Minggu, 28 Februari 2021

Five Reasons Why Sea Vegetables Could Be The Future Of Produce - Forbes

sea.indah.link

The world of sea vegetables or sea greens is not limited to the seaweed in your miso soup or the wrapping around you sushi.

Green sea vegetables, such as sea lettuce, red sea vegetables, such as nori and dulse, and brown sea vegetables, such as arame, hijiki, kombu and wakame have become all the rage.

Food processors, caterers, restaurants and specialty and health food retailers have showed a greater interest in sea vegetables as consumers have become aware of their health and nutritional benefits. It’s no surprise that The Independent listed seaweed as its number one food trend for 2021.

According to the most recent figures from the Food and Agriculture Organization (2020), worldwide aquaculture production, including sea vegetables, recently reached an all-time high of 114.5 million metric tons in "live weight," representing a market value of almost $264 billion.

Here are five reasons why sea vegetables could soon be the future of produce.

They are better for the environment

As the soil faces more intense pressure from factory farming practices, farmers will seek to put less pressure on the land. Sea vegetables can play an important role in reducing the carbon emissions associated with food by sequestering carbon from the atmosphere.

MORE FOR YOU

Sea vegetables can grow in tanks or in the ocean and have a much smaller carbon footprint than land vegetables. They are also low waste, with the edible portion for sea purslane ranging from 55 per cent, 72 per cent for the sea asparagus and 75 per cent for saltwort.

Recent studies have also shown that adding red seaweed to cow feed could cut bovine flatulence and cut cows' methane production by up to 98 per cent.

They are more nutritious than land vegetables

Sea vegetables are packed with protein, iodine, fiber and vitamins A, B, C and E in amounts that are 10 to 20 times higher than land vegetables.

Trace minerals that we need for our bodies to function make up about 7 to 38 percent of the dry weight of sea vegetables, with the most significant of these being iodine, calcium, phosphorous, iron and sodium. As soils continue to decline in micro-nutrients due to factory farming practices, the nutrition gap between sea vegetables and land vegetables is likely to increase.

Sea vegetables are rich in antioxidants that support cardiovascular health, stabilize blood-sugar levels and provide anti-inflammatory benefits.

They are trendy

Marine macroalgae or seaweed aquaculture is the fastest-growing segment of global food production, with the world production of seaweed, having tripled, up from 10.6 million tonnes in 2000 to 32.4 million tonnes in 2018. (FAO)

And this trend has become evident on our plates. Food producers like Blue Evolution are selling products such as kelp popcorn and seaweed pasta, and at Michelin star, Loam restaurant in the United Kingdom, chef founder Enda McEvoy enjoys experimenting with sea vegetables on her menu, while in Spain, Ángel León creates unique dishes with foraged sea vegetables at his Michelin starred restaurant, Aponiente.

They are delicious

Sea vegetables provide novel taste and texture opportunities for a virgin palate. They can be eaten raw in salads, sautéed, cooked or added to smoothies in much the same way as land vegetables. While they exhibit an array of subtle flavor differences, sea vegetables typically taste like cooked greens but are more savory in flavor; sea asparagus for example has been described as a saltier version of land based asparagus. Because they contain dimethyl sulfide, sea vegetables often carry the aroma of coastal air.

They are easy to grow

With the supply chain disruptions of COVID-19, there has been a renewed interest in sea vegetables. Controlled conditions or aquaculture result in a much more simplified process than farming land based vegetables.

Sea vegetables don’t require fresh water and they grow rapidly, requiring only sunlight, salt water and mineral input.

A team of researchers at Florida Atlantic University’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute managed to grow more than 100 pounds of sea asparagus, sea purslane and saltwort in 10-weeks, with just salt water and fish waste as fertilizer. The sea vegetables also exhibited remarkable survival.

With so much land being over-farmed, sea vegetables are a delicious and nutritious option for plant-based vitamins and minerals.

The Link Lonk


March 01, 2021 at 11:34AM
https://ift.tt/3bIhdZK

Five Reasons Why Sea Vegetables Could Be The Future Of Produce - Forbes

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Spain: Shipload of cattle to be killed after 2 months at sea - The Associated Press

sea.indah.link

MADRID (AP) — Nearly 900 cattle that have been on a ship traveling the Mediterranean Sea for two months will be sacrificed after veterinarians deemed them no longer fit for export, Spanish authorities said.

A total of 895 cattle set sail from the Spanish port of Cartagena on Dec. 18 in the cargo ship named Karim Allah destined for export to Turkey. Turkish port authorities, however, refused to let them disembark, reportedly due to suspicions about their health.

After a second failed attempt to unload the cattle in Libya, the boat returned to Cartagena, where Spanish authorities ordered it to dock on Thursday.

ADVERTISEMENT

After an official inspection by government veterinarians, Spain’s minister of agriculture said animals were to be sacrificed. Veterinarians judged them to be both unfit either for transport to another country of for their return to Spain.

The ministry said the cattle originally left Spain with the proper health authorizations.

Animal rights groups have denounced the slaughter of the livestock.

“This is yet another wake-up call to urgently end live export,” the Eurogroup for Animals said.

The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 07:30AM
https://ift.tt/37Q8bZB

Spain: Shipload of cattle to be killed after 2 months at sea - The Associated Press

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

China to hold month-long military drills in South China Sea - Global Times

sea.indah.link
J-10 fighter jets attached to a naval aviation brigade under the PLA Eastern Theater Command get ready to take off on February 20, 2021, kicking off their 2021 annual training.Photo:China Military

J-10 fighter jets attached to a naval aviation brigade under the PLA Eastern Theater Command get ready to take off on February 20, 2021, kicking off their 2021 annual training.Photo:China Military

 China has announced that it will hold military exercises in the South China Sea for the whole of March, at a time when the US military has been frequently sending reconnaissance aircraft and ships to the region and a French warship group is on its way. 

The South China Sea will likely remain a flashpoint with the new US administration expected to continue to pressure China with both military and political moves, analysts said on Sunday. 

