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Author Topic: Pollution  (Read 8560 times)

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AGelbert

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Pollution
« on: October 17, 2013, 07:43:24 pm »
Here’s where you’re most likely to die from air pollution


http://grist.org/climate-energy/heres-where-youre-most-likely-to-die-from-air-pollution[/
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AGelbert

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4qaHCFaF9I&feature=player_embedded
The Dirty Business Of Turning This Latino Farmworker Town Into A Toxic Wasteland
http://www.mycuentame.org/toxicwasteland
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AGelbert

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U.N. lists air pollution as carcinogen
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2013, 08:16:45 pm »
U.N. lists air pollution as carcinogen

By John Upton

If you want to avoid lung cancer, the United Nation’s cancer-research body has some advice for you: Don’t breathe.  :P   >:(

The International Agency for Research on Cancer on Thursday added air pollution, and the particulate matter that it contains, to its list of carcinogens.

The airborne poisons were classified as “Group 1″ carcinogens, meaning there is “sufficient evidence” that they cause cancer in humans. They are mostly produced through the burning of fossil fuels in vehicles, power plants, and stoves.

And it’s not just lung cancer that can be triggered by air pollution. In a statement [PDF], the agency noted “a positive association” between polluted air and bladder cancer.

“Our task was to evaluate the air everyone breathes rather than focus on specific air pollutants,” agency official Dana Loomis told Reuters. “The results from the reviewed studies point in the same direction: the risk of developing lung cancer is significantly increased in people exposed to air pollution.”

The decision follows findings that air pollution killed 3.2 million people in 2010, including 233,000 cancer-related deaths. Most of the deaths occurred in India, China, and other developing countries with large populations. The Clean Air Act helped dramatically clean up the air that Americans breathe, but anybody who has visited Los Angeles or California’s Central Valley knows that problems persist in the West.

Air pollution and particulate matter now join a list [PDF], nicknamed the encyclopedia of carcinogens, that also contains such nasties as
asbestos,
plutonium,
hepatitis, and
tobacco smoke. Oh, and
sun rays,
estrogen therapy,
Chinese-style salted fish, and
booze
.

 


Source

Outdoor air pollution a leading environmental cause of cancer deaths, IARC



UN agency calls outdoor air pollution leading cause of cancer, Reuters


John Upton is a science fan and green news boffin who tweets, posts articles to Facebook, and blogs about ecology. He welcomes reader questions, tips, and incoherent rants: johnupton@gmail.com.

http://grist.org/news/u-n-lists-air-pollution-as-carcinogen
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AGelbert

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Environmental engineering

‘We continue to abuse the environment as a convenient dump for increasing amounts of wastes, including large quantities of man-made toxic materials. Our efforts to control the risks have had limited success, but have made us painfully aware of how little is known about natural processes and our created life support system. This environmental crisis, which is to a considerable degree the result of greed—a desire to have more and more material possessions— has now reached a critical point where the damage may not be reversible in time to prevent a major catastrophe.

As a Christian who believes we cannot separate our stewardship role from our faith, I believe it is a spiritual issue, a wake-up call from God to greater holiness. The majority of Christians, including myself, have bought into an economic system based on unlimited growth and, hence, unlimited consumption of the Earth’s resources. Materialism—more and bigger cars, houses, gadgets, etc.—interferes with our stewardship obligations, as well as our spiritual growth.’

Dr Lambert Otten,
Director, School of Engineering
Professor of Biological Engineering
Professor of Environmental Engineering
University of Guelph, Canada.


 
Environmental science

‘The Bible teaches that the Curse on nature will end—nature will be restored to its original splendour (Acts 3:21), sharing in the effects of redemption (Romans 8:19–23). Biblical visions of this restoration are of people and nature once again in harmony.

‘Christians are part of a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). We share the Gospel message with many people, even though we know that probably only a few will respond. Likewise, we ought to be willing to care for creation, even though we know we can’t bring full restoration.

It is therefore right to care for the natural environment, provided it does not conflict with another Scripture principle. Too often we waste and misuse God’s possessions, like the manager in Luke 16:1 wasted his master’s possessions.’

Dr George Hawke
Senior Environmental Consultant
Pacific Power International, Sydney, Australia.



Environmental management

‘The principle of Ecologically Sustainable Development has been widely accepted by governments all over the world since the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992. One of its main principles is inter-generational equity, i.e. we shouldn’t eat now the future of our children. It’s not hard to see Biblical ethics behind this idea.’

Geoff Meadows
Manager–Environmental Planning
Environmental Protection Agency, Cairns, Australia.



