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UK net zero strategy under fire for failure to show carbon savings

The UK's net zero strategy does not detail any of the anticipated emissions savings that will stem from action on homes, transport, industry and more

Nearly every person in Iran seems to have had covid-19 at least once

An analysis of covid-19 infections among Iranian people casts further doubt on the idea that herd immunity can be achieved without vaccination

Impaled turtle reveals new insight on the day the dinosaurs died

A controversial fossil site claimed to preserve a scene of destruction from the day the dinosaurs died seems to show the even happened in spring there and led to a turtle being impaled on a branch

UK university climate targets strongly criticised for lack of ambition

A group of 140 UK universities says it will cut its carbon emissions by 78 per cent by 2035 and hit net zero by 2050, but critics say these targets don't go far enough, particularly on international travel

Extinct Japanese wolf is the closest wild relative of dogs yet found

The extinct Japanese wolf is not the direct ancestor of dogs but its DNA shows it is more closely related to those ancestors than any other wolves yet found

Covid-19 news: No 10 warns of ‘challenging’ months ahead for UK

The latest coronavirus news updated every day including coronavirus cases, the latest news, features and interviews from New Scientist and essential information about the covid-19 pandemic

UK plans £5000 grants for heat pumps ahead of gas boiler ban in 2035

Under the UK’s long-delayed Heat and Buildings Strategy, households in England and Wales will be encouraged to shift from gas boilers to heat pumps

The Trick review: How the Climategate scandal rocked the world

The Trick on the BBC is a dramatisation of the Climategate scandal, when researchers were wrongly accused of faking evidence of global warming. The film is a correction of the record and evidence that it isn't too late to make up for lost time

IVF embryos discarded as 'abnormal' can actually become healthy babies

One in four embryos made via IVF contain some seemingly abnormal cells and are typically considered too risky to use, but new research shows they are just as viable

This koala was first to be vaccinated against chlamydia in new trial

Shano was the first of 200 koalas to receive a chlamydia vaccine that may help curb an epidemic that is ravaging koala populations across Australia

Microsoft and Nvidia build largest ever AI to mimic human language

An artificial intelligence with more than 530 billion parameters - the largest ever - has achieved record scores at understanding human language

Your unique pattern of brain activity can be spotted in 100 seconds

Everyone has a unique pattern of brain activity and it can be spotted after just 100 seconds inside a brain scanner

Climate change could slow recovery of southern right whales

Extreme El Niño weather events caused by climate change could slow the recovery of southern right whale populations

Self-healing plastic repairs itself in 10 seconds even under water

A new type of strong, flexible, self-healing plastic can repair itself rapidly, even in salty or acidic water, which may be useful for divers or underwater pipes

Arid meteor shower makes new appearance in southern hemisphere skies

A meteor shower called the Arids has appeared in southern hemisphere skies, as predicted by astronomers

Contraceptive pill may reduce polycystic ovary syndrome diabetes risk

Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) who take the contraceptive pill have three-quarters of the diabetes risk as those with PCOS who don’t

Snakes started eating birds and mammals after dinosaurs went extinct

Snakes typically ate insects before the mass extinction event that wiped out the non-bird dinosaurs, but then they broadened diets to include birds and mammals

US military may get a dog-like robot armed with a sniper rifle

A four-legged robot made by Ghost Robotics and outfitted with a sniper rifle and night-vision cameras was displayed at a meeting of the Association of the United States Army

Venomous viper species from the Tibetan plateau discovered in museum

A DNA analysis of museum snake specimens has revealed two previously unrecognised species of Asian pit viper, both from the eastern Tibetan plateau

Weird shape-shifting clouds of dust seem to be orbiting a distant star

The light from a distant star appears to be orbited by something that is continually changing shape and size, possibly clouds of dust from repeated collisions

Highly processed junk food consumption is rising among US adults

US adults are eating more highly processed junk food now than they were 20 years ago, with the trend particularly clear among those without a college degree

Can long covid clinics in England cope if cases rise this winter?

