Breaking Waves: Ocean News

06/14/2018 - 11:17
Skype founder increases his investment, saying firm is using technology for good The online ethical grocer Farmdrop has raised £10m from investors, including the founder of Skype, to take its home delivery service to the north of England. The London-based company, launched by an ex-city broker, Ben Pugh, in 2014, wants to open a warehouse in Manchester after expanding to Bristol and Bath late last year. Continue reading...
06/14/2018 - 05:00
Enbridge wants to build a new tar sands pipeline Tar sands are the dirtiest fossil fuels. These are low-quality heavy tar-like oils that are mined from sand or rock. Much of the mining occurs in Alberta Canada, but it is also mined elsewhere, in lesser quantities. Tar sands are the worst. Not only are they really hard to get out of the ground, requiring enormous amounts of energy; not only are they difficult to transport and to refine; not only are they more polluting than regular oils; they even have a by-product called “petcoke” that’s used in power plants, but is dirtier than regular coal. Continue reading...
06/14/2018 - 04:31
UK called for 30% as green groups say increase does not go far enough The EU is raising its target for the amount of energy it consumes from renewable sources, in a deal lauded by the bloc’s climate chief as a hard-won victory for the switch to clean energy. Energy ministers agreed a binding renewable energy target of 32% by 2030, up from the previous goal of 27%, but fell short of the hopes of some countries and green groups for a more ambitious share. Continue reading...
06/14/2018 - 03:00
At a gathering of fossil fuel executives at the Vatican, Pope Francis spoke much-needed common sense about climate change You kind of expect popes to talk about spiritual stuff, kind of the way you expect chefs to discuss spices or tree surgeons to make small talk about overhanging limbs. Which is why it was so interesting this week to hear Pope Francis break down the climate debate in very practical and very canny terms, displaying far more mathematical insight than your average world leader and far more strategic canniness than your average journalist. In fact, with a few deft sentences, he laid bare the hypocrisy that dominates much of the climate debate. Continue reading...
06/14/2018 - 00:01
Circular economy could recycle more plastic and meet industry demand for raw materials, finds Green Alliance research Plastic recycled in the UK could supply nearly three-quarters of domestic demand for products and packaging if the government took action to build the industry, a new report said on Thursday. The UK consumes 3.3m tonnes of plastic annually, the report says, but exports two-thirds to be recycled. It is only able to recycle 9% domestically. Continue reading...
06/14/2018 - 00:00
Experts say almost 30 species of pyralid moths have flown in or been transported via the horticultural trade Continue reading...
06/13/2018 - 23:30
Sandy, Bedfordshire: The smaller birds lunged and jabbed with mute jibes that might have said: ‘Egg thief! Chick killer! Get out of our territory!’ All through the spring, mewling cries of raptors have scolded out of thin air. On clear-sky days such as this the buzzard is complainer-in-chief, condemned by nature to speak only in a minor key. Even in the exaltation of soaring, the uplift of raised wings is accompanied by a downbeat of dissatisfaction. Nevertheless, the buzzard demonstrates moments of great expressiveness, when its peevish tones are transformed into genuine distress. Such a mayday came just as I was sauntering down the long slope from Sheerhatch Wood. The call had me swivelling round to scan over the trees, only to be turned again by a pained cry that seemed to be coming from the opposite direction. The buzzard was flying overhead, assaulted front, back and sides by a pair of crows. The smaller birds were intent on ruffling a few feathers, lunging and jabbing with mute jibes that might have said: “Egg thief! Chick killer! Get out of our territory!” The hapless buzzard, their sworn-at enemy, flapped in loud desperation, unable to rid itself of its turbulent assailants. Continue reading...
06/13/2018 - 18:01
Report finds life expectancy in region reduced by average of six months due to pollution Dangerous levels of air pollution are having a devastating impact on the health of people living in Greater Manchester and costing the regional economy £1bn every year, according to a new study. The report found that toxic air is reducing life expectancy in the region by an average six months and, over the next century, estimates “1.6 million life years” will be lost unless action is taken. Continue reading...
06/13/2018 - 15:30
A ‘glacial lake outburst flood’ killed 44 people and many animals in 1818 in Switzerland In June 1818, ice falling from the tongue of the Giétro glacier had in effect blocked the valley of Mauvoisin in Switzerland. Water was building up behind this ice dam to dangerous levels, and engineers were called in to release it gradually. They drilled a hole through the ice, but it did not relieve the water pressure quickly enough. On 16 June at 4.30pm the ice dam burst, disintegrating and releasing all the water at once. The result was a catastrophic “glacial lake outburst flood”, a phenomenon characterised by extremely high rates of water flow. Warnings did not travel as fast as the sudden rush of 20m cubic metres (4.4bn gallons) of water, which swept away bridges and buildings in its path, killing 44 people and many animals. Continue reading...
06/13/2018 - 12:00
Rate of melt has accelerated threefold in last five years and could contribute 25cm to sea-level rises without urgent action Ice in the Antarctic is melting at a record-breaking rate and the subsequent sea rises could have catastrophic consequences for cities around the world, according to two new studies. A report led by scientists in the UK and US found the rate of melting from the Antarctic ice sheet has accelerated threefold in the last five years and is now vanishing faster than at any previously recorded time. Continue reading...