Military exercises will be held in a circular zone with a radius of five kilometers in the South China Sea, west of the Leizhou Peninsula, from Monday to March 31, and the entry of other vessels is prohibited, reads a navigation restriction notice released by China's Maritime Safety Administration on its website on Friday.

The notice did not elaborate on the details of the exercises. 

Since July 2020, China has held several rounds of military drills in the region, indicating it is a routine location for exercises, analysts said.

The exercises come at a time when the US has started to again frequently conduct close-up reconnaissance operations on China's coastal regions as well as on hydrological environments in the South China Sea.

According to monitoring data released by the South China Sea Strategic Situation Probing Initiative (SCSPI), a Beijing-based think tank, the US sent reconnaissance aircraft of different types, including an MQ-4C maritime reconnaissance drone, an EP-3E spy plane and an RC-135U strategic reconnaissance aircraft, to the South China Sea on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, and the USNS Impeccable ocean surveillance ship to the region on Friday.

Chinese military experts reached by the Global Times on Sunday said that these kinds of operations have military significance because they allow the US to gather military intelligence on the People's Liberation Army (PLA) and hydrological environments in the sea, including eavesdropping on PLA communications, learning the electromagnetic signal patterns of Chinese equipment and planting underwater sonar devices to track PLA submarines.

France also sent an amphibious assault ship and a frigate in mid-February, and they are scheduled to transit the South China Sea twice, Paris-based navalnews.com reported on February 18.

According to the route plan in the navalnews.com report, the French warships are scheduled to sail through the Qiongzhou Strait, an inland sea of China between the Leizhou Peninsula and the island province of Hainan. 

The US is attempting to contain China by rallying its Western allies to the South China Sea, which has more political rather than military significance, analysts said.

China is expected to continue facing pressure from the sea, as the US, its allies and India could keep stirring up troubles, Li Jie, a Beijing-based naval expert, told the Global Times.

Since the South China Sea, the Taiwan Straits and the Diaoyu Islands will remain as maritime security flashpoints, Chinese troops should enhance combat preparedness, Li said, predicting a continued steady increase in China's defense budget for this year, which is expected to be released during the upcoming two sessions in a week.

The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 10:08PM
https://ift.tt/3b2vql1

China to hold month-long military drills in South China Sea - Global Times

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Spain: Shipload of cattle to be killed after 2 months at sea - Minneapolis Star Tribune

sea.indah.link

MADRID — Nearly 900 cattle that have been on a ship traveling the Mediterranean Sea for two months will be sacrificed after veterinarians deemed them no longer fit for export, Spanish authorities said.

A total of 895 cattle set sail from the Spanish port of Cartagena on Dec. 18 in the cargo ship named Karim Allah destined for export to Turkey. Turkish port authorities, however, refused to let them disembark, reportedly due to suspicions about their health.

After a second failed attempt to unload the cattle in Libya, the boat returned to Cartagena, where Spanish authorities ordered it to dock on Thursday.

After an official inspection by government veterinarians, Spain's minister of agriculture said animals were to be sacrificed. Veterinarians judged them to be both unfit either for transport to another country of for their return to Spain.

The ministry said the cattle originally left Spain with the proper health authorizations.

Animal rights groups have denounced the slaughter of the livestock.

"This is yet another wake-up call to urgently end live export," the Eurogroup for Animals said.

The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 07:26PM
https://ift.tt/3sxKSLY

Spain: Shipload of cattle to be killed after 2 months at sea - Minneapolis Star Tribune

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Will California’s desert, Salton Sea be transformed into Lithium Valley? - Desert Sun

sea.indah.link
CLOSE

California’s desert is littered with remnants of broken dreams — hidden ghost towns, abandoned mines and rusty remains of someone’s Big Idea. But nothing looms larger on an abandoned landscape than the Salton Sea, which languishes in an overlooked corner of the state.

The water shimmers and broils in the desert like a rebuke: born of human error, made worse by 100 years of neglect and pollution. California’s largest lake is also one of its worst environmental blights, presenting a problem so inverted that its toxic legacy intensifies as its foul water disappears. 

For generations, Imperial Valley residents have been breathing in a Periodic Table of minerals and metals, as well as agricultural chemicals. But for all the misery that these receding waters have unleashed — asthma and other respiratory ailments triggered by dust clouds — the Salton Sea now offers a potential way out: A bounty of lithium, called “white gold,” one of the planet’s most prized elements, used to manufacture batteries that power electric cars and drive a fossil-fuel-free future.

And the state of California wants to be in on it.

The California Energy Commission has stepped in as an angel investor, doling out $16 million in grants to a handful of companies to determine if it’s technically and commercially feasible to extract lithium from the brine that geothermal plants are already pulling from the Salton Sea.

One of the recipients, CalEnergy Resources, a subsidiary of the giant Berkshire Hathaway Energy Renewables, is using $6 million in state grants to piggy-back a lithium-extraction pilot project onto its existing geothermal plants near Calipatria, at the southeast end of the dying sea. The company, which expects to break ground soon, will build a small-scale demonstration plant to begin operating next year. Should all go well, it envisions that it could eventually produce nearly a third of the world’s lithium.

More: Salton Sea: Congressmen Ruiz and Vargas reintroduce bill to address New River pollution

From the standpoint of California public policy, the project offers a unique intersection of two state priorities: increasing sources of renewable energy and encouraging new battery technology for electric cars and energy storage. The state’s target for electric cars, for example, could use a boost. Gov. Gavin Newsom last year directed the state to ban all new gasoline-powered cars by 2035.  

Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia, a Democrat from Coachella, gave the idea a jump start last year, writing a law that created the Lithium Valley Commission, an optimistic reference to the economic juggernaut that is Silicon Valley. The blue-ribbon commission members, appointed by state agencies, legislators and the governor, hold their first meeting today, and will file a report to lawmakers next year.

State officials envision not just lithium extraction and power plants, but also constructing links along the supply chain, battery-building facilities, electric vehicle manufacturing plants and everything else local authorities can dream of.

Such an expansive project would transform the entire Imperial Valley, home to 174,000 people, 85% Latino, who face chronically high unemployment and few job opportunities outside farm fields. 

