November 25, 2020 By Henry Fountain The New York Times
The immense project would have been one of the world’s largest gold and copper mines, but regulators found it “contrary to the public interest” due to environmental risks in the pristine Alaskan tundra.
November 19, 2020 By Erik Stokstad Science Magazine
Two years ago, off the coast of Norway, the blue-hulled Ro Fjell pulled alongside Ocean Farm 1, a steel-netted pen the size of a city block. Attaching a heavy vacuum hose to the pen, the ship’s crew began to pump brawny adult salmon out of the water and into a tank below deck. Later, they offloaded the fish at a shore-based processing facility owned by SalMar, a major salmon aquaculture company.
November 19, 2020 By Alastair Bland Hakai Magazine
Hundreds of sea turtles and marine mammals have been choked, snared, and hooked by plastic debris.
November 18, 2020 By Alexandra Borunda National Geographic
Spring-run Chinook salmon, critical to Indigenous fishers along the Klamath River, are in steep decline. But two recent developments may offer a path to their recovery.
November 18, 2020 By Katherine Harmon Courage Smithsonian Magazine
Bright sunlight filters down through the clear Mediterranean waters off the coast of Spain, illuminating a lush meadow just below the surface. Blades of strikingly green grass undulate in the currents. Painted comber fish dart among clumps of leaves, and technicolor nudibranchs crawl over mounds. Porcelain crabs scuttle by tiny starfish clinging to the blades. A four-foot-tall fan mussel has planted itself on a rock outcropping. A sea turtle glides by.
November 18, 2020 By Paul Voosen Science Magazine
Ask climate scientists how fast the world’s oceans are creeping upward, and many will say 3.2 millimeters per year—a figure enshrined in the last Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, from 2014. But the number, based on satellite measurements taken since the early 1990s, is a long-term average. In fact, the global rate varied so much over that period that it was hard to say whether it was holding steady or accelerating.
November 17, 2020 By Grace Mitchell Tada Hakai Magazine
Changing sea levels are pushing groundwater into new and problematic places.
November 16, 2020 By Rhett A. Butler Mongabay
In August this year, a fleet of around 300 Chinese fishing vessels attracted international attention when they congregated just outside Ecuador’s territorial waters around the famed Galápagos Islands. Said to be fishing for squid, the fleet’s checkered past raised concerns about the possibility the ships were actually targeting sharks and other threatened species.
November 12, 2020 By Ashleigh Papp Mongabay
For three years scientists with Raising Coral Costa Rica has been snapping off coral pieces from existing reefs to grow them in an underwater nursery.
November 10, 2020 By Bobby Caina Calvan Associated Press
A first of its kind assessment of coral reefs in U.S. waters is again sounding the alarm over the continued decline of these sensitive underwater ecosystems, which scientists deem essential to the health of the world’s oceans amid the environmental effects posed by human activity and climate change.
November 13, 2020 By Justin Meneguzzi National Geographic
Shark liver oil can make vaccines more effective, but increased demand could harm critically endangered species. Pfizer and Moderna’s promising vaccine candidates do not contain the substance.
November 10, 2020 By Sabrina Imbler The New York Times
You might know what a hydrothermal vent looks like: black plumes billowing from deep-sea pillars encrusted with hobnobbing tubeworms, hairy crabs, pouting fish. But do you know what a hydrothermal vent sounds like?
November 9, 2020 By Drew Higgins Hakai Magazine
New research reveals that once anthropogenic carbon emissions drop, so too will the ocean’s ability to absorb carbon dioxide. That could make it seem like emission reduction efforts aren’t working.
November 6, 2020 By Elizabeth Claire Alberts Mongabay
The Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR), a governing body of 25 member states and the European Union, missed an opportunity to establish a network of three marine protection areas (MPAs) in the Southern Ocean, according to conservation experts who attended the commission’s recent meeting.
November 6, 2020 By Kimberly Riskas Hakai Magazine
In the absence of adequate oversight, fishing fleets are exploiting international waters in the Indian Ocean.
October 30, 2020 By Veronica Penney The New York Times
The United States is using more plastic than ever, and waste exported for recycling is often mishandled, according to a new study.
