Josh Gabbatiss, The Independent

Josh Gabbatiss

The Independent

United Kingdom

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Recent:
  • Unknown
Past:
  • The Independent
  • BBC
  • Nautilus

Past articles by Josh:

‘Monstrous’ ancient fossil named after fictional Cthulu creature

An incredibly well-preserved fossil unearthed in Herefordshire has been named after a hideous creature from fiction: Sollasina cthulhu. Although no larger than 3cm wide, its array of tentacles reminded the team who discovered it of the monster Cthulhu created by American author H.P. Lovecraft. A gigantic entity worshipped by cultists, the writer describes its appearance is → Read More

New ‘safe’ pesticides to replace banned chemicals still hurt bees, scientists say

New pesticides regarded as “bee safe” could actually be causing harm to these vital pollinators when combined with other chemicals being applied to crops, according to a new study. Since a range of bee-harming substances were banned in the UK and the rest of Europe, there has been growing pressure to find replacements. However, experts have voiced concerns that some of these → Read More

Ski resorts under threat as glaciers in Alps could vanish ‘within decades’

Europe’s ski resorts and mountain communities are under threat as global warming will rob them of their glaciers in the coming decades, a new study has found. Scientists have warned that even if greenhouse gas emissions are cut dramatically, the warming that has already been locked in will see much of the ice covering the Alps disappear. → Read More

Nets preventing birds reaching their nests after migrating thousands of miles from Africa

A council has come under fire for installing netting that prevents birds from accessing their nests after flying thousands of miles to their spring breeding grounds in Norfolk. Sand martins undertake enormous migrations from Africa, and return every year to sandy burrows in the UK in which they lay their eggs and raise chicks. → Read More

Mystery of how animals with no mouths or guts stay alive revealed

The mystery of how tiny worms with no mouths or guts are able to thrive and keep themselves sustained, has been solved by scientists. Known as Paracatenula, the creatures which thrive in warm ocean waters around the world are well-fed against the odds. Their secret lies in the bacteria that live inside their bodies, providing them with a regular supply of chemical nutrients. → Read More

Earth will take millions of years to recover from climate change mass extinction, study suggests

Earth is likely to take millions of years to recover from the destruction currently being wrought by humanity, scientists have warned. A “speed limit” on the rate of evolution means it will take at least 10 million years for the world’s diversity to return to pre-human levels, according to a new study. → Read More

Electric shocks delivered to the brain restore youthful memory to older adults, experiment shows

Weak electric shocks applied to the brain can be used to reverse decades of age-related memory decline in older people, if only for a limited time. Scientists exploring memory loss found that the poor performance seen in the elderly was linked to faulty circuits in the most sophisticated parts of the brain. They discovered that by stimulating these regions with an electrical → Read More

London ultra-low emission zone: Teachers and green groups welcome scheme amid fears for small businesses

London’s “world-leading” new ultra-low emission zone (ULEZ) has been launched in a bid to tackle the city’s deadly levels of air pollution by keeping the dirtiest vehicles out of the city centre. While the scheme has been welcomed by schools and green groups, some have expressed concerns about the impact the new charges will have on small businesses and charities. → Read More

‘We’re going to win this war’: Anti-fracking campaigners celebrate victory against Ineos and vow to keep shale gas industry out of England

The two men who successfully challenged fracking company Ineos in court this week say “the tide is starting to turn” in the fight to stop the country’s fledgling shale gas industry in its tracks. Joe Corre and Joe Boyd have been engaged in a struggle to overturn an injunction granted to the petrochemicals giant that restricted protesting at their shale gas sites. → Read More

Dolphin clitoris study suggests marine mammals may experience sexual pleasure

An in-depth study of the dolphin clitoris has revealed that these marine creatures may belong to a small group of animals that are known to experience sexual pleasure. Dolphins are known to have sex throughout the year, even at times when they are not capable of conceiving. In other animals that do this, including humans, sex can be pleasurable for females due in large part to → Read More

Campaigners call for ‘climate damages tax’ as they launch legal action against Shell

Seven environmental and human rights organisations are launching legal action against Shell for what they see as the company’s inadequate efforts to tackle climate change. Friends of the Earth have been joined by Greenpeace and ActionAid, as well as 17,000 people who have signed up as co-plaintiffs in the lawsuit. The groups are calling for the oil giant to align its business → Read More

Screen time before bed has very little impact on mental health in teenagers, Oxford study concludes

Screen time has little effect on teenagers’ mental health, despite fears about the impact late-night gaming or TV viewing is having on the world’s youth, a new study has concluded. Scientists at the University of Oxford used data on more than 17,000 children from across Ireland, the UK and the US, and found screens were not related to wellbeing. This was true if the teenagers → Read More

Ancient four-legged whale that looked like an otter discovered in Peru

A four-legged creature that had a tail and webbed feet similar to those found on otters, has been identified as an ancestor of the whale. Fossils unearthed in Peru have led scientists to conclude that the enormous creatures that traverse the planet’s oceans today are descended from small hoofed ancestors that lived in south Asia 50 million years ago. These small small → Read More

Cats able to recognise their own names, study finds

Despite their aloof nature, cats are actually perfectly capable of recognising their names when called, according to a new study. While many cat owners are doubtless already sure their beloved pets understand them, there has never been much evidence to back this up. Dogs on the other hand, as well as apes, parrots and dolphins, have all shown some understanding of human speech → Read More

Climate change panel disbanded by Trump defies president to issue urgent guidance on flooding and wildfire threats

A group devoted to helping the US tackle climate change has released its first report since being officially disbanded by Donald Trump two years ago. The Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment was set up as a panel of experts to prepare the nation for a future of rising sea levels and wildfires. It was first appointed by former president → Read More

Scientists urge UN to create protected zone across third of planet’s oceans

Scientists have laid out a strategy to protect nearly a third of the world’s oceans by creating a massive network of sanctuaries. Released ahead of a major vote on the issue at the United Nations (UN), the study describes a blueprint for a strategy many now see as crucial to preserve wildlife and tackle climate change. → Read More

The government can only end air pollution if it confronts the big, poisonous elephants in the room

Another day, another study warning us about the dangers of air pollution. Around the world, scientists have predicted the average child born today will have 20 months knocked off his or her life thanks to toxic gases and particles in the air. An unpleasant conclusion maybe, but not a surprising one. Air pollution has been blamed for respiratory problems, heart disease, → Read More

Number of ‘coral babies’ emerging from Great Barrier Reef drops by 90% due to global warming

Devastating heatwaves have caused the number of coral “babies” emerging from the Great Barrier Reef to drop by nearly 90 per cent, according to a new study. → Read More

Anti-fracking campaigners win legal victory against energy giant Ineos over ‘draconian’ injunction

Campaigners have won a major legal victory against a “draconian” injunction granted to fracking firm Ineos. The measures were taken out to prevent “persons unknown” from trespassing or causing disruption at the energy giant’s shale gas sites. → Read More

Cameras mounted on great white sharks capture giant predators hunting in kelp for first time

Cameras attached to great white sharks have revealed the infamous predators hunting in densely packed kelp forests for the first time. Scientists previously assumed the seaweed provided a safe refuge for seals to hide in, but the new footage suggests this may not be the case. → Read More