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Friday, September 10, 2010

The State of Seafood Report

The State of Seafood Report

Our oceans are increasingly affected by human activities—primarily the ways we catch and farm seafood. Today, fish and other populations of ocean wildlife, from turtles to seabirds, are imperiled. Yet we appear to have reached a turning point, with many signs of hope for the future. Fishermen and consumers, businesses and governments recognize the threats. They are charting a new course, and cooperating in new ways.
Read our report, Turning the Tide: The State of Seafood, to learn more about the threats to our oceans, as well as the significant steps being taken to preserve what remains and restore what we've lost.
Download the reportPDF


Where California's Next One Million Acre-Feet of Water Should Come From

Clean drinking water...not self-evident for ev...Image via Wikipedia

Where California's Next One Million Acre-Feet of Water Should Come Fromut

We must do the most critical and effective things first, from a technical, political and economic perspective.
 
 
 
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This is a key time for California water: we are coming off of three years of serious drought and growing political conflict over water allocations. The Legislature passed a comprehensive water bill last November. A major water bond was proposed to fund a wide range of interventions, but has now been tabled for at least two years and could be greatly altered or even scrapped altogether. New reviews from around the state are calling for prompt efforts to use infrastructure, markets, and institutional reform to address the state’s water crisis. All parties agree that the state will need a diverse portfolio of solutions for our diverse and complex water problems.
But the argument that we must do everything at once — conservation, new dams, seawater desalination plants, replumbing the Delta, some of this or that — is disingenuous, and wrong. We must do the most critical and effective things first, from a technical, political, and economic perspective.
And the most effective thing, hands down, is improving water-use efficiency. The Pacific Institute has just released a new analysis that recommends a set of specific actions that can annually save a million acre-feet of water quickly and at a lower economic and ecological cost than developing new supplies. These water savings are split 30/70 between the urban and agricultural sectors.
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Pacific sockeye salmon return in record numbers

Pacific sockeye salmon return in record numbers

All experts agree that conditions have been near-perfect for this year's sockeye, a strikingly red species with a dramatic four-year life cycle.
by Staff Writers Vancouver, Canada (AFP) Sept 9, 2010 After years of scarcity, the rivers of the US and Canadian Pacific Northwest are running red, literally, with a vast swarm of a salmon species considered to be in crisis. Sockeye salmon, whose stocks ran perilously low last year, are gushing in record numbers from the Pacific Ocean toward their spawning grounds far inland.
Since mid-August, in a torrent expected to last through early October, sockeye have plunged and leapt up Alaskan streams, massed through the mouth of the mighty Fraser River in Vancouver, and filled Oregon and Washington waterways.
"We don't know why for certain," said Barry Rosenberger, a manager with Canada's federal fisheries department.
All experts agree that conditions have been near-perfect for this year's sockeye, a strikingly red species with a dramatic four-year life cycle.http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Pacific_sockeye_salmon_return_in_record_numbers_999.html
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Irrigation's Cooling Effects May Mask Warming - For Now

Irrigation's Cooling Effects May Mask Warming - For Now

Irrigation can have a major cooling effect in some regions. Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture.
by Staff Writers New York NY (SPX) Sep 10, 2010 Expanded irrigation has made it possible to feed the world's growing billions-and it may also temporarily be counteracting the effects of climate change in some regions, say scientists in a new study. But some major groundwater aquifers, a source of irrigation water, are projected to dry up in coming decades from continuing overuse, and when they do, people may face the double whammy of food shortages and higher temperatures. A new study in the Journal of Geophysical Research pinpoints where the trouble spots may be.
"Irrigation can have a significant cooling effect on regional temperatures, where people live," said the study's lead author, Michael Puma, a hydrologist who works jointly with Columbia University's Earth Institute and its affiliated NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies.
"An important question for the future is what happens to the climate if the water goes dry and the cooling disappears? How much warming is being hidden by irrigation?"
More at link
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Satellites offer clues to forest fates