References and notes

1. This current of warm water from the tropics is probably ‘driven’ by cold water sinking in the freezing Arctic. Return to text.
2. Impact # 339, Acts and Facts, September 2001. Return to text. 
3. Hugh Mackay, The Adelaide Advertiser , 2 May 1990. Return to text.
4. Batten, D., What! … no potatoes?, Creation  21(1):12—14, 1998. Return to text.
5. Some say that a consistent evolutionist should not complain about extinction because it is part of evolution. This is true, but may be a little unfair. The evolutionist believes that it took a very long time for nature to create these things, and that the abnormal selection pressure applied by mankind nowadays is forcing extinction to occur at a far greater rate than new ones could possibly evolve. Return to text.
6. For a discussion of the problem of how ‘bad’ things arose post-Fall, see Chapter 6 of The 7. Creation Answers Book,  Creation Ministries International, Brisbane, 2006. Return to text.
7. Singer, P. (Ed.), In Defence of Animals, Basil Blackwell Limited, Oxford, p. 6, 1985. Return to text.
8. Time, p. 57, 26 March 1990. Return to text.
9. Frey, R. & G., Journal of Medical Ethics  9:94–97, 1983. Return to text.

Fouling the nest  Christianity and the environment
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AGelbert

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The case for a revenue-neutral carbon tax
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2013, 09:52:16 pm »
The case for a revenue-neutral carbon tax

By John D. Kelley

“Men argue. Nature acts.” Voltaire

No argument will prevent ice from changing into water when the temperature shifts from 32 degrees Fahrenheit to 33 degrees Fahrenheit. The climate of our planet is not controlled by wishes and opinions, it only responds to the natural forces that drive it.


There is no longer any credible scientific debate that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases caused by human activities are warming the Earth in dangerous ways. Worldwide, people are experiencing the effects of climate change with sea level rise, bigger storms, larger floods, extreme heat, longer droughts, and huge wildfires. Four of the five largest wildfires in California history have occurred since 2003. The Rim Fire currently burning near Yosemite is the third largest. It has burned over 400 square miles. >:(

We have a moral responsibility to future generations to take powerful action now to moderate climate change by severely curtailing our greenhouse gas emissions. A revenue-neutral carbon tax that would change the economics of energy and reduce our greenhouse gas emissions is getting support across the political spectrum. The essence of this concept is to tax carbon production and return 100% of the proceeds equally to all citizens. This is a powerful way to cause a shift away from carbon fuels while protecting American families from higher energy prices.

 A growing number of people believe that a national carbon tax is the most efficient, transparent, and enforceable mechanism to drive an effective and fair transition to a clean energy economy. To make the economic transition as smooth as possible the tax would start small and increase annually and predictably. At the same time fossil fuel subsidies would be phased out. This would mean that energy prices would be predictable for people and businesses.

A national carbon tax would be easy to administer. The tax would be charged at first point-of-sale, the mine, wellhead, or border crossing, and would be collected by the IRS. The funds would be placed in a Carbon Tax Trust Fund and rebated to American households. All adult citizens would receive equal monthly dividends and families would also receive ˝ share per child under 18 years old, with a limit of 2 child-shares per family. It is estimated that 70% of families would see a net increase in income.

A national carbon tax would be reconciled with existing state programs such as California’s cap and trade system. There are several ways this would be done: 1. Preemption 2. Stacking 3. Integration.

In Preemption, the CA program would cease to function once the federal law took effect.

In Stacking, the program would continue to function as is on top of the federal regulations.

In Integration, the state and federal programs would work together. To ensure that U.S. made goods remain competitive in international markets carbon tax equivalent tariffs would be charged for goods entering the U.S. from countries without equivalent carbon pricing while carbon tax rebates would reduce the price of exports to those countries. These tariffs and rebates would provide an incentive for international adoption of carbon taxes.

Five years ago British Columbia implemented a revenue-neutral carbon tax. It gradually added to the cost of fossil fuels while cutting both personal and corporate income taxes. A recent study reports that BC’s use of petroleum fuels has dropped by 15.1%.” The study also finds that BC’s “personal and corporate income tax rates are now the the lowest in Canada, due to the carbon tax shift.

Perhaps we are finally approaching a political tipping point regarding climate change policies. Currently the Environmental Protection Agency is under court order to issue climate change rules. The fossil fuel industry is fearful of what the EPA may do, so there is a new congressional debate over climate change policy. As part of this national debate a revenue-neutral carbon tax must be considered. It would be efficient, transparent, and enforceable because market decisions would select the best clean energy programs and technologies, and the dividends would stimulate the economy. By acting now to implement a revenue-neutral carbon tax we can create a stronger economy and ensure a more livable climate for our children and grandchildren.


