This group is teaching new sailors how to tackle plastic pollution

By Paola Rosa-Aquino on Aug 27, 2019

The Bronx’s City Island docks are a strange mixture of outer-borough New York and New England coast. There are crusty boatyards and pristine yacht clubs, seedy seafood joints and fancy oyster bars, “my she was yar” schooners and “I’m on a boat” party cruisers. But the love of the ocean has always had the ability to bring disparate-seeming forces together — including, in this case, climate activism and the American Sailing Association.

On a recent summer morning, I headed to the docks to watch Captain Dave Jenkins of Soul Sailing prepare a small sailboat. Life vests and nautical maps in hand, Jenkins — a charismatic middle-aged man decked out in an appropriate sailing ensemble (boat shoes included) — boarded a vessel which was moored at the Harlem Yacht Club. We had been going back and forth for months trying to find the right time to head out on the water, only to be forced to reschedule several times due to unfavorable weather conditions. First it was the cold, then the heat, then torrential rain — the kinds of extremes that climate scientists say we should expect more of in the near future.

But on that day, with the sun shining bright and a slight breeze in the air, Jenkins assured me conditions were “ideal for sailing.”

“This is my playground,” Jenkins said of the open water. But it’s not just his alone — the way he sees it, the water belongs to everyone. He takes his sailboat, the Betty Lou, out regularly, showing students how to explore the five boroughs by way of its many waterways. While many people think of sailing as an exclusive endeavor, Jenkins says there are ways to keep the sport accessible. For example, there are a lot of old sailboats out there that sell for cheap and don’t require expensive fuel compared to one of those pesky motorboats.

“There’s so much to do in the city, they forget about the sixth borough — the water,” Jenkins said.

Jenkins’ love of the water is infectious. But in order for future generations to continue to enjoy it, he knows seafarers like himself need to do more than attract new talent. They also need to keep the ocean as clean as possible. And so every time he takes the sailboat out to open water, whether he’s hanging out with friends or instructing students, he keeps an eye open for any plastic debris.

Grist / Paola Rosa-Aquino

Jenkins says cleaning up trash while you are out on the water is something many sailors have been doing for a long time. But thanks to a new ocean cleanup program by the American Sailing Association, one of the world’s biggest coalitions of sailing enthusiasts, trainers, and charter companies, the habit is becoming formalized.

The group started the crusade, called Operation Plastic Pollution Purge, last year. The campaign, which, according to the American Sailing Association’s website, has exposed around 111 million people to the concept of ocean conservation, urges boaters to reduce or eliminate the number of plastic items they bring on their vessels and to collect and properly dispose of any trash they see while they’re out on open water. It’s an especially important value to instill in new sailing enthusiasts, and something organization says it is uniquely situated to do given its 300 schools and 7,000 instructors.

“It has to start with one person, and what better group of people than sailors,” Lenny Shabes, CEO and founder of the American Sailing Association, told Grist.

Granted, not all types of boats are great for the environment. Big cruise ships, for example, run off of diesel fuel and can actually end up being more harmful to the planet per mile even compared to air travel. But sailboats are largely wind-powered, and when decked out with solar panels like the one currently transporting 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg to the U.N. Climate Summit in New York City, can provide a net-zero means of transportation even across long distances.

More than that, Shabes says sailing can benefit the planet because it can make people realize they have a special responsibility to the water. “It’s a very spiritual thing. There’s no propulsion involved, other than what the good earth gives you. The difference between living in New York City and going sailing in the Long Island Sound, which is one of the most beautiful places in the world to sail is immense. To see it become polluted because some yahoo doesn’t care and throws the plastic bottle overboard — it irks me.”

And between the planet’s warming waters and humanities’ growing trash problem, the oceans need all the love they can get. Scientists don’t know exactly how much plastic trash is in the ocean, but some estimates suggest that as much as 244,000 metric tons might bob on the surface. Another 8.5 million metric tons are though to settle on the ocean floor per year. The United Nations estimates that by the year 2050 there will be more plastic debris in our oceans than fish.

“It’s as if you took a New York City garbage truck and dumped it full of plastic into the ocean every minute of every day,” Jenkins said.

If that trash stays at sea, it could cluster up in trash hot spots, the most famous of which is a swirling mass of garbage twice the size of Texas. The patch is located somewhere between California and Hawaii called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. There, currents deposit waste like abandoned fishing gear, bottles, and tiny pieces of pulverized plastics.

Back at the City Island docks, Jenkins and I were just about ready to set sail on our trash-finding venture. As the Betty Lou pulled out from the Bronx and into the open water, it felt like an escape from city life. To the east lay the Sound, Connecticut to the north and Long Island to the south. We headed toward the Long Island Sound.

Jenkins surveyed a nautical chart as we headed south and the ship neared the Throgs Neck Bridge. It wasn’t long before we spotted our first piece of refuse — a bright yellow bag floating on the waves. Jenkins quickly redirected the Betty Lou, grabbing a handy net. As we cruised by, he dipped it into the water and lifted it up to reveal a soggy bag of Funyons. After about three hours of sailing, we’d amassed a modest bag’s worth of trash. Jenkins said that if we’d gone sailing on a Monday after people were in surrounding beaches over the weekend, he would have expected even more prices of plastic surrounding the ship.

Of course, it will take more than a few sailing trips to solve the ocean’s plastic problem. That’s why many countries are either restricting or even wholesale banning single-use plastics. But Bonnie Monteleone, executive director of the Plastic Ocean Project, says these small-scale clean-ups can still do a lot of good. As part of a separate cleanup effort, she hired charter fishermen to pick up trash they see offshore. “Just that exposure of getting people to become aware of how much trash is out there — I call it “the magic eye,” Monteleone told Grist. “Once you do you can’t unsee it. I think any opportunity that will get people out on the water [for this kind of effort] will cast a wider net and get more people proactive at picking up what they see. “

And the stakes are high: The billions upon billions of items of plastic waste choking our oceans, lakes, and rivers and piling up on land is more than unsightly and harmful to plants and wildlife. According to Lauren Coiro, the American Sailing Association’s marine conservationist, plastic Pollution is a very real and growing threat to human health. “In terms of the health of marine life, it’s not good,” Coiro told Grist. “In terms of our own health, it’s not good.”