October 30, 2020 By Emma Bryce Anthropocene Magazine
Researchers calculate that protecting just 5% more of the ocean could boost fisheries by as much as 20%.
October 28, 2020 By Saqib Rahim The Washington Post
Environmental threats to oceans around the world are prompting new approaches and deals to raise money for rescue efforts.
October 28, 2020 By Katarina Zimmer Hakai Magazine
Abnormally long fasts linked to melting sea ice may be pushing polar bears to their limits.
October 27, 2020 By David Shiffman National Geographic
Many shark fins used in a traditional Asian delicacy come from the coastal waters of just a handful of countries. The finding upends conventional notions—and could make this conservation challenge easier to tackle.
October 27, 2020 By Nick Kilvert ABC Science
Researchers have found a new reef that is as tall as a skyscraper in the waters off Cape York in North Queensland. The ‘detached’ reef is — the first to be discovered in more than 120 years — is around 1.5 kilometres long, and rises from over 500 metres deep up to 40 metres below the surface.
October 22, 2020 By Jen Chan Mongabay
In the Philippines, the fishing industry has long been considered male territory, with fathers, sons and brothers taking their boats out to sea each day in hopes of catching tuna, blue marlin, or sea bass. A closer look, however, reveals that women play an equally significant role.
October 22, 2020 By Jesse Scott National Geographic
Tourism is down, but nesting success may be up. Here’s what scientists are saying and how travelers can help.
October 22, 2020 By Larry Pynn Hakai Magazine
Proponents are calling for the deaths of at least 75,000 seals and sea lions in the first year.
October 20, 2020 By Dan Bilefsky The New York Times
A battle over the lucrative lobster industry in Nova Scotia has become the latest flash point in a series of abuses of Indigenous people in Canada.
October 18, 2020 By Lynda V. Mapes The Seattle Times
They were the king of kings in Puget Sound, the biggest chinook of them all, strong enough to muscle up the falls at the Goblin Gates and power on all the way through nearly 4 miles of chutes and falls in the Grand Canyon of the Elwha.
October 13, 2020 By Nicola Jones Yale Environment 360
With oceans absorbing more than 90 percent of global warming, marine heatwaves are becoming hotter and larger and are lasting longer. Scientists say the trend has major ecological consequences, from altering fish and plant populations to forcing whales into hazardous waters.
October 12, 2020 By Alaine Johnson Mongabay
On Oct. 10, 2019, the Bali governor designated Benoa Bay a conservation area for religious and cultural activities and artisanal fisheries, protected from reclamation of any kind. For a brief moment after five years of relentless protests, it appeared that Benoa Bay would remain untouched. Barely 11 months later, the Balinese legislature gathered discreetly during the COVID-19 pandemic and approved a zoning plan for the area that would permit sand mining and an expansion of the harbor and airport.
October 10, 2020 By Helen Briggs BBC
More than 350 scientists and conservationists from 40 countries have signed a letter calling for global action to protect whales, dolphins and porpoises from extinction.
October 8, 2020 By Nick Dall Hakai Magazine
A South African project that has small-scale fishers doing real science is a boon for jobs, data, and trust.
October 8, 2020 By Matt Richtel Cronutt The New York Times
Cronutt, like a growing number of ocean mammals, developed seizures because of toxins in the water. Scientists hope the pioneering procedure he underwent this week could help.
October 7, 2020 By Forest Ray Hakai Magazine
In the Southern Ocean, bioluminescent animals deploy light to evade attacks from hungry elephant seals.
October 6, 2020 By Corryn Wetzel Smithsonian Magazine
Scientists put GPS locators inside plastic eggs to find trafficking destinations in Costa Rica.
October 6, 2020 By Laura Parker National Geographic
The global campaign to gain control of plastic waste is one of the fastest-growing environmental causes ever mounted. Yet it hasn’t been enough to make a dent in the growing tonnage of discarded plastic that ends up in the seas.
October 5, 2020 By Graham Readfearn The Guardian
At least 14m tonnes of plastic pieces less than 5mm wide are likely sitting at the bottom of the world’s oceans, according to an estimate based on new research.