John D. Kelley AIA, an award-winning architect, specializes in healthy, environmentally-friendly home design. A former President of AIA Santa Barbara, he is a founding member of several local volunteer groups including: The Sustainability Project, the Green Building Alliance, and the Mesa Architects. As a concerned citizen he advocates for immediate action to address climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

http://citizensclimatelobby.org/oct-11-2013-oped-in-pacific-coast-business-times/
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AGelbert

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Wide Support For EPA Across State & Party Lines
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2013, 07:58:06 pm »
Wide Support For EPA Across State & Party Lines 


Fighting emissions regulations by the Environmental Protection Agency must be a winning national electoral issue, right? Otherwise why would so many politicians fight so hard to allow power plants to keep spewing pollution into the air?

Um, not so much. :o  ;D  An overwhelming majority of voters in swing states across the country support EPA action to limit the amount of carbon power plants can emit, according to a new survey from the League of Conservation Voters (LCV).

By wide margins, voters in 11 states considered in play for 2014 Senate elections not only support emissions regulation, but trust EPA to administer the policy and say they’re less likely to vote for candidates who either oppose EPA’s proposal or deny climate change.




74% of voters support EPA’s proposals to limit power plant emissions. That support cuts across states Barack Obama (73%) and Mitt Romney (73%) as well as party identification for Democrats (92%), independents (72%), and Republicans (58%). “The anti-environmental message is a losing argument with the American people,” blogged Gene Karpinski, LCV President.

The LCV poll derived these findings from telephone interviews on October 9-13 with 1,113 likely voters in Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Louisiana, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, and Virginia.

It’s also probably not surprising to learn the public wants EPA to regulate emissions, not Congress. At the height of the government shutdown, voters preferred EPA regulation to Congressional action by a 5-to-1 margin, 66% to 12%

Anti-EPA Stance & Climate Denial Cost Votes

In fact, EPA opposition may actually turn out to be a harmful policy position for 2014 candidates. Nearly half (48%) of all voters said they would be less likely to vote for a candidate who opposed emissions regulation, while only 17% said they’d be more likely to vote for that candidate. By comparison, 44% of voters said they’d be more likely to vote for a candidate who supported power plant emissions regulations by EPA.

When presented with both sides of the argument (war on coal, higher electricity prices, and job killer were used against regulation while climate change, public health, and protecting the planet were used for regulation), 64% of voters said they wanted their senator to support EPA’s proposal.

Those same trends translate to voter perceptions about the threat of climate change. 65% of voters say climate change is a serious problem nationwide, and surprisingly say so at a higher rate in Romney states (67%) compared to Obama states (64%).

And if candidates deny climate change, they may be shooting their campaigns in the foot. 63% of voters said hearing their Senate candidate deny climate change would make them view the candidate less favorably than one recognizing basic science.

Pro-Climate Trends Taking Shape One Year Out

Election Day 2014 could be a major turning point for clean energy and climate policy – if Republicans keep the House of Representatives and take control of the Senate, action would grind to a halt for the rest of Obama’s term. However, if Democrats cut into the GOP’s House majority and hold the Senate, Obama could cement his progressive legacy by pushing through renewables support and emissions reduction goals.

LCV’s latest survey tracks with a bipartisan poll from July 2013 that found young voters “intensely supportive” of action to fight climate change, and willing to punish those who ignore the problem. Now that those trends are showing up across the wider US population, on broader policy fronts, it might just be time to scrap that climate-denier, anti-EPA playbook.

Read more at http://cleantechnica.com/2013/10/30/poll-74-us-voters-back-epa-power-plant-emissions-regulation/#A3wgwACM6TejgZfk.99
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Surly1

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Re: Pollution/Devolution of the Seas
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2013, 07:11:46 am »
This article brought to our attention By Gail Zawacki on the Earth Matters FB page. It appeared in Foreign Affairs (!) and in spite of that, we offer it here. It illustrates the extent to which we are soiling our own nest through apathy and ignorance.

The Devolution of the Seas
October 29, 2013 at 2:28pm

 
The Devolution of the Seas: The Consequences of Oceanic Destruction
By Alan B. Sielen


 
Of all the threats looming over the planet today, one of the most alarming is the seemingly inexorable descent of the world’s oceans into ecological perdition. Over the last several decades, human activities have so altered the basic chemistry of the seas that they are now experiencing evolution in reverse: a return to the barren primeval waters of hundreds of millions of years ago.
 
A visitor to the oceans at the dawn of time would have found an underwater world that was mostly lifeless. Eventually, around 3.5 billion years ago, basic organisms began to emerge from the primordial ooze. This microbial soup of algae and bacteria needed little oxygen to survive. Worms, jellyfish, and toxic fireweed ruled the deep. In time, these simple organisms began to evolve into higher life forms, resulting in the wondrously rich diversity of fish, corals, whales, and other sea life one associates with the oceans today.
 
