Breaking Waves: Ocean News

05/19/2022 - 12:35
Ocean Leadership ~ Twenty Teams Competed in 25th Annual National Science Competition (Washington, D.C.) – Last week, students from Canyon Crest Academy in San Diego, California, won the National Finals of the 25th Annual National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB). An interdisciplinary ocean science education program of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, the NOSB tests students’ knowledge of ocean science topics, including cross-disciplines of biology, chemistry, policy, physics, and geology. This year, due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis, students competed in a hybrid competition season culminating in two-weeks of online competition, mentoring, and interactive “field trip” events as part of NOSB Finals. Students on the championship team include Mason Holmes, Emily Zhang, Andrew Kuang, Andrew Zhang, and Shrey Goel (team photo right). They are coached by Mary Holmes. For this year’s theme, Climate Change: Ocean Science and Solutions, students studied up on the interconnected processes influencing Earth’s climate at global and regional scales, the impacts of climate change, and the opportunities and approaches to adaptation or mitigation. In total, more than 220 teams (made up of more than 1,100 students representing nearly 30 states) participated, adding to the over than 40,000 students who have passed through the ocean sciences competition over the last 25 years. A full list of the 2022 NOSB Finals participants is available here. “This year was a very special year for the NOSB. For a quarter of a century, this program has been an invaluable educational experience for high school students,” said Dr. Alan Leonardi, President and CEO of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership. “We’re especially pleased this year to be endorsed by the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, which shares the NOSB’s goal to build ocean scientific literacy in the next generation. Our global ocean is an interconnected system facing an urgent threat, and this year’s NOSB students will be uniquely suited to solving the challenges climate change poses. Congratulations to our winning team from Canyon Crest Academy, as well as every student who participated this year.” Through buzzer-style, multiple-choice questions and open-ended team challenge questions, students tested their general knowledge of ocean science and showcased what they learned about the ways that the biggest driver of climate, the ocean, impacts and is impacted in turn by climate change, as well as the myriad ways that modern science can mitigate those impacts. Teams also presented science recommendations on a piece of legislation in the Science Expert Briefing (SEB), a mock congressional hearing that enhances the critical thinking elements of the competition and focuses on real-world skills. The top eight teams at the Finals Competition were: 1st Place – Canyon Crest Academy (San Diego, California) 2nd Place – Dougherty Valley High School (San Ramon, California) 3rd Place – Lexington High School (Lexington, Massachusetts) 4th Place – Tesla STEM High School (Redmond, Washington) 5th Place – Ladue Horton Watkins High School (St. Louis, Missouri) 6th Place – Midwood High School (New York, New York) 7th Place – Santa Monica High School (Santa Monica, California) 8th Place – Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (Alexandria, Virginia) In addition to the quiz bowl-style competition questions, participants were scored separately on their performance in the SEB. Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (Alexandria, Virginia) won this portion of the competition, while Canyon Crest Academy (San Diego, California) came in second and Lexington High School (Lexington, Massachusetts) came third. “Ocean science is an interdisciplinary field, so it has always been important that the NOSB reflect that, from the topics we have students study to the career development we offer,” shared Kristen Yarincik, NOSB Program Director. “The NOSB doesn’t just create smart students, it creates smart communicators, problem solvers, and leaders. Thousands of students have participated over the past 25 years, taking what they learn from NOSB back to their communities and teaching them in turn, growing the impact of this program beyond just the competition. I am immensely proud of this year’s students and would like to thank the Regional Coordinators, volunteers, and supporters who helped make this competition year possible.” For the first time since 2019, NOSB will be offering in-person experiential summer award trips for the top three finishing teams. These award trips are important as they inform students about different aquatic and marine environments, research topics of interest to the local university host, conservation issues of the local area, and the wealth of available career paths. During these trips, the teams will participate in a variety of hands-on activities and tours related to aquatic and ocean science, research, and conservation. The first- and second-place teams will choose between a trip to Milwaukee, Wisconsin (with assistance from the Lake Sturgeon Bowl hosted by the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee) and San Diego, California (with assistance from the Garibaldi Bowl hosted by the University of San Diego). The third-place team, as well as the team who placed highest in the SEB, will both visit Washington, D.C. Team members and coaches of the fourth- through eighth-place teams will receive gift certificates to Amazon and ninth- through twelfth-place teams will receive ocean science books. Additionally, all Finals team coaches will receive a one-year membership to the National Marine Educators Association. The 2022 national NOSB program is made possible through the following major sponsors: U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Schmidt Ocean Institute U.S. National Academies of Science, Gulf Research Program U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) American Honda Foundation Curtis and Edith Munson Foundation Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Marine Mammal Commission Marine Technology Society IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society Vineyard Wind MacGregor Global National Renewable Energy Laboratory National Marine Educators Association A complete list of sponsors can be found here:  https://nosb.org/2022-finals-competition/#sponsors For more information about NOSB, visit www.nosb.org. The post Canyon Crest Academy Takes Gold In Silver Anniversary of National Ocean Sciences Bowl Finals appeared on Consortium for Ocean Leadership.
