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UCLA Campus Report: Report Takes on Plastic Litter in Oceans and More

A look at some of the non-sports stories making headlines around campus


An occasional report from around campus that recognizes that UCLA is a school with a world-class reputation for research and innovation and whose people make real impact on the real world:

This week's news includes a new report that advocates new policies regarding plastic in our oceans and chemists using MRI to look at temperatures inside catalytic reactors.

A new report by UCLA scientists advocates for new global policy efforts to tackle crisis of plastic litter in oceans:

A new report by authors from UCLA School of Law's Emmett Center on Climate Change and the Environment and UCLA's Institute of the Environment and Sustainability explores the sources and impacts of plastic marine litter. The study offers domestic and international policy recommendations to attack these growing problems - a targeted, multifaceted approach aimed at protecting ocean wildlife, coastal waters, coastal economies and human health.

UCLA chemists have used an MRI machine to peek at temperatures of gases inside catalytic reactors

UCLA chemists for the first time have employed magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) - a technique normally reserved for medical clinicians peering inside the human body - to better measure the temperature of gases inside a catalytic reactor.

The research, a major step toward bridging the gap between laboratory studies and industrial catalysis, could help improve the design and environmental impact of catalytic reactors, including tiny "lab-on-a-chip" devices, which are used in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and other chemical products.

"Stemming the Tide of Plastic Marine Litter: A Global Action Agenda," the Emmett Center's most recent Pritzker Environmental Law and Policy Brief, documents the devastating effects of plastic marine litter, detailing how plastic forms a large portion of our waste stream and typically does not biodegrade in marine environments. Plastic marine litter has a wide range of adverse environmental and economic impacts, from wildlife deaths and degraded coral reefs to billions of dollars in cleanup costs, damage to sea vessels, and lost tourism and fisheries revenues. The brief describes the inadequacy of existing international legal mechanisms to resolve this litter crisis, calling on the global community to develop a new international treaty while also urging immediate action to implement regional and local solutions.

UCLA in the News, Making Headlines:

On the Anniversary of the First Internet Message (which originated at UCLA)

Los Angeles Times article yesterday marked the 44th anniversary of the first Internet message, sent Oct. 29, 1969, from UCLA to a computer in Menlo Park, Calif. Leonard Kleinrock, distinguished professor of computer science at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, who led the research team, is quoted.

Sleep Apnea More Harmful to Women

An Examiner blog reported Thursday on a study led by Paul Macey, assistant professor at the UCLA School of Nursing, that found that that the body's ability to control blood pressure, heart rate and sweating is weaker in people with sleep apnea but is even more diminished in women. (Achilles: Someone should study the effects of UCLA football on men. Inability to control blood pressure, heart rate and sweating are familiar symptoms to me.)

Concussions in Pro Athletes, Kids

A Friday CBS article about brain injuries and the NFL highlighted the expertise of Dr. Christopher Giza, associate professor of neurosurgery and pediatric neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA, who co-developed new guidelines for handling sports-related concussions. Giza was quoted Sunday in a New York Times article about kids and concussions.

Carol Burnett: Comedienne receives national recogntion

Carol Burnett, who discovered her love of acting and knack for comedy as an undergraduate at UCLA, got the best laughs as well as the highest honor Sunday at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.

Fowler Museum Receives $14M Gift of African Art

The Los Angeles Times and Artfix Daily reported that collectors Jay and Deborah Last have given the Fowler Museum at UCLA a gift of 92 African wood and ivory figures, masks, tools and spoons estimated to be worth more $14 million.