But environmental justice advocates worry about the potential impacts of additional waste and air pollution from extracting and processing lithium at the Salton Sea. Since it’s an experimental technology, the environmental effects have not been analyzed yet.

The Imperial Valley already is perennially ranked at the top of California’s most polluted places — with all the serious health problems that go along with it. 

“Disadvantaged communities are always going to be on the losing end,” said Luis Olmedo, executive director of Comite Civico Del Valle, a health and social services organization in Brawley. 

“Do we see opportunity for jobs, do we see opportunity for economic benefit for community development? We see all of that, but unfortunately the way the system is set up right here in this region, the monies are not reaching those vulnerable disadvantaged populations.”

On the ‘Toxic Tour’

Geothermal plants at the Salton Sea, with their huffing stacks and snaking pipelines, are difficult to miss, jutting up from the Imperial Valley’s flat desert floor. 

Getting to the facilities requires negotiating narrow county roads bordering alfalfa fields and past teeming cattle feedlots. But the out-of-the-way plants are not out-of-mind to valley residents. They are included on a local group’s “Toxic Tour” when state officials come to town.

Even as Garcia ushers in a project that could invigorate the economy of his ailing district, he is adamant that whatever future industry materializes, it cannot make things worse in the environmentally-challenged region.

“One of the main principles is to do no harm,” Garcia said.  “A lot of information is still to be gathered and understood before we are able to determine that this is going to be the best thing to happen and will have the return investment from a social, human health, economic perspective. Otherwise, we are not meeting the overall goals.

“It would do us no good if all we were doing is extracting the minerals and leaving behind an environmental mess on top of an existing mess that we are making strides to address. We cannot regress.”

This “mess” was created in 1905, when engineers cut into the west bank of the Colorado River, diverting water to slake the thirst of Imperial County’s agricultural field. Water sluiced into the valley. Heavy flooding overwhelmed the man-made channels, and for two years the river ran unimpeded into the Salton Basin.

The floodwaters were tamed, but the great lake, cut off from its freshwater supply, began the inexorable process of evaporating and receding. It stayed alive with surplus agricultural water and runoff, but the tainted water that fed the sea began to lay down generations of toxic sludge buried in sediment.

Fish died, migratory birds that fed on them detoured and the yacht clubs, marinas and shoreline vacation homes were left stranded in muck. The exposed lake bed’s mineral-laden soil is whipped by frequent winds, and the dust clouds contribute to the region’s chronic respiratory health problem. 

Today the Salton Sea’s nearly 350 square miles of shallow water remains one of the state’s most stubborn and expensive repair jobs, and as each new restoration plan is unveiled but not implemented, the legacy continues to make residents sick.

“The community faces high rates of asthma and respiratory conditions that have been existing ever since this valley was created. You have all different sources of pollution, the sea being one of the strongest ones, and the (geothermal) plants out there,” said Miguel Hernandez, co-chair of the Environmental Justice Enforcement Task Force for Imperial Valley and the Eastern Coachella Valley.

Anyssa Garcia has lived in Brawley, population 26,000, a dozen miles from the southern edge of the Salton Sea, her entire 21 years. Her family and friends are frequently sick with respiratory illness.

“My mom and my cousins have asthma, I see the struggle they go through,” she said. “Everyone carries an inhaler. I’m paying more attention to the air we breathe now.”

According to University of Southern California researchers, Imperial County’s children visit emergency rooms and are hospitalized for asthma at double the rate of the state average. Another measure shows double the state rate of active asthma among adults older than 65. 

Anyssa Garcia said the environmental problems are so intractable that she longs to join the diaspora of young people away from the valley. 

 “I’ve never seen my family struggle like this,” she said. “I would love to get out of this valley, the conditions here are very unhealthy.”

State officials just launched a $200 million wetlands and air quality project, part of a pledge to spend nearly a half-billion dollars to restore the lake for fish and birds and cover the exposed playa to control the dust.

The lithium extraction efforts are not connected to the Salton Sea restoration projects, but there is a great temptation to conflate them and imagine how the lithium bonanza might improve the health of both the lake and those who live around it. At least one geothermal developer has floated the idea of contributing to  a long-term fund dedicated to lake remediation. 

To David Hochschild, chairman of the California Energy Commission, it’s inevitable, and even fitting, that the Salton Sea’s lithium windfall might be leveraged to fix its age-old problems.

“It’s not possible to work in a region like the Salton Sea and not deal with the pre-existing issues, which are substantial,” he said.

Extracting ‘white gold’

Although the costliest of clean energy options, geothermal is in many ways the ideal renewable energy — not dependent on wind blowing or sun shining, and ever-ready to provide reliable power. 

“Lithium is the oil of the clean energy future,” Hochschild said. “I do think the revenue from the industry as it grows can be part of the solution. What I think you’re going to see over time is rather than geothermal facilities that produce lithium on the side, it will be that lithium facilities produce geothermal power on the side.”

CalEnergy’s 23 geothermal wells pull up naturally superheated water from deep beneath the salty lake and use the steam created to run turbines, providing reliable renewable energy to the state’s power grid. The brine is brimming with lithium and other coveted elements, including cobalt and zinc. 

The pilot project will extract lithium from the brine, then, in a two-part process, convert the raw material first into lithium chloride and then into battery-grade lithium hydroxide. The company aims to have the two small processing plants operating next year.

CalEnergy hopes that lithium plants will have the side benefit of lowering the price of geothermal energy, making it a more competitive renewable power source.

“If successful, lithium could be the tail that wags the geothermal dog,” said Jonathan Weisgall, vice president for government relations at Berkshire Hathaway Energy, which has committed $40 million to the ongoing research. The federal Energy Department awarded its Salton Sea project a $15 million grant.

While lithium extraction projects at the Salton Sea are still unproven, the idea is “tantalizing and intriguing” said Rod Eggert, deputy director of the Critical Materials Institute at the Colorado School of Mines. As investors anticipated the growth in demand for lithium-ion batteries 10-15 years ago, he said, developers began to look at unconventional sources for the element, including geothermal brine.