September 30, 2020 By Andrew Freedman and Brady Dennis The Washington Post
The Greenland ice sheet is on track to lose mass at about four times the fastest rate observed over the past 12,000 years. At its current trajectory, such melting would dump huge quantities of freshwater into the sea, raising global sea levels and disrupting ocean currents, scientists concluded in new research Wednesday.
September 28, 2020 By Eric Roston and Laura Millan Lombrana Bloomberg
Enric Sala has helped create over 2 million square miles of marine reserves, half the size of Canada.
September 25, 2020 By Lynda V. Mapes The Seattle Times
Another baby orca has been born to J pod, the Center for Whale Research confirmed Friday morning. It’s the second calf born this month for the endangered southern resident orcas that frequent Puget Sound.
September 24, 2020 By Henry Fountain The New York Times
The “blob” of hotter ocean water that killed sea lions and other marine life in 2014 and 2015 may become permanent.
September 23, 2020 By Laurel Wamsley NPR
At least 380 pilot whales have died off the coast of Tasmania in what experts are calling Australia’s largest recorded mass-stranding event.
September 23, 2020 By Claudia Geib Mongabay
The new mapping and analysis tool alerts mariners when whales are likely present in the busy Santa Barbara Channel near Los Angeles, drawing on data from an acoustic monitoring buoy, on-the-water sighting reports, and computer modeling.
September 23, 2020 By Michelle Carrere Mongabay
In early June, a fleet of around 260 boats from China reached the limits of Ecuador’s exclusive economic zone around the Galápagos Islands to fish for Humboldt squid (Dosidicus gigas). For months, the fleet skirted this area, drawing outrage among Ecuadorans as well as scientists and conservationists around the world.
September 22, 2020 By Annie Roth The New York Times
The Monterey Bay Aquarium has learned how to raise the deepest sea life to the surface and keep it alive for display.
September 21, 2020 By Elizabeth Claire Alberts Mongabay
A new study has found a 45% decline in the biomass of important fish species in West Hawai‘i’s reefs across a 10-year period.
September 20, 2020 By Cara Giaimo The New York Times
A new study suggests that the ocean’s strangest-looking headgear is difficult to tote around.
September 19, 2020 By Lynda V. Mapes The Seattle Times
For nearly a month the team has been at sea, marveling at the prowess of southern and northern resident killer whales as they follow the orcas’ foraging rounds, using a drone and stick-on cameras to record the daily lives of orcas, even underwater.
September 17, 2020 By Carolyn Gramling Science News
Sound waves traveling thousands of kilometers through the ocean may help scientists monitor climate change. As greenhouse gas emissions warm the planet, the ocean is absorbing vast amounts of that heat. To monitor the change, a global fleet of about 4,000 devices called Argo floats is collecting temperature data from the ocean’s upper 2,000 meters. But that data collection is scanty in some regions, including deeper reaches of the ocean and areas under sea ice.
September 17, 2020 By William J. Broad The New York Times
A giant new vessel, OceanXplorer, seeks to unveil the secrets of the abyss for a global audience.
September 17, 2020 By Nancy Averett Hakai Magazine
Some marine mammals carry gene mutations that could make them more susceptible than humans to SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus at the heart of the ongoing pandemic. If these marine mammals get infected, the results could be devastating—more than half of the species predicted to be susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 are already at risk of extinction.
September 16, 2020 By Liz Kimbrough Mongabay
As the planet plunges headlong into its sixth mass extinction, caused by humans, biodiversity is being lost at an unprecedented rate, and efforts to address this crisis, through a series of targeted goals, have largely failed.
‘Tons And Tons of Fishing Equipment’: B.C. Tour Operators Clean Up Ocean Debris During Coronavirus Pandemic
September 15, 2020 By Matt Simmons The Narwhal
Waste from fishing industry accounts for about 70 per cent of garbage collected in 61-tonne haul, according to captain on expedition supported by provincial government.
September 15, 2020 By Annie Roth Hakai Magazine
A new study highlights the treasure trove of data trapped in seaweeds over a century old.
September 14, 2020 By Chris Mooney The Washington Post
Two Antarctic glaciers that have long kept scientists awake at night are breaking free from the restraints that have hemmed them in, increasing the threat of large-scale sea-level rise.
September 14, 2020 By Ian Morse Science Magazine
Aiming to bolster conservation on the high seas, a team of marine researchers today released the first comprehensive survey of coral reefs in the high seas–the roughly two-thirds of the ocean outside of national jurisdictions.
September 14, 2020 By Henry Fountain The New York Times
The effects of global warming in the Arctic are so severe that the region is shifting to a different climate, one characterized less by ice and snow and more by open water and rain, scientists said Monday.
September 9, 2020 By Basten Gokkon Hakai Magazine
Proper management of plastic waste is lacking in coastal communities in Indonesia, the No. 2 contributor to the ocean plastic crisis. That’s the conclusion of a recently published study, which notes that the use of plastic is increasingly outpacing mitigation efforts.
September 8, 2020 By Nishan Degnarian Forbes
As the true enormity dawns of the large oil spill in Mauritius caused by Japanese bulk carrier, The Wakashio, Silicon Valley synthetic biology companies have been racing to offer support to the Indian Ocean island famous for its rare biodiversity.
September 7, 2020 By Erik Stokstad Science Magazine
As the world warms, many species of plant and animal will have to find new—often cooler—places to live. But things are trickier for sedentary marine creatures like snails, worms, and clams, according to a new study. It finds that in the Northwest Atlantic Ocean, many species are spawning earlier in the year, when currents take their larvae southward and into warmer waters—the wrong direction. For some of them, including the sand dollars beloved by beachcombers, this means their range is shrinking.
September 5, 2020 By Lynda V. Mapes The Seattle Times
Mother orca Tahlequah has had her baby. The endangered southern resident killer whale, J35, touched hearts in the Pacific Northwest and around the world in August 2018 when she lost a calf that lived only a half-hour. She carried the calf for 17 days and 1,000 miles, refusing to let the calf go.
September 4, 2020 By Steve Murray Hakai Magazine
A genetic discovery may help restore chinook salmon to reopening river habitats.
September 2, 2020 By Abigail Eisenstadt Smithsonian Magazine
Once in a while, scientists re-discover an unusual specimen hidden on the shelves of a museum collection. This time, they found a cast of a skull from a Southern elephant seal, Mirounga leonina, which swam upriver to Indiana over 1000 years ago. The cast had been hidden in a drawer of the fossil marine mammals collection at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History since the 1970s.
September 2, 2020 By Michael Allen Hakai Magazine
A systematic review exposes the dangers of tiny plastics and the hidden bias at the heart of plastic research.
September 1, 2020 By Annie Roth The New York Times
The influx of whales to cleaner waters off New York City has meant that the number of them injured or killed there is on the rise.
August 31, 2020 By Kate Wheeling Hakai Magazine
In an ordinary year, Californians gather along the state’s beaches, parks, and waterways on the third Saturday of September to pick up trash before it can make its way into the Pacific. Every cigarette butt, bottle cap, and plastic bag in sight is collected and recorded, each a new point in a massive data set built over 35 years of coastal cleanups. Now, both the ecosystem and the data describing it are at risk.
August 31, 2020 By Hailey Branson-Potts Los Angeles Times
Crowds would normally be filling the aquarium corridors in these waning days of summer. But the aquarium on Cannery Row has been closed to the public for five months now because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Inside, it is quiet.
August 26, 2020 By Priyanka Runwal The New York Times
A species of insect tags along with elephant seals as they spend months at sea, enduring the crushing pressure changes of the mammals’ dives.
August 25, 2020 By Paul Voosen Science Magazine
Arctic sea ice is itself an endangered species. Next month its extent will reach its annual minimum, which is poised to be among the lowest on record. The trend is clear: Summer ice covers half the area it did in the 1980s, and because it is thinner, its volume is down 75%. With the Arctic warming three times faster than the global average, most scientists grimly acknowledge the inevitability of ice-free summers, perhaps as soon as 2035. “It’s definitely a when, not an if,” says Alek Petty, a polar scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.
August 24, 2020 By Greg Mercer The Globe and Mail
A new network of underwater microphones that listen for the whooping call of right whales may be helping save the solitary giants’ lives in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, but they’re also forcing some fishermen to return to shore with half-empty boats.