Satellites offer clues to forest fates

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only
by Staff Writers Washington (UPI) Sep 8, 2010 Rocketing numbers of pine beetles have decimated areas of forest from British Columbia to Colorado so large they can be detected by satellites, authorities say. NASA says scientists use Landsat satellite imagery to map these pine beetle outbreaks and determine what impact the beetle damage might have on forest fires.
University of Wisconsin forest ecologists compared maps of areas hardest-hit by the beetles with maps of recent fires. Their preliminary analysis indicates large fires do not appear to occur more often or with greater severity in forest tracts with beetle damage. In fact, some beetle-killed forest swaths may actually be less likely to burn.
The results appear counter-intuitive, researchers say, but make sense when considered more carefully.
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Better Ways To Engineer Earth's Climate To Prevent Dangerous Global Warming

Better Ways To Engineer Earth's Climate To Prevent Dangerous Global Warming

Scientists investigating geoengineering have so far looked mainly at injecting sulphur dioxide into the upper atmosphere. This approach imitates the way volcanoes create sulphuric acid aerosols, or sulphates, that will reflect solar radiation back into space - thereby cooling the planet's surface.

Keith says that sulphates are blunt instruments for climate engineering. It's very difficult to achieve the optimum distribution and size of the aerosols in the atmosphere to reflect the most solar radiation and get the maximum cooling benefit. One advantage of using sulphates is that scientists have some understanding of their effects in the atmosphere because of emissions from volcanoes such as Mt. Pinatubo, he adds.
by Staff Writers Calgary, Canada (SPX) Sep 10, 2010 There may be better ways to engineer the planet's climate to prevent dangerous global warming than mimicking volcanoes, a University of Calgary climate scientist says in two new studies. "Releasing engineered nano-sized disks, or sulphuric acid in a condensable vapour above the Earth, are two novel approaches. These approaches offer advantages over simply putting sulphur dioxide gas into the atmosphere," says David Keith, a director in the Institute for Sustainable Energy, Environment and Economy and a Schulich School of Engineering professor.
Keith, a global leader in investigating this topic, says that geoengineering, or engineering the climate on a global scale, is an imperfect science.
"It cannot offset the risks that come from increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. If we don't halt man-made CO2 emissions, no amount of climate engineering can eliminate the problems - massive emissions reductions are still necessary."
Nevertheless, Keith believes that research on geoengineering technologies,their effectiveness and environmental impacts needs to be expanded.
"I think the stakes are simply too high at this point to think that ignorance is a good policy."
Keith suggests two novel geoengineering approaches-'levitating' engineered nano-particles, and the airborne release of sulphuric acid-in two newly published studies. One study was authored by Keith alone, and the other with scientists in Canada, the U.S. and Switzerland.
Scientists investigating geoengineering have so far looked mainly at injecting sulphur dioxide into the upper atmosphere. This approach imitates the way volcanoes create sulphuric acid aerosols, or sulphates, that will reflect solar radiation back into space - thereby cooling the planet's surface.
Keith says that sulphates are blunt instruments for climate engineering. It's very difficult to achieve the optimum distribution and size of the aerosols in the atmosphere to reflect the most solar radiation and get the maximum cooling benefit.
One advantage of using sulphates is that scientists have some understanding of their effects in the atmosphere because of emissions from volcanoes such as Mt. Pinatubo, he adds.
"A downside of both these new ideas is they would do something that nature has never seen before. It's easier to think of new ideas than to understand their effectiveness and environmental risks," says Keith.
In his study-published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a top-ranked international science journal-Keith describes a new class of engineered nano-particles that might be used to offset global warming more efficiently, and with fewer negative side effects, than using sulphates.
According to Keith, the distribution of engineered nano-particles above the Earth could be more controlled and less likely to harm the planet's protective ozone layer.
Sulphates also have unwanted side-effects, ranging from reducing the electricity output from certain solar power systems, to speeding up the chemical process that breaks down the ozone layer.
Engineered nano-particles could be designed as thin disks and built with electric or magnetic materials that would enable them to be levitated or oriented in the atmosphere to reflect the most solar radiation.
It may also be possible to control the position of particles above the Earth. In theory, the particles might be engineered to drift toward Earth's poles, to reduce solar radiation in polar regions and counter the melting of ice that speeds up polar warming-known as the ice-albedo feedback.
"Such an ability might be relevant in the event that warming triggers rapid deglaciation," Keith's study says.
"Engineered nano-particles would first need to be tested in laboratories, with only short-lived particles initially deployed in the atmosphere so any effects could be easily reversible," says Keith.
Research would also be needed to determine whether such nano-particles could be effectively distributed, given the complex interplay of forces in the atmosphere, and how much cooling might be achieved at the planet's surface.
It is also unknown whether the amount of particles needed-about 1 trillion kilograms per year or 10 million tonnes over 10 years-could be manufactured and deployed at a reasonable cost.
However, Keith notes another study, which looked at the cost of putting natural sulphates into the stratosphere.
"You could manipulate the Earth's climate at large scale for a cost that's of the order of $1 billion a year. It sounds like a lot of money, but compared to the costs of managing other environmental problems or climate change, that is peanuts."
"This is not an argument to do it, only an indication that risk, not cost, will be the deciding issue," he adds.
In a separate new study published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, Keith and international scientists describe another geoengineering approach that may also offer advantages over injecting sulphur dioxide gas.
Releasing sulphuric acid, or another condensable vapour, from an aircraft would give better control of particle size. The study says this would reflect more solar radiation back into space, while using fewer particles overall and reducing unwanted heating in the lower stratosphere.
The study included computer modeling that showed that the sulphuric acid would quickly condense in a plume, forming smaller particles that would last longer in the stratosphere and be more effective in reflecting solar radiation than the large sulphates formed from sulphur dioxide gas.
Keith stresses that whether geoengineering technology is ever used, it shouldn't be seen as a reason not to reduce man-made greenhouse gas emissions now accumulating in the atmosphere.
"Seat belts reduce the risk of being injured in accidents. But having a seat belt doesn't mean you should drive drunk at 100 miles an hour," he says.
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Pakistan flood emergency far from over


