Friday, September 15, 2017

Week in Review September 15, 2017: Hurricane Irma - Is it Insensitive to Speak About Climate Change at This Time? and More....

1. Hurricane Irma - Is it Insensitive to Speak About Climate Change at This Time?


scott pruitt, EPA
A debate has arisen after Hurricane Irma, is this the time to discuss climate change, or should we remain silent?  World and U.S. leaders including the mayor of Miami, the former president of the Maldives and the prime minister of Fiji all think it is time to talk about climate change.  The head of the EPA Scott Pruitt, a climate change denier, says it is insensitive to talk about climate change when there are devastated areas in the South of the U.S.
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2. How Hurricanes Impact Marine Life

hurricane irma, hurricane Atlantic, hurricane
Hurricanes affect not only land-based animals but also underwater life. Although fast swimmers such as sharks and dolphins can sense pressure changes and leave for calmer or deeper water, hurricanes "can be death sentences" for slow swimmers such as sea turtles and seahorses. Coral reefs can protect coastlines from damage, but churning water can break them apart and cover them with sediment.
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3. Hurricane Irma Made Worse by Climate Change

hurricane irma, hurricane irma puerto rico
Scientists in the U.K. and Germany have concluded that Hurricane Irma was made worse by climate change. One scientist states, “Hurricanes get their destructive energy from the warmth of the ocean, and the region’s water temperatures are super elevated.” High sea temperatures added energy and moisture to Irma, which caused record flooding in Florida.
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4. The Jaw-Dropping Stats from Hurricane Irma



Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Irma Caribbean
These statistics include Hurricane Irma being the strongest Atlantic basin hurricane ever recorded, the longest (3 days) category 5 storm since satellite tracking began, record 37 hours of winds at or above 185 mph and a record 6,300,000 people evacuated in Florida.
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5. Hurricane Irma Strands Two Manatees

manatees, hurricane irma, manatees stranded by Hurricane Irma
Two manatees stranded during Hurricane Irma were rescued thanks to social media. Within four hours of being posted on Facebook, pictures of the federally protected species were shared 6,000 times with 800 comments. “Two Manatee County deputies and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation (FWC) officials responded to the scene after seeing the post.” They put tarps under the manatees and took them 100 yards away to a channel in 100 mph winds.
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6. One of World's Largest Marine Protected Areas Created Off Easter Island

rapa nui Marine Protected Area
At 740,000 sq km, the new Rapa Nui marine park "is roughly the size of the Chilean mainland and will protect at least 142 endemic marine species, including 27 threatened with extinction.” A whopping 77% of Pacific Ocean fish abundance occurs there. Species include “scalloped hammerhead sharks, minke, humpback and blue whales, and four species of sea turtle.” The Rapa Nui people will be permitted to continue fishing in the reserve using traditional methods.  
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7. Sea Salt from Around the World Is Contaminated by Plastic

sea salt micro plastics
Microplastics have been found in salt consumed in the U.K., France, Spain, China and the United States. Scientists are concerned that salt may be another route for humans to ingest microplastics. “Scientists have struggled to research the impact of plastic on the human body, because they cannot find a control group of humans who have not been exposed.”
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8. Small Scale Fisheries Have Big Impact on the Oceans


small scale fisheries, handling fishermen
Most fisheries studies have focused on large-scale industrial fishing, but a new study of small, subsistence fishing in developing countries has found the “influence from small-scale fisheries is far from small.” The researchers say that such fisheries are unsustainable. Small-scale fisheries remove 30 percent of the global catch, or 22 million tons of seafood.
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Sea Save Foundation is committed to raising awareness of marine conservation. The Week in Review is a team effort produced by the Sea Save staff to provide a weekly summary of the latest in marine research, policy, and news.

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