EnvironmentNews

Ghana

Trawler Fined $1 Million in Ghana

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-16 18:45:46

A trawler has been apprehended in Ghanaian waters having caught at least 13.9 tonnes of small pelagic fish in a single day, using illegal nets.  The small-mesh nets found on board – which are illegal for an industrial trawler – indicate that the vessel was specifically targeting small pelagics. Analysis of the catch also showed that a significant proportion were undersized juveniles.   The small pelagic fish populations, known as the “people's fish,” are the main catch of local canoe...

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Research Vessel Encounters Giant Methane Seep in Arctic Waters

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-08 21:42:55

Researchers from Tomsk Polytechnic University reported Monday that they have found an "unusually powerful" methane seep in the remote East Siberian Sea.  The team - comprised of TPU faculty and scientists from other Russian research institutions - is on a mission to study the environmental impact of melting permafrost. Subsea permafrost is similar to permafrost on shore, but underwater; it is found in shallow-water areas of the Arctic continental shelf, including areas of the Beaufort Sea and waters of the...

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Credit: NOAA

Fast Facts: How do Hurricanes Form?

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-06 19:14:02

Hurricanes form over the ocean, often beginning as a tropical wave - a low pressure area that moves through the moisture-rich tropics, possibly enhancing shower and thunderstorm activity. Hurricanes are powerhouse weather events that suck heat from tropical waters to fuel their fury. These violent storms form over the ocean, often beginning as a tropical wave - a low pressure area that moves through the moisture-rich tropics, possibly enhancing shower and thunderstorm activity. As this weather system moves westward across...

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Credit: University of Sheffield

Japan’s New Sea Defenses Fail to “Imagine the Future”

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-06 19:03:53

The Japanese government’s “failure to imagine the future” means its new sea defenses could be overwhelmed in the face of tsunamis made more destructive by rising sea levels, according to academics at the University of Sheffield in the U.K. Researchers at the University’s School of East Asian Studies found that the Japanese government did not account for global heating-driven sea level rises in its recommendations after the devastating earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011. In a paper published in...

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B.C.'s Wild Salmon Fisheries Give Up MSC Certification

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-04 21:56:03

Canada's wild salmon fisheries are voluntarily giving up their Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification, the most popular "sustainable" label for seafood.  An audit in 2018 found that the Canadian Pacific coast salmon fisheries were not on track to meet nine out of 22 required remedial conditions related to stock assessments, fishery monitoring and reducing the impact of hatchery fish on the wild population. With insufficient progress since, the fishery was effectively pushed out of MSC certification, a representative of the...

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Credit: Sea Shepherd

The Gambia Arrests Fourth Trawler

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-02 02:16:34

The Gambian Department of Fisheries and The Gambia Navy operating on board the Sea Shepherd vessel Sam Simon have arrested a trawler for fishing in an area reserved for artisanal fishermen. The fishing vessel Niam Niokho was arrested for several counts of fishing within The Gambia’s nine-nautical mile Special Management Area in less than a month. The incursions were confirmed both by the vessels’ own fishing log book as well as the fisheries observer’s fishing log. The Niam Niokho is...

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Cigarette and cigarette filter found on the beach at Sandy Point State Park, MD. (Photo Credit: NOAA)

Fast Facts: What is the Most Common Form of Ocean Litter?

By The Maritime Executive 2019-09-29 00:28:32

Broken bottles, plastic toys, food wrappers ... during a walk along the coast one finds any of these items, and more. In all that litter, there is one item more common than any other: cigarette butts. Cigarette butts are a pervasive, long-lasting, and a toxic form of marine debris. They primarily reach our waterways through improper disposal on beaches, rivers, and anywhere on land, transported to our coasts by runoff and stormwater. Once butts reach the beach, they may impact...

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Arctic Sea Ice Shrinks to Minimum Extent for 2019

By The Maritime Executive 2019-09-24 02:08:01

Arctic sea ice has likely reached its minimum extent for the year, at 4.15 million square kilometers (1.60 million square miles) on September 18, 2019, according to scientists at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) at the University of Colorado Boulder.  The 2019 minimum is ranked at second lowest in the 41-year satellite record, effectively tied with 2007 and 2016. The minimum extent was reached four days later than the 1981 to 2010 median minimum date of September...

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file photo

Six Percent of Fishing Nets Lost Annually

By The Maritime Executive 2019-09-22 20:57:31

An estimate of commercial fishing gear lost in the world's oceans has been published by CSIRO, Australia's national science agency. Using data from 68 studies published between 1975 and 2017, researchers estimates that six percent of all fishing nets, nine percent of all traps and 29 percent of all lines are lost or discarded into our oceans each year. Fishing gear loss due to bad weather was the most commonly reported cause of loss (69 percent). Gear conflict was the...

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Credit: EJF

NOAA Reports on IUU Fishing

By The Maritime Executive 2019-09-21 18:21:55

NOAA Fisheries has released its 2019 Improving International Fisheries Management Report to Congress identifying nations with vessels reported to be engaged in illegal, unreported or unregulated (IUU) fishing activities globally.    Mexico, Ecuador and Russia were identified in the 2017 Report for reported IUU fishing activities but have since taken corrective actions to remedy those activities. However, in the 2019 Report, Mexico and Ecuador are again identified for reported IUU fishing activities (occurring in 2016-2018).  Mexico was also identified for...

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