Breaking Waves: Ocean News

05/23/2018 - 09:13
Ban will stop 214,000 vehicles from using two key roads as part of pollution crackdown Hamburg is to become the first German city to ban some diesel cars to improve air quality, setting a template for other urban centres in the country. The ban will affect about 214,000 cars, more than two-thirds of the diesel vehicles registered in Germany’s second-largest city. Continue reading...
05/23/2018 - 06:18
Samples of Scottish lake will be tested to reveal truth behind centuries-old legend A scientific examination of Loch Ness using DNA sampling techniques will try to establish exactly what lives in the UK’s largest freshwater body – it may also discover whether there is any scientific basis to the legend of the Loch Ness monster. The mission will involve genetic code being extracted from the lake over a two-week period, which will be analysed to determine the types of creatures that live there. Continue reading...
05/23/2018 - 05:00
Farmers take their lives at a rate higher than any other occupation, and at twice the rate of military veterans. Two bills to help farmers were included in the federal farm bill In early May, Kansas farmer John Blaske is waiting for the rain to stop so he can begin planting. From the front door of his farmhouse, a green yard decorated with bird feeders slopes down to a series of fields where the corn will be planted. Beyond the fields, there’s a tree line and a small bridge with a creek running below. It’s peaceful here, and mostly quiet, except for the sound of the occasional car or tractor, or the cows calling from the paddock. The waiting makes him restless, he tells me. And it’s not just the rain. He’s also waiting desperately for the opportunity to talk to fellow agrarians or to legislators about the stress, depression and suicidal ideation he experiences as a farmer. Continue reading...
05/23/2018 - 05:00
Hot oceans fueled Hurricane Harvey, generating more intense rainfall Last summer, the United states was pummeled with three severe hurricanes in rapid succession. It was a truly awesome display of the power of weather and the country is still reeling from the effects. In the climate community, there has been years of research into the effect that human-caused global warming has on these storms – both their frequency and their power. The prevailing view is that in a warming world, there will likely be fewer such storms, but the storms that form will be more severe. Some research, however, concludes that there will be both more storms and more severe ones. More generally, because there is more heat, there is more activity, which can be manifested in several ways. Continue reading...
05/23/2018 - 00:01
Wasted water from leaking pipes and overuse in homes is causing damage to rivers and wildlife and putting increasing pressure on overstretched supplies, warns the Environment Agency People need to use less water and companies must curb leaks to prevent future water shortages and damage to rivers and wildlife, the Environment Agency (EA) has warned. Many sources of water supplies are already overstretched and, with climate change and a growing population, much of England could see significant supply shortages by the 2050s – particularly in the south-east. Continue reading...
05/22/2018 - 23:30
Bodnant Garden, Gwynedd: Rhododendrons and azaleas flash white, pink, red, orange and blue as the oaks awaken from a long winter dream These oak leaves open like bloody beef. Not the “rich brown-umber hue the oaks unfold/ When Spring’s young sunshine bathes their trunks in gold” that John Clare described in his poem Wood Pictures in Spring. These are the emerging leaves of a Quercus robur “Atropurpurea” (they will mature to a deep red-purple), a form of English or common oak, growing in a Welsh wood on the ravine of a stream flowing into the Vale of Conwy. Continue reading...
05/22/2018 - 23:01
Exclusive: Study finds 12,000 items worth $4m, including ivory, live orangutans and a huge number of reptiles and birds for the pet trade The online sale of endangered and threatened wildlife is rife across Europe, a new investigation has revealed, ranging from live cheetahs, orangutans and bears to ivory, polar bear skins and many live reptiles and birds. Researchers from the International Fund for Animal Welfare (Ifaw) spent six weeks tracking adverts on 100 online marketplaces in four countries, the UK, Germany, France and Russia. They found more than 5,000 adverts offering to sell almost 12,000 items, worth $4m (£3m) in total. All the specimens were species in which trade is restricted or banned by the global Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species. Continue reading...
05/22/2018 - 22:44
Yacht club members can finally take to the ephemeral lake in South Australian outback after tracking water from western Queensland • Sign up to receive the top stories in Australia every day at noon After weeks of tracking the slow progress of flood waters through outback Queensland, members of the improbable Lake Eyre Yacht Club have been able to return to the water. Water reached Lake Eyre, or Kati Thanda, in South Australia on 15 May, two months after falling in the upper Diamantina catchment in western Queensland, some 1,000km away. Continue reading...
05/22/2018 - 19:00
With insect numbers falling because of pesticides, natural controls are being sought for a pest threatening valuable oilseed rape crops One of the pests that troubles British farmers is the pollen beetle, Meligethes aeneus, which is particularly fond of yellow flowers and is a menace to oil seed rape. On some plants it is a beneficial pollinator, but on oilseed rape it destroys the plant’s ability to produce the all-important seed. Related: Our wildlife can be saved – but only with political will | Letters Continue reading...
05/22/2018 - 14:29
Potentially deadly plumes of volcanic gas and particles are polluting the Big Island in the wake of recent eruptions Three dozen tourists were gathered at the Wailoa Sampan Basin Harbor in Hilo, Hawaii, hoping to get a glimpse of the lava that they’d seen on the news for weeks. But because Hawaii Volcanoes national park – often a key stop in travelers’ itineraries – was closed after Kilauea erupted, their best hope on Monday afternoon was taking a boat to the point where the lava met the sea. Continue reading...