Two types of lithium harvesting take place in the world today: open pit mines, found in Australia, and vast evaporation ponds in the Lithium Triangle — Chile, Argentina and Bolivia. China also produces lithium, and there is one production facility in Nevada. 

“As with any resource extraction, there are environmental consequences that need to be managed,” Eggert said. 

In countries where lithium is mined, the process uses a lot of water, and contaminates waterways with acid and other hazardous materials. 

If California industries do develop the new lithium-geothermal process that carries a small environmental footprint, it would likely create a competitive edge globally, Eggert said.

“It’s a tantalizing opportunity,” he said, “but it hasn’t been demonstrated.”

Jobs and toxic substances

As with most industrial processes, the geothermal power plants at the Salton Sea emit air pollutants and create waste: The plants unearth hazardous minerals, such as arsenic, lead and barium.

“Not only is geothermal generating an economic benefit, but it’s also generating waste streams and emissions, and has been doing so for years,” said environmental justice advocate Olmedo. 

Olmedo, a member of the Lithium Valley Commission, said he intends to make sure that the group is not so dazzled by the promise of jobs and revenue that it overlooks potential environmental issues from lithium extraction and processing. 

“We support economic development, but we support responsible economic development where we are not adding burdens to the already disadvantaged environmental justice community,” he said.

Imperial County planners exempted the lithium pilot project from environmental review requirements because the existing geothermal plant is already permitted. Full-scale commercial plants, however, would require environmental impact studies and new permits.

Most of the waste, which contains heavy metals, is reinjected in the ground from which it came, but some waste is held temporarily in ponds that are regulated by state officials to protect groundwater. The water board concluded that the lithium extraction would not alter the chemical properties of the waste, according to its 2020 report.

“We don’t anticipate any environmental issues,” Berkshire Hathaway Energy’s Weisgall said. Researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and University of California, Riverside will test the demo project’s waste and emissions, he said.

Yet Katie Burnworth, who monitors the Salton Sea for the Imperial County Air Pollution Control District, said she worries that the waste might be hazardous. “It’s a dangerous, dirty process, with a lot of unknown material,” she said.

In 2006, CalEnergy’s geothermal facility was cited by state authorities for failing to properly dispose of hazardous materials after an inspection found elevated levels of arsenic and lead had been released into the environment. The company in 2007 entered into a consent agreement with state officials requiring a cleanup. 

Another of the company’s power plants at the Salton Sea was fined by the air district for operating for seven years without an emissions permit.

The CalEnergy plants emit several toxic air pollutants, including hydrogen sulfide, ammonia and fine particles, according to state Air Resources Board reports. 

Imperial County is eager to work with the industry to streamline the permitting process for lithium production.

“We’ve got to let them know that we want them here by making the permitting and planning process as least hard as it can be,” said Tim Kelley, CEO for the Imperial Valley Economic Development Corp., a public-private organization. “It’s never going to be easy and we want to make it easier for them.” 

Unemployment in the rural county hovers at 18%, about twice the state average. “Our biggest exports are water, crops and people,” Kelley said. “We want the jobs.”

CalEnergy, which employs about 250 people, estimates it would double its workforce if lithium production takes off.

“The first thing they are dangling is jobs, said Eric Reyes, an organizer with the group Amigos de la Comunidad. “We are all for jobs. But we cannot let everyone do whatever they want. Our community has a history of bending over for industry. We need to be smarter now. We are on the cusp of environmental disaster.”

James C. Hanks, president of the Imperial Irrigation District, which leases land to three geothermal operations, welcomes the potential for growth, but said desert denizens are ever-watchful for speculators. 

“The toughest part is sorting through and figuring out who’s the real deal or not,” said Hanks, who also serves on the state’s new Lithium Valley Commission.

Business as usual is not going to be acceptable this time, Olmedo said. Jobs and a healthy environment are the goals. Whatever economic boon the county has gained from past development has not improved life in the region’s poorest communities, he said.

“They’re not getting more libraries. They are not getting better schools. They are not getting better community services,’” Olmedo said. “They are not getting better health care. They are getting nothing but sickness and exposure to unhealthy conditions.

“We are fighting two fronts. One is supporting this huge opportunity. The other is whether those dollars are going to benefit the population of this region. Now the real work begins.”

Read or Share this story: https://ift.tt/2MufwXc

The Link Lonk


February 27, 2021 at 05:15AM
https://ift.tt/2MufwXc

Will California’s desert, Salton Sea be transformed into Lithium Valley? - Desert Sun

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

'Ghosts of the Sea': Shark report hits home for Clayton couple - NNY360

sea.indah.link
‘Ghosts of the Sea’ Report of shark decline hits home for Clayton couple

Lemon sharks on patrol slightly below the surface at dusk in the Bahamas at a shark sanctuary. Courtesy David Doubilet/Undersea Images

A jaw-dropping report last month in the Journal Nature reported that many species of sharks are at the point of no return.

“We find that, since 1970, the global abundance of oceanic sharks and rays has declined by 71% owing to an 18-fold increase in relative fishing pressure,” the report reads. “This depletion has increased the global extinction risk to the point at which three-quarters of the species comprising this functionally important assemblage are threatened with extinction.”

For decades, Clayton residents David Doubilet and Jennifer S. Hayes have come face-to-face with sharks all over the world and they have shared shark tales and other stories of their underwater dives and their encounters with various wildlife for National Geographic’s “Live” series all over the world, including two at the Clayton Opera House in July of 2018.

“I’m surprised they say only 70% decline,” Ms. Hayes said, noting the drop is especially noticeable in Asia-Pacific waters. “I suspected it would be even higher if we could get accurate estimates.”

Ms. Hayes and Mr. Doubilet are the authors of the 2009 National Geographic book, “Face to Face with Sharks,” which focuses on how our fear and ignorance puts the diverse family of sharks in great danger.

