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An entirely new carbon sink in the oceans may have been discovered

One of the themes that has run through prior posts is to note that our understanding of the carbon cycle may leave more than a little to be desired. Such lack of understanding may explain why the impacts of global warming are, in some cases, more severe than anticipated, and in some cases less severe...

California sets forth indicators of disproportionate impacts of climate change on environmental justice communities

To assist Cal-EPA with the examination of potential environmental justice concerns associated with climate change, Cal-EPA requested the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) [best known for its role in setting drinking water related Public Health Goals and in overseeing much of the...

Movement of corals around Japan provides evidence of global warming

Prior posts have noted that in terms of ascertaining evidence of global warming, it may be worthwhile to assess the numerous studies of various potential indicators (e.g., migration patterns, drought, relocation of biota). Add another indicator. A new study of reefs around Japan reveals that a handful...

Where is the methane from the BP Deepwater Horizon blowout?

Natural gas in various forms comprised approximately 2/3 of the hydrocarbons emitted from the Deepwater Horizon well blowout. Methane is believed to compose an estimated 87.5% of that natural gas. Sampling in June 2010 found no microbial breakdown of methane. [See http://www.sciencemag.org/content/330...

What killed off much of the explosion of life following the Cambrian "explosion"?

Prior posts have discussed the Cambrian explosion, and noted the evidence suggesting that it was a more gradual process than stereotypically described. However, there has been little solid evidence to explain why, following this alleged burst of complex life, a substantial extinction set in. As with...

Another potential sign of global warming: Crabs are invading the shallow waters of the Southern Ocean

Numerous past posts have noted that evidence for global warming can be found in the numerous reports on specific environmental conditions and events around the globe (for example, the migration of corals around Japan, the trend in lakes around the world to become warmer). Although these events and conditions...

Coast Guard stumbles as it tries to preempt Massachusetts state law

The Massachusetts Oil Spill Prevention Act (OSPA) was enacted following an oil spill in Buzzards Bay. [As the appellate court notes, Buzzards Bay is a scenically beautiful body of water. See also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Buzzards_Bay_map.png.] OSPA requires a tugboat escort for all tank vessels...

Amount of plastic trash in the ocean may be vastly underestimated

Prior posts have noted the various plastic debris wastes that are located in the oceans. Prior posts have also suggested that there may be plastic waste in the water column, though its quantification was uncertain. A recent assessment suggests that the amount previously estimated using surface sampling...

Acidification of Oceans May Affect the Brains of Fish

Yesterday's post noted some of the adverse consequences that are likely to arise from acidification of oceans. Another recent study shows that such acidification can influence the behavior of fish because of impacts on their brains; the response of nerve cells can be reversed as acidifying seawater...

Ocean Exchange Launches 2014 Call For Solutions

By: E. Lynn Grayson The Ocean Exchange has announced the launch of its fourth annual global competition for the 2014 Gulfstream Navigator Award of $100,000 and the 2014 Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics Orcelle Award of $100,000. The theme for the 2014 competition is ACCELERATE SUSTAINABILITY, innovations...

New SCCCL Report: Flag State Regulation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The Sabin Center for Climate Change Law has released a new white paper addressing state authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from ships. According to international law, all ships must have a nationality and must register with and fly the flag of that state. Flag state jurisdiction refers to...

Red Tuna Crabs Overrun CA Beaches

Masses of small red tuna crabs have been washing up along San Diego, California area beaches from Ocean Beach to La Jolla. The species, Pleuroncodes planipes, is unique in that it can live its entire life cycle, from larva to adulthood, in the water column from surface to seafloor. Accordingly, it can...

Oil Spills At Sea: Better Prevention and Cleanup

Some rare good news. Oil tanker spills into world oceans: there aren’t as many as there used to be, and they do not do as much damage as they used to do. According to the excellent newsletter of the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation , both the number of oil spills and the quantity...