The care situation for long covid patients in England is improving, but a winter spike in cases will put the country’s 89 specialist clinics under new pressure

NASA’s Lucy mission is launching to study asteroids near Jupiter

A NASA spacecraft called Lucy is about to blast off to study the Trojan asteroids near Jupiter, which are pristine relics from the early solar system

Women have been under-represented in stroke therapy trials for decades

For decades, clinical trials to test stroke treatments haven't included enough women – a disparity that could be hampering efforts to develop better care

Australia's unusual western swamp turtle is an oddity under threat

The first analysis of species that have evolved in isolation for millions of years has found that many – including Australia’s western swamp turtle – are under threat

Bubbles in blood open the brain for world-first cancer treatment

The blood-brain barrier prevents drugs from entering the brain, but now doctors have bypassed it to treat four women with cancer for the first time

T. rex with feathers: China’s fossils are rewriting the dinosaur story

Twenty-five years ago, Chinese scientists revealed the first feathered dinosaur. Since then, they have unearthed a treasure trove of exquisitely preserved specimens that put dinosaurs in a whole new light

The race to make the first feature film in space is heating up

A new space race, plus Facebook feels a distubance in the Force and the reason why hippos make such great units, in Feedback’s weird weekly round-up

Can Einstein’s forgotten theory of space solve the cosmology crisis?

Decades ago, Einstein concocted a theory in which space doesn't just curve, but swirls like a cyclone. Now it is making a comeback because it could fix several of the biggest problems in cosmology

The mRNA technology behind covid-19 vaccines can transform medicine

The success of coronavirus vaccines has been a rare bright spot in the devastation of the pandemic, and the mRNA technology behind some of them offers a way to revolutionise how we treat many illnesses

How the Hubble Telescope opened a new window on the cosmos

The Hubble Space Telescope's journey to the sky was a bumpy one, but it was well worth the effort, writes Chanda Prescod-Weinstein

Look at fossils on your phone to help researchers uncover Earth’s past

Fossilised plants tell stories of Earth’s capricious past. By participating in the Fossil Atmospheres project, you can help researchers uncover them, find Layal Liverpool

Why psychologists can't decide if moral disgust is even a thing

Psychology is split on what exactly disgust is, but the evidence is starting to come in, says Ana Aznar

Don't Miss: Sonic Ray lights up London’s only lighthouse

New Scientist's weekly round-up of the best books, films, TV series, games and more that you shouldn't miss

Cloud of eggs and sperm image wins Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Laurent Ballesta has won Wildlife Photographer of the Year for an image that captures groupers during their annual reproductive season

Escape from Extinction review: How crucial are zoos for conservation?

A one-sided documentary claims that zoos are essential to reversing the sixth mass extinction, skipping over many of the nuances of captive breeding

Why the ancestors of dogs were our colleagues not friends

Pat Shipman’s book, Our Oldest Companions: the story of the first dogs, explores the surprising story of how humans and dogs came to join forces

Artificial insect-inspired ‘brain’ can guide robotic dog through maze

UK start-up Opteran Technologies has demonstrated a system that can guide a robot through a maze using far less energy and weight than conventional approaches

Venus’s surface may have never been cool enough for oceans or life

The surface of Venus may have remained extremely hot since its formation, meaning that water in the atmosphere never had a chance to fall to the surface

Jupiter-like planet survived the death of its star without harm

Astronomers have spotted a Jupiter-like planet in its original orbit around a white dwarf for the first time

Poorer nations will be hit by rising energy costs from climate change

Some countries will spend less on power by 2100, but middle-income countries in the tropics and subtropics will spend more to keep buildings cool

Ancient faeces show Iron Age miners ate blue cheese and drank beer

Faeces samples from an Iron Age salt mine have been genetically sequenced, revealing traces of fungi found in blue cheese and beer

How mRNA is transforming the way we treat illnesses from flu to cancer

The mRNA technique used in covid-19 vaccines recruits our bodies to make their own medicines. That could revolutionise treatments for all manner of conditions – and make personalised therapies cheaper and easier

US becomes world's largest bitcoin miner after China crackdown

The US now has a 35 per cent global market share in bitcoin mining, the largest in the world – the electricity to produce the cryptocurrency may come mostly from coal

Energy watchdog says net zero can protect against future price shocks

The International Energy Agency, a Paris-based energy watchdog, finds that a strong switch to renewables, energy efficiency and electric cars would cushion households against fossil fuel price shocks

Penguins have rare ability to recognise each other's faces and voices

African penguins identify each other using unique features of their physical appearance and vocal calls – making them the second group of birds after crows known to do so

Spies may be storing data to decrypt with a future quantum computer

Quantum computers may one day break encryption, and security researchers say intelligence agencies may already be storing encrypted data with a plan to crack it in future

COP26: Which countries are doing best at tackling climate change?

