Episode: Organic farming emissions; Staring at seagulls; Salt and dementia


BBC Inside Science Logo
Subscribe
Organic farming emissions; Staring at seagulls; Salt and dementia
Switching to 100% organic food production in England and Wales would see an overall increase in greenhouse gas emissions. Although going fully organic would produce fewer direct emissions than conventional farming, researchers say it would limit food production. Making up the shortfall with imports from overseas would increase overall emissions. But is the sustainability of our food production about more than greenhouse gas emissions alone? Professor Dave Reay is Chair in Carbon Management & Education at the University of Edinburgh, and has recently acquired a smallholding in Scotland. He discusses the study and answer your questions about sustainable food and population growth. Seagulls have become notorious food thieves in recent times as they move into towns to find new habitats and sustenance. Scientists at the University of Exeter have found that if you stare at a herring gull, it’s much less likely to steal your chips. Reporter Graihagh Jackson went to Falmouth to meet with researchers Madeleine Goumas and Neeltje Boogert to see the tactic in action. More than 800,000 people in the UK live with dementia, which is an umbrella term for over 200 specific diagnoses that all involve some form of neurodegeneration. Epidemiological evidence has suggested that high dietary salt intake may somehow be linked to developing cognitive impairment. A study released this week shows a mechanism for how this might occur biologically in the brains of mice who were fed a high salt diet. Professor Carol Brayne is Director of the Cambridge Institute of Public Health at the University of Cambridge, and she explains how this new research fits into the field and our understanding of dementia’s causes.

BBC Inside Science
Users who viewed this episode also viewed...

BBC Inside Science > Clean Air Strategy, Fast Radio Bursts and Kuba Kingdom

With the publication of the UK Government’s Clear Air Strategy this week, Professor of atmospheric chemistry at the University of York, Alastair Lewis, discusses with Adam Rutherford about whether the guidelines go far enough. It’s a hugely complex issue that’s been complied with unprecedented scientific input...

BBC Inside Science > Manipulating mouse memory; London pollution; Nature of knowing; Snail fur

Manipulating mouse memory Optogenetics allows researchers to use light to turn the genes involved in memory, in the brain, off and on. It's a powerful tool for seeing exactly where specific types of memory are formed and processed. Researchers at MIT have been using the technique to manipulate fearful or pleasurable memories associated with a particular location, in mice...

BBC Inside Science > Gravitational Waves, UK Spaceport, Big Brains and Extinction Risk, Conservation in Papua New Guinea

Gravitational waves were announced last week, in what may be the science discovery of the decade. The Ligo detector, the most sensitive instrument on the surface of the planet, detected the ripples given off by the collision of two black holes. Adam Rutherford puts a selection of listener questions to UCL cosmologist Dr Andrew Pontzen...
Comments (0)

Login or Sign up to leave a comment.

Log in
Sign up

Be the first to comment.