Monthly Archives: February 2018

Over fishing the oceans.

A new map just published shows how much of the oceans are being over fished. More than half of the world’s oceans are now being fished by industrial vessels and more than 70,000 vessels cover a greater surface than agriculture on earth. As it stands, more than one-third of commercial fish stocks are caught at levels that cannot be sustained and fish stocks are in decline everywhere.

Among the findings are that five countries account for 85% of commercial fishing measured by hours at sea. China accounts for half of that number, and the others include Spain, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. Let us not forget that people eat on average 20kg of fish each year but in developing countries, up to 70% of their proteins come from fish.

The only hope to prevent over fishing is that human beings restrain themselves. After all, on weekends and holidays the map shows sharp declines in fishing at these times. Cultural and political events impact on fishing show that humans still control the fate of the world’s fisheries.

 

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Sea levels are rising faster and faster!

A study published on Monday reports that sea levels could climb by 65 centimeters by the end of the century, a number that is in accord with the estimations of the United Nations. This increase could seriously impact coastal cities.

The annual increase which is now around 3 millimeters per year could more than triple to reach 10 millimeters per year before the year 2100. These results are based on information collected by satellites in the past 25 years and are in agreement with the report submitted in 2014 by a group of experts on climate change to the United Nations.

As Greenland and Antarctica see an accelerating rate of melt this could double the increase of sea level in comparisons to projections that estimated the rate of melt would be constant. With this increase in melting the sea levels will increase by more than 60 centimeters by the end of the century. And that is a conservative estimate. But of course we all know that climate change was an invention of the Chinese…according to president Trump.

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Ecosystems shrinking in Alberta, Canada.

A new study on ecosystems in Alberta has concluded that portions of it are shrinking faster than the Amazonian tropical forests. The study concluded that 70% of Alberta is still intact, most of it in the northern part.

However, in some areas of the province human activities such as forestry has increased from 20% to 29%, an increase of 60%, nearly two times superior at what was found in the Amazonian forests over the same period. That is surprising and shocking at the same time.

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A setback for clean water in the United States.

One should not be surprised that the Trump administration has decided to suspend an Obama clean water regulation, saying it plans to issue a new one later this year. Of course, the new one will be more friendly to industry.

According to what is known, the new rules will have looser requirements for farmers, ranchers and real estate developers on how to safeguard streams and tributaries that flow through their property and into other bodies of water.

Small landowners objected to Obama clean water rules as they regulated how much pesticides could be allowed in the waters. Naturally, these same landowners are part of Mr. Trump’s base.

The Obama rules on water had been hailed by environmentalists but it was opposed by farmers and ranchers as an infringement of their property rights. As usual in such cases, the ruling by the Trump administration will be challenged in court. The Clean Water Rule protects the bodies of water that feed the drinking water supply of 33% of Americans

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