Ahead of the COP26 climate summit, New Scientist has assessed which countries are ahead when it comes to cutting carbon emissions

Toxic oak moth threatens UK trees after failure to control its spread

The oak processionary moth, a native of southern Europe that damages oak trees, is invasive in the UK and is now spreading more rapidly there – despite efforts to control it

Something strange is sending radio waves from the centre of the galaxy

A source of radio waves, nicknamed "Andy's object", coming from the direction of the centre of the galaxy has left astronomers puzzled

Living sensors in our guts could provide early warnings of cancer

Gut bacteria engineered to produce a signal when they eat chunks of DNA from cancer cells could form an early warning test for the disease, tests in mice suggest

Breadfruit could be the food of the future as the climate warms

Breadfruit – which is a bit like a potato that grows on trees – is projected to grow well throughout this century, even as staples like rice are hit by rising temperatures

UK's slow response to covid-19 was a 'serious' error, say MPs

A report by the UK's Health and Social Care Committee and Science and Technology Committee says the government made a "serious" error in not responding faster to the coronavirus pandemic

Sea cucumber has modified genes to help it live on hydrothermal vents

A sea cucumber called Chiridota heheva lives on deep-sea vents and cold seeps where there is little oxygen, and has evolved to survive in these toxic environments

Women are less likely to get pregnant for two years after a concussion

Women with concussion are less likely to conceive in the two years after their head injury than women who injured another part of their body

Decaying oil tanker near Yemen could trigger humanitarian disaster

Safer, an oil tanker in the Red Sea, has been abandoned and could unleash a catastrophic oil spill that would leave millions of people without food or clean water

Ancient seeds reveal we began using tobacco at least 12,300 years ago

Tobacco seeds discovered in the remains of an ancient fire suggest people have been using the plant for much longer than we thought

Football teams lost home advantage in lockdowns but it is coming back

Football fans cheering on their team can influence match results, as a lack of spectators during lockdowns saw a dip in home advantage

Lava-munching microbes were the earliest life on land

About 3.2 billion years ago, microbes began to colonise land for the first time, and geological evidence suggests they fed on energy-rich chemicals in volcanic lava

A lack of fish faeces is changing the flow of carbon in the ocean

Fish faeces plays an important role in the carbon cycle of the ocean, but industrial fishing has lead to a lack of defecation

Sydney comes out of 4-month lockdown after reaching vaccination target

After a gruelling 107-day lockdown to curb a delta covid-19 outbreak, Sydneysiders are being let out and about again after reaching 70 per cent vaccination rates

Ron's Gone Wrong review: Robot friends and reasons to be offline

Disney's Ron’s Gone Wrong is a familiar story about a child and a robotic friend, but it soon moves into more interesting territory about the dilemmas around online and offline life

AI-generated deepfake voices can fool both humans and smart assistants

Deepfake tools that mimic a particular individual's voice from just a few snippets of audio are good enough to trick humans and bypass voice recognition systems

UK National Grid in talks to build an energy island in the North Sea

The idea of a renewable energy hub on an island in the North Sea has been studied before, but now the National Grid in the UK is in discussions with its equivalents in two other countries to build one

Rocks gathered by Chang'e 5 rover show magma once spewed from the moon

Lunar samples brought back to Earth by the Chang’e 5 spacecraft seem to be less than 2 billion years old, meaning the moon had volcanic activity more recently than researchers expected

Circadian clock made from scratch to probe how biological rhythms work

Circadian clocks help living things keep time, and one has now been assembled from scratch in the lab to find out more about how they work

Ancient Mars lake had fast-moving floods that carried huge boulders

Mars used to have flowing water, which filled Jezero crater with an enormous lake. Images of cliff faces taken by NASA’s Perseverance rover show the lake used to flood 3.7 billion years ago

Team of underground rescue robots wins $2 million DARPA prize

The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has awarded $2 million to a team of quadruped and flying robots capable of exploring underground caves

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has found two odd pairs of asteroids

The New Horizons spacecraft has found two pairs of unusually close asteroids in a region of the solar system called the Kuiper belt

Hares with failed snow camouflage still manage to avoid predators

Snowshoe hares turn white in autumn to blend into their snowy environment – but surprisingly, they thrive even when the snow doesn’t fall

World's first malaria vaccine approved for use in children in Africa

The WHO has approved the first vaccine against malaria in the world, for use in children in sub-Saharan Africa

Some ancient giant ground sloths dined on meat

Ground sloths are often depicted as herbivorous giants of the ice age, but a fresh analysis suggests a 3-metre-long species that once lived in South America also ate some meat

Flying robot can also ride a skateboard and balance on a rope

A versatile robot inspired by birds can walk, balance on a slackline, skateboard and even fly – a mix of skills that could be useful for monitoring power lines or space exploration

Massage gun for mice shows how pummelling tissue boosts muscle repair

Massage really does help damaged muscles heal, because pummelling the tissue clears it of immune cells that interfere with tissue regrowth, a study in mice suggests

Repressed memories: The dangerous idea we can’t seem to forget

The idea that recollections of traumatic experiences can be locked away only to suddenly re-emerge years later has once again become a hotly debated issue, with serious implications for investigations of historical abuse

A new dawn in AI and quantum computing now looks tantalisingly close

Hopes of developing artificial general intelligence and a truly useful quantum computer are looking less fanciful thanks to recent breakthroughs

Eating to Extinction review: Are our bland diets bad for the world?