Yet that sea life is now in peril. Over the last 50 years -- a mere blink in geologic time -- humanity has come perilously close to reversing the almost miraculous biological abundance of the deep. Pollution, overfishing, the destruction of habitats, and climate change are emptying the oceans and enabling the lowest forms of life to regain their dominance. The oceanographer Jeremy Jackson calls it “the rise of slime”: the transformation of once complex oceanic ecosystems featuring intricate food webs with large animals into simplistic systems dominated by microbes, jellyfish, and disease. In effect, humans are eliminating the lions and tigers of the seas to make room for the cockroaches and rats.
 
The prospect of vanishing whales, polar bears, bluefin tuna, sea turtles, and wild coasts should be worrying enough on its own. But the disruption of entire ecosystems threatens our very survival, since it is the healthy functioning of these diverse systems that sustains life on earth. Destruction on this level will cost humans dearly in terms of food, jobs, health, and quality of life. It also violates the unspoken promise passed from one generation to the next of a better future.
Humans are eliminating the lions and tigers of the seas to make room for the cockroaches and rats.
LAYING WASTE
The oceans’ problems start with pollution, the most visible forms of which are the catastrophic spills from offshore oil and gas drilling or from tanker accidents. Yet as devastating as these events can be, especially locally, their overall contribution to marine pollution pales in comparison to the much less spectacular waste that finds its way to the seas through rivers, pipes, runoff, and the air. For example, trash -- plastic bags, bottles, cans, tiny plastic pellets used in manufacturing -- washes into coastal waters or gets discarded by ships large and small. This debris drifts out to sea, where it forms epic gyres of floating waste, such as the infamous Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which spans hundreds of miles across the North Pacific Ocean.
 
The most dangerous pollutants are chemicals. The seas are being poisoned by substances that are toxic, remain in the environment for a long time, travel great distances, accumulate in marine life, and move up the food chain. Among the worst culprits are heavy metals such as mercury, which is released into the atmosphere by the burning of coal and then rains down on the oceans, rivers, and lakes; mercury can also be found in medical waste.
 
Hundreds of new industrial chemicals enter the market each year, most of them untested. Of special concern are those known as persistent organic pollutants, which are commonly found in streams, rivers, coastal waters, and, increasingly, the open ocean. These chemicals build up slowly in the tissues of fish and shellfish and are transferred to the larger creatures that eat them. Studies by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have linked exposure to persistent organic pollutants to death, disease, and abnormalities in fish and other wildlife. These pervasive chemicals can also adversely affect the development of the brain, the neurologic system, and the reproductive system in humans.
 
Then there are the nutrients, which increasingly show up in coastal waters after being used as chemical fertilizers on farms, often far inland. All living things require nutrients; excessive amounts, however, wreak havoc on the natural environment. Fertilizer that makes its way into the water causes the explosive growth of algae. When these algae die and sink to the sea floor, their decomposition robs the water of the oxygen needed to support complex marine life. Some algal blooms also produce toxins that can kill fish and poison humans who consume seafood.
 
The result has been the emergence of what marine scientists call “dead zones” -- areas devoid of the ocean life people value most. The high concentration of nutrients flowing down the Mississippi River and emptying into the Gulf of Mexico has created a seasonal offshore dead zone larger than the state of New Jersey. An even larger dead zone -- the world’s biggest -- can be found in the Baltic Sea, which is comparable in size to California. The estuaries of China’s two greatest rivers, the Yangtze and the Yellow, have similarly lost their complex marine life. Since 2004, the total number of such aquatic wastelands worldwide has more than quadrupled, from 146 to over 600 today.
 
TEACH A MAN TO FISH -- THEN WHAT?
Another cause of the oceans’ decline is that humans are simply killing and eating too many fish. A frequently cited 2003 study in the journal Nature by the marine biologists Ransom Myers and Boris Worm found that the number of large fish -- both open-ocean species, such as tuna, swordfish, and marlin, and large groundfish, such as cod, halibut, and flounder -- had declined by 90 percent since 1950. The finding provoked controversy among some scientists and fishery managers. But subsequent studies have confirmed that fish populations have indeed fallen dramatically.
 
In fact, if one looks back further than 1950, the 90 percent figure turns out to be conservative. As historical ecologists have shown, we are far removed from the days when Christopher Columbus reported seeing large numbers of sea turtles migrating off the coast of the New World, when 15-foot sturgeon bursting with caviar leaped from the waters of the Chesapeake Bay, when George Washington’s Continental army could avoid starvation by feasting on swarms of shad swimming upriver to spawn, when dense oyster beds nearly blocked the mouth of the Hudson River, and when the early-twentieth-century American adventure writer Zane Grey marveled at the enormous swordfish, tuna, wahoo, and grouper he found in the Gulf of California.
 