Pakistan flood emergency far from overhttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/Pakistan_flood_emergency_far_from_over_999.html
Islamabad, Pakistan (UPI) Sep 9, 2010 -
The emergency in flood-ravaged Pakistan is far from over, a U.N. official warned. "Everything I saw and heard today confirmed that this disaster - already one of the largest the world has seen - is still getting bigger," U.N. Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos said Wednesday. She is on a 3-day tour of the province of Si ... more
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Termites Foretell Climate Change In Africa's Savannas

Termites Foretell Climate Change In Africa's Savannas
Palo Alto CA (SPX) Sep 10, 2010 -
Using sophisticated airborne imaging and structural analysis, scientists at the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology mapped more than 40,000 termite mounds over 192 square miles in the African savanna. They found that their size and distribution is linked to vegetation and landscape patterns associated with annual rainfall. The results reveal how the savanna terrain has evol ... morehttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/Termites_Foretell_Climate_Change_In_Africa_Savannas_999.html

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Long struggle to free the Baltic Sea of mines

Map of the Baltic Sea, showing the Gulf of Bot...Image via WikipediaLong struggle to free the Baltic Sea of mines
Klaipeda, Lithuania (AFP) Sept 9, 2010 -
The deck of a Lithuanian mine-sweeper shakes as a blast rips below the Baltic Sea, sending a geyser of water rising into the sky. Ships from seven other Baltic navies, plus their counterparts from Belgium and France, have stepped in to help Lithuania tackle an enduring legacy of World Wars I and II, when both sides littered the sea with mines. The two-week Operation Open Spirit, which en ... morehttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/Long_struggle_to_free_the_Baltic_Sea_of_mines_999.html
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Thursday, September 9, 2010

Outer Continental Shelf Safety Oversight Board: Report to Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar

This report of the U.S. Department of the Interior, Outer Continental Shelf Safety Oversight Board Report to Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, dated September 1, 2010, presents a complex of issues and recommendations ranging from improved consistency and communication of Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement's (BOEMRE) operational policies to technology improvements and day-to-day management in the field.

Inspections and enforcement—from personnel training to the deterrent effect of fines and civil penalties—also need attention. In addition, BOEMRE must be diligent to achieve the stewardship balance between development and environmental responsibilities envisioned in its statutes.

BOEMRE responsibilities have expanded in scope and complexity to such an extent that BOEMRE must increase and develop its staff to meet new challenges. Above all, BOEMRE must pursue, and industry must engage in, a new culture of safety in which protecting human life and preventing environmental disasters are the highest priority, with the goal of making leasing and production safer and more sustainable.

Forging a new safety culture cannot be achieved by government alone. The Board recognizes that the federal agency for offshore management must carry the flag for safety culture, through its own actions, through its rules and enforcement, and through its establishment of priorities.