‘Ghosts of the Sea’ Report of shark decline hits home for Clayton couple

Sharks swim at Fakarava, French Polynesia, where they are thriving. Courtesy David Doubilet/Undersea Images

Mr. Doubilet, a native of New Jersey, is one of the most prolific photographers for National Geographic magazine and has been a contract photographer for the magazine since 1976. He has spent more than five decades exploring and documenting the far corners of the world from beneath interior Africa, remote tropical coral reefs, rich temperate seas and recent projects beneath the polar ice. He is an honorary fellow of the Royal Photographic Society of London and has been inducted into the International Diving Hall of Fame.

Mr. Doubilet and Ms. Hayes are trustees at the Shark Research Institute.

Ms. Hayes, an aquatic biologist, is a graduate of South Jefferson Central School, Adams. After graduating from SUNY Potsdam with a bachelor’s degree in biology, she earned advance degrees in aquatic biology and fisheries at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and zoology and marine biology at the University of Maryland. She is the author of numerous articles on marine environments.

Ms. Hayes and Mr. Doubilet make routine trips to the Gulf at Quebec’s Madeleine Islands as part of their tasks for National Geographic to document harp seal pups. In March of 2020, Ms. Hayes was featured from the Gulf on an ABC “Good Morning America” segment as part of its “Extraordinary Earth” series.

One of Ms. Hayes’s graduate degrees’ master theses focused on shark finning and commercial landings in the western Atlantic.

“We need sharks,” Ms. Hayes said. “People tend not to like them, but we sure need them. It’s a case that without them in the ecosystem, the network falls apart a bit.”

From their experiences, the married couple has taken to calling sharks “Ghosts of the sea.”

“They became rare and now seeing them is a gift,” Ms. Hayes said. “You don’t say, ‘Oh my God, there’s a shark in the water. I’ve got to get out.’ Oftentimes now, it’s ‘Oh my God, there’s a shark in the water. I’ve got to get in.’”

‘Ghosts of the Sea’ Report of shark decline hits home for Clayton couple

A batch of dead blue sharks are seen at a shark market in Vigo, Spain. The International Union for Conservation of Nature says the species is the world’s most abundant and heavily fished open ocean shark and is classified as near threatened. Courtesy Jennifer Hayes/Undersea Images

Shark fins targeted

The Journal Nature shark report said that, “Strict prohibitions and precautionary science-based catch limits are urgently needed to avert population collapse, avoid the disruption of ecological functions and promote species recovery.”

Shark fin soup, a delicacy in China, especially served at wedding banquets in the country, is one of the main culprits of the decline of shark numbers. The appetite for it was fueled by a rising middle class in the country.

In the U.S., NOAA Fisheries first banned shark finning in the Atlantic Ocean in 1993 because of the role it played in overfishing. Congress extended the ban to any vessel in the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone with the Shark Finning Prohibition Act of 2000 and Shark Conservation Act of 2010.

Mr. Doubilet and Ms. Hayes have recollections of seeing mounds of shark fins in a warehouse in Hong Kong. They also recall eye-opening scenes about a decade ago involving shark fins in Vigo, Spain, one of the largest fish shipping ports in the world. They were visiting the port with a Spanish-speaking friend.

“David and I were walking around, going, ‘Look at all these dead sharks!’”

Their friend, Ms. Hayes explained, said that those numbers were nothing compared to three, four and five years prior to their visit.

“I mistakenly said to Leo, ‘That’s really good they’re not fishing so much for them anymore.’ He said, ‘No Jennifer, the sharks have disappeared from the sea. They’re not there to be caught.”

The fewer sharks seen at places like Vigo also relate to a conservation method, Ms. Hayes explained.

“They used to cut the fins off at sea and keep just the fins,” Ms. Hayes said. “You can imagine how long it took to fill up the hold with fins. Now, with conservation efforts in place, they say they have to bring the whole shark carcass back, so their holds fill up faster and fewer sharks are caught.”

The sharks are often caught as a by-product of swordfish fishing, Ms. Hayes and Mr. Doubilet explained.

“The landings are less, the sizes are less and the sharks become something to pay the gas as they have to go further across the Atlantic,” Ms. Hayes said.

Looking back at that trip to Vigo, Mr. Doubilet said, “We saw one longliner, a 68-to-70-foot boat with a crew of about seven, unload 13 tons of blue sharks and 150 to 200 swordfish.”

The Animal Welfare Institute reports that 32 countries, including the United States, have enacted full or partial bans on the practice of shark finning. A growing list of companies, ranging from Amazon to Hong Kong Disneyland, have banned shark fin soup. Many airlines have banned the transport of shark fins.

‘Ghosts of the Sea’ Report of shark decline hits home for Clayton couple

Sharks swim at Fakarava, French Polynesia, where they are thriving. “You dive there at night, you have to watch where you put your hands, because you might not come home with them,” said aquatic biologist and photographer Jennifer Hayes. Courtesy David Doubilet/Undersea Images

Rebound areas

According to the AWI, nearly two dozen countries have full or partial bans on shark fishing. It is allowed in the U.S. where the waters off the East Coast are home to more than 50 shark species, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

According to NOAA, following significantly lower populations of sharks in the 1980s and 1990s, some species in the Atlantic in coastal U.S. waters have seen a rebound, particularly black tip sharks, sandbar, spiny dogfish and white sharks.

Mr. Doubilet and Ms. Hayes said other areas of the world have seen shark numbers increase because countries have linked the animals to environmental tourism. The couple mentioned their trips to Raja Ampot, Indonesia, as an example as to what can happen when such policies are enacted.

“We spent nearly two years swimming through Indonesia’s waters and saw only two species of sharks, tiny walking sharks and the wonderful Wobbegong — a shark that looks more like a bath mat than a shark and it lays about a lot like a bath mat as well,” Ms. Hayes said. “The rest of the sharks had disappeared into bowls of shark fin soup.”

The Raja Ampot archipelago, known for its coral reefs, is located off the northwest tip of Bird’s Head Peninsula on the island of New Guinea.

In 2013, Raja Ampot created a shark and ray sanctuary of 1 million acres.

“For two years, we never saw a shark in Indonesian waters,” Ms. Hayes said.