Indeed, the toxic chemicals leach out of plastic and can be found in the blood and tissue of nearly every one of us. Exposure to these substances is linked to cancers, birth defects, impaired immunity, endocrine disruption and a whole slew of other ailments. What’s worse, instead of breaking down, plastic breaks into smaller and smaller pieces called microplastics, making it even harder to clean up.

But on a macro level, ocean cleanups can still do their part to help rid the ocean of its plastic scourge. And who better to lead the way than people who are already on the waves? “Sailors are naturally a really easily motivated group of people,” Coiro says. “When we asked sailors to start talking about this and take leadership … a lot of sailors [were] happy to do it..”

At the end of our rendezvous on open water, Jenkins packed the sails away, a process that requires the utmost care to avoid twists, tears, and tangles. With the lines finally coiled and the sails covered, and Betty Lou was tucked in for the day — but perhaps not for long.

If weather conditions are favorable, Jenkins says he’ll go back out and do the same thing all over again tomorrow.

https://grist.org/science/american-sailing-association-ocean-plastic-program-cleanup/

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This List Of The Dirtiest Beaches In America Shows There’s Fecal Bacteria In Many Public Swimming Areas

Summer is all fun and games until you find out there’s fecal bacteria contaminating your local beach.

That’s exactly what’s happening at public swimming areas around the country according to John Rumpler, the clean water program director at the Environment America Research and Policy Center.

The center released a study in July that examined dangerous bacteria levels at beaches in 29 coastal and Great Lakes states. The study shows the number of days in 2018 that the water had fecal bacteria counts exceeding Environmental Protection Agency standards, which can put swimmers at risk of getting sick.

“It’s hard to believe that 47 years after we passed the Clean Water Act that we are still concerned with poop in the water when people want to go swimming,” Rumpler told USA Today.

Nearly 60 percent of the 4,523 beaches tested nationwide had dangerously high contamination levels in the water on at least one occasion.

South Carolina, Myrtle Beach, Atlantic ocean, Myrtle Beach State Park, sunbather and fishing pier.Don’t be fooled by the view: Part of Myrtle Beach made the list!

JeffGreenbergGetty Images

While most states prioritize shutting down public swimming areas and posting warning signs to beachgoers when pollution levels are high, you should check water quality reports before hitting the sand.

Did your favorite summer hangout make the list of the dirtiest beaches? See below to find out.

Alabama

• Fairhope Public Beach, Baldwin

• Dog River, Alba Club, Mobile

• Camp Beckwith, Baldwin

• Volanta Avenue, Baldwin

• Orange Street Pier, Baldwin

California

• Inner Cabrillo Beach, Los Angeles

• Coronado Ave. Beach, Los Angeles

• Salt Creek Beach, Orange

• Molino Avenue Beach, Los Angeles

• 5th Place Beach, Los Angeles

Connecticut

• Byram Beach (South), Fairfield

• Byram Beach (North), Fairfield

• Seaside Park Beach (Southernmost), Fairfield

• Seaside Park Beach (South), Fairfield

• Seaside Park Beach (Mid), Fairfield

Delaware

• Slaughter Beach, Sussex

• Fenwick Island State Park Beach, Sussex

• Rehoboth Beach, Sussex

• Broadkill Beach, Sussex

• Lewes Beach North, Sussex

Florida

• Bayou Texar, Escambia

• Sanders Beach, Escambia

• Crandon Park on Key Biscayne, Miami-Dade

• Bird Key Park, Sarasota

• Venice Fishing Pier, Sarasota

Georgia

• St. Simons Island Lighthouse, Glynn

• Skidaway Narrows, Chatham

• Kings Ferry, Chatham

• Tybee Island, Polk St., Chatham

• Jekyll Driftwood Beach, Glynn

Hawaii

• Keehi Lagoon (North), Honolulu

• Keehi Lagoon (South), Honolulu

• Punaluu Beach Park, Honolulu

• MS2 (Kapoho Point), Honolulu

• Kalihi Channel, Honolulu

Illinois

• South Shore Beach, Cook

• Calumet South Beach, Cook

• 63rd Street Beach, Cook

• Rogers Avenue Park Beach, Cook

• Howard Street Park Beach, Cook

Indiana

• Jeorse Park Beach I, Lake

• Jeorse Park Beach II, Lake

• Buffington Harbor Beach, Lake

• Indiana Dunes State Park East Beach, Porter

• Washington Park Beach, LaPorte

Louisiana

• North Beach, Calcasieu

• Cypremort Point State Park, St. Mary

• Fontainebleau State Park, St. Tammany

• Rutherford Beach, Cameron

• Holly Beach 4, Cameron

Maine

• Goose Rocks Beach – Site 5, York

• Goose Rocks Beach – Site 1, York

• Willard Beach, Cumberland

• Ogunquit Beach, York

• Kennebunk Beach, York

Maryland

• Camp Pecometh, Kent

• Public Landing Beach near Snow Hill, Worcester

• Ocean City Beach 1, Worcester

• Purse State Park, Charles

• Ferry Park, Kent

Massachusetts

• Nahant Bay at Eastern Ave, Essex

• Tenean Beach, Suffolk

• Nahant Bay at Pierce Road, Essex

• Nahant Bay at Kimball Road, Essex

• Quincy Shore at Channing Street, Norfolk

Michigan

• St. Clair Shores Memorial Park Beach, Macomb

• Pier Park, Wayne

• HCMA/Lake St. Clair Metropark Beach, Macomb

• New Baltimore Park Beach, Macomb

• Singing Bridge Beach, Arenac

Minnesota

• New Duluth Boat Club landing, St. Louis

• Near Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge, St. Louis

• Agate Bay, Lake

• Twin Points Public Access, Lake

• Flood Bay, Lake

Mississippi

• Gulfport East Beach, Harrison

• Shearwater Beach, Jackson

• Long Beach, Harrison

• Gulfport Central Beach, Harrison

• Courthouse Road Beach, Harrison
New Hampshire

• State Beach-Left, Rockingham

• State Beach-Center, Rockingham

• New Castle Island-Right, Rockingham

• State Beach-Right, Rockingham

• Sawyer Beach-Right, Rockingham

New Jersey

• Berkeley Township/Beachwood Beach West, Ocean

• Belmar Borough at L Street Beach, Monmouth

• Berkeley Township at West Beach Avon Road, Ocean

• Brick Township at Windward Beach, Ocean

• Highlands Borough at Highlands Recreation Center, Monmouth

New York

• Tanner Park, Suffolk

• Woodlawn Beach State Park, Erie

• Shirley Beach, Suffolk

• Venetian Shores, Suffolk

• Valley Grove Beach, Suffolk

North Carolina

• Sound access at the intersection of E. Main Street/Tooley Street, Belhaven, Beaufort