However, the Board believes that industry, as the lead player in offshore oil and gas development, has a pivotal role to play as well. Indeed, industry must make a widespread, forceful and long-term commitment to cultivating a serious approach to safety that sets the highest safety standards and consistently meets them.

Juan Cole | The Great Pakistani Deluge Never Happened

Juan Cole | The Great Pakistani Deluge Never Happened
Juan Cole, Tomdispatch: "In the United States, the contrast with the wall-to-wall cable news coverage of the Haitian earthquake in January and the consequent outpouring of public donations was palpable.... What of American civil society? No rock concerts were organized to help Pakistani children sleeping on highways or in open fields infested with vermin. No sports events offered receipts to aid victims at risk from cholera and other diseases. It was as if the great Pakistani deluge were happening in another dimension, beyond the ken of Americans."
Read Articlehttp://www.truth-out.org/juan-cole-the-great-pakistani-deluge-never-happened63106
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Lawmakers and Activists Pressure Obama to Sign Landmine Ban Treaty

http://www.truth-out.org/lawmakers-and-activists-pressure-obama-sign-landmine-ban-treaty63121

Lawmakers and Activists Pressure Obama to Sign Landmine Ban Treaty

by: Mike Ludwig, t r u t h o u t | Report
photo
A landmine victim by the river in Kampot, Cambodia. (CC Photo: John Einar Sandvand, Cambodia Tales)
Human rights groups are once again putting pressure on the Obama administration to join every other NATO ally and sign the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty. The treaty, established during a summit in Canada, bans the antipersonnel landmines that continue to maim and kill thousands of civilians across the world.
The Obama administration is currently wrapping up a review of its landmine policies, prompting lawmakers, human rights groups and physicians to take action.
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Brazil seeks more control on sea resources

Brazil seeks more control on sea resources

Brazil has had a series of hydrocarbon discoveries offshore that raised the stakes for both security of the new oil fields and the cash required to exploit them.
rshttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/Brazil_seeks_more_control_on_sea_resources_999.html Rio De Janeiro (UPI) Sep 8, 2010 Brazil expanded its offshore border through a unilateral navy order, opening possibilities of copycat actions elsewhere and asserting its interest in hydrocarbon and mineral resources beyond the 200-nautical-mile zone claimed by some other Latin American nations. The immediate effect of the naval order would be two-fold, analysts said.
First, it would challenge the United Nations' rule on what generally is a country's offshore border -- until recently accepted as 12 nautical miles but increasingly adopted as 200 nautical miles by nations bordering seas.
Secondly, analysts said, the naval edict puts government stamp of ownership on the sea waters designated as part of Brazil, ruling out private enterprise ventures into the area without state approval.
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New Climate Change Mitigation Schemes Could Benefit Elites More Than Poor

New Climate Change Mitigation Schemes Could Benefit Elites More Than Poor
Oaxaca, Mexico (SPX) Sep 09, 2010 - With governments across Latin America preparing to implement a new financial mechanism aimed at mitigating climate change by curbing carbon emissions from the destruction of tropical forests, experts have warned against a "one-size-fits-all" approach, calling instead for flexible, balanced solutions to the thorny dilemmas surrounding this new mechanism. Among the experts' chief worries is ... more

http://www.terradaily.com/reports/New_Climate_Change_Mitigation_Schemes_Could_Benefit_Elites_More_Than_Poor_999.html
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Study: Earth's last ice age not worldwide




Researchers theorize that a weakening Gulf Stream at the start of the last ice age drove the north into freezing temperatures while simultaneously affecting the planet's wind patterns and ocean currents, pushing warm air and seawater south.

Study: Earth's last ice age not worldwide
New York (UPI) Sep 8, 2010 - U.S. scientists say Earth's last ice age, about 13,000 years ago, saw Europe freezing while the antarctic was warming up, an anomaly that has long puzzled them. Researchers at Columbia University, in a study published in the journal Nature, say new evidence from New Zealand suggests the deep freeze up north bypassed much of the Southern Hemisphere. "Glaciers in New Zealand recede ... more
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Drought, wildfires put Brazil under environmental emergency