‘Ghosts of the Sea’ Report of shark decline hits home for Clayton couple

David Doubilet and Jennifer Hayes have collaborated on assignments from the equator to the polar ice, but the Clayton residents have called the St. Lawrence River their favorite part of the world. Courtesy photo

But Ms. Hayes and Mr. Doubilet returned in 2016 through 2018 and they saw the creatures. Popular shark species now at Raja Ampot range from white tip reef sharks to “walking” sharks. Now, tourists can dive in and swim with sharks.

“It’s good to see some places like Raja Ampot say, ‘Protecting our ecosystem is probably economically, a sound thing to do,’” Ms. Hayes said. “It keeps the ecosystem intact, a lot of eco-tourists come, they leave a lot of money there and the fishermen have turned into environmental tour guides. And instead of pulling fish off the reef, they’re sustained by other income.”

“You know what happens when you’re an eco-tour guide there? Your children go to school,” Mr. Doubilet said. “It’s that simple.”

Sharks are also thriving in Fakarava, part of French Polynesia, Pacific Ocean. They’ve been protected there since 2006.

“You dive there at night, you have to watch where you put your hands, because you might not come home with them,” Ms. Hayes said. “I love that, because that’s another symbol of hope. There are places on the planet where they’ve protected these things and it’s incredible to see them.”

Mr. Doubilet said there could be hope for regions in the world that have seen declines in shark numbers.

“It was thought that once you fish the shark population out, it would never come back,” he said. “In some cases, that might be true. In other cases, we’ve seen populations begin to come back.”

Turning the tide

The Shark Conservation Fund estimates that 100 million sharks and rays are killed every year for their “valuable fins, meat, livers and gills and nearly a third of all sharks and rays are threatened with extinction.”

One key step to recovery would be reducing the demand for shark fin soup, Ms. Hayes and Mr. Doubilet said. Celebrities like Jackie Chan have begun to highlight the consequences of the delicacy.

The fins aren’t designed to add flavor to the soup. Mr. Doubilet said they’re used to create the soup’s texture. And to create the soup requires a repeated process of boiling and drying the fins.

“That’s the amazing thing about it,” he said. “To reach that point is an enormous amount of work. But the end point of it is a gluey and thick, just as if you added flour to the stock.”

“And that has been responsible for eradicating the shark numbers you see in that report,” Ms. Hayes said.

But Ms. Hayes believes the tide may be turning against shark fin soup with it being taken off menus, with celebrities like Mr. Chan raising concern about it and with pledges by youth not to consume it.

‘Ghosts of the Sea’ Report of shark decline hits home for Clayton couple

A mako shark, Isurus oxyrinchus, swims near Block Island, R.I., in the Northwest Atlantic. The International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies the species as endangered. Courtesy David Doubilet/Undersea Images

“There’s a slow, collective movement to recognize the destructive force of shark finning,” she said. “It’s slowly making a difference, especially for the next generation, who do not need to have shark fin soup to appear at their tables.”

“People build up an enormous case about sharks and how fearsome they are and how incredibly dangerous and everything else that surrounds the folktales and the culture of how we view sharks,” Mr. Doubilet said. “They get underwater and they see sharks swimming toward them, back and forth. And they look at this creature and it’s incredibly sculptural. It’s beautiful, elegant and fascinating. A lot of people who do it will come back.”

“Some people are inherently terrified,” Ms. Hayes said. “But a lot of people see them and become curious, especially if you want to learn about them. If you get to know them and understand their value in an ecosystem, and the fact that every fish on this planet is a miracle and the law of nature is so harsh.”

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 10:29AM
https://ift.tt/3r5dXxQ

'Ghosts of the Sea': Shark report hits home for Clayton couple - NNY360

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

It Doesn't Take Much Cold To Stun Sea Turtle - National Parks Traveler

sea.indah.link

Sea turtles are released back into the Gulf of Mexico after recovering from being stunned by cold water/NPS

It takes seemingly little cold to stun a sea turtle. For humans, 50 degrees is chilly, but for the thousands of sea turtles that were stunned along the Gulf Coast of Texas the past two weeks, it can be deadly.

"Turtles begin to become lethargic and experience other symptoms of cold stunning when water temperatures reach and fall below 50 degrees," Dustin Baker, a ranger at Padre Island National Seashore, wrote in an email. "After turtles are brought to the park, they are brought into indoor spaces varying from 60 to 72 degrees. Because sea turtles are reptiles and are ectothermic (cold blooded), they gradually warm to the temperature of their new environment."

More than 11,500 sea turtles were stunned, and an undetermined number killed, by the cold snap. The key for those who rescued the stunned turtles is to get to them as soon as possible. That's because stunned turtles are unable to swim.

"They float up to the surface and become vulnerable to boat strikes or wash ashore and become stranded. If not rescued quickly, these defenseless animals often die of shock, predation, or trauma due to boat strike," the national seashore's website notes.

Additionally, "Most of the cold stunned sea turtles that the Division of Sea Turtle Science and Recovery rescues are found in inshore waters and shorelines along the bays and inlets of the Laguna Madre, which borders the park to the west. The shallow water here can change temperature rapidly, especially when a strong cold front passes through the area. As a result, sea turtles swimming in those waters may not have enough time to navigate out of Laguna Madre and into the deeper, warmer waters of the Gulf of Mexico before becoming cold stunned."

Once turtles have warmed up, they are released back into the ocean as long as the waters aren't too cold. "If they have other illnesses or injuries, they can rehabilitate until they are ready for release," the park website notes.

You can watch some turtles being released back into the gulf in this short video on the national seashore's Facebook page.

The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 03:08PM
https://ift.tt/3kvWDQ7

It Doesn't Take Much Cold To Stun Sea Turtle - National Parks Traveler

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Sabtu, 27 Februari 2021

Why France is flexing its muscles in the South China Sea - South China Morning Post

sea.indah.link
[unable to retrieve full-text content]Why France is flexing its muscles in the South China Sea  South China Morning Post The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 07:00AM
https://ift.tt/37RF3kM

Why France is flexing its muscles in the South China Sea - South China Morning Post

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

China, US tensions over South China Sea to continue under Biden: Report - Business Standard

sea.indah.link

Chinese military recently conducted a live-fire drill to test its response to repeated missile attacks in a "far sea" and Washington also has been stepping up reconnaissance activities in the area

Topics
China | South China Sea

ANI  |  Asia 

It seems tensions between and the US over the South Sea will continue under the new US administration as the Chinese military recently conducted a live-fire drill to test its response to repeated missile attacks in a "far sea" and Washington also has been stepping up reconnaissance activities in the area.