• NC Maritime Museum Sailing Camp, Carteret

• Pamlico River – City Park, Beaufort

• End of Shore Line Drive, Pender

• Pamlico River-Washington-Trestle, Beaufort

Ohio

• Bay View West, Erie

• Maumee Bay State Park (Inland), Lucas

• Villa Angela State Park, Cuyahoga

• Lakeview Beach, Lorain

• Euclid State Park, Cuyahoga

Oregon

• Sunset Bay State Park Beach/Big Creek, Coos

• Nye Beach turnaround/discharge pipe, Lincoln

• Harris Beach State Park at Harris Creek, Curry

• Sunset Bay, Seep Creek, Coos

• Sunset Bay State Park Beach/North Beach, Coos

Pennsylvania

• Beach 11 West in Thompson Bay, Erie

• Beach 11 East in Thompson Bay, Erie

• Beach 11 Center in Thompson Bay, Erie

• Barracks Beach West, Erie

• Barracks Beach East, Erie

Rhode Island

• Easton’s Beach, Newport

• Conimicut Point Beach – West, Kent

• Goddard Memorial State Park Center, Kent

• Sandy Point Beach – South, Newport

• Oakland Beach Center, Kent

South Carolina

• Withers Swash, Horry

• Myrtle Beach at 24th Avenue N, Horry

• White Point Swash, Horry

• Bear Branch Swash, Horry

• Cane Patch Swash, Horry

Texas

• Cole Park – Site 3, Nueces

• Ropes Park – Site 2, Nueces

• Cole Park – Site 4, Nueces

• Cole Park – Site 2, Nueces

• Poenisch Park, Nueces

Virginia

• North Community Beach, Norfolk city

• Captains Quarters, Norfolk city

• 10th View, Behind Quality Inn, Norfolk city

• 15th Street, Virginia Beach city

• 13th View, North End, Norfolk city

Washington

• Sooes Beach, Clallam

• Lummi Bay, adjacent to second tidegate, Whatcom

• Dakwas Park Beach, Neah Bay, Clallam

• Little Squalicum Park, Whatcom

•Cline Spit County Park, Clallam

Wisconsin

• Cupertino Park, Milwaukee

• McKinley Marina Roundhouse, Milwaukee

• Wolfenbuttel Park, Kenosha

• North Nicolet Bay Campground, Door

• Memorial Park in Chequamegon Bay, Ashland County

https://www.delish.com/just-for-fun/a28527611/dirtiest-beaches-in-america/

(h/t USA Today)

Content Strategy Editor Kelly O’Sullivan is the content strategy editor for CountryLiving.com and also covers entertainment news, from standout moments on “The Voice” to the latest drama on “Chicago Fire.”

5 Things to Know About the State of Our Oceans for World Oceans Day

ecowatch.com
Tropical fish and turtle swim in the Red Sea, Egypt, an inlet of the Indian Ocean. vlad61 / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Saturday, June 8 is World Oceans Day, a chance to honor and celebrate our blue planet. Ocean lovers around the world will attend beach cleanings and other events or join a March for the Ocean to call for an end to activities that harm marine life, like offshore oil drilling and plastic pollution.

The oceans generate most of the oxygen we breathe, provide food and medicine and help keep our climate stable, according to the day’s organizers. They are also home to amazing animals and ecosystems, like whales and coral reefs, that make the earth a more wondrous place to live. But the world’s marine environments face unprecedented threats. Here are five things to know about the state of our oceans in 2019.

1. Ocean Plastics Are on the Rise

It’s well-known that eight million metric tons of plastics enter the world’s oceans every year. But a study published in April gave new insight into how plastic pollution has proliferated in the past six decades. Researchers found that equipment used to collect plankton had increasingly been disrupted by plastic since it first got entangled with fishing gear in 1957.

“The message is that marine plastic has increased significantly and we are seeing it all over the world, even in places where you would not want to, like the Northwest Passage and other parts of the Arctic,” Marine Biological Association in Plymouth, England researcher Clare Ostle told The Guardian.

2. Plastic Pollution Threatens Marine Oxygen Production

All that plastic floating in the ocean kills one million birds and more than 100,000 marine mammals every year, according to the UK government. But a study published in May found it could have a disturbing impact on some of the ocean’s smallest life forms as well. Scientists exposed the ocean’s most abundant photosynthetic bacteria to chemicals that leach from plastic bags. The chemicals made it harder for the bacteria to grow and produce oxygen. This is scary because these bacteria are responsible for 10 percent of the oxygen we breathe.

“This study revealed a new and unanticipated danger of plastic pollution,” paper co-author and Macquarie University research fellow Lisa Moore told The Independent.

3. Global Warming Is Already Putting Fish in Hot Water

The oceans and the creatures in them are also threatened by climate change, and a groundbreaking study published in March found that rising ocean temperatures are already shrinking fish populations. A University of Rutgers-led team discovered that sustainable fish populations had declined by an average of 4.1 percent over 80 years. That might not sound like a lot, but it actually amounts to 1.4 million metric tons of fish lost between 1930 and 2010. And in some regions the decline was more extreme: sustainable fish populations fell by 34 percent in the northeast Atlantic and 35 percent in the Sea of Japan.

“We were stunned to find that fisheries around the world have already responded to ocean warming,” study co-author and Rutgers’ Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources associate professor Malin Pinsky told Rutgers Today. “These aren’t hypothetical changes sometime in the future.”

4. Marine Heatwaves Act Like Underwater Wildfires

Ocean warming doesn’t just damage individual species. It devastates entire ecosystems. A first-of-its-kind study published in March found that the number of ocean heat wave days per year is surging: The number has increased by more than 50 percent between two 29-year time chunks compared by the scientists. This has particularly harmed coral reefs in the Caribbean, Australian sea-grass beds and California’s kelp forests.

