Grim signs of the biosphere under threat
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Issue 107, November 2023
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The year-round resource for EGU members
Geoscience for the benefit of humanity and the planet

Credit: Thomas Plenefisch (via

Grim signs of the biosphere under threat

Faster Arctic warming and Earth’s changing gravity tell us more than one would expect

Scientists from University College London have found that faster warming in the Arctic will lead to a global 2 degree Celsius rise being reached eight years earlier than if the region was warming at the average global rate.

Geodesy researcher Andreas Kvas explains how Earth’s geometric shape, orientation in space, and gravity field are affected by climate-relevant processes. “Variations in Earth’s gravity field are related to mass change signals such as ice mass loss, water storage variations, and sea level rise,” he explains in this month’s Geotalk blog.

In early November, EGU observed International Day for Biosphere Reserves by sharing some lesser known facts about these reserves around the world. And to mark 90 years since the first fake photo of the Loch Ness Monster, Devayani Khare dives deep into the monster lore, only to discover that most folk tales and myths last for a reason.

Finally, the Call for Abstracts for EGU24 is now open, so make sure to advertise your sessions and apply for travel support grants now! You can stay up-to-date with information EGU24 by subscribing to receive updates in your inbox at the beginning of each month.

Science Policy

GeoPolicy: Science for Policy Internships & Traineeships – a regularly updated list

Internships and traineeships are a great way to gain a better understanding of the political system and how policymakers use scientific evidence! This month’s GeoPolicy blog highlights various European-based opportunities to which researchers can apply.

Credit: European Parliament, distributed via Flickr

Science for Policy newsletter

In November’s #ScienceforPolicy newsletter, you have the opportunity to join a Masterclass on lessons and tools to increase your public affairs impact, learn about how Earth Observation has been used to support evidence-informed policymaking, and have your say on a European Commission Consultation.

You can also share any new science for policy opportunities or ask us questions by getting in touch via or on the EGU’s official Science for Policy Twitter Account @EGU_Policy

Journal Watch

“Two types of biodegradable plastic mulch films showed no signs of degradation over a 10-month period within lake surface sediments, suggesting very limited biodegradability in freshwater sediment environments. These findings stress the importance of limiting the transport of plastics from agricultural soils to waterways – not only for traditional plastics but also for soil-biodegradable plastics.”

van Grinsven and Schubert, 2023, Biogeosciences


November EGU journal highlights


EGU Outreach Committee seeks two new members!

Are you interested in public engagement activities, communication with scientists and the media, and building links with European decision makers? Then apply to join our Outreach Committee by 20 December!

Resource of the month

Fighting fake news: identifying and addressing scientific misinformation

Challenging misinformation can feel daunting, but as producers of the original knowledge, scientists are in a unique position to help. Find out how with this free EGUwebinar on YouTube.

Upcoming Dates

EGU Science for Policy hangout

Come virtually network with those working at the science-policy interface! Register for our upcoming #ScienceForPolicy hangout at 14:00 CET on 4 December.

Job Vacancy: EGU24 Press Assistant

The EGU24 Press Centre has three vacancies for science communicators experienced in science writing and/or photography/videography. Apply by 8 December.

GeoCinema at EGU24: submit your short film now!

If you’ve shadowed a scientist in the lab or field, or produced an educational feature in the geosciences, we want to hear from you! Send us your submissions by 15 December.

Apply to EGU’s new ‘Artists raising awareness of EDI in the Geosciences’ placement

EGU are seeking artists who can create work that reflects the ideas and issues of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in geoscience! Apply by 15 December.

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