Oceans

Valuing Nature Through Lens of Economic Growth and Profit Puts It at Risk, Assessment Finds

Valuing Nature Through Lens of Economic Growth and Profit Puts It at Risk, Assessment Finds

Is market-based decision making compatible with a sustainable relationship between people and nature?  A new assessment from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) found that decisions about nature are being made based on a narrow range of values that precipitate biodiversity loss.  “Biodiversity is being lost and nature’s contributions to people […]

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    New California Law Could Eliminate 23 Million Tons of Plastic in 10 Years

    New California Law Could Eliminate 23 Million Tons of Plastic in 10 Years

    A newly signed law in California, SB54, is set to reduce amounts of plastic waste, improve recycling rates, and place more responsibility on producers rather than consumers to curb plastic pollution. The new law requires a 25% decrease in single-use plastics entering the market over the next 10 years, and nearly half of that reduction […]

    New Plastic Alternative Degrades Into Sugar

    New Plastic Alternative Degrades Into Sugar

    Scientists around the world are working to find an alternative to fossil-fuel based plastics that contribute to the climate crisis and persist in the environment, including the ocean.  In the latest attempt at a sustainable plastics alternative, researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne, or EPFL, have developed a plant-based plastic alternative that […]

    Join the Plastic-Free Parks TrashBlitz

    Join the Plastic-Free Parks TrashBlitz

    People visiting U.S. national parks and other wild spaces are advised to leave no trace of their presence on the plants, animals and ecosystems they visit. Despite this, the Department of the Interior (DOI), which manages the nation’s parks, produced almost 80,000 tons of solid waste in 2020, much of it plastic. But what if […]

    UN Chief Declares ‘Ocean Emergency’ on First Day of Global Conference

    UN Chief Declares ‘Ocean Emergency’ on First Day of Global Conference

    From sea level rise to ocean acidification to plastic pollution, our planet faces an “ocean emergency,” UN Secretary General António Guterres said on the first day of the UN Ocean Conference. The conference, which is taking place in Lisbon, Portugal, from June 27 to July 1, is an international gathering co-hosted by the governments of […]

    Viruses Can Remain Infectious on Microplastics for Three Days

    Viruses Can Remain Infectious on Microplastics for Three Days

    New research has discovered another way that microplastic pollution might harm human health.  The study, published in Environmental Pollution, is the first to prove that certain viruses can stay infectious by attaching themselves to plastics in a freshwater environment.  “We found that viruses can attach to microplastics, which allows them to survive in the water […]

    Largest Ever Bleaching of Sea Sponges Recorded in New Zealand

    Largest Ever Bleaching of Sea Sponges Recorded in New Zealand

    Sea sponges are simple marine animals that have been around for about 600 million years. Their skeletons are dense and porous and they adapt well to their particular habitat, attaching themselves to different types of surfaces, from rocks and corals to soft sediments, like mud and sand. They have even been known to fasten themselves […]

    Scientists Develop Robotic Fish That Consumes Microplastics

    Scientists Develop Robotic Fish That Consumes Microplastics

    One of the dangers posed by microplastic pollution in the oceans is that fish and other marine life might eat it by mistake. But could a solution to the problem involve a robot designed to consume it on purpose? Researchers at Sichuan University in China have developed a proof-of-concept for a robotic fish that can […]

    Mangroves and Coral Reefs Yield Positive Return on Investment for Flood Protection, Study Finds

    Mangroves and Coral Reefs Yield Positive Return on Investment for Flood Protection, Study Finds

    Using a benefit-risk analysis, researchers have found that mangroves and coral reefs can be cost-effective in reducing coastal flooding, a press release from the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC), said. Using risk and insurance industry techniques, the researchers were able to show that the gains from reduced damage from floods outweighed the costs of […]