“You have heatwave-induced wildfires that take out huge areas of forest, but this is happening underwater as well,” lead author Dan Smale at the Marine Biological Association in Plymouth, UK told The Guardian. “You see the kelp and seagrasses dying in front of you. Within weeks or months they are just gone, along hundreds of kilometres of coastline.”

5. Ocean Acidification Makes Life Even Harder for Coral Reefs

Marine heat waves threaten coral reefs by causing coral bleaching, in which corals expel the algae that give them color and nutrients. But the greenhouse gasses we are pumping into the atmosphere also endanger coral in another way. They cause ocean acidification, which is what happens when carbon dioxide dissolves in seawater and changes its chemical makeup. This reduces the amount of calcium carbonate that animals like corals use to repair themselves after stressful events like bleachings. In research published just last week, scientists found that some corals and algae they studied were not able to adapt to more acidic waters. This could alter the composition and function of reefs.

“We found that corals and coralline algae weren’t able to acclimatize to ocean acidification,” study author Malcolm McCulloch said.

 

https://www.ecowatch.com/world-oceans-day-facts-2638711550.html?rebelltitem=1#rebelltitem1

It’s World Ocean Day

 

It is World Oceans Day
What will YOU do?

It is Time To Act

Oceans are in trouble. Overfishing, pollution, warming, acidification and poaching are a few issues we face. These insults do not recognize political boundaries. With a myriad of issues dominating headlines daily, we must raise our voices to say: “Ocean health must be a priority; without healthy oceans, life on earth is unsustainable.”

Get Trashy!

Wherever you are, take just a few minutes to pick up some trash. Sea Save Foundation is working hard to stop this glut of plastics and trash “upstream” with laws that stop single use plastic pollution, but today we need you to help us clean up. Parks, waterways, beaches, underwater everywhere. Please take a pix and post it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with our hashtags (below) so we can repost!

#GetTrashy #MotionForTheOcean #SeaSave

Motion for the Ocean

We want to encourage you to take action. We need some “Motion for the Ocean”. You can be involved in a worldwide virtual movement. If we all pitch in the results will be great! You do not have to drive, march or organize. You can MULTITASK! Enjoy a beautiful day with friends and family, and take 15 minutes to clean up and then post! You’ve Got This!

Carnival Cruise Lines Fined $20 Million For Illegal Dumping Of Trash Into The Ocean – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com
Posts by Alex Larson →
Photo by jonathan leonardo on Unsplash

Carnival Corporation will now have to pay $20 million after a court filing submitted on Monday said Carnival released food waste and plastic into the ocean, failed to accurately record waste disposals, created false training records, and secretly examined ships to fix environmental-compliance issues before third-party inspections without reporting its findings to the inspectors.

The violations took place on Princess Cruises, a subsidiary of Carnival.

The settlement reached this week will require Carnival to pay $20 million within seven days, receive additional inspections, invest in more resources to ensure compliance with its probation, reduce the number of single-use plastic items on its ships, and establish teams to improve waste management. If the requirements are not met, they will have to pay penalties of $1 million to $10 million per day.

U.S. District Judge Patricia Seitz approved the terms of the deal during a hearing Monday in Miami. She had appeared to grow increasingly frustrated as the company has continued to defy environmental regulations over the past couple decades.

“You not only work for employees and shareholders. You are a steward of the environment,” she told Carnival CEO Arnold Donald, who attended the hearing with other senior executives. “The environment needs to be a core value, and I hope and pray it becomes your daily anthem.”

In 2013, a whistleblowing engineer exposed the illegal dumping of contaminated waste and oil from the company’s Caribbean Princess ship. He told authorities that engineers were using a special device called the “magic pipe” to bypass the ship’s water treatment system and dump oil waste straight into the ocean. The company also tried to cover up this practice from investigators, according to the Justice Department.

http://seavoicenews.com/2019/06/07/carnival-cruise-lines-fined-20-million-for-illegal-dumping-of-trash-into-the-ocean/

Remote Island Chain Has Few People — But Hundreds Of Millions Of Pieces Of Plastic

npr.org
Christopher Joyce Twitter
Debris blankets the north side of one of the Cocos Keeling Islands in the Indian Ocean. Researchers found a huge amount of plastic both onshore and buried in the sand.

When a marine biologist from Australia traveled to a remote string of islands in the Indian Ocean to see how much plastic waste had washed up on the beaches, here’s just part of what she found: “373,000 toothbrushes and around 975,000 shoes, largely flip-flops,” says Jennifer Lavers of the University of Tasmania in Australia.

And that’s only what was on the surface.

The Cocos Keeling Islands make up barely 6 square miles of land, about 1,300 miles off the northwest coast of Australia. It was a good place to measure plastic waste because almost no one lives there. That meant the plastic debris there wasn’t local — it floated in — and no one was picking it up. It gave Lavers a good notion of just how much was bobbing around the ocean.

She was flabbergasted.

“So, more than 414 million pieces of plastic debris are estimated to be currently sitting on the Cocos Keeling Islands, weighing a remarkable 238 tons,” Lavers says.

There are 27 of these islands, most just a few acres in size. Lavers’ team of researchers studied seven of them, mostly in 2017, by marking off transects on beaches and counting all the plastic inside each transect. They multiplied that number by the total beach area of all the islands. Lavers had done this before on other remote islands. “You get to the point where you’re feeling that not much is going to surprise you anymore,” she says, “and then something does … and that something [on the Cocos Keeling Islands] was actually the amount of debris that was buried.”

Where Will Your Plastic Trash Go Now That China Doesn’t Want It?

Lavers didn’t just count the stuff on the surface, she dug down 4 inches into the sand. “What was really quite amazing was that the deeper we went,” she says, “the more plastic we were actually finding.” What happens is that the sun breaks down the plastic on the surface, and the waves pummel it into tiny pieces and drive it into the sand.

“It’s the little stuff that’s perfectly bite-sized,” Lavers says. “The stuff that fish and squid and birds and even turtles can eat.”

Brightly colored pieces of microplastic mar one of the 27 islands in the Cocos Keeling chain. Much of the plastic is hidden under the sand. The sun breaks down plastic debris, and the tiny pieces get buried in the sand.

Brightly colored pieces of microplastic mar one of the 27 islands in the Cocos Keeling chain. Much of the plastic is hidden under the sand. The sun breaks down plastic debris, and the tiny pieces get buried in the sand.