Today, the human appetite has nearly wiped those populations out. It’s no wonder that stocks of large predator fish are rapidly dwindling when one considers the fact that one bluefin tuna can go for hundreds of thousands of dollars at market in Japan. High prices -- in January 2013, a 489-pound Pacific bluefin tuna sold for $1.7 million at auction in Tokyo -- make it profitable to employ airplanes and helicopters to scan the ocean for the fish that remain; against such technologies, marine animals don’t stand a chance.
 
Nor are big fish the only ones that are threatened. In area after area, once the long-lived predatory species, such as tuna and swordfish, disappear, fishing fleets move on to smaller, plankton-eating fish, such as sardines, anchovy, and herring. The overexploitation of smaller fish deprives the larger wild fish that remain of their food; aquatic mammals and sea birds, such as ospreys and eagles, also go hungry. Marine scientists refer to this sequential process as fishing down the food chain.
 
The problem is not just that we eat too much seafood; it’s also how we catch it. Modern industrial fishing fleets drag lines with thousands of hooks miles behind a vessel, and industrial trawlers on the high seas drop nets thousands of feet below the sea’s surface. In the process, many untargeted species, including sea turtles, dolphins, whales, and large sea birds (such as albatross) get accidentally captured or entangled. Millions of tons of unwanted sea life is killed or injured in commercial fishing operations each year; indeed, as much as a third of what fishermen pull out of the waters was never meant to be harvested. Some of the most destructive fisheries discard 80 to 90 percent of what they bring in. In the Gulf of Mexico, for example, for every pound of shrimp caught by a trawler, over three pounds of marine life is thrown away.
 
As the oceans decline and the demand for their products rises, marine and freshwater aquaculture may look like a tempting solution. After all, since we raise livestock on land for food, why not farm fish at sea? Fish farming is growing faster than any other form of food production, and today, the majority of commercially sold fish in the world and half of U.S. seafood imports come from aquaculture. Done right, fish farming can be environmentally acceptable. But the impact of aquaculture varies widely depending on the species raised, methods used, and location, and several factors make healthy and sustainable production difficult. Many farmed fish rely heavily on processed wild fish for food, which eliminates the fish-conservation benefits of aquaculture. Farmed fish can also escape into rivers and oceans and endanger wild populations by transmitting diseases or parasites or by competing with native species for feeding and spawning grounds. Open-net pens also pollute, sending fish waste, pesticides, antibiotics, uneaten food, diseases, and parasites flowing directly into the surrounding waters.
 
DESTROYING THE EARTH’S FINAL FRONTIER
Yet another factor driving the decline of the oceans is the destruction of the habitats that have allowed spectacular marine life to thrive for millennia. Residential and commercial development have laid waste to once-wild coastal areas. In particular, humans are eliminating coastal marshes, which serve as feeding grounds and nurseries for fish and other wildlife, filter out pollutants, and fortify coasts against storms and erosion.
Hidden from view but no less worrying is the wholesale destruction of deep-ocean habitats. For fishermen seeking ever more elusive prey, the depths of the seas have become the earth’s final frontier. There, submerged mountain chains called seamounts -- numbering in the tens of thousands and mostly uncharted -- have proved especially desirable targets. Some rise from the sea floor to heights approaching that of Mount Rainier, in Washington State. The steep slopes, ridges, and tops of seamounts in the South Pacific and elsewhere are home to a rich variety of marine life, including large pools of undiscovered species.
 
Today, fishing vessels drag huge nets outfitted with steel plates and heavy rollers across the sea floor and over underwater mountains, more than a mile deep, destroying everything in their path. As industrial trawlers bulldoze their way along, the surfaces of seamounts are reduced to sand, bare rock, and rubble. Deep cold-water corals, some older than the California redwoods, are being obliterated. In the process, an unknown number of species from these unique islands of biological diversity -- which might harbor new medicines or other important information -- are being driven extinct before humans even get a chance to study them.
 
Relatively new problems present additional challenges. Invasive species, such as lionfish, zebra mussels, and Pacific jellyfish, are disrupting coastal ecosystems and in some cases have caused the collapse of entire fisheries. Noise from sonar used by military systems and other sources can have devastating effects on whales, dolphins, and other marine life. Large vessels speeding through busy shipping lanes are also killing whales. Finally, melting Arctic ice creates new environmental hazards, as wildlife habitats disappear, mining becomes easier, and shipping routes expand.
 
