More

Electrical activity in living organisms mirrors electrical fields in atmosphere

Most electrical activity in vertebrates and invertebrates occurs at extremely low frequencies, and the origin — and medical potential — of these frequencies have eluded scientists. Now a Tel Aviv University study provides evidence for a direct link between electrical fields in the atmosphere and those found in living organisms, including humans. The study’s findings… Read More

LocalTAU top scientists move closer to securing pilot program in Miami

Top scientists Dror Avisar, Yaron Zinger and Tamar Lanir from Tel Aviv University know that their innovative Hybrid Biofilters invention can capture and treat the stormwater runoff that ends up polluting Biscayne Bay. That’s why, just a few months after winning the first LocalTAU Pitch Competition, the inaugural fellows return to Miami to present at the… Read More

Breakdown in coral spawning places species at risk of extinction

Coral reefs are among the most diverse and productive ecosystems on our planet. But due to climate change and other human stressors, reef-building corals that reproduce by means of broadcast-spawning — the simultaneous release of eggs and sperm into open water — may now be under threat of extinction. A new Tel Aviv University study… Read More

Microplastics and plastic additives discovered in ascidians all along Israel’s coastline

A new Tel Aviv University study finds that microplastics — tiny pieces of plastic ingested by aquatic life — are present in solitary ascidians all along the Israeli coastline. Ascidians are sac-like marine invertebrate filter feeders. The research also confirmed the presence of plastic additives, i.e. “plasticizers,” in ascidians. Plasticizers are substances added to plastics… Read More