In fact, most of the plastic waste was just under the surface. “We estimated that what was hidden below the sediment was somewhere in the range of 380 million pieces of plastic,” Lavers says. But it probably won’t stay there. Eventually, she predicts, high tides or storms will carry it out to sea.

Lavers describes what her team found in the journal Scientific Reports.

It’s becoming increasingly clear that no place on the planet seems immune from plastic debris. Ecologist Chelsea Rochman at the University of Toronto studies microplastics and says different places simply have different kinds of plastic.

Microplastic Found Even In The Air In France’s Pyrenees Mountains

Take the Arctic, for example. “Contaminants are transported via air currents in addition to ocean currents,” Rochman explains. “And there [in the Arctic], we see high concentrations of small microfibers and small particles, and so, absolutely, you expect different things in different places. And what you find tells you something about where it’s coming from.”

Rochman says she’s not exactly surprised at what Lavers found. “It’s just kind of sad to kind of read about it and think, ‘Yep, OK, this is becoming, I guess, normal.’

“And we never wanted something like this to become normal.”

https://www.npr.org/2019/05/16/723641299/remote-island-chain-has-few-people-but-hundreds-of-millions-of-pieces-of-plastic

Rep. Cunningham Introduces Bill Banning Offshore Drilling on the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts

cunningham.house.gov

The Coastal and Marine Economies Protection Act would permanently ban oil and gas leasing off the coast of the Pacific and Atlantic

Washington, D.C. – Keeping his promise to make sure there is never offshore drilling on South Carolina’s coastline, today Rep. Joe Cunningham introduced the Coastal and Marine Economies Protection Act. This bipartisan legislation would permanently ban oil and gas leasing off the coast of the Pacific and Atlantic.

“I’ve been clear from the very beginning that our beaches, businesses, and way of life should not be for sale. South Carolinians want nothing to do with offshore drilling and the devastating threat it poses to our vibrant natural resources,” said Congressman Joe Cunningham. “I am proud to have the support of a bipartisan group of lawmakers, advocates, and organizations up and down South Carolina and across both the Atlantic and Pacific coastlines. It’s an honor to have the opportunity to lead this bipartisan bill across the finish line to ban offshore drilling off our coast once and for all.”

“The Administration is trying to further oil and gas interests at an alarming rate, including major expansions of offshore drilling in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. This is nothing more than a hand-out to the oil and gas industries and runs counter to health, safety, and environmental safeguards we know must be in place to protect our coastlines. These actions also run counter to the will of the citizens in these coastal communities. I am proud to join with my colleagues in making it perfectly clear to this Administration – there will be no new drilling off our coasts,” said Rep. Alan Lowenthal.

“The Trump administration’s drill-everywhere plan has run into a wave of public opposition. Americans from coast to coast have made it very clear that they do not want to see more oil rigs in their oceans,” said Rep. Jared Huffman. “The Coastal and Marine Economies Protection Act will halt Trump’s oil and gas drilling spree in its tracks, protecting coastal communities and fragile ecosystems from environmental catastrophe. In California, we know that our coastal economies would be placed at unacceptable risk by offshore oil and gas drilling, which threatens the tourism, recreation, and fishing industries. I’m glad to work together with Joe Cunningham on this ongoing effort to block offshore drilling on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, and to shield both of our coastlines from dangerous exploitation.”

“From Congress to the Governor’s mansion to City Council chambers, bipartisan leaders across South Carolina have said time and time again they oppose drilling off our coast. Now Congressman Cunningham is leading the charge in Congress to ensure this threat never comes to be,” said John Tynan, Executive Director of Conservation Voters of South Carolina. “Voters in the Palmetto State have told their elected leaders to prevent drilling off our coast, and we’re proud to stand beside Congressman Cunningham as he leads the way in the fight to protect our coastline, tourism economy, and quality of life.”

“This smart measure responds to communities and leaders all along our Atlantic and Pacific coasts who strongly oppose offshore drilling. It would protect those coastal waters and wildlife from the risks of another BP-style disaster, as well as industrial ruin and ongoing harm. This bill deserves the support of everyone who cares about healthy oceans, marine life, our coastal economies and all they support”, said Alexandra Adams, Legislative Director, Nature Program, Natural Resources Defense Council.

https://cunningham.house.gov/media/press-releases/rep-cunningham-introduces-bill-banning-offshore-drilling-atlantic-and-pacific

Petition: Protect Our Ocean—Don’t Let the Oil and Gas Industry Call All the Plays

takeaction.oceanconservancy.org

The Trump administration has chosen David Bernhardt to lead the Department of the Interior—the federal agency that has control over huge swaths of our ocean and all of our country’s federal offshore oil and gas resources.

Bernhardt has made clear that he intends to charge forward with vastly expanding offshore drilling—despite overwhelming bipartisan opposition from Florida to Maine, the Atlantic to the Pacific.

Please tell your Senators to vote NO and oppose Bernhardt’s nomination when it comes to the Senate floor for a vote.

Bernhardt’s past as an oil and gas industry lobbyist is concerning, and his tenure as both Deputy and Acting Secretary of the Interior has demonstrated that these concerns are well-founded. While Deputy and Acting Secretary, Bernhardt led the core political team that repeatedly adopted a pro-industry, anti-science approach to policy that benefited industry at the expense of a healthy environment.

When it comes to protecting our ocean and the communities that depend on it, the oil and gas industry cannot be allowed to call the plays.

Take action today.

https://takeaction.oceanconservancy.org/page/40971/action/1?ea.tracking.id=19LPDCOAXX&utm_medium=email&utm_source=engagingnetworks&utm_campaign=20190405BernhardtAdvocacy&utm_content=20190405-Bernhardt-Prospects-Email1-19LPDCOAXX&ea.url.id=2520928&forwarded=true

Oil Leak In Solomon Islands Potentially Wreaking Havoc On World’s Largest Raised Coral Atoll – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com

by Alex Larson

An environmental crisis continues in the Solomon Islands as for more than month, a cargo ship off the coast of Rennell Island in the Kangava Bay has been leaking oil into the waters. This site also happens to be a UNESCO World Heritage site as it is the world’s largest raised coral atoll.

The ship, a 740-foot-long ship called the Solomon Trader ran aground on February 5, 2019 where it was carrying more than 700 metric tons of oil according the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) said Tuesday. So far, CNN affiliate Radio NZ has reported that the wreck has released more than 100 tons of oil into the sea that holds one of the most important coral atolls in the world.