Coat of arms of BrazilImage via WikipediaDrought, wildfires put Brazil under environmental emergency
Brasilia (AFP) Sept 7, 2010 - Hundreds of wildfires fed by weeks of relentless drought have forced authorities to place 15 of Brazil's 26 states under an environmental emergency, the official Agencia Brasil news agency said Tuesday. The decree, which includes the capital Brasilia, authorizes federal emergency plans and funds to fight some 1,200 wildfires threatening indigenous reservations, farms ahttp://www.spacewar.com/reports/India_says_China_seeking_foothold_in_SAsia_999.htmlnd across the country, ... more
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A Paradigm Shift Towards Sustainable Low Carbon Transport

A Paradigm Shift Towards Sustainable Low Carbon Transport
Bangkok, Thailand (SPX) Sep 09, 2010 - At a meeting of top transportation and environment leaders from two dozen governments across Asia, key experts said changes in how transport is financed are essential if cities and nations are to deal effectively with the rapid growth in motor vehicle traffic and related environmental and health problems, including climate change. "Current trahttp://www.energy-daily.com/reports/A_Paradigm_Shift_Towards_Sustainable_Low_Carbon_Transport_999.htmlnsport financing practices are unfit to meet 21 ... more
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The Great Vanishing Oil Spill


The Great Vanishing Oil Spill
Microbes may have eaten away at BPhttp://www.technologyreview.com/energy/26138/'s oil in deep water; now the marshland needs help.

Making a Nano-Water Filter for the Developing World

Making a Nano-Water Filter for the Developing World
by Katherine Bourzac
Researchers at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California are developing a filter that rapidly kills bacteria in water. The researchers hope their filter will be used in the developing world, where at least one billion people lack access to clean water.
Read More »

http://www.technologyreview.com/video/?vid=610
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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

World Map Of Methane Concentrations

World Map Of Methane Concentrations
Bonn, Germany (SPX) Sep 09, 2010 - What works on a small scale also works on a large scale. For the last several years, a helicopter-mounted measuring instrument developed by the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum fur Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) has been hard at work detecting methane leaks from natural gas pipelines. From 2014, a similar instrument will be used on a German/French satellite orbiting Earth at an altitu ... morehttp://www.spacemart.com/reports/World_Map_Of_Methane_Concentrations_999.html
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The Coming Conflicts of Climate Change

The Coming Conflicts of Climate Change

Pakistan's floods could presage a series of troubling natural disasters of direct concern to U.S. national security interests. Planning for them now is essential, writes CFR's Michael L. Baker.

Scientific Assessment of Hypoxia in U.S. Coastal Waters

Scientific Assessment of Hypoxia in U.S. Coastal Waters

This Report dated September 2010 and prepared by the Interagency Working Group
on Harmful Algal Blooms, Hypoxia, and Human Health finds that Hypoxia is a major contributor to the decline of coastal water quality observed in recent decades,
and its extent has been expanding.

It is part of the broader issue of nutrient-driven eutrophication. Eutrophication is also linked to increased HABs, loss of seagrasses, and other impacts on coastal ecosystems. For eutrophic ecosystems, concerted and coupled research and management efforts, along with stakeholder support, will be needed to rigorously identify, quantify, and implement nutrient reduction strategies that are effective and achievable. Knowledge gained will be important for developing forecasts of the extent and severity of low dissolved oxygen, which will help managers mitigate the impacts of hypoxia.
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Land grabs, biofuel demand raise global food-security risk - 2010-09-08

Land grabs, biofuel demand raise global food-security risk
- 2010-09-08http://globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=20949

Alien Forests, Oceans and Skies: Genetically Engineered Forests, Altering the Chemistry of the Atmosphere and Hydrosphere - by Rady Ananda - 2010-09-08

Alien Forests, Oceans and Skies: Genetically Engineered Forests, Altering the Chemistry of the Atmosphere and Hydrosphere
- by Rady Ananda - 2010-09-08http://globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=20957

Whaling and fishing for the largest species has altered carbon sequestering in oceans

Whaling and fishing for the largest species has altered carbon sequestering in oceans

September 6, 2010
(PhysOrg.com) -- Decades of whaling and fishing for the largest species have altered the ability of oceans to store and sequester carbon, according to a team of marine researchers from the University of Maine, the University of British Columbia and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI).

