Breaking Waves: Ocean News

02/02/2023 - 16:59
Large volumes of traps, nets and marine debris in sperm whale’s intestinal tract highlight plastic pollution’s threat to wildlife A sperm whale that washed ashore in Hawaii over the weekend probably died in part because it ate large volumes of fishing traps, fishing nets, plastic bags and other marine debris, scientists said on Thursday, highlighting the threat to wildlife from the millions of tons of plastic that ends up in oceans every year. The body of the 56ft (17-meter) long, 120,000-pound (54,000kg) animal was first noticed on a reef off Kauai on Friday. High tide brought it ashore on Saturday. Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 14:35
Nearly 14,000 people from two Nigerian communities are seeking justice in the high court in London against the fossil fuel giant Shell, claiming it is responsible for devastating pollution of their water sources and destruction of their way of life. The individuals from the Niger delta area of Ogale, a farming community, joined more than 2,000 people from the Bille area, a large fishing community. Shell have been operating on the Niger delta for over 80 years and recently announced that they will be ceasing all operations. The oil company made record-breaking profits in 2022, generating over $32bn in the first three quarters. The oil giant are arguing that they are not responsible for a clean-up of Nigerian communities for spills that they say were caused by criminal gangs over five years ago. Lawyers representing the fishing villages argue that the scale of oil spills in the delta masks a human tragedy on an extraordinary scale Nearly 14,000 Nigerians take Shell to court over devastating impact of pollution Calls for bigger windfall tax after Shell makes ‘obscene’ $40bn profit Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 11:27
Small isolated wetlands that are full for only part of the year are often the first to be removed for development or agriculture, but a new study shows that they can be twice as effective in protecting downstream lake or river ecosystems than if they were connected to them.
02/02/2023 - 10:49
Sir Richard Kleinwort has not given permission for viable walking and cycling route between Burgess Hill and Haywards Heath An aristocrat is at odds with his local council after blocking plans for a green walkway linking two Sussex towns through his estate, which would give children a safe route to walk or cycle home from school. Local people complain that to travel between Burgess Hill and Haywards Heath, they have to use two winding country roads with no pavements and fast traffic. Mid Sussex district council has proposed a “green path” through the lush fields and pretty woodland of the nearby area, where people could walk and cycle. Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 09:00
Moree Plains company found guilty of knowingly taking water with faulty metering equipment for crops such as cotton Sign up for the Rural Network email newsletter Join the Rural Network group on Facebook to be part of the community A Moree Plains irrigator has been ordered to pay a record $350,000 in fines after pleading guilty to knowingly taking water, using an under-recording meter system and constructing an unlawful dam. It is the first time a “tier one” offence has been successfully prosecuted by the Natural Resources Access Regulator (NRAR). Sign up to receive Guardian Australia’s fortnightly Rural Network email newsletter Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 06:48
An online tour is being launched of an enclosure on the Holnicote estate in Somerset that is home to a family of five beavers. In what is billed as the first of its kind, the tour allows viewers to navigate through the 2.7-acre Exmoor enclosure where two adult beavers and their three offspring live. Other wildlife captured include kingfishers, stoats, roe deer and bull finches, all of which are believed to have benefited from the changes the beavers are making to the area Somerset estate offers rare peek into life of beavers with launch of online tour Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 06:00
A wave of unionization has swept the non-profit sector – but workers say they are experiencing aggressive opposition and retaliation Workers at some of the top environmental organizations in the US are calling out their managers as “incredibly hypocritical” as they argue the progressive non-profits are fighting workers’ efforts to unionize. A wave of unionization efforts has swept the non-profit sector as part of a renewed national enthusiasm for unionization. Shortly into the Covid-19 pandemic, workers at 350.org, Sunrise Movement, the National Audubon Society, Defenders of Wildlife, Greenpeace USA, the Public Interest Network and the Center for Biological Diversity unionized. Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 06:00
The energy industry is turning waste from dairy farms into renewable natural gas – but will it actually reduce emissions? On an early August afternoon at Pinnacle Dairy, a farm located near the middle of California’s long Central Valley, 1,300 Jersey cows idle in the shade of open-air barns. Above them whir fans the size of satellites, circulating a breeze as the temperature pushes 100F (38C). Underfoot, a wet layer of feces emits a thick stench that hangs in the air. Just a tad unpleasant, the smell represents a potential goldmine. The energy industry is transforming mounds of manure into a lucrative “carbon negative fuel” capable of powering everything from municipal buses to cargo trucks. To do so, it’s turning to dairy farms, which offer a reliable, long-term supply of the material. Pinnacle is just one of hundreds across the state that have recently sold the rights to their manure to energy producers. Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 05:33
Co-author of paper says results have implications for anyone who has to think hard in polluted areas Chess experts make more mistakes when air pollution is high, a study has found. Experts used computer models to analyse the quality of games played and found that with a modest increase in fine particulate matter, the probability that chess players would make an error increased by 2.1 percentage points, and the magnitude of those errors increased by 10.8%. Continue reading...
02/02/2023 - 05:19
Retailer and green groups warn of ‘high environmental cost’ of fish aggregating devices to tuna stocks and other endangered marine life The EU is under pressure to significantly restrict its huge fleet of fishing vessels from using “fish aggregating devices” that make it easier to catch huge numbers of fish and contribute further to overfishing. A letter signed by Marks & Spencer and more than 100 environmental groups, including the International Pole and Line Foundation, warns EU officials that the devices (FADs) are one of the main contributors to overfishing of yellowfin tuna in the Indian Ocean, because they catch high numbers of juveniles. Continue reading...