While a large amount of the oil still remains in the ship, there is a high risk that the remaining oil on board could leak into the sea. According to the DFAT, the oil had spread about three and half miles and has begun to wash up onshore.

Speaking to the New York Times, Simon Albert, a marine ecologist at the University of Queensland explained that the spill is likely to cause long therm damage to the coral and local ecosystem.

When coral comes in contact with oil, it can either kill the coral polyps direct or significantly impact reproduction, growth, and behavior over the a long period of time. What this means is that this coral, which is already struggling to survive due to bleaching events and ocean acidification, will be impacted for generations of coral to come.

While the future will be problematic, there are already environmental impacts occurring according to Radio NZ. Loti Yates, the director of the Solomon Islands Disaster Management Office, told them that dead fish have been washing up on beaches.

“There are dead fish and crabs and all that,” Yates said. “The fumes that is coming out from the oil is also affecting communities and I just had a report it’s also impacting on the chicken and birds.”

The site is the largest raised coral atoll in the world, according to UNESCO, which said in a statement this week the leak is taking place just outside the World Heritage site.

The ship ran aground when it was attempting to load cargo of bauxite in the Solomon Island when Cyclone Oma pushed in into a reef. The ship is based out of Hong-Kong and insured by a Korean company.

Thus far, the company attempted to try and use a tugboat to move the ship but this only made matters worse as it pushed it further into the reef. Since then, Australian officials are supporting the Solomon Islands in efforts to mitigate ecological damage. The DFAT said the Australian government has deployed special equipment and an eight-person response crew from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.

The companies are now working on transferring the remaining 600 metric tons of fuel oil on the ship to different tanks which will be pumped onto a separate barge that is en route.

They’ve also started deploying oil spill booms to contain the spread, and have begun cleaning along the shoreline, the statement said.

http://seavoicenews.com/2019/03/12/oil-leak-in-solomon-islands-potentially-wreaking-havoc-on-worlds-largest-raised-coral-atoll/

Sign Petition: Tell Coastal Golf Courses to Get Their Golf Balls Out of Our Ocean

thepetitionsite.com
by: Care2 Team
recipient: The Pebble Beach Company and other coastal and riverside golf coursesmore

Pebble Beach is world-renowned for being one of the most beautiful golf courses on Earth. The golf resort is dotted with million dollar mansions and frequented by some of the wealthiest people on the planet. It truly is a golfer’s paradise.

But right off the coast, where the links turn into the sea, that paradise has been lost.

Two years ago, a young 16-year-old freediver named Alex Weber was swimming off the coast in Carmel Bay. Weber says she had been diving since she was a young child, so the underwater world was nothing new to her. But this time she saw something she didn’t expect. Instead of sand covering the seafloor, she saw nothing but golf balls — thousands and thousands of them.

Weber knew this wasn’t good. Golf balls are covered in plastic, and like any plastic material that finds its way into the sea, they degrade over time, releasing microplastics and other toxins into the ocean that marine life ingest.

Weber knew just what she had to do — with help, she initiated her own golf ball clean up effort to rid Carmel Bay of its golf ball scourge. Over the following two years, she and her helpers removed around 50,000 balls — more than 2 tons of them.

Weber said that even as they made their regular diving trips out to remove more golf balls, they could hear the “plink, plink” of more balls hitting the ocean from golfers at nearby resorts.

The Pebble Beach Company (PBC) — owner of Pebble Beach and two other courses along the coast including The Links at Spanish Bay and Spyglass Hill — charge big money by offering a chance to play at this stunning course. They can charge exorbitant green fees ($525) because the links are pristine and beautiful. But management has failed to keep the entire area in equally as tip-top shape. For PBC officials, out of sight means out of mind. Over the years they have allowed thousands of golf balls to pollute California’s shore. That is unacceptable.

The PBC must take responsibility for the golf ball pollution caused by their guests and rid the sea floor of them at once. Additionally, they should take extra steps to make sure more balls don’t make their way into the sea, perhaps by erecting a net to stop stray balls.

Sign the petition to tell PBC and other coastal and river golf courses to clean up their mess. Photo credit: The Plastic Pick-Up.

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/972/407/417/tell-pebble-beach-to-get-their-golf-balls-out-of-our-ocean/

 

New Florida Governor To Implement Major Water Reforms With Billions Of Dollars – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com
by Alex Larson

Florida is facing one of the countries biggest crisis as their water quality continues to grow worse and worse. And finally, after eight years of hopelessly waiting, the new governor plans to take the state’s water quality seriously and put some real money towards the problem.

Ron Desantis announced the move while the state of Florida is still seeing the effects of one of their worst red tide blooms on record. The move is a multifaceted executive order on water policy vastly different from the new governors predecessor. On top of that, Desantis also fired the entire board of the South Florida Water Management after they have failed to protect the states water.

The plan includes to spend $2.5 billion to restore the Everglades and protect its water, a blue-green algae task force, creating a chief science officer position, phasing out septic tanks, putting teeth in environmental crime enforcement and creating an office of resilience and coastal protection to fund and coordinate response to rising sea levels.

While Desantis is known for being a very conservative Republican, the positive conservation steps forward are a stark difference from the previous administration whom banned state employees from using the words climate change or global warming in official communication.

DeSantis called his executive order the “most comprehensive, boldest actions that we have seen in Florida in a long time. … We can solve a lot of these problems, but it has got to begin now.”

Sierra Club Florida Chapter Director Frank Jackalone said DeSantis in his first week “has done more to address Florida’s water quality crisis than (former) Gov. Rick Scott did in eight years.”

But Jackalone said concerns remain over a “poorly designed” Everglades-area reservoir and the lack of a direct mention of climate change in DeSantis’ order. Also, he said more details are needed about the order’s stated opposition to offshore oil and gas drilling and opposition to the controversial drilling process known as fracking.

DeSantis, who campaigned as a critic of the Big Sugar farmers, said he is working with the White House and U.S. Army Corps to end the massive water releases from Lake Okeechobee. Residents living along the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee estuaries have blamed the discharges of polluted water from the lake for toxic algae outbreaks which has caused some of the biggest algae blooms to waterways and coastal waters.