In Eating to Extinction, Dan Saladino argues that our health, our culture and the environment will suffer unless we broaden our dietary horizons

Sublime slime mould wins New Scientist photography competition

Barry Webb's amazing image of a woodlouse munching on a gelatinous slime mould has taken the top prize at the New Scientist Photography Awards 2021

Don't Miss: Dopesick is an intense drama about the US opioid crisis

New Scientist's weekly round-up of the best books, films, TV series, games and more that you shouldn't miss

'Ionic wind' could power planes, save energy and fight wild weather

Airflow induced by electric fields, known as ionic wind, has already propelled a small aircraft – now engineers think it could help to ease the clean-energy transition and protect infrastructure from natural winds

A maize meme shows why you shouldn't trust social media

There is an image circulating on social media looking at genetically modified corn, but its origins are extremely dubious, writes James Wong

Living Proof review: A unique take on Scotland's environmental history

Archive footage from Scotland's industrial history tells a tale of people, landscape and environment as the nation prepares to host the COP26 summit, says Simon Ings

How to water your garden in a more environmentally friendly way

There are ways of keeping your garden growing that don't involve wasting huge quantities of water. Clare Wilson explains how

The Apollo Murders review: Chris Hadfield's novel is a space thriller

No one is better qualified to write a space thriller than Chris Hadfield, who has been there and lived to tell the tale. His debut novel, The Apollo Murders, is an accomplished story

Why some people find it so hard to find food in the fridge

The frequency of felines in our dreams, plus problems with fridge foraging and more nominative determinism in Feedback's weird weekly round-up

EU votes to restrict AI use in law enforcement while UK rolls it out

Legislation working its way through the European Parliament could see a complete ban on the use of artificial intelligence in law enforcement

Drug treatment for Lyme disease could lead to its eradication

Lyme disease, a tick-borne illness that is becoming more common in many countries, could be eradicated using a drug that kills the disease-causing bacterium

Microscopic tardigrade fossil found in 16-million-year-old amber

Tardigrades, tough microscopic animals that can survive the vacuum of space, don’t fossilise well – a new specimen from ancient amber is just the third ever found

UK could halve energy demand by 2050 without reducing quality of life

The UK needs to cut its energy use to meet climate change goals, but the government is focused on increasing efficiency rather than measures to cut demand

Ivermectin 'buyers clubs' want to use the drug to treat covid-19

Ivermectin has gained notoriety as an unproven drug for preventing or treating covid-19. Now people in the UK are trying to find ways to use it

UAE will send spacecraft to visit Venus and land on an asteroid

The United Arab Emirates is planning to land on an asteroid in 2033, after a quick visit to Venus

Chemistry Nobel awarded for technique to produce mirror molecules

The 2021 Nobel prize for chemistry has been awarded to Benjamin List and David MacMillan for developing catalysts that produce molecules of a desired left or right "handedness"

Supersized AIs: Are truly intelligent machines just a matter of scale?

Gigantic neural networks that write with remarkable fluency have led some experts to suggest that scaling up current technology will lead to human-level language abilities – and ultimately true machine intelligence

Covid-19 dashboard: Cases, deaths and vaccinations

This interactive dashboard tracks the world’s recorded covid-19 cases and deaths, plus vaccines administered

What is a metaverse and why is everyone talking about it?

Huge virtual events including Ariana Grande concerts held inside the video game Fortnite are the latest example of Silicon Valley's new favourite buzzword: a metaverse

Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

Eggs evolved more than a billion years ago, whereas chickens have been around for just 10,000 years. So the riddle is easily solved…or is it?

Can we finally wipe out malaria with a vaccine 37 years in the making?

Efforts to make malaria history have had huge success in recent years. Now, there’s hope that the long-awaited RTS,S vaccine can go the last mile

Henrietta Lacks

African American woman whose cancer cells were the source of the HeLa cell line – the first immortalised human cell line

Alan Turing

Alan Turing was one of the most influential British figures of the 20th century and often considered the father of modern computer science.

Quantum physics

Quantum physics underlies how atoms work, and so why chemistry and biology work as they do. You, me and the gatepost – at some level at least, we’re all dancing to the quantum tune.