Environment

Environment
Sunday, August 22nd 2010 - 04:24 UTC

Plastic debris in the Atlantic Ocean seems to have peaked, say US scientists

The study covers 22 years, but overall is quite distant from research in the Pacific

A study has measured the amount of plastic debris found in a region of the Atlantic Ocean over a 22-year period. US researchers, writing in Science, suggest the volume of plastic appeared to have peaked in recent years.

Sunday, August 22nd 2010 - 04:23 UTC

Massive loss of pilot whales stranded on New Zealand beach

Dozens of rescuers tried to re-float the whales

Only nine of the 63 pilot whales which were found stranded on a beach of New Zealand’s northern island on Friday are believed to have survived. Thirteen whales were re-floated Saturday but four of them got back into difficulty and NZ Department of Conservation staff made the tough decision to euthanize them.

Friday, August 20th 2010 - 02:44 UTC

Giant “Terror Birds” Used Their Heads Like Hatchets

A fossil skull of a “terror bird” species dwarfs those of a modern golden eagle and a human. (Photograph courtesy Ohio University)

Phorusrhacids have been extinct for millions of years, yet the so-called terror birds just got a bit more frightening. The flightless birds stood up to three meters tall and had hook-beaked heads the size of horse heads. Now a new study has apparently deciphered how the birds used those fearsome skulls—employing a fighting style like that of legendary boxer Muhammad Ali.

Thursday, August 19th 2010 - 06:00 UTC

National Geographic wants to protect Chilean pristine marine life Island

The island 1.990 miles off the Chilean coast is famous for its red coral and 100 metre long algae

Chile’s Salas y Gómez Island has caught the attention of The National Geographic Society as one of the most pristine marine sites in the world.

Thursday, August 19th 2010 - 05:50 UTC

African coastal states organize network to tackle illegal fishing

The IUU workshop took place in Cape Town earlier this month

Representatives from African coastal states attend a workshop in the United Kingdom designed to build capacity in tackling illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing. IUU fishing is damaging to fish stocks, the marine environment, food security and wider economic growth and development.

Thursday, August 19th 2010 - 05:47 UTC

Undercover-anglers stop slaughter of whales on Faroe Islands

The two activists raise a banner at the roof of the hotel “Hafnia” in front of the parliament of Faroe (WDSF/ProWal)

As soon as pilot whales are sighted in the waters off the Faroe Islands the hunting frenzy takes hold of the about 48.000 inhabitants. Boats are launched and pods of whales are herded into the next official hunting bay.

Wednesday, August 18th 2010 - 03:03 UTC

Shell agrees to pay for environmental damages caused by 2005 oil spill

The UK/Dutch corporation is divesting its interests Chile

A lawsuit filed against Shell Oil Company in 2005 by north Chile fisherman and shellfish divers has resulted in a compromise settlement requiring Shell to pay 1.2 million US dollars to the plaintiffs and repair environmental damages.

Wednesday, August 18th 2010 - 02:58 UTC

Whiskey’s noblesse: super bio-fuel (butanol) from distilleries by products

“Fill her up with whiskey pot ale”

Topping up at the petrol pump is about to take an intriguing twist as cars are set to be fuelled with a new super bio-fuel, made from whisky by-products. Edinburgh Napier University has filed a patent for the new bio-fuel, which can be used in ordinary cars, without any special adaptations needed.

Wednesday, August 18th 2010 - 00:38 UTC

Environmentally friendly mini-cows latest trend in US farms

Professor Richard Gradwohl and his mini cattle

They have become the latest trend in United States farms and an estimated 20.000 miniature cattle, weighing less than 300 kilos, are believed to be successfully breeding and could be indicating the future for environmentally-friendly beef.

Tuesday, August 17th 2010 - 19:27 UTC

South Sandwich Islands are the emergent tips of huge volcanoes, according to BAS

Bathymetric map showing submarine volcanoes around Zavodovski Island and numerous seamounts and sediment waves in the foreground (Image BAS)

Earlier this year, geologists on the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) ship “RRS James Clark Ross” completed a project to map the sea floor around the volcanic South Sandwich Islands using multi-beam sonar. This completes a project started three years ago, reports the latest edition of the South Georgia newsletter.

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