While Desantis failed to mention anything about climate change, he did say the state needs to be “ahead of the curve” on increased flooding and rising waters, which will be a job of the Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection.

http://seavoicenews.com/2019/01/14/new-florida-governor-to-implement-major-water-reforms-with-billions-of-dollars/

Ireland To Task Fishing Industry In Assisting To Clean Up The Oceans – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com

by Alex Larson

To clean the oceans of all the plastic waste, humans will need to get ingenuitive in their attempt to clean up the ocean and much more important, in how to prevent it.

While finding an alternative to plastic that is practical to replicate on such a large scale has been a challenge, many people across the world are doing what they can to try and clean up the plastic that is in the sea.

Now, Irish fishing trawlers will be used to remove plastic waste from the oceans by the end of 2019, according to Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed.

Creed called for all trawlers to get involved in the Clean Oceans Initiative by the end of this year.

“A coordinated action is required,” he said, “to address the serious issue of pollution of the Oceans with plastics.”

Fishing ports, harbours and piers all need to get involved, said Creed, and added that he hoped the industry would build on the work it had been doing voluntarily to date.

With an estimated 15-51 trillion pieces of plastic already estimated to be in the ocean today, that number will only grow at a rapid pace in the future. By 2050, plastic pollution is estimated to outweigh all fish in the ocean.

Plastic also harms the marine life and the very fish stocks that fisherman make a living in, are being impacted severely.

The plan for Irish fisherman is to actively remove garbage, plastic and man-made debris everyday, “as they go about their activity at sea”, according to Creed.

A Department of Agriculture statement said that those working in the fishing industry shared concerns about the plastics issue.

“Our fishing vessels are towing nets through the waters around our coast on a daily basis and often find debris, including waste plastics, when the nets are hauled,” said the statement.

With the hope that fisherman will be bringing home a lot of garbage after each trip out at sea, the Minister is making funding available under Ireland’s European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF), to provide storage facilities on board vessels.

The funding will also be used for “on-shore infrastructure for environmentally friendly disposal of all plastics, waste, ghost fishing gear, etc. recovered at sea.”

The Seafood Development Agency will be tasked with putting together a team of stakeholders which will include fishermen, fish farmers, net makers, harbor authorities, fish processors, community groups, Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs), academics and NGOs to determine the best methods of prevention and removal.

This would also include a wider outreach to coastal communities, asking people to report back at the end of the year with more proposals for solutions for the removal and prevention of plastics in the future.

http://seavoicenews.com/2019/01/15/ireland-to-task-fishing-industry-in-assisting-to-clean-up-the-oceans/

Ocean Plastic Is Expected To Triple By 2025 – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com

by Alex Larson →

Plastic pollution remains one of the biggest threats to our oceans along with rising seas levels, climate change, human-made chemical pollution, and agricultural runoff.

In a new report titled Foresight Future of the Sea by the UK Government Office for Science, discovered that the amount of plastic in the ocean could triple by the year 2025.

Currently, there is already over 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic trash in the world’s ocean and with the current amount expected to triple in such a short time, we need to address the reality of what we have created.

The report warns that the current health of the oceans could have some cruel implications for biodiversity, noting that there is already a 49% decline in marine vertebrate populations between 1970 and 2012.

The world is slowly starting to wake up to our plastic problem but we still use way too much on a global scale. Walk into any super market or restaurant and pay attention to the amount of single-use plastic being used and quickly, it becomes evident how vast our addiction has become.

Governments have started to implement bans on plastic items but not yet on a scale that we need. One of the authors’ primary recommendations is to reduce plastic pollution in the sea through the development of new biodegradable plastics and public awareness campaigns. The authors note that that the UK and the world need to seriously reassess the way it manages the ocean.

Recent reports have started to identify just how troubling plastic pollution has become. Last week, a separate report found that 93 percent of major brand bottled water contained microplastics inside of the bottled water.

The time is now to reduce plastic waste. Governments need to start identifying how to reduce waste but it also starts at a personal level. Every decision a person makes to say to no to plastic is decision that is positively impacting our environment.

http://seavoicenews.com/2018/03/21/ocean-plastic-is-expected-to-triple-by-2025/

Florida To Introduce Bill That Would Ban Smoking On Public Beaches – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com
by Alex Larson →

A new bill has been introduced that aims to reduce cigarettes on Florida beaches. Sarasota House Republican Joe Gruters is looking for the state to bank smoking on all public beaches through bill SB218, which would fine first-time violators $25 or 10 hours of community service.

If Florida passes the bill, it would go into effect July 1st, 2019.

The bill may face potential problems as this isn’t the first time representatives have tried to restrict smoking on beaches in Florida. In 2017, a law that was in place for five years and banned smoking in Sarasota County public parks and beaches was tossed out by a judge whom declared it unconstitutional on the grounds that local jurisdictions couldn’t ban something that was legal on a state level.

Hopefully though, with the potential ban being state wide this time, there will not be another loop-hole that would allow the bill to be thrown out if it does get through the legislatures.

Florida would not be the only state with this ban in place as New Jersey recently banned smoking in public beaches which carries a fine of $250.00

Cigarette butt continue to be the largest single polluter in the ocean damaging habitats, poisoning fish and costing tax dollars for cleanup and disposal, according to environmental experts.

Outside of direct pollution on the beach, cigarettes make their way to the sea due to countless storm drains, streams and rivers around the world. The waste often disintegrates into microplastics easily consumed by wildlife. Researchers have found the detritus in some 70 percent of seabirds and 30 percent of sea turtles.

As Florida holds some of the most visited and popular beaches in the world, banning smoking would be a huge win in helping to contain ocean pollution.

http://seavoicenews.com/2019/01/03/florida-to-introduce-bill-that-would-ban-smoking-on-public-beaches/

The Ocean Cleanup Device Breaks Under Stress Of The Sea – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com
by Alex Larson

The trash cleaning device deployed by the The Ocean Cleanup to collect plastic floating in the Pacific Ocean inside the Great Pacific Garbage Patch has broken apart and will be hauled back to land to attempt to repair.

Boyan Slat, who launched the project, told NBC that the device will be towed 800 miles to Hawaii so they can attempt to repair. If unable to, the device will be loaded on a barge and returned to Alameda, California.

