Environment and Climate Change

When the Beach Is Out of Reach—Coastal Access Becomes a Growing Concern

As Americans crowd toward the coasts, states and municipalities are caught in passionate battles about public access, while lawsuits seem headed for the U.S. Supreme Court. Timothy B. Clark Route Fifty NORTHEAST HARBOR — Maine, it is said, has more coastline than any other state. Measured along the twists and turns of countless coves and inlets, the coast stretches 3,478 miles, a few more than California’s—and over 5,000 miles if one counts the shorelines of… But Maine does not grant the ... Read More »

Father and son’s incredible close encounter with ocean giants

A Victorian father and son have shared an incredible close encounter with some gentle giants of the sea. 9news Drew Woods and his seven-year-old son Ollie were about to head out to paddleboard off the coast of Shoreham, on the Mornington Peninsula, about midday yesterday when something caught their eye in the distance. Mr Woods and Ollie raced out about 500m on the boards to where two southern right whales were swimming. A professional cameraman friend of the family was ... Read More »

Weak hand at helm as Australia drifts upon stormy regional seas

Political turmoil compels leadership to prioritize domestic survival, rather than the greatest series of foreign policy challenges Canberra has faced in decades. By LACHLAN COLQUHOUN Asia Times Australia faces arguably its greatest series of regional foreign policy challenges in decades – including, most notably, how to balance its relations with a rising China – but political turmoil is hampering a coherent and committed response. New Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison recently visited Indonesia to ink a new trade deal, while Foreign ... Read More »

Chevron wins Ecuador rainforest ‘oil dumping’ case

An international tribunal in The Hague has ruled in favour of the US oil company, Chevron, in an environmental dispute with the government of Ecuador. BBC Chevron had been ordered to pay $9.5bn (£7.4bn) compensation to thousands of residents in Ecuador’s Amazon region. They accused the company of dumping toxic waste in local lakes and rivers of the Lago Agrio region for decades. The court said that the 2011 Ecuador Supreme Court ruling had been obtained through fraud, bribery and ... Read More »

‘A moral obligation’ – MCG goes carbon neutral for finals season

Few images are as emblematic of Melbourne as the MCG, floodlit and heaving with tens of thousands of punters.  Packed to the rafters. But this spectacle comes at a cost. Joe Hinchliffe The Age Have you ever wondered how much electricity is consumed to power those light towers? Or how much carbon is emitted in transporting those fans to the ground, heating their pies, cooling their beers or frying their chips? The Melbourne Cricket Club, which runs the venue, has. ... Read More »

UN Begins Talks on World’s First Treaty to Regulate High Seas

UNITED NATIONS, Sep 7 2018 (IPS) – After several years of preliminary discussions, the United Nations has begun its first round of inter-governmental negotiations to draft the world’s first legally binding treaty to protect and regulate the “high seas”—which, by definition, extend beyond 200 nautical miles (370… Thalif Deen “The high seas cover half our planet and are vital to the functioning of the whole ocean and all life on Earth. The current high seas governance system is weak, fragmented ... Read More »

Iran and Turkey Divert Iraq’s River Waters, Leaving Iraq on the Brink of Catastrophe

Global attention has been focused on the strained Ethiopian-Egyptian relations due to the construction of the Renaissance Dam by Ethiopia on the Blue Nile, whose reservoir – once filled – will probably lower the… Col. (ret) Dr. Jacques Neriah Institute for Contemporary Affairs But little attention has been given to the brewing conflict over the Tigris (Dajla in Arabic) and Euphrates (Furat in Arabic) waters, both iconic rivers on which Iraq’s existence in both ancient and… Deadly riots in Iraq’s ... Read More »

Peruvian villagers face murder and intimidation from land traffickers

Invaders continue to seize land within the Chaparrí ecological reserve, one of Peru’s most biodiverse forests Rajmonda Rexhi and Matthew Weaver in El Mirador, Peru The Guardian hortly after sunset, along an isolated stretch of highway leading out of a dusty hamlet in northern Peru, a band of five weary farmers clad in reflective neon vests and armed with traditional whips made of bull penises set out on a solemn march. The Ronderos – self-governing peasant patrols – are resuming ... Read More »