An individual whale contains a huge amount of carbon, an amount only exceeded by the largest trees, says Andrew Pershing, a research scientist with a joint appointment at UMaine and GMRI who led the team. A century of whaling equates to burning more than 70 million acres of temperate forest or 28,000 SUVs driving for 100 years, he says.
“We tend to think of in peat bogs, trees and grasslands, not in animals,” Pershing says. “By removing whales, sharks and large fish, we’ve reduced the amount of carbon stored in these populations.”
Conserving larger marine vertebrate species and the largest individuals in the species should be a top conservation priority, according to the researchers, whose findings on the impact of whaling on the ocean carbon cycle were published last week (week of Aug. 30) by the international Public Library of Science (PLoS).http://www.physorg.com/news202985104.html
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Marine animals suggest evidence for a trans-Antarctic seaway

Marine animals suggest evidence for a trans-Antarctic seaway

August 31, 2010 http://www.physorg.com/news202449319.html Marine animals suggest evidence for a trans-Antarctic seawayEnlarge
A schematic of partial collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet showing a seaway between the Weddell and Ross seas (as well as Amundsen and Bellingshausen seas). Such a collapse would enable mixing of faunas but would also generate significant sea level rise.
A tiny marine filter-feeder, that anchors itself to the sea bed, offers new clues to scientists studying the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet - a region that is thought to be vulnerable to collapse.
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Smithsonian Launches Ocean Portal

Smithsonian Launches Ocean Portalhttp://ocean.si.edu/

Explore this new ocean site that inspires awareness, understanding, and stewardship of the world’s ocean.

Life at the Edge On the frontier of a frozen ocean, rising temperatures imperil wildlife whose survival depends on ice.

Vanishing Sea Ice

Vanishing Sea Ice

Life at the Edgehttp://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2007/06/vanishing-sea-ice/sea-ice-text

On the frontier of a frozen ocean, rising temperatures imperil wildlife whose survival depends on ice.

By Paul Nicklen
Photograph by Paul Nicklen

Overfishing Plenty of Fish in the Sea? Not Always

http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/critical-issues-overfishing/ Photo: Fishermen with their tuna catch in Spain
Led by the sushi market in Japan, the global demand for succulent tuna meat has driven stocks of the once ubiquitous species to the brink of collapse. Fisheries in the Mediterranean, where this catch was landed, are in particular peril, with some studies showing highly prized bluefin tuna near extinction there.
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Why the Ocean Matters - National Geographic Video

http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/player/environment/ocean-now/why-ocean-matters.html
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How Many Oil Rigs Will Explode Before We Realize the Future Lies with Clean Energy?

OilrigImage via Wikipedia

How Many Oil Rigs Will Explode Before We Realize the Future Lies with Clean Energy?

It shouldn't take an oil apocalypse to get our attention. We are facing a continuing threat in the gulf from multiple points of potential peril. http://www.alternet.org/story/148105/how_many_oil_rigs_will_explode_before_we_realize_the_future_lies_with_clean_energy
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Coast Guard Resources for Protecting the Environment Fell in Recent Years G.W. Schulz, 09.02.2010 Reporter, Center for Investigative Reporting

U.S. Coast Guard Official Mark - "Racing ...Image via Wikipedia


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gw-schulz/coast-guard-resources-for_b_703711.html
Marine environmental protection has been at the bottom of the Coast Guard's several missions for at least four years.
Read Post
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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Drought, wildfires put Brazil under environmental emergency

Drought, wildfires put Brazil under environmental emergency
Brasilia (AFP) Sept 7, 2010 - Hundreds of wildfires fed by weeks of relentless drought have forced authorities to place 15 of Brazil's 26 states under an environmental emergency, the official Agencia Brasil news agency said Tuesday. The decree, which includes the capital Brasilia, authorizes federal emergency plans and funds to fight some 1,200 wildfires threatening indigenous reservations, farms and across the country, ... more

Indonesian volcano unleashes violent eruption

Indonesian volcano unleashes violent eruption
Kabanjahe, Indonesia (AFP) Sept 7, 2010 -
An Indonesian volcano that returned to life after four centuries of inactivity threw an ash cloud thousands of metres into the air Tuesday in its most most violent eruption yet. Witnesses said lava, rock, ash and gas shot into the sky from the crater of 2,460-metre (8,000 feet) Mount Sinabung in northern Sumatra shortly after midnight. The eruption lasted five minutes and was felt about ... more

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