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Oceans

Acting Sub Lt.niwat Thumma / EyeEm / Getty Images

Plastic Straw Bans Have Unintended Consequences for People with Disabilities

The movement to ban plastic straws has gained major momentum this month, with Seattle's ban going into effect July 1 and companies like Starbucks, Hyatt and American Airlines all agreeing to phase the sucking devices out as well.

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Business
Adidas shoes made with Parley ocean plastics. Adidas

Adidas Will Use Only Recycled Plastics by 2024

Adidas has long been committed to the fight against single-use plastics. Since 2015, it has partnered with Parley for the Oceans to respond to the plastic pollution crisis threatening marine life. In June, Adidas CEO Kasper Rorsted announced the company had sold one million shoes made from plastic collected and recycled from the oceans.

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Animals
A Kemp's ridley sea turtle like this one was found strangled by a beach chair Saturday. EPA

World’s Most Endangered Sea Turtle Found Strangled by Beach Chair

An extremely endangered sea turtle was found dead on a Fort Morgan, Alabama beach Saturday, strangled by an abandoned beach chair, the Miami Herald reported Sunday.

The turtle's death was documented by a series of Facebook posts by the Fort Morgan branch of Alabama sea turtle conservation group Share the Beach.

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Animals
A photo posted by Hard to Port shows an Icelandic company having killed what some say is an endangered blue whale. Hard to Port / Facebook

Some Experts Say Icelandic Whaling Company Killed an Endangered Blue Whale

Anti-whaling group Hard to Port posted photos on their Facebook page Tuesday that activist group Sea Shepherd claims show an endangered blue whale recently killed by an Icelandic whaling company, the Australian ABC News reported Thursday.

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Oceans
Accumulated garbage on a beach on Msasani Bay in Tanzania. Loranchet / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 3.0

Solution to Ocean’s Plastic Waste Problem ‘Starts With Product Design’

By John C. Cannon

Solving the problem of the growing amount of plastic in the ocean requires rethinking how we use and design plastic products, a group of scientists said at the European Open Science Forum (ESOF18) on July 10.

To address the issue, we need to "properly consider the product's life and its end of life right from the beginning, from the design stage," said Richard Thompson, a marine biologist at the University of Plymouth in the UK.

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Oceans
London-based artist Sarah Tanat Jones created a set of illustrations specifically for the collaboration.

Bacardi and Lonely Whale to Remove 1 Billion Plastic Straws to Ensure #TheFutureDoesntSuck

Bacardi, the world's largest privately-owned spirits company, and Lonely Whale, the innovative oceans nonprofit helping Alaska Airlines reduce plastic use, have teamed up with the goal of removing one billion plastic straws from circulation by 2020.

The pair announced their partnership Wednesday under the banner #thefuturedoesntsuck. As part of the initiative, Bacardi will also review its supply chain to see where it can eliminate other single-use plastics.

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Politics
Fishing vessels in Point Judith, RI. NOAA Fisheries / Ariele Baker, NEFSC

House Republicans Pass Hostile 'Empty Oceans Act'

By Molly Masterton

For the last 40 years, the Magnuson-Stevens Act has been our nation's primary defense against overfishing.

The road hasn't been easy—in the 80s and 90s many of our fish stocks were still in bad shape—but through previous reauthorizations of the law in 1996 and 2006, Congress has consistently moved the ball forward on sustainable fisheries management, with broad bipartisan support.

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Oceans
Weddell seals live around Antarctica and nearby islands. changehali / CC BY 2.0

Fishing Companies Halt Activities in Waters Proposed for Antarctic Sanctuary

The five companies responsible for 85 percent of krill fishing in Antarctica announced Monday that they would put a "voluntarily permanent stop" to fishing in vulnerable areas earmarked by conservationists for the world's largest ocean sanctuary, the Guardian reported.

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Business
The new strawless lids that will replace straws in Starbucks worldwide. Starbucks

Starbucks Becomes Largest Food and Beverage Retailer to Announce Plastic Straw Ban

Starbucks announced Monday it would become the largest food and beverage retailer to phase out plastic straws, aiming to complete the process at locations worldwide by 2020, CNN Money reported. The decision will remove more than one billion straws from circulation annually, the company said.

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