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Updated: 45 weeks 1 day ago

New Zealand: Greenpeace welcomes Sealord’s promise to end destructive tuna fishing

Wed, 05/29/2013 - 08:44
Greenpeace: Greenpeace has today applauded a decision from New Zealand fishing brand Sealord to remove a destructing fishing method from its supply chain of canned skipjack tuna by early 2014 and urged the wider industry to follow suit. Currently Sealord buys much of its tuna from boats using purse seine nets set on Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs) – floating lures that attract far more than adult tuna. This destructive method is globally responsible for catching about 200,000 tonnes of other marine life every...
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GM salmon can breed with trout and harm ecosystem, warn scientists

Wed, 05/29/2013 - 07:24
Telegraph: The researchers fear that plans to farm a new type of GM salmon that grows faster than normal salmon may result in some of the animals escaping into streams and rivers. They conducted a study to examine the impacts that such an escape would have on natural habitats. They found that the GM salmon, which have been developed by a Canada firm and are expected to be given approval for sale as food in the US, could mate with wild brown trout. This resulted in a "hybrid' species that grew faster...
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Chris Hayes rips Chris Christie for dismissing climate change

Wed, 05/29/2013 - 03:14
Raw Story: MSNBC host Chris Hayes sharply criticized New Jersey Governor Chris Christie on Tuesday night for dismissing climate change following Hurricane Sandy. "Chris Christie is too busy preparing to serve up red meat to bother with that," he said. "With his approval rating high and his political strength in New Jersey shored up, his challenge right now is not governing, but beginning to remember how to tell the Republican base everything they want to hear. And it`s looking like climate denialism is going...
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Historic sea-level change along New Jersey coastline mapped

Wed, 05/29/2013 - 00:03
ScienceDaily: Hurricane Sandy caught the public and policymakers off guard when it hit the United States' Atlantic Coast last fall. Because much of the storm's devastation was wrought by flooding in the aftermath, researchers have been paying attention to how climate change and sea-level rise may have played a role in the disaster and how those factors may impact the shoreline in the future. A new study led by the University of Pennsylvania's Benjamin P. Horton, an associate professor in the Department of Earth...
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Rare species perform unique roles, even in diverse ecosystems

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 23:03
ScienceDaily: A new study, published 28 May in the open access journal PLOS Biology, has revealed the potential importance of rare species in the functioning of highly diverse ecosystems. Using data from three very different ecosystems -- coral reefs, tropical forests and alpine meadows -- a team of researchers led by David Mouillot at the University of Montpellier 2, France, has shown that it is primarily the rare species, rather than the more common ones, that have distinct traits involved in unique ecological...
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Antarctic polar icecap is 33.6 million years old, researchers show

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 23:03
ScienceDaily: Seasonal primary productivity of plankton communities appeared with the first ice. This phenomenon, still active today, influences global food webs. These findings, reported in the journal Science, are based on fossil records in sediment cores at different depths. The Antarctic continental ice cap came into existence during the Oligocene epoch, some 33.6 million years ago, according to data from an international expedition led by the Andalusian Institute of Earth Sciences (IACT) -- a Spanish National...
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Antarctica's ecosystem is 33 million years old

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 19:48
LiveScience: he modern ecosystem of icy Antarctica is some 33.6 million years old, new research finds, with a system dating back to the formation of the polar ice caps. The date is revealed by fossilized remnants of plankton found in Antarctic sediments, which show how plankton diversity plummeted when a big chill came along at the end of the Eocene Epoch and the beginning of the Oligocene Epoch. Before the transition, Earth was a toastier place, and a wide array of plankton survived even at the poles. The...
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Endangered sea turtles in harm's way in Gulf of Mexico

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 19:13
LA Times: Federal scientists for the first time have mapped the migration patterns and feeding grounds of Kemp's ridley sea turtle in the Gulf of Mexico, and the study reveals that the favored feeding sites for the endangered turtles overlap with the most-damaged areas of the gulf. Researchers with the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey found that the small turtles predominantly forage in waters where there is extensive commercial fishing, frequent oil spills and a well-known oxygen depletion...
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NYC and the U.S. East Coast Must Take Drastic Actions to Prevent Ocean Flooding

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 11:44
Scientific American: Thomas Abdallah has seen a lot of water in his 26 years of work for New York City's transit system. In December 1992 a nor'easter storm killed the subway's power, forcing rescue crews to evacuate passengers from flooding tunnels. In August 2007 a five-inch deluge that meteorologists called an “extreme climate event” shut down the system again. So did Hurricane Irene in August 2011. Then came Hurricane Sandy. As Sandy's storm surge began to flood downtown Manhattan last October, dozens of New York...
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Compelling conversation is the key for improving the odds on sustainability

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 09:17
Guardian: Being gloomy has never been easier. Open any newspaper and the world looks every bit like it's going to pot. Carbon levels in the atmosphere are stratospheric, literally. Freak weather-related disasters are becoming two-a-penny. One in eight people are still going to bed hungry. The apocalypse, you'd think, is nigh. Bryan Welch would like you to think otherwise. A rare breed in these doom-mongering days, 53-year-old Welch is an out-and-proud optimist. This is the man who gave his book about the...
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Mangrove conservation pays off for Kenya's coastal communities

