Planet Earth online is the free, companion website to the award-winning magazine Planet Earth published and funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). Planet Earth covers news from across the environmental sciences - whether research is funded directly by NERC or is carried out by NERC's research and collaborative centres. It also covers the work of partner organisations, such as through the £1bn "Living with Environmental Change" programme.
Scientists find tiny fragments of plastic in the digestive systems of fish pulled from the English Channel
The discovery, by a team from Plymouth University and the UK Marine Biological Association, highlights the growing problem of plastic contamination of marine environments.
European fisheries flip with long-term ocean cycle
A sudden switch from herring to sardines in the English Channel in the 1930s was due to a long-term ocean cycle called the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), an international study shows. This is the first evidence ...
Call to use raptors to monitor European pollution
Predatory birds like buzzards, eagles and barn owls could be used to monitor pollution across Europe, say scientists.
Biofuels may damage health, researchers find
Concern is growing about finding alternatives to fossil fuels, but the negative impact of one of these—biofuels—may be greater than we first thought, say scientists.
Seabird guano releases more ammonia at tropics
Seabird guano emits more ammonia into the atmosphere in warmer and wetter climates, scientists have found.
Perks of parasitic plants revealed
Parasitic plants, sworn enemy of many a farmer, can carry surprising benefits for wildlife, according to new research.
Variety the spice of life for pollinating insects
Planting a variety of flowers on farmland could boost the number and diversity of pollinating insects, according to new research.
Rising acid in oceans is worsening industry toxins
Acidification of UK waters may make industrially-contaminated sediments more toxic over time, say scientists.
Bleach and antifreeze integral to Arctic animal survival
Bleach and antifreeze are natural chemicals that help one creature survive the Arctic winter by triggering cryogenic preservation, say scientists.
Rising seas to hit tropics hardest
Sea levels around the equator will rise up to 150 per cent more than the global average by 2100, new research reveals.