Breaking Waves: Ocean News

07/06/2016 - 15:25
Lab is experimenting with hydroponics to sustain gardens in conditions where fresh produce only lasts up to 10 days into a three-month deployment A navy research lab is working on a new project that could allow deployed sailors to finally grow fresh vegetables on submarines. Engineering technician and 30-year navy veteran Don Holman is testing whether hydroponics can be used to sustain gardens on submarines at the army’s Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center, located on the outskirts of Boston. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 11:19
America has surpassed Saudi Arabia and Russia in oil reserves, a new report says, but current rate of production oil supplies will only last 70 more years The United States has surpassed Saudi Arabia and Russia as the global leader in oil reserves, according to a report by a Norwegian consultancy firm. “We have done this benchmarking every year, and this is the first year we’ve seen that the US is above Saudi Arabia and Russia,” Per Magnus Nysveen, head of analysis at Rystad Energy, said. He credited the rise to a sharp increase in the number of discoveries in the Permian basin in Texas over the past two years. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 09:13
European commissions’ opposition to a proposed global ban will spell the beginning of a mass extinction of African elephants, warn officials from 29 African states Wildlife officials in nearly 30 African states say they are appalled by an EU decision to oppose a comprehensive global ban on the ivory trade. In a position paper released on 1 July, the European commission said that rather than an all-encompassing ban it would be better to encourage countries with growing elephant numbers to “sustainably manage” their populations. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 07:46
Council grants planning permission to controversial Druridge Bay coal mine, as campaigners vow to fight on, reports BusinessGreen Green groups have responded with outrage to the decision yesterday by Northumberland County Council to approve controversial plans for a new opencast coal mine near the Northumberland coast. The council voted in support of plans from developer Banks Group, which would see 3m tonnes of coal, sandstone and fireclay extracted from a surface mine at Highthorn, near the village of Widdrington. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 06:15
Candidates running for Congress and the presidency aren’t offering real solutions, despite growing scientific alarm. That is not acceptable Every election year, candidates for office engage in a perverse form of theater. Some flatter voters or try to scare them, others offer promises of a better future. Unfortunately, few candidates feel an obligation to follow through on campaign pledges or grapple with serious problems confronting our country and planet. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 06:00
Climate change has barely registered as a 2016 campaign issue, but in Florida, the state which usually decides the presidential election, the waters are lapping at the doors of Donald Trump’s real estate empire On a hot and lazy afternoon in Palm Beach, the only sign of movement is the water gently lapping at the grounds of Mar-a-Lago, the private club that is the prize of Donald Trump’s real estate acquisitions in Florida. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 05:20
Volcanic ash threatens world’s largest colony of chinstrap penguins that are currently trapped on a small island in the sub Antarctic, say scientists One of the world’s biggest colonies of penguins is at risk from a volcano that has erupted on their small sub-Antarctic island in a British overseas territory. British scientists fear that Mt Curry’s eruption could have a serious impact on the 1.2m chinstrap penguins and nearly 200,000 macaroni penguins based on Zavodovski, one of the South Sandwich islands. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 04:15
Conservationists are devastated after the first two chicks born in captivity to one of the world’s rarest birds die at a wildfowl centre in Gloucestershire An attempt to breed one of the world’s rarest birds in captivity has failed after the only two chicks which hatched died, conservationists said. Efforts to breed critically endangered spoon-billed sandpipers, named after their unusual beak, from the world’s only captive population seemed to have yielded results, with seven eggs laid and two chicks hatching. Continue reading...
07/06/2016 - 00:00
As the demand for tobacco declines in the US, farmers in Virginia are experimenting with turning the crop into viable biofuel Most of the tobacco growing across 80-acres at Briar View Farms in Callands, Virginia is chosen for its flavour and high nicotine content. The leaves are hand-harvested, flue-cured or dark-fired and sold as smoking or chewing tobacco at premium prices. One two-acre plot stands apart from the rest, its flavour and nicotine content are irrelevant. The June and October harvests are mechanised and the entire plant, including leaves and stems, are cut with a silage chopper and tossed into metal bins. All of the tobacco plants harvested are turned into biofuel. Continue reading...
07/05/2016 - 23:30
Wenlock Edge Each flower on the spike is a little pink cutout of a figure, perhaps an effigy of a person our news never mentions Up on the Windmill there are more pyramidal orchids than I’ve ever shaken a stick at. Singly or in stands of up to 50 in a stride, they scatter across the hill meadow. Their name suggests the sacred geometry of the Egyptians or Incas, but they appear as blobs of absurd colour. From lilac purple, through cerise to baby pink Anacamptis pyramidalis flowers are domed or conical and have the foxy scent of a rebel. Their leaves are largely lost in a meadow thatch where bees and moths are taking refuge, slow to emerge; a few dithery grass moths and a bumble or two lift the spirits. Continue reading...