05/19/2022 - 12:30
Despite the growth of renewable energy, Australia’s per capita coal emissions of 4.04 tonnes a year is nearly four times the global average Get our free news app; get our morning email briefing Australia had the highest levels of greenhouse gas pollution from coal per person than any other developed country in 2021, according to new data. But the data shows per capita greenhouse gas emissions from coal fell sharply last year, with a surge in solar and wind energy seeing per capita rates drop well below the average of the previous five years. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 12:30
Proposed EPA to collect data on the plight of the country’s wildlife as Labor commits to global biodiversity targets Follow our Australia news live blog for the latest updates Election 2022 seat explorer; Pork-o-meter election promises tracker Guardian Australia’s full federal election coverage Get our free news app; get our morning email briefing Labor will establish an independent environment protection agency to enforce national conservation laws and collect data on the plight of the country’s wildlife if it wins the election. An Albanese government would also promise to give an annual ministerial statement on Australia’s role in international negotiations on environmental issues, suggesting it would look to play a leadership role at global biodiversity talks and on issues such as whale protection. Sign up to receive an email with the top stories from Guardian Australia every morning Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 11:47
Peter Muchlinksi, Robert Cooper and Andy Bradley respond to the Guardian’s exposé of big oil’s fossil fuel projects that are a colossal threat to the climate and human life Your exposé on the dangers of fossil fuel “carbon bombs” (Revealed: the ‘carbon bombs’ set to trigger catastrophic climate breakdown, 11 May) gives us much to worry about. I would like to offer a small ray of hope. Last year, The Hague’s district court held that Royal Dutch Shell was obliged to reduce the group’s CO2 emissions by a net 45% by the end of 2030 relative to 2019. Shell was found to have a legal duty of care to do so, based on the relevant facts of the case, the best available science on climate change and how to manage it, and “the widespread international consensus that human rights offer protection against the impacts of dangerous climate change and that companies must respect human rights”. This linkage between climate change and human rights is a major step towards acknowledging that fossil-fuel-based industries are a significant threat to human rights. It offers a basis for mass legal challenges against the purveyors of carbon bombs. Sadly, the UK and other governments don’t see it this way and continue to subsidise such projects. In this, they may well be complicit in mass violations of human rights. Uncontrolled fossil fuel investment should be seen as a direct threat to the human right to life, and the law should impose severe financial penalties on firms and governments that continue to invest in carbon bomb projects. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 11:23
Demonstrators rejecting algal bloom explanation for wash-ups on England’s north-east coast call for investigation to be reopened About 25 fishing boats have sailed into the mouth of the River Tees while setting off flares and fireworks in a protest over mass marine deaths that are ruining livelihoods as well as being a “huge ecological disaster”. More than 200 well-wishers, many representing conservation and environmental campaigns, cheered from the shore, chanted “Stop the sludge” and sang protest songs. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 10:51
Fewer laying birds are being placed on farms as producers respond to poor retail profit margins Consumers could be hit with higher egg prices as UK farmers reduce their flock numbers, in response to escalating costs and insufficient profit margins. The numbers of chicks being placed by egg producers in April was down 15% year on year, according to the latest government figures. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 10:51
Exclusive: Pollutants can upset body’s metabolic thermostat with some even causing obesity to be passed on to children Chemical pollution in the environment is supersizing the global obesity epidemic, according to a major scientific review. The idea that the toxins called “obesogens” can affect how the body controls weight is not yet part of mainstream medicine. But the dozens of scientists behind the review argue that the evidence is now so strong that it should be. “This is critical because the current clinical management of obese patients is woefully inadequate,” they said. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 10:00
New research suggests the cetaceans may be self-medicating for their skin ailments, adding to evidence of the medicinal properties of some corals and sponges Who doesn’t like a bath scrub? Dolphins definitely do: they are known for being clever, playful, tactile animals, and they like to rub against rough surfaces, nap in coral beds and soak on sponges like guests at an underwater spa. However, dolphins may be getting more from their bath scrubs than just relaxation and leisure. A study published today suggests that bottlenose dolphins may be self-medicating their skin ailments with the help of corals, adding to growing research on their previously unexplored medicinal properties. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 07:17
International experts who analyzed more than 1,200 scientific studies warn chemicals are being consumed with unknown long-term impacts Scientists have identified more than 3,000 potentially harmful chemicals that can be found in food packaging and other food-related materials, two-thirds of which were not previously known to be in contact with food. An international group of scientists analyzed more than 1,200 scientific studies where chemicals had been measured in food packaging, processing equipment, tableware and reusable food containers. Continue reading...
05/19/2022 - 07:00
While alarm over wildfires, droughts, flooding and societal unrest is on the rise, not many of us talk about climate angst This article contains a description of a suicide It was a stunning, grisly act. A man, a climate activist and Buddhist, had set himself on fire on the steps of the US supreme court. He sat upright and didn’t immediately scream despite the agony. Police officers desperately plunged nearby orange traffic cones into the court’s marbled fountain and hurled water at him. It wasn’t enough to save him. The death of Wynn Bruce, a 50-year-old photographer who lived in Boulder, Colorado, was a shock to those who knew him. “It was so upsetting,” said April Lyons, a psychotherapist who knew Bruce from a therapeutic dance class they both took. “He was a solid person, a compassionate, kind person. We had no idea he’d do this.” Continue reading...