According to South Morning Post, there are fresh signs that from the Chinese and the American armed forces that tensions over the will continue.

The Chinese military's Southern Theatre Command conducted a live-fire drill to test its response to repeated missile attacks in a "far sea", state broadcaster CCTV reported on Saturday without saying when or where the exercise took place.

The drill involved the guided-missile destroyer Yinchuan, guided-missile frigate Hengyang, the amphibious dock landing ship Wuzhishan, and the support ship Chagan Hu, according to the report. The Southern Theatre Command is responsible for overseeing the vast waters claimed by China in the

At the same time, the US has been stepping up reconnaissance activities in the area.

The US also sent a reconnaissance aircraft to fly over the off the coast of Taiwan on Saturday, the think tank said in another post.

China claims virtually the entire South China Sea, something which is contested heavily by several countries in the region.

China's territorial claims in the South China Sea and its efforts to advance into the Indian Ocean are seen to have challenged the established rules-based system.

China has been increasing its maritime activities in both the South China Sea and the East China Sea over the past few months, partly in response to Beijing's concerns over the increasing US military presence in the region because of escalating Sino-US tensions.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Sun, February 28 2021. 07:05 IST

The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 08:35AM
https://ift.tt/3r2aAYI

China, US tensions over South China Sea to continue under Biden: Report - Business Standard

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

South China Sea: PLA in live-fire missile drill, US Navy on Paracels patrol - South China Morning Post

sea.indah.link
[unable to retrieve full-text content]South China Sea: PLA in live-fire missile drill, US Navy on Paracels patrol  South China Morning Post The Link Lonk


February 28, 2021 at 05:00AM
https://ift.tt/2NEECDw

South China Sea: PLA in live-fire missile drill, US Navy on Paracels patrol - South China Morning Post

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Florida Bill to Combat Rising Sea Levels and Flooding - Bay News 9

sea.indah.link

TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. — If you've ever been to Tarpon Springs during rainy season, you know the stretch of road along the sponge docks often floods from the sea water coming over the edge. 

That's one of the reasons why Florida House Speaker Chris Sprowls introduced several bills combating sea level rise and flooding. 

The legislation looks to start a fund of a $100 million next year. That money would help local governments cover the costs of addressing flooding. It would also expand grants to local communities dealing with sea level rise. 

Some of the bills sponsors want to make Florida one of the leading states on the issue. 

"Sea level rise doesn’t care where you are or what zip code you live in. It affects all Floridians. It's time to protect our communities, protect our homes, and our state as a whole," State Rep. Demi Busatta Cabrera said. 

The proposal would also establish a Florida hub of research and collect data on sea level rise. 

Another proposal is to provide tax breaks for homeowners who work to elevate their homes. 

The Link Lonk


February 27, 2021 at 11:11PM
https://ift.tt/3szjVra

Florida Bill to Combat Rising Sea Levels and Flooding - Bay News 9

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Wisconsin Sea Grant Releases Biennial Report Addressing Progress On Sea Grant's 4 Pillars - Wisconsin Public Radio News

sea.indah.link

The Wisconsin Sea Grant recently released it’s biennial report addressing the organization's progress on its four pillars: healthy coastal ecosystems; sustainable fisheries and aquaculture; resilient communities and economies; and environmental literacy and workforce development.

Part of the national Sea Grant, the Wisconsin Sea Grant has studied the Great Lakes for more than 50 years.

Jim Hurley, director of the Wisconsin Sea Grant, said it makes sense for the Great Lakes to be part of the Sea Grant because many of the issues that occur in the oceans and coasts also occur in the Great Lakes.

"Issues like sea level rise," he said. "We've seen tremendous fluctuations in Great Lakes water levels. Where they may be looking on the ocean coast at small increments of sea level rise, we've seen changes in Lake Michigan of 4 feet, over the course of maybe five or six years."

2020 was a unique year, Hurley said. Research proposals were slightly down, and communication and outreach strategies had to shift. Yet while the events went virtual because of the coronavirus pandemic, in some cases they saw more engagement with a virtual audience than with live events, he said.

Funding for the program comes from the federal government and university partnerships. The Wisconsin Sea Grant is connected to the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has partners across the state and country. Below are highlights from the 2018-20 report released in December.

Healthy Coastal Ecosystems

Hurley calls researching healthy and sustainable coastal systems and appropriately utilizing the resources of the Great Lakes the heart of the Sea Grant.

"We've seen major changes in the Great Lakes, especially if you look at fisheries," he said. Research and work on contaminants like PCB, particularly in the Fox River and lower Green Bay, and invasive species in Lake Michigan have been major points of focus. 

From the report:

  • So-called forever chemicals, known a PFAS, were detected in rainfall for the first time ever in precipitation samples.
  • A $120,000 two-year grant was used to build on past Sea Grant work to develop a wild rice toolkit for Native American communities.
  • Five nesting pairs of highly endangered piping plovers were found on the Cat Island chain of restored lands in the bay of Green Bay. 

Resilient Communities and Economies

Hurley said Sea Grant staff are embedded in communities to help prepare them to deal with issues they are facing, or will face with changing ecosystems, such as rising sea levels. 

"Can we create some green infrastructure? How can we transfer information about how best to develop?" he said. "We always say that we're neutral brokers of science. And that's what we try to do. We try to bring the scientific needs to those communities."

From the report:

  • 582 feet: The highest monthly record for the Lake Michigan water level, set in April 2019. It broke the previous record set in 1986 by 3 inches.
  • 25 feet per year: The rate of erosion of the Kenosha Dunes natural area between 2018 and 2020. The Sea Grant and partners installed wave-breaking sills underwater to mitigate the water’s effects on the land. 
  • 16 feet: The root depth of common ninebark, a shrub included on a recommended vegetation list by Sea Grant’s coastal engineer to help stabilize coastal bluffs.

Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture

The changing ecosystems of the Great Lakes has put pressure on many of the fish populations, Hurley said. For over 30 years, the Sea Grant has invested in research on aquaculture to help fill the gaps in the species population.

"What we're really seeing start to burgeon is recirculating aquaculture systems," he said. "Which are contained systems of recirculating water, so we wouldn't use as much water in our system, and we could grow fish."

From the report:

  • Researchers spent 118 days on Lake Michigan to gather trawl catch data, which led to a change in a state rule and extended the fishing season. 
  • Three fish diseases — viral hemorrhagic septicemia, columnaris and saprolegniasis — were studied by Sea Grant researchers that impact both wild and aquaculture fish.

Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development

Hurley said the Sea Grant’s approach to education is to follow the "teach the teacher" method.

"We feel that in education we're more effective and cover more if we help train teachers," he said. "We have opportunities for teachers to spend some time on a research vessel in the Great Lakes … we have a marine debris program ... to send to teachers so that they can understand concepts like microplastics and other things that are affecting our coast."

From the report: 

The Link Lonk


February 27, 2021 at 06:00PM
https://ift.tt/3syapER

Wisconsin Sea Grant Releases Biennial Report Addressing Progress On Sea Grant's 4 Pillars - Wisconsin Public Radio News

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share:

Florida House plan targets flooding, sea level rise - WJXT News4JAX

sea.indah.link

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Floridians would be asked to approve a tax break for people who elevate their homes to avoid the threat of flooding, while up to $100 million a year would be set aside to help local governments combat rising sea levels, under proposals announced Friday by House Speaker Chris Sprowls, R-Palm Harbor.

The measures are filed for the legislative session that begins Tuesday and come after Gov. Ron DeSantis proposed providing $1 billion over the next four years to state and local agencies for “resiliency” projects to help combat the effects of climate change.

In announcing the House plan Friday at the University of South Florida’s St. Petersburg campus, Sprowls said the proposals aren’t filled with “bricks and concrete,” but “great ideas” from lawmakers and other people “making sure that Florida will become the leader in America in protecting us from flood mitigation and sea level rise.”

“While some continued to debate word choices, we’re rolling up our sleeves and focusing on real problems that affect real business owners and real homeowners in our community,” said Sprowls, who was among the first Republicans to publicly address climate-change impacts at the end of former Gov. Rick Scott’s second term.

The House is looking to budget $25 million next fiscal year and establish a program to help local governments cover costs of addressing flooding and sea level rise. The plan, which would set up the Resilient Florida Trust Fund within the Department of Environmental Protection, calls for funding to jump to $100 million annually starting in the 2022-2023 fiscal year.

The House plan and DeSantis’ proposal include some key differences.

DeSantis calls for spending $25 million during the upcoming 2021-2022 fiscal year, but that money would be used for debt service to issue bonds. He would increase the state funding by $25 million a year the next three years as part of long-term bonding.

DeSantis would use money from documentary stamp taxes on real-estate transactions. State voters in 2014 directed a third of the so-called “doc stamp” money go to land and water conservation. The governor’s proposal would run the money through a non-profit entity that would be called the Resiliency Florida Financing Corp.

While the funding source for the House plan still needs to be worked out as lawmakers put together the 2021-2022 budget, the House doesn’t call for bonding the money. House leaders have been averse to incurring long-term debt through issuing bonds.

The House proposal, which Sprowls called a “suite of bills,” also would set up a three-year Statewide Flooding and Sea Level Rise Resilience Plan that the Department of Environmental Protection would update annually.

Also, the proposal would ask voters in 2022 to approve a constitutional amendment that would provide a property-tax break when residents elevate homes to avoid the impacts of flooding and rising seas. Under the proposal, such improvements would not be considered in determining assessed values of homes for tax purposes.

“Homeowners who are taking proactive measures to protect their property from flooding should not only be rewarded, but they should be incentivized,” said Rep. Linda Chaney, a St. Pete Beach Republican, sponsoring the proposed constitutional amendment and an accompanying bill (HJR 1377 and HB 1379).

The House plan also would require the Department of Environmental Protection to conduct a statewide assessment of flood risks, encourage local governments to set up regional coalitions on resilience issues and establish at USF the Florida Flood Hub for Applied Research and Innovation to address flooding and sea-level rise issues.

“Our regional efforts have led the way in responding to flooding and sea level rise, and we are committed to supporting them,” said Rep. Demi Busatta Cabrera, a Coral Gables Republican who will help carry the legislation. “No matter where you live in Florida. We want you to have the best information and innovation to address these problems.”

Environmentalists want lawmakers to take additional steps to address the causes of climate change.

“It is mandatory that we have substantial and urgent action to reduce our reliance on dirty fossil fuels and transition us to a clean, renewable energy future,” said Jonathan Webber, deputy director of the Florida Conservation Voters. “No matter how much money the state invests in flooding and infrastructure, we cannot adapt ourselves out of climate change.”

Yoca Arditi-Rocha, executive director of the non-profit CLEO Institute, which works on climate-change issues, called the House proposal a good first step but said the effort remains “reactionary, not proactive.”

“Our leaders must take the necessary steps to not only address these impacts, but more importantly, acknowledge and address the root cause of this problem.” Arditi-Rocha said in a statement.

Asked Friday about what in the proposals would address the causes of climate change, Sprowls replied that the media often likes to engage in “the hyper-politicization of the environment.”

“It’s all about words. I’ve said all the words,” Sprowls said. “Well, what we’re here to do is tackle real problems. Washington is engaged in theoretical debates about theoretical topics that nothing happens about. Here in the state of Florida the members who spoke here today are interested in the people who live in our community. They’re interested in their businesses. And they’re interested in the vibrance of a beautiful state called Florida.”

The Link Lonk


February 27, 2021 at 08:40PM
https://ift.tt/3dTtixU

Florida House plan targets flooding, sea level rise - WJXT News4JAX

https://ift.tt/2CoSmg4
Sea
Share: