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Spending on renewables in rich countries has halved in six years

Only a few renewables projects continue without government subsidiesimageBROKER / Alamy The world added more solar capacity in 2017 than all new coal, gas and nuclear electricity-generating plants combined. That’s the headline conclusion of a report on how much banks, private investors and utility companies invested in renewables last year. While that sounds promising, on…

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Palm trees have been spotted changing sex for the first time

Quindío wax palmsRodrigo Bernal, Quindío Botanical Garden, Colombia By Alice Klein Palm trees are more sexually fluid than once thought. Four individuals transitioning from male to female have been spotted in a Colombian forest. Sexual expression is complicated in the plant world. Some plants are dioecious, meaning they are either male or female. Others are…

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Facebook admits data scandal may have hit 87 million users

Mladen Antonov/AFP/Getty ImagesBy New Scientist staff and Press Association Facebook has revealed that 87 million users could have been affected by the Cambridge Analytica scandal, nearly 40 million more than previously estimated. The figure includes more than a million users from the UK with the majority of those potentially affected based in the US. The…

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The centre of our galaxy may be swarming with 10,000 black holes

This picture of the area around our galaxy’s centre is a composite of images taken in X-ray, optical, and infrared wavelengthsX-ray: NASA/CXC/UMass/D. Wang et al.; Optical: NASA/ESA/STScI/D.Wang et al.; IR: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSC/S.Stolovy By Adam Mann As many as 10,000 new black holes have been discovered buzzing around in the centre of the Milky Way galaxy. The galactic centre is…

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