August 25, 2020 By Julien Gignac The Narwhal
New study shows increased precipitation and ice melt caused by climate change have left Arctic waters less salty, and repercussions will be felt much farther south.
August 24, 2020 By Elissaveta M. Brandon Smithsonian Magazine
Off the coast of Curaçao, at a depth of 60 feet, aquanaut Fabien Cousteau is looking to create the world’s largest underwater research habitat.
August 24, 2020 Hakai Magazine
As the world’s population swells to 9.7 billion, industry and governments say aquaculture is the way to provide protein to the people—if that’s true, can we learn from the past and avoid screwing over the planet and each other?
August 24, 2020 By Juliet Eilperin and Jeff Stein The Washington Post
The Trump administration delayed a key permit for the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska on Monday, saying the company that wants to build the biggest gold and copper mine in North America needs to take extensive action to offset the harm it will cause to the environment.
August 21, 2020 By Elizabeth Clare Alberts Mongabay
Two liters of seawater, or about half a gallon. That’s all that’s needed to detect the presence of sharks in the ocean, according to a new study. A group of researchers from Florida International University (FIU), New College of Florida and Havenworth Coastal Conservation recently teamed up to develop a new method of detecting the presence of blacktip sharks (Carcharhinus limbatus) in Terra Ceia Bay, a semi-enclosed bay on the west coast of Florida.
August 21, 2020 Oceanographic Magazine
A study of four salmon species across all regions of Alaska – chinook, chum, coho, and sockeye – has found that salmon are returning to rivers smaller and younger than in the past.
August 20, 2020 By Henry Fountain The New York Times
Greenland lost a record amount of ice in 2019, researchers reported Thursday. Nearly half of it was lost in July, when the region roasted from an unusual heat wave.
August 19, 2020 By Kimberly Riskas China Dialogue Ocean
New study shows critical importance of national context and government regulation to protecting mangrove forests.
August 19, 2020 By Nishan Degnarain Forbes
Global shipping regulator, London-based UN Agency, the International Maritime Organization released a statement on the effect of the fuel that spilled into the waters of Mauritius from Japanese vessel, The Wakashio, in which they admit they do not know the effects of releasing this amount of fuel (VLSFO) into the biodiversity-rich coral lagoons of Mauritius.
August 18, 2020 By Sasha Chapman Hakai Magazine
Bluefin tuna are a luxury that feeds the egos of many, the bellies of few. Inside a Canadian fishery that pursues them.
August 17, 2020 By Ian Urbina Yale Environment 360
After exhausting areas close to home, China’s vast fishing fleet has moved into the waters of other nations, depleting fish stocks. More than seafood is at stake, as China looks to assert itself on the seas and further its geo-political ambitions, from East Asia to Latin America.
August 17, 2020 By Ryan Stuart Hakai Magazine
30 years ago today, a new law controlling the oil and gas industry was adopted in the wake of the Exxon Valdez disaster. Now some fear those regulations are being rolled back.
August 17, 2020 By Juliet Eilperin The Washington Post
The Trump administration finalized plans Monday to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, a move that will auction off oil and gas rights in the heart of one of the nation’s most iconic wild places. Achieving a goal Republicans have sought for 40 years, it marks a capstone for an administration that has ignored calls to reduce fossil fuel consumption in the face of climate change.
August 14, 2020 By Barbara Moran WBUR
Last October, lobstermen fishing off the coast of southern New England noticed the lobsters getting more active. That’s fairly common, says Mark Sweitzer, a commercial fisherman out of Port Judith, Rhode Island.
August 14, 2020 By James Prosek National Geographic
Maine pioneered dam removal to restore salmon runs. Now millions of fish, among them alewives, are swimming upriver again to inland spawning grounds.
August 14, 2020 By Oliver Whang The New York Times
Mapping currents in the Southern Ocean is vital to monitoring climate change, but hard to conduct. So scientists turned to seals for help.
August 14, 2020 By Isabelle Groc The Guardian
It is not just at sea that North America’s smallest marine mammals with a huge appetite are benefitting the ecosystem.
