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Red Sea Corals may be Resilient to Climate Change

By Sonia Altzitser 2019-04-21 19:37:44

In recent decades, many coral reefs around the world have been suffering tremendous damages as a result of global climate change. Climbing greenhouse gas emissions do not only cause a rise in average global temperature and more extreme weather events but also cause the oceans to become warmer and more acidic. What follows are mass bleaching events like those that wreaked havoc on the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) in Australia between 2016 and 2017. At that time 30 percent of...

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NOAA: Hurricane Michael was a Category 5 Storm

By MarEx 2019-04-19 14:35:57

On Friday, NOAA's National Hurricane Center announced that after a thorough analysis of data, it has determined that Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle as a Category 5 storm last year, not a Category 4.  The change makes Michael the fourth Category 5 hurricane to reach the U.S. in recorded history, and the first since Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Michael is also the strongest hurricane landfall on record in the Florida Panhandle. Michael made landfall near Panama City,...

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Credit: Rob Camp / Marine Biological Association

Rise in Ocean Plastics Evidenced in 60-Year Time Series

By MarEx 2019-04-16 21:41:42

Scientists from the University of Plymouth and the Marine Biological Association have confirmed the significant increase in open-ocean plastics in recent decades using records of entanglement of plankton research equipment. In a research paper published in the journal Nature Communications, the researchers present 60 years of data collected over 6.5 million nautical miles from the North Atlantic demonstrating a significant increase in larger plastic items such as bags, rope and netting (macroplastics) from 1957 to 2016. The findings are based...

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Credit: EJF

Co-op, Sainsbury’s and Tesco Sign IUU and Slavery Charter

By MarEx 2019-04-13 21:38:33

Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Co-op are the first to sign the Environmental Justice Foundation’s Charter for Transparency, designed to help supermarkets ensure their seafood supply chains are free from illegal fishing and human rights abuse. Together these major retailers make up over half of all groceries sales in the U.K.  The NGO says it is also having positive discussions with several other supermarkets and hopes to announce further commitments soon.  Out at sea and far from law enforcement, crew are vulnerable,...

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Credit: Jorge Martinez / FFI

Women Empowered by Turtle Conservation Program

By MarEx 2019-04-13 20:01:48

Every year thousands of turtles come ashore along the beaches of the south Pacific coast of Nicaragua to lay their eggs. The female turtles return to the beaches on which they were born to lay an average of 100 ping-pong ball shaped eggs into nest holes dug out of the sand. The beaches in this region are of global importance for nesting turtles, including endangered olive ridley turtles, and critically endangered Pacific leatherback and hawksbill turtles. However the eggs are...

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New Study Finds GHG Benefit for LNG as a Marine Fuel

By MarEx 2019-04-12 19:51:30

SEA\LNG and the Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel have sponsored a new study by consultancy Thinkstep on LNG's total greenhouse gas emissions profile, from well to wake. The analysis determined that compared with HFO, LNG delivers lifecycle greenhouse gas emission reductions of between 14 and 21 percent for two-stroke engines. Burning LNG can reduce on-board CO2 emissions by as much as 30 percent. The full "well-to-wake" lifecycle of gas production, liquefaction, transport and utilization of LNG as a...

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Fuel Cells Tested for First-Ever Hydrogen Hybrid Ferry Conversion

By ABB 2019-04-11 11:36:35

ABB and the SINTEF Ocean laboratory in Trondheim will assess how fuel cells and batteries can best function together for short-distance ferry operations, and how Fiskerstrand can integrate them with other engine room systems. The tests will also provide insight into the introduction of hydrogen fuel cells for future reviews of the rules covering shipboard use of hydrogen. The tests will simulate the conditions the ferry is expected to encounter on a high frequency 10km route to ensure that the...

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Nordic Council meeting 2019

Nordic Countries Call for Ocean Plastic Treaty

By MarEx 2019-04-10 20:20:12

Nordic governments have become the first in the world to formally call for a global treaty to tackle ocean plastic. The call was made at a gathering of the environment ministers of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden at the Nordic Council in Reykjavik, Iceland.  In the declaration, the ministers for the environment are pushing for a global agreement on plastic. The declaration, which has been sent to E.U. governing bodies, UNEP, the G7 and the G20, also asks the...

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"Magic Pipe" MARPOL Violations Can Be Spotted from Space

By MarEx 2019-04-08 20:23:00

Environmental monitoring organization SkyTruth watches for illegal activity using satellite data, and over the past several years, they've made it clear that "magic pipe" bilge water disposal can no longer be hidden at sea.  Bypassing the ship's oily water separator to dump bilge waste is an illegal but relatively common practice. In the United States, it is one of the most frequently prosecuted maritime crimes, thanks to generous whistleblower awards, the ease of finding physical evidence and an enthusiasm for MARPOL enforcement....

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Reprieve for Great Barrier Reef Sharks

By MarEx 2019-04-02 02:10:28

Australia's Administrative Appeals Tribunal has ruled in favor of Humane Society International and ordered an end to the lethal culling of sharks in the Great Barrier Reef.  The Tribunal found that killing sharks does not reduce the risk of unprovoked shark interactions. They found the scientific evidence to be "overwhelming in this regard." The ruling applies to killing by gunshot and also introduces changes to how drumlines are managed. The Tribunal ordered that drumlines must be checked more frequently, preferably...

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