Chinese ship runs into protected UNESCO reef in Philippines — while transporting 11 tons of illegal Pangolin meat
A Chinese vessel that ran into a protected coral reef in the southwestern Philippines held evidence of even more environmental destruction inside: more than 22,000 pounds of meat from a protected species, the pangolin or scaly anteater.
The steel-hulled vessel hit an atoll on April 8 at the Tubbataha National Marine Park, a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site on Palawan island.
Coast guard spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Armand Balilo said Monday that 400 boxes, each containing 25 to 30 kilograms of frozen pangolins, were discovered during a second inspection of the boat Saturday.
The World Wide Fund for Nature Philippines said the Chinese vessel F/N Min Long Yu could have been carrying up to 2,000 of the toothless, insect-eating animals rolled up in the boxes, with their scales already removed.
The boat’s 12 Chinese crewmen are being detained on charges of poaching and attempted bribery, said Adelina Villena, the marine park’s lawyer. She said more charges are being prepared against them, including damaging the corals and violating the country’s wildlife law for being found in possession of the pangolin meat.
Father Martin, parish priest on the island of Abaiang walks through the wasteland that used to be the village of Tebunginako garden. Rising sea water made the soils heavily saline and unable to support the Bananas and Taro vital to the villagers’ survival
“What happens when you trade the foundations of your society for cash?” - Céline Rouze, a brave journalist who wrote Exxon Mobil’s Papua New Guinea LNG Project. This project is the largest energy project in the history of the entire Pacific Rim. Exxon’s promises of economic development has instead brought chaos and violence.
Céline Rouze is very courageous journalist. People like her give me hope…
akingamongrunaways asked: I'm studying the storm-surge buffering capabilities of the Boston Harbor Islands as well as possible plans to install barriers and sea gates between the islands in the future. What is the feasibility of such plans? How big of a role do the Harbor Islands currently play in protecting Boston Harbor? Do you have any suggested resources? Thank you for any help you can give.
I’m going to assume you’ve done a lot of research on climate, so I’ll just point you to some sources.
For climate science and some good maps, I’d check Woods Hole/USGS, MIT, and UMass.
You might be surprised by calling the folks at Mass/DCR, they’re actually real friendly on the phone.
You may want to look into orgs that do disaster, conservation, and beach erosion management work on the Cape (possibly Manomet, but definitely check with MassDOT).
And I’m sure the Army Corps of Engineers has their hands in the harbor (the Corps websites are a nightmare, so be persistent. There are hidden gems!).
The City of Boston’s climate report is embarrassingly weak. But, you should scour the authors and sources of the report for leads.
VHB, an engineering firm, does a lot of work on infrastructure using climate data, and I believe they have several contracts with the City of Boston, Logan Airport (in fact, Logan and VHB hosted me on a tour of the airport’s infrastructure and facilities). VHB has a strong climate division, and they’re very friendly folks and if you ask nicely, they’ll send you some climate CDs and climate reports by mail.
And finally, check with MassPort Authority. You’ll run into roadblocks when calling them directly, so you should target specific people in the organization and be persistent. Nothing gets built in the harbor without MassPort’s blessing.
That’s all I got off the top of my head. Good luck and let me know how it goes!
The world’s oldest-known wild bird — a 62-year-old albatross on Midway Atoll in the Pacific Ocean — is also a new mother. The bird, a Laysan albatross whom biologists have named Wisdom, hatched a chick this week, her sixth in the past six years….
The chick, which scientists describe as healthy, hatched Sunday.
The mother, by now an old pro at the finer points of the birds and the bees, received her first identification band during the Eisenhower administration, in 1956. Back then, USGS scientist Chandler Robbins estimated she was 5 years old. Since then, she has worn out five ID bands, returning year after year to lay an egg at Midway, a remote island northwest of Hawaii that was the site of a famous 1942 naval battle. Today, it’s a U.S. national wildlife refuge where hundreds of thousands of albatrosses nest every year.
Albatrosses lay only one egg a year. Legendary long-distance marvels of the animal kingdom, they fly thousands of miles across the ocean, gliding on wind currents with their large wings. They feed on fish, squid and other marine life. Researchers estimate that if Wisdom flew typical routes, she quite probably has traveled 50,000 miles a year as an adult. That’s at least 2 million to 3 million miles since she was first banded, the equivalent of four to six trips from Earth to the moon and back.
Most Laysan albatrosses live between 12 and 40 years, although some have been documented surviving into their 50s. About 70 percent of the bird’s world population nests on Midway. Researchers estimate that Wisdom has hatched up to 35 chicks in the past half-century.
“60 feet” - That’s the amount of beach lost in parts of Martha’s Vineyard island due to Hurricane Sandy. On the map, above, you can see Martha’s Vineyard middle right, just below the “hook” known as Cape Cod. Note the island’s proximity to Boston, Providence, and Manhattan.
The “vinyud” as we Yankees call it, is a beautiful place with fantastic restaurants and beaches. Ultimately, though, it’s a play ground for the very wealthy. Indeed, many Presidents (among other fancy people) regularly vacationed here, including John Adams(!), Ulysses S. Grant, Chester Arthur, John F. Kennedy (actually, the Kennedys have a ton of property here), Bill Clinton, and, yep, Barack Obama. (Mitt Romney, by the way, has two of his six homes in Massachusetts).
One private home worth around $8 million hired engineers, negotiated with neighbors, and won approval from the town for an emergency permit to build a temporary beach erosion protection system.
The emergency plan calls for the installation of a Coir Log Coastal Bank Protection System which will “hopefully temporarily slow down” the rate of erosion, Mr. Sourati said. “It’s not a permanent solution, but it’s going to give us some time to think about other solutions.” Via
A great solution, but it’s just for one house. What about the roads, hotels, schools, research facilities, and countless thousands of homes impacted by sea level rise and aggressive beach erosion? What can be done for an entire coast line, which has already seen a foot of sea level rise?
Sony World Photography Awards 2011 - open shortlist: Nature and Wildlife: Antoine Beyeler, Switzerland. “This is as kitsch a bear as it gets, but real ice, real sky and, most importantly, real wild polar bear in its actual habitat - Svalbard.”
Pacific small island States most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change will benefit from a new climate resilience project worth EUR11.4 million, funded by the EU and implemented by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) over the next four years, the SPC has announced.
The project, titled “Increasing Climate Resilience of Pacific Small Islands States through the Global Climate Change Alliance,” will support the Governments of Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Tonga and Tuvalu in their efforts to tackle the adverse effects of climate change. It will promote the development of long-term strategies and approaches to adaptation planning, and pave the way for more effective and coordinated delivery of aid for climate change response at the national and regional level.
The project will assist countries in developing more detailed climate change response strategies and investment plans, and in integrating these into overarching national climate change response frameworks. In addition, the project also will provide assistance to countries to help identify, design and implement practical, on-the-ground climate change adaptation activities, in accordance with their established priorities. At least one concrete adaptation project will be implemented in each of the nine countries.
At the regional level, the project will strengthen the capacity of key regional organizations to deliver climate change-related scientific, technical and information services to countries, and it will reinforce regional mechanisms to better coordinate the flow of climate change funding in the Pacific.
A blog about the interactions between the built environment, people, and nature.
I'm a climate change consultant specializing in climate adaptation, environmental law, and urban planning based in the U.S. In addition to traveling and hiking, I research, publish, and lecture on how cities can adapt to climate change.
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