Coast Guard interdicts lancha crew illegally fishing in U.S. waters

Coast Guard crews from Corpus Christi interdicted a Mexican lancha crew illegally fishing in waters off the Texas coast on Sunday. KRIS Communications According to the Coast Guard, four fishermen onboard the boat were detained and turned over to Border Patrol for processing. Coast Guard also seized 113 red snapper and two sharks from the vessel. A lancha is a fishing boat used by Mexican fishermen that is approximately 20 to 30 feet long, with a slender profile, typically has ... Read More »

Chilean Navy captures Peruvian vessel fishing in Exclusive Economic Zone

SANTIAGO – During a surveillance patrol, the Chilean Navy captured the fourteenth foreign vessel in the early hours of Friday morning, which was fishing in waters belonging to the Exclusive Economic Zone of the… The Santiago Times While the Maritime Zone Patrol Officer OPV-84 “Cabo Odger”, dependent of the Fourth Naval Zone, carried out surveillance operations, it detected a Peruvian minor vessel within the Exclusive National Economic Zone, 172 kilometers west of… The fishing vessel named “Jean Anthony” was inspected ... Read More »

MAPPED: Where can the British and French fish for scallops? Where are the boundaries?

A SCALLOPS war has broken out over the English Channel, with British and French vessels clashing in angry exchanges over capture of the valuable shellfish. Where can they fish for scallops and what are the boundaries? Paul Withers Express This map from the Government shows the territorial sea limits of the UK, Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. In particular in the latest outbreak with fishermen from across the channel, it illustrates a clear red line there the UK-France ... Read More »

How Brazil can beat the odds and restore a huge swathe of the Amazon

Over the past few decades the international community has watched as the destruction of Earth’s largest forest has intensified. Authors: The Conversation Deforestation has been eating away at the Amazon’s fringes, mainly for commercial cattle ranching and agricultural plantation. The agriculture, livestock, mining and infrastructure sectors have been promoted due to powerful financial and development pressures for high profits and economic growth. Meanwhile, indigenous peoples, traditional communities and smallholders have had their livelihoods imperilled, while carbon emissions have increased, water ... Read More »

Will John McCain be the last Republican leader in the Senate to address climate change?

“He was just doing his job.” When I asked a longtime staffer to Sen. John McCain why the senator battled to address climate change in the early 2000s, that was his answer. Tim Profeta The Conversation A simple answer, but one essential to understanding how McCain led those early efforts to combat the challenge when no one else would step forward. Although others had brought climate change as an issue to the Senate, McCain, a Republican, and democratic Sen. Joseph ... Read More »

Taiwanese fishing boat investigated after being caught in NZ waters

The Navy was involved in drama on the high seas, after sailors and fisheries officials boarded a Taiwanese-flagged vessel in New Zealand waters. Andrea Vance stuff The Yi Rong No.6 was spotted close to the Kermadec Islands, in New Zealand’s exclusive economic zone, earlier this month. A crew from the offshore patrol vessel HMNZS Otago went aboard the Taiwanese boat on August 9 and spent two hours inspecting it. The ship wasn’t illegally fishing in New Zealand waters – but fisheries officers did ... Read More »

Al Gore, missionary man

For someone warning of dangers of climate apocalypse, former US vice president is surprisingly upbeat. By MATTHEW KARNITSCHNIG Politico BERLIN — Al Gore spent a year in divinity school as a young man, but he was well into middle age by the time he found his calling as a climate preacher. Now 70, and both grayer and portlier than when he was a full-time politician, America’s almost-president travels the world to raise awareness about climate change and what mankind can do ... Read More »

North Korean fishing in Japan’s economic zone drops 77%

Early patrol by coast guard ahead of squid season pays off MIO SADAKATA, Nikkei staff writer Asian Review TOKYO — North Korean boats fishing illegally in a vital part of Japan’s exclusive economic zone appear to have decreased almost 80% on the year in July, after the Japan Coast Guard began issuing earlier warnings ahead of prime squid season. The Yamatotai area of the Sea of Japan, about 300 km northwest of the Noto Peninsula in Ishikawa Prefecture, offers ideal ... Read More »