August 13, 2020 By Alejandra Borunda National Geographic
Last month, less sea ice covered the Arctic Ocean than in any other July since scientists began keeping track of it with satellites in 1979, marking another step toward a devastating and planet-reshaping inevitability: an ice-free summer for the Arctic Ocean.
August 13, 2020 By David Hambling Forbes
DARPA has awarded a contract for the next phase of development of its Ocean of Things (OoT), a project to seed the seas with thousands of floating sensors, monitoring everything that passes from aircraft to submarines.
August 11, 2020 By Francesca Edralin Mongabay
Glass sponge reefs may have outlived the dinosaurs, but they may not survive much longer. In May, Stevenson and her colleagues published a study in Scientific Reports that warns that the impacts of climate change will likely weaken glass sponges’ skeletal strength and filter-feeding ability.
August 7, 2020 By Bradley van Paridon Hakai Magazine
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic is a reminder of the devastation disease outbreaks can cause. But such disasters do not only affect humans. New research led by Claire Sanderson, a wildlife epidemiologist and immunologist at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, shows that disease outbreaks among marine mammals have quietly been on the rise.
August 5, 2020 By Jackie Snow Hakai Magazine
Scientists have determined a new way to slice and dice marine ecosystems.
August 5, 2020 By Jonathan Amos BBC
Satellite observations have found a raft of new Emperor penguin breeding sites in the Antarctic. The locations were identified from the way the birds’ poo, or guano, had stained large patches of sea-ice.
August 4, 2020 By Bill Trotter Bangor Daily News
More than seven years after Maine’s lobster fishery was certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council, that certification is being revoked because of the impact the fishery has on critically endangered right whales.
August 4, 2020 By Erik Anderson KPBS
The warming climate is putting environmental pressure on California forests that have towered over the Golden State for thousands of years.
August 3, 2020 By Greg Rasmussen and Chris Corday CBC News
How sea otters are radically changing the West Coast ecosystem 50 years after their return to B.C.
August 2, 2020 By Lynda V. Mapes The Seattle Times
At the insistence of tribes and federal fisheries managers, the Army Corps of Engineers will soon complete the biggest facility of its kind in North America, to capture and transport salmon to free flowing stretches of the White River, a tributary of the Puyallup.
July 31, 2020 By Robin Smith-Duke Futurity
Wild bottlenose dolphins devote time early in life to making friend connections that could give them an edge later on, a new study shows.
July 31, 2020 By Amy Tucker CBC
A team of international researchers has compiled the most detailed map of the Arctic seabed to date. It was published earlier this month in the journal Scientific Data. The map is part of this year’s contribution to the Nippon Foundation-GEBCO Seabed 2030 Project, which seeks to map the world’s ocean floor by 2030.
July 30, 2020 By Annemarie Mannion Hakai Magazine
Sea turtles became an unexpected passion for Jones, who now often wears sea turtle T-shirts or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle (TMNT) garb instead of his old Florida Gators shirts. (The TMNTs aren’t sea turtles, but Jones’s link to the superheroes is irresistible: the human vigilante who fought alongside them was also named Casey Jones.) He began searching for ways to help conserve the reptiles, which is how he learned about a pervasive and preventable risk to their well-being: light pollution. Artificial bright lights are a deadly hazard that can lead sea turtles astray. Jones had found his mission.
July 30, 2020 By Brad Plumer The New York Times
As global warming pushes up ocean levels around the world, scientists have long warned that many low-lying coastal areas will become permanently submerged. But a new study published Thursday finds that much of the economic harm from sea-level rise this century is likely to come from an additional threat that will arrive even faster: As oceans rise, powerful coastal storms, crashing waves and extreme high tides will be able to reach farther inland, putting tens of millions more people and trillions of dollars in assets worldwide at risk of periodic flooding.
July 28, 2020 By Elizabeth Pennisi Science Magazine
Microbes buried beneath the sea floor for more than 100 million years are still alive, a new study reveals. When brought back to the lab and fed, they started to multiply. The microbes are oxygen-loving species that somehow exist on what little of the gas diffuses from the ocean surface deep into the seabed.