IN HOT WATER
As if all this were not enough, scientists estimate that man-made climate change will drive the planet’s temperature up by between four and seven degrees Fahrenheit over the course of this century, making the oceans hotter. Sea levels are rising, storms are getting stronger, and the life cycles of plants and animals are being upended, changing migration patterns and causing other serious disruptions.
 
Global warming has already devastated coral reefs, and marine scientists now foresee the collapse of entire reef systems in the next few decades. Warmer waters drive out the tiny plants that corals feed on and depend on for their vivid coloration. Deprived of food, the corals starve to death, a process known as “bleaching.” At the same time, rising ocean temperatures promote disease in corals and other marine life. Nowhere are these complex interrelationships contributing to dying seas more than in fragile coral ecosystems.
 
The oceans have also become more acidic as carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere dissolves in the world’s water. The buildup of acid in ocean waters reduces the availability of calcium carbonate, a key building block for the skeletons and shells of corals, plankton, shellfish, and many other marine organisms. Just as trees make wood to grow tall and reach light, many sea creatures need hard shells to grow and also to guard against predators.
 
On top of all these problems, the most severe impact of the damage being done to the oceans by climate change and ocean acidification may be impossible to predict. The world’s seas support processes essential to life on earth. These include complex biological and physical systems, such as the nitrogen and carbon cycles; photosynthesis, which creates half of the oxygen that humans breathe and forms the base of the ocean’s biological productivity; and ocean circulation. Much of this activity takes place in the open ocean, where the sea and the atmosphere interact. Despite flashes of terror, such as the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami of 2004, the delicate balance of nature that sustains these systems has remained remarkably stable since well before the advent of human civilization.
 
But these complex processes both influence and respond to the earth’s climate, and scientists see certain recent developments as red flags possibly heralding an impending catastrophe. To take one example, tropical fish are increasingly migrating to the cooler waters of the Arctic and Southern oceans. Such changes may result in extinctions of fish species, threatening a critical food source especially in developing countries in the tropics. Or consider that satellite data show that warm surface waters are mixing less with cooler, deeper waters. This reduction in vertical mixing separates near-surface marine life from the nutrients below, ultimately driving down the population of phytoplankton, which is the foundation of the ocean’s food chain. Transformations in the open ocean could dramatically affect the earth’s climate and the complex processes that support life both on land and at sea. Scientists do not yet fully understand how all these processes work, but disregarding the warning signs could result in grave consequences.
 
A WAY FORWARD
Governments and societies have come to expect much less from the sea. The base lines of environmental quality, good governance, and personal responsibility have plummeted. This passive acceptance of the ongoing destruction of the seas is all the more shameful given how avoidable the process is. Many solutions exist, and some are relatively simple. For example, governments could create and expand protected marine areas, adopt and enforce stronger international rules to conserve biological diversity in the open ocean, and place a moratorium on the fishing of dwindling fish species, such as Pacific bluefin tuna. But solutions will also require broader changes in how societies approach energy, agriculture, and the management of natural resources. Countries will have to make substantial reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, transition to clean energy, eliminate the worst toxic chemicals, and end the massive nutrient pollution in watersheds.
 
These challenges may seem daunting, especially for countries focused on basic survival. But governments, international institutions, nongovernmental organizations, scholars, and businesses have the necessary experience and capacity to find answers to the oceans’ problems. And they have succeeded in the past, through innovative local initiatives on every continent, impressive scientific advances, tough environmental regulation and enforcement, and important international measures, such as the global ban on the dumping of nuclear waste in the oceans.
 
So long as pollution, overfishing, and ocean acidification remain concerns only for scientists, however, little will change for the good. Diplomats and national security experts, who understand the potential for conflict in an overheated world, should realize that climate change might soon become a matter of war and peace. Business leaders should understand better than most the direct links between healthy seas and healthy economies. And government officials, who are entrusted with the public’s well-being, must surely see the importance of clean air, land, and water.
 
The world faces a choice. We do not have to return to an oceanic Stone Age. Whether we can summon the political will and moral courage to restore the seas to health before it is too late is an open question. The challenge and the opportunity are there.
 
If you have a password, see the original here: http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/140164/alan-b-sielen/the-devolution-of-the-seas

AGelbert

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Re: Pollution
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2013, 04:08:12 pm »
Quote
The world faces a choice.

And the 99% have made the right one. It's the 1% with their massive financial leverage that need to wake up and smell the coffee.


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Making "lemonade' out of 600 Year Polluting 'lemons'
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2013, 11:34:33 pm »
Discarded Fishing Nets Turn Into Carpets And Benefits Communities
 
Reducing Pollution AND Poverty



ttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqTUOPq6844&feature=player_embedded

An inspiring story of Win Win Win 

 Here is a business that harvests fishing nets from the shorelines of the Philippines and uses the nylon they're made of to create 100% recycled carpeting.