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 05:00
Reuters: When Kahindi Charo gathered 30 of his friends to replant mangroves in the 32 square km (12 square mile) Mida Creek area, people in his village of Dabaso in Kilifi County dismissed them as crazy idlers. Charo recalls that back then, in 2000, the creek had suffered badly from unregulated harvesting that had left the area bare, with rotting stumps and patches of old mangrove trees. Today, Mida Creek, about 60 km (38 miles) north of Mombasa, flourishes with dense mangrove plantations...
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The Arctic Ice “Death Spiral”

Tue, 05/28/2013 - 04:31
Slate: It's no surprise to regular readers I am quite concerned about climate change. My concern on this issue is two-fold: one consists of the actual global consequences of the reality of global warming, and the other is the blatant manipulation of that reality by those who would deny it. These two issues overlap mightily when it comes to Arctic sea ice. The ice around the North Pole is going away, and it's doing so with alarming rapidity. I don't mean the yearly cycle of melt in the summer and freeze...
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Consumerism driving us to disaster

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 23:04
Scotsman: IMAGINE you’re at the wheel of a car and you are careering towards a cliff edge, foot hard down on the accelerator. You don’t know where the cliff is because you are blindfolded. The stuff of nightmares? It’s an analogy for our collective plight here on planet Earth in the early 21st century. The car driver is humanity speeding recklessly into the unknown; the cliff represents the descent into chaos and turmoil when climate change spins out of control. The fact that concentrations of carbon dioxide...
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Climate change: we're not doomed quite yet

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 21:34
Telegraph: Have we been granted a reprieve in the battle against global warming? If research by Alexander Otto and colleagues at Oxford University is to be believed, the climate is less sensitive to carbon emissions than we believed. Climate change is by no means over, but we may have more of a breathing space to do something about it. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s previous best estimate put “climate sensitivity” at 3C; that is, for every doubling of carbon dioxide concentrations in the...
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Here is my manifesto for rewilding the world

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 19:44
Guardian: Until modern humans arrived, every continent except Antarctica possessed a megafauna. In the Americas, alongside mastodons, mammoths, four-tusked and spiral-tusked elephants, there was a beaver the size of a black bear: eight feet from nose to tail. There were giant bison weighing two tonnes, which carried horns seven feet across. The short-faced bear stood 13ft in its hind socks. One hypothesis maintains that its astonishing size and shocking armoury of teeth and claws are the hallmarks of a...
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New FEMA Flood Maps Needed But Funding Is Slashed

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 16:35
Scientific American: As the United States grows warmer and extreme weather more common, the federal government's flood insurance maps are becoming increasingly important. The maps, drawn by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, dictate the monthly premiums millions of American households pay for flood insurance. They are also designed to give homeowners and buyers the latest understanding of how likely their communities are to flood. The government's response to the rising need for accurate maps? It's slashed...
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How nature writing can make us care

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 15:23
New Scientist: Ginkgo: The tree that time forgot by Peter Crane Published by: Yale University Press Price: £25 The Global Pigeon by Colin Jerolmack Published by: University of Chicago Press Price: $27.50 Looking for the Goshawk by Conor Mark Jameson Published by: Bloomsbury Price: £18.99 NATURE writing is being touted as a new literary genre for new times. Most of us live in towns and cities but we are all keen naturalists now - at least by proxy. The more remote our physical relationship with the natural...
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Climate researchers discover new rhythm for El Niño

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 14:48
ScienceDaily: El Niño wreaks havoc across the globe, shifting weather patterns that spawn droughts in some regions and floods in others. The impacts of this tropical Pacific climate phenomenon are well known and documented. A mystery, however, has remained despite decades of research: Why does El Niño always peak around Christmas and end quickly by February to April? Now there is an answer: An unusual wind pattern that straddles the equatorial Pacific during strong El Niño events and swings back and forth...
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New York beaches open despite Superstorm Sandy scars

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 14:00
Associated Press: Not all the repairs are finished, not all the sand is replaced and not every nearby business has recovered. But seven months after Superstorm Sandy devastated hundreds of miles of shoreline, most of New York's beaches are officially open this Memorial Day weekend. After a cleanup effort that cost tens of millions of dollars, visitors from the Rockaways to the Hamptons will be able to enjoy miles of seashores that have been groomed and cleaned up by volunteers and work crews. In some places,...
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Oil spill restoration overseers release draft plan

Mon, 05/27/2013 - 14:00
Associated Press: There's now a draft plan for using fines from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill to restore the Gulf Coast's natural resources and economy. But the document released Thursday doesn't include two items required by federal law: a 10-year allocation plan or a three-year priority list of projects and programs, The Times-Picayune (http://bit.ly11jC0Vt ) reports. There are several reasons, according to the 20-page "draft initial comprehensive plan" released Thursday by The Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration...
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