‘Baby Louie’ Identified as New Dinosaur Species

From USA Today.

Infant ‘Baby Louie’ dinosaur identified as new species ‘baby dragon’

Doyle Rice  May 9, 2017

An artist's conception of a gigantic dinosaur named Beibeilong in the act of incubating its eggs. (Photo: Illustration by Zhao Chuang)
An artist’s conception of a gigantic dinosaur named Beibeilong in the act of incubating its eggs. (Photo: Illustration by Zhao Chuang)

Scientists finally know what species a famous fossilized baby dinosaur, still partly encased in its egg, belongs to — and it’s a new one.

Nicknamed Baby Louie, the dinosaur made headlines in 1996 when an artist’s conception of its embryo landed on the cover of National Geographic. But scientists were not certain of its species.

Now, the specimen has been properly studied, allowing scientists to determine it belongs to a new species called Beibeilong sinensis or baby dragon from China, according to a study.

The fossilized egg may have been smuggled from China more than 20 years ago, delaying the discovery. It was finally returned in 2013, according to a National Geographic, and handed over to the Henan Geological Museum.

After the egg’s reappearance, scientists were able to determine the creature inside lived during the Cretaceous Period some 90 million years ago, said study co-author Lü Junchang, a paleontologist at the Institute of Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences.

Each egg is about 18 inches long and weighs about 11 pounds, making them some of the largest dinosaur eggs ever discovered. They were found in an enormous nest — likely bigger than a monster truck tire — about 2-3 yards in diameter that probably contained two dozen or more eggs.

“For many years it was a mystery as to what kind of dinosaur laid these enormous eggs,” said Darla Zelenitsky, a professor at the University of Calgary who was part of the research team that described the fossil. “Because fossils of large theropods, like tyrannosaurs, were also found in the rocks in Henan, some people initially thought the eggs may have belonged to a tyrannosaur.”

“Thanks to this fossil, we now know that these eggs were laid by a gigantic oviraptorosaur,” Zelenitsky said. “It would have been a sight to behold with a three-ton animal like this sitting on its nest of eggs.”

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/sciencefair/2017/05/09/new-dinosaur-species-baby-dragon/101479848/

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“Mud Dragon” Dinosaur Unearthed

From National Geographic.  Visit source (at bottom) for images of the fossil and the artist’s rendering of the dinosaur if it were alive.

‘Mud Dragon’ Dinosaur Unearthed—By Dynamite

The fossil, dated to the time right before a giant impact wiped out the dinosaurs, was almost destroyed during school construction. Continue reading “Mud Dragon” Dinosaur Unearthed

Paris Climate Deal – U.S. and China

From BBC.  Visit the source for images and a video.

Paris climate deal: US and China formally join pact

3 September 2016

The US and China – together responsible for 40% of the world’s carbon emissions – have both formally joined the Paris global climate agreement.

After arriving with other leaders of G20 nations for a summit in the city of Hangzhou, Mr Obama said: “History will judge today’s effort as pivotal.”

CO2 emissions are the driving force behind climate change.

Last December, countries agreed to cut emissions in a bid to keep the global average rise in temperatures below 2C.

 

The Paris deal is the world’s first comprehensive climate agreement. It will only come into force legally after it is ratified by at least 55 countries, which between them produce 55% of global carbon emissions.

Members of China’s National People’s Congress Standing Committee adopted “the proposal to review and ratify the Paris Agreement” on Saturday morning at the end of a week-long session.

This is a big step towards turning the Paris climate agreement into reality.

Other nations will still tussle over their own ratification, but this will put pressure on G20 nations over the weekend to move faster with their pledge to phase out subsidies to fossil fuels.

But even if enough other players step forward to make the Paris deal law, huge challenges lie ahead.

Before China made its announcement, the 23 nations that had so far ratified the agreement accounted for just over 1% of emissions.

The UK has yet to ratify the Paris deal. A spokesman for the prime minister told BBC News that the government would ratify as soon as possible – but gave no date.

The White House issued a statement on Saturday morning announcing the US move.

In a speech in Hangzhou, Mr Obama said the Paris deal was the “single best chance that have to deal with a problem that could end up transforming this planet”.

He praised US and Chinese leadership on the climate issue, saying: “We are moving the world significantly towards the goal we have set.”

The Paris deal struck last December was seen as a major breakthrough. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and French President Francois Hollande celebration the adoption of the Paris agreement
The Paris deal struck last December was seen as a major breakthrough. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and French President Francois Hollande celebration the adoption of the Paris agreement

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon praised Mr Obama for what he called “inspiring” leadership.

Mr Ban said Mr Obama and China’s President Xi Jinping had both been “far-sighted, bold and ambitious”.

However, analysts warn that the target of keeping temperature rises below 2C is already in danger of being breached.

For 14 consecutive months meteorologists have recorded the hottest month on record, and the UK’s Met Office has forecast that 2016 is likely to hit temperatures 1.1C above pre-industrial levels.

Average temperatures worldwide are likely to increase more in the coming years as the effect of previous carbon emissions makes itself felt.

Environmental campaigning group Friends of the Earth welcomed the move by China and the US.

But spokesman Asad Rehman added: “The Paris agreement is a step in the right direction, but the reality is it’s too weak and delays action to the next decade.

“What’s needed is comprehensive and urgent action now to slash emissions and build a low-carbon future.”

The G20 summit in Hangzhou starts on Sunday.

This is expected to be Mr Obama’s last trip to Asia as US president.

However, as he arrived there was a security dispute on the tarmac at Hangzhou airport as White House officials, including National Security Adviser Susan Rice, and reporters tried to get closer to the president. A Chinese official shooed them away shouting: “This is our country! This is our airport!”

Paris agreement: Key points

  • To keep global temperature increase “well below” 2C and to pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5C
  • To peak greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible and achieve a balance between sources and sinks of greenhouse gases in the second half of this century
  • To review progress every five years
  • $100bn a year in climate finance for developing countries by 2020, with a commitment to further finance in the future
  • Once the deal comes into force, countries that have ratified it have to wait for a minimum of three years before they exit

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-37265541