 These fishing nets were traditionally just left on the shores, polluting the environment for 600 years. Worse, they were discarded in the water and caught fish and other marine life that just lingered and died for no benefit.

 "Networks" is a program that takes discarded fishing nets from impoverished communities and recycles them into carpet tile. Not only do the nets turn into something useful instead of polluting the environment, but the program is set up to benefit the community in the long term.

 An inspiring story of Win Win Win that is just getting started. Other materials are next!

 --Bibi Farber

 This video was produced by Sustainable Brands

- See more at: http://www.nextworldtv.com/videos/reducing-waste/discarded-fishing-nets-turn-into-carpets-and-benefits-communities.html#sthash.6cLeO4jE.dpuf
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Gulf fisherman: “There is no life out there”
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2013, 10:49:56 pm »

Gulf fisherman: “There is no life out there” 


By John Upton

There are many ways of preparing oysters. BP has the recipe for destroying them  >:(.

If it’s true that oysters are aphrodisiacs, then BP has killed the mood.

 

Louisiana’s oyster season opened last week, but thanks to the mess that still lingers after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, there aren’t many oysters around.

“We can’t find any production out there yet,” Brad Robin, a commercial fisherman and Louisiana Oyster Task Force member, told Al Jazeera. “There is no life out there.” Many of Louisiana’s oyster harvest areas are “dead or mostly dead,” he says.


In Mississippi, fishing boats that used to catch 30 sacks of oysters a day are returning to docks in the evenings with fewer than half a dozen sacks aboard.

It’s not just oysters. The entire fishing industry is being hit, with catches down and shrimp and shellfish being discovered with disgusting deformities. One seafood business owner told Al Jazeera that his revenue was down 85 percent compared with the period before the spill. From the article:


“I’ve seen a lot of change since the spill,” [Hernando Beach Seafood co-owner Kathy] Birren told Al Jazeera. “Our stone crab harvest has dropped off and not come back; the numbers are way lower. Typically you’ll see some good crabbing somewhere along the west coast of Florida, but this last year we’ve had problems everywhere.”

Birren said the problems are not just with the crabs. “We’ve also had our grouper fishing down since the spill,” she added. “We’ve seen fish with tar balls in their stomachs from as far down as the Florida Keys. We had a grouper with tar balls in its stomach last month. Overall, everything is down.”

According to Birren, many fishermen in her area are giving up. “People are dropping out of the fishing business, and selling out cheap because they have to. I’m in west-central Florida, but fishermen all the way down to Key West are struggling to make it. I look at my son’s future, as he’s just getting into the business, and we’re worried.”

Ecosystem recovery is a slow process. Ed Cake, an oceanographer and marine biologist, points out that oysters still have not returned to some of the areas affected by a 1979 oil well blowout in the Gulf. He thinks recovery from the BP disaster will take decades.
Source
Gulf ecosystem in crisis after BP spill, Al Jazeera


http://grist.org/news/gulf-fisherman-there-is-no-life-out-there/

DECADES!!? What part of "There is no life out there" does this oceanographer NOT UNDERSTAND?  ??? The Gulf DOES NOT HAVE Decades!
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Starfish Along West Coast Are Dying, ‘Star Wasting Disease’

Quote
“Every population has sick animals,” Gaydos said. “Are we just seeing sick animals because we’re looking for it, or is it an early sign of a large epidemic that may come through and wipe out a lot of animals?”

Surly, Thank you for this article. This is FAR more serious than meets the eye.

Quote

WHAT EATS A STARFISH?

What Eats A Starfish? What eats starfish?

What do starfish eat?


To us humans, starfish look like they’d be a bit too hard and crunchy to make a good meal. But starfish do have a few predators, or natural enemies.

Manta rays, some sharks and other large, bony fishes like to pick starfish off the bottom of the ocean, crunch them up and eat them.

In addition, small starfish need to be on the lookout for larger starfish, which will sometimes attack, kill and eat them.

What do starfish eat? Most species eat mussels and other mollusks, or shellfish.
http://www.whateats.com/what-eats-a-starfish


The reason this is so serious is because the mollusks that starfish eat are mainly FILTER FEEDERS. Why is this important (as in OH ****! :P)? Because filter feeders are THE life form that concentrates radioactive cesium (taking it up into their muscle tissue). I'll bet you dollars to donuts this is a sign of the Fukushima radioisotopes concentrating in mussels starting to move up the chain of sea life that eats them.



