Breaking Waves: Ocean News

05/22/2019 - 13:00
Aquaculture network in Victoria, maintained over 6,600 years, faces final step in recognition process A 6,600-year-old, highly sophisticated aquaculture system developed by the Gunditjmara people will be formally considered for a place on the Unesco world heritage list and, if successful, would become the first Australian site listed exclusively for its Aboriginal cultural value. Known as the Budj Bim cultural landscape, the site in south-west Victoria is home to a long dormant volcano, which was the source of the Tyrendarra lava flow. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 11:11
Despite agreeing upon climate emergency, delegates vote to back oil and gas companies More than 70 Church of Scotland delegates – including the outgoing moderator the Very Rev Susan Brown – have formally lodged their frustration at the decision of its general assembly not to divest from fossil fuels, with advocates describing Wednesday’s vote as “an embarrassing abdication of moral leadership”. Although the general assembly voted to “recognise and affirm the declarations of the Scottish government, UK parliament and others that we are experiencing a climate and ecological emergency” on Wednesday morning, a counter-motion to disinvest from oil and gas companies by 2020 was narrowly defeated. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 11:05
Fluctuations in the orbital parameters of the Earth are considered to be the trigger for long-term climatic fluctuations such as ice ages. This includes the variation of the inclination angle of the Earth's axis with a cycle of about 40,000 years. Marine scientists have now shown by using a new model that biogeochemical interactions between ocean and atmosphere could also be responsible for climate fluctuations on this time scale.
05/22/2019 - 11:05
Researchers have charted the distribution of phytoplankton in the world's oceans for the first time and investigated the environmental factors that explain this distribution. They concluded that plankton diversity is only partially congruent with previous theories of biodiversity for the seas between the equator and the poles.
05/22/2019 - 10:20
Birds brooding three eggs due to hatch in June are part of a rewilding project White storks nesting on top of an ancient oak tree could become the first wild pair to successfully breed in Britain for hundreds of years. The enormous birds are brooding three eggs on the rewilded Knepp estate, in Sussex, as part of a project to reintroduce the species to south-east England. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 05:38
UK workers must move to nine-hour week if carbon levels do not change, says thinktank People across Europe will need to work drastically fewer hours to avoid disastrous climate heating unless there is a radical decarbonising of the economy, according to a study. The research, from thinktank Autonomy, shows workers in the UK would need to move to nine-hour weeks to keep the country on track to avoid more than 2C of heating at current carbon intensity levels. Similar reductions were found to be necessary in Sweden and Germany. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 01:45
Mining giant loses its appetite for thermal coal and will turn instead to oil, copper and nickel BHP is looking to add more oil, copper and nickel resources to its portfolio, while souring on thermal coal because it thinks the fossil fuel will be phased out, “potentially sooner than expected”. BHP’s chief financial officer, Peter Beaven, told investors and analysts in a strategy briefing on Wednesday that “the world will be a very different place in 10 to 20 years’ time” and the global miner must be thoughtful about the risks and opportunities. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 01:00
We are exposed to synthetic chemicals in plastics, cosmetics and food every day. Could it be making us toxic? Our environment reporter was tested for over 1,530 chemicals to find out • Help us reach our $150,000 goal to fund this series. Make a contribution Sitting on a plastic chair in a small office, I’m wearing medical scrubs rolled up to my knees and I have an X-ray machine strapped to my shin. The machine is scanning my bones for lead as an expert monitors readings streaming on to a screen. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 01:00
Thousands of potentially harmful chemicals are in products ranging from electronics to medical equipment and carpets in the US • Help us reach our $150,000 goal to fund this series. Make a contribution Synthetic chemicals are in nearly everything we touch and consume. But some chemicals can be potentially harmful and a number of experts are anxious about possible long-term health effects of our everyday exposure. They say US regulations could be stronger. One of those who is concerned is Leo Trasande of NYU Langone Health, an expert in children’s environmental health and author of Sicker Fatter Poorer, which is about the threat of hormone-disrupting chemicals. Continue reading...
05/22/2019 - 00:00
Analysis in north-west England linked to evidence of UK’s vulnerability to climate crisis The floods of 2009 and 2015 in north-west England were the worst for more than 550 years, according to groundbreaking analysis of lake sediment in the region. Residents have long suspected that the devastating floods were the worst in living memory, but this confirmation – from an analysis of lake sediment layers – provides a unique window on to the history of flooding in one of the wettest parts of England, and reveals the global climate crisis. Continue reading...