It has begun. The BULLSHIT the nuke pukes were always putting out that the "solution to pollution is dilution" DOES NOT WORK with living sea life that sucks in the radioisotopes and concentrates them because, in nature, the non radioactive elements and the elements these God Damned radioisotopes mimic ARE ESSENTIAL NUTRIENTS! Radioinuclides are the ULTIMATE poison pill disguised as an attractive natural important nutrient. Another "minor detail" the IDIOTS that back nuclear power never have gotten through their greedy skulls. 



http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/23399560/website-map-tracks-path-of-ocean-pollution-fukushima-radiation-plume

"Since caesium does not volatilise from water, transport of caesium from water to the atmosphere is not considered likely,except by windblown sea sprays. Most of the caesium released to water will adsorb to suspended solids in the water column and ultimately be deposited in the sediment core. Caesium can also bioconcentrate and has been shown to bioaccumulate in both terrestrial and aquatic food chains. Mean bioconcentration factors (BCF) for 137Cs of 146, 124, and 63 were reported for fish, brown macroalgae, and molluscs, respectively." :P

http://datasheets.scbt.com/sc-203876.pdf

And radioactive cesium is just ONE of the 57 or so radioinuclides STILL getting pumped into the Pacific ocean. UGH! :emthdown: :emthdown: :emthdown: :'(



« Last Edit: November 06, 2013, 12:14:33 am by AGelbert »
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Re: Pollution
« Reply #12 on: November 15, 2013, 02:26:43 am »
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXUPDAMc_6o&feature=player_embedded
Corporate Crooks united to hobble enforcement of environmental regulations and eliminate them if possible. It's Profits over planet all the way for A.L.E.C. and their ilk.  >:(
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Train loaded with oil derails, explodes, pollutes Alabama wetlands


By John Upton

Yet another oil-hauling train has derailed and exploded, this one sending flaming cars loaded with North Dakota crude into Alabama wetlands. >:(

The 90-car train derailed early Friday, causing flames to shoot 300 feet into the air.
No injuries were reported. One family living in the marshy area was evacuated from their home following the accident. The L.A. Times has the details:


A train that derailed and exploded in rural Alabama was hauling 2.7 million gallons of crude oil, according to officials.

The 90-car train was crossing a timber trestle above a wetland near Aliceville late Thursday night when approximately 25 rail cars and two locomotives derailed, spilling crude oil into the surrounding wetlands and igniting a fire that was still burning Saturday.


Each of the 90 cars was carrying 30,000 gallons of oil, said Bill Jasper, president of the rail company Genesee & Wyoming at a press briefing Friday night. It’s unclear, though, how much oil was spilled because some of the cars have yet to be removed from the marsh.

And here’s more from Reuters:


A local official said the crude oil had originated in North Dakota, home of the booming Bakken shale patch. If so, it may have been carrying the same type of light crude oil that was on a Canadian train that derailed in the Quebec town of Lac-Megantic this summer, killing 47 people. …

The accident happened in a wetlands area that eventually feeds into the Tombigbee River, according to the Alabama Department of Environmental Management. Booms were placed in the wetlands to contain the spilled oil.

In Demopolis, Alabama, some 40 miles south of the site of the accident, where the rail line runs 300 meters away from the U.S. Jones Elementary School, Mayor Michael Grayson said there hadn’t been an accident in the area in a century of train traffic.

But since last summer, when the oil trains first began humming past, officials discussed what might happen if a bridge just outside of town collapsed, dumping crude into the river.

“Sadly, with this thing, the only thing you can do is try to be prepared,” he said by phone.

Thanks to the North American oil boom, more and more crude is being shipped by rail — and more and more crude is being spilled by rail. The Lac-Megantic disaster isn’t the only previous example. There were 88 rail accidents involving crude oil last year, up from one or two per year during much of the previous decade. Other high-profile accidents in North America this year have included a 15,000-gallon spill from a derailed train in Minnesota in April and a fiery accident near Edmonton, Alberta, last month.

These accidents often fuel debate over whether more pipelines should be built to help safely haul oil and natural gas across the continent. But pipeline spills are on the rise too. Has anybody thought of just leaving the filthy stuff in the ground?  >:(
 


Source

Train carrying crude oil derails, cars ablaze in Alabama, Reuters
Train in Alabama oil spill was carrying 2.7 million gallons of crude, L.A. Times

John Upton is a science fan and green news boffin who tweets, posts articles to Facebook, and blogs about ecology. He welcomes reader questions, tips, and incoherent rants: johnupton@gmail.com.

http://grist.org/news/train-loaded-with-oil-derails-explodes-pollutes-alabama-wetlands/?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_term=EDIT%20Daily&utm_campaign=Daily%20Nov%2012
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