The project has received an immense amount of criticism due to the concern of the trash collecting boom not being able to withstand the force of the ocean and that the device has failed to collect any significant amount of trash through months of testing.

Now, critics prediction of the device breaking has come true as the boom broke apart under constant wind and waves in the Pacific.

In late December, 60 feet of the device detached due to material fatigue. Slat then indicated that this likely occurred due to wave action placing stress on the boom. The fracture was caused by material fatigue, he wrote. That’s likely because of the intense action of the waves that puts tremendous stress on objects in the water.

“This is an entirely new category of machine that is out there in extremely challenging conditions,” the 24-year-old Dutch inventor said. “We always took into account that we might have to take it back and forth a few times. So it’s really not a significant departure from the original plan.”

The plastic barrier with a tapered 10-foot-deep (3-meter-deep) screen is intended to act like a coastline, trapping some of the 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic that scientists estimate are swirling in the patch while allowing marine life to safely swim beneath it.

Slat has said he hopes one day to deploy 60 of the devices to skim plastic debris off the surface of the ocean.

With the device incapable of collecting trash and already breaking apart, more questions are quickly arising whether this effort is worth it and whether the group should continue to throw money at something that appears to not work.

http://seavoicenews.com/2019/01/07/the-ocean-cleanup-device-breaks-under-stress-of-the-sea/

Remember that $20 million ocean cleanup project? It isn’t working.

grist.org
By Paola Rosa-Aquino on Dec 26, 2018

The $20 million effort to clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch has hit a bit of a snafu.

Organizers for The Ocean Cleanup, which launched the project in September, already had their work cut out for them — the floating garbage patch is made up of an estimated 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic, which has coalesced into a field of debris twice the size of Texas, weighing in at 88,000 tons (that’s the equivalent of 500 jumbo jets, yikes).

In order to clean up the massive garbage island, engineers at the non-government organization built a U-shaped barrier, which they hoped would act like a coastline, trapping the plastic floating in large swathes of the patch. The system can communicate its whereabouts at all times, allowing a support vessel to come by periodically to pick up all the junk in the device’s trunk, so to speak, for recycling.

The highly anticipated endeavor deployed out of San Francisco in September, when the floating device — known as System 001 or Wilson — was towed out to the island of rubbish located between California and Hawaii. The goal of The Ocean Cleanup is to remove up to 50 percent of plastics in the area within five years.

But so far, the giant garbage catcher is having issues holding on to plastic waste.

George Leonard, chief scientist of the Ocean Conservancy, a non-profit environmental advocacy says the organization’s goal is admirable, but can’t be the only solution to ocean plastics pollution. He said a solution must include a multi-pronged approach, including stopping plastic from reaching the ocean in the first place. Humans dump more than 8 million tons of trash into the ocean each year — the equivalent of one dump truck full of plastic every minute.

“The clock is ticking; we must confront this challenge before plastics overwhelm the ocean,” Leonard said.

The Ocean Cleanup Fonder Boyan Slat said the slow speed of the solar-powered 600-meter long barrier isn’t allowing it to scoop up plastic from the swirling trash island. Over the next few weeks, a crew of engineers will make tweaks to the system. Slat says it’s all part of the process when you take on a project this ambitious (Forbes called it “the world’s largest ocean cleanup”).

In a statement released on December 20, Slat said that he always expected it was going to be a bit of an ongoing experiment. “What we’re trying to do has never been done before,” he said. “For the beta phase of [the] technology, this is already a success.”

https://grist.org/science/remember-that-20-million-garbage-cleanup-project-it-isnt-working/

I Went to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. This is What I Saw.

Plastic planet is a series on the global plastics crisis that evaluates the environmental and human cost and considers possible solution to this devastating man-made problem. In this piece, Alli Mahoney, Teen Vogue News and Politics Features Editor, describes her experience in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

The great Pacific Garbage patch (GPGP) a site of marine debris is considered to be twice the size of Texas, is perhaps the foremost expression of the impact of plastic waste on our world and the role of humans in environmental degradation.

Continue reading here…

https://www.teenvogue.com/story/i-went-to-the-great-pacific-garbage-patch/amp?__twitter_impression=true

Endangered Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle Severely Entangled By Fishing Nets – Sea Voice News

seavoicenews.com

by Alex Larson

With the help of technology and social media, we are starting to see just how often endangered species are being caught as a result of bycatch and the increase in reportings is very disturbing. The latest to marine animal to be found entrapped by fishing gear tossed into the sea is the severely endangered Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle.

Reported on Facebook by Animal Rehabilitation Keep (http://seavoicenews.com/2018/09/23/photos-endangered-kemps-ridley-sea-turtle-severely-entangled-by-fishing-nets/) at UT Marine Science Institute, the group found the Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle severely entangled in fishing netting. In a statement on their Facebook page the stated, “Horrible case of entanglement today of a Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle entangled in shark fishing gear. Unfortunately, we see entanglement cases way too often. Please help by removing and properly disposing of all fishing line debris. Together we can make a difference!”

Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles numbers are starting to slowly increase but yet are still the most endangered in the world. The turtle only lives in the Gulf of Mexico and part of the east coast of the US. With incidents such as this becoming more frequent due to pollution from humans, it is now more important than ever to do our best to keep our beaches and oceans clean. You can do your small part by picking up any trash that you may see, you never know the impact you may have on another creatures life.

http://seavoicenews.com/2018/09/23/photos-endangered-kemps-ridley-sea-turtle-severely-entangled-by-fishing-nets/

Florida’s coasts: It smells like death!

World Animals Voice

USA-Flagge

In the photo you can see what is happening on the coasts of Florida! Naples is a city on the Gulf of Mexico in southwest Florida. Here, tons of dead crabs were washed away!

tote Krabben-Florida_n

Recently, 135 turtles and dolphins and manatees died in Sarasota, Florida.

On the weekend of September 16, 2018, beach visitors at Panama City Beach made a gruesome discovery: thousands of fish had been stranded dead. Nitrates and phosphorus together with rising temperatures are ideal conditions for algae blooms.Water has been drained from a Florida lake that was full of algal blooms, and this contaminated water got into the ocean!

More and more dead sea turtles, dolphins, manatees and fish have been washed ashore on Florida beaches since the end of July. Including a 200 kg sea turtle.
She had swum across the oceans for 100 years and her life ended on the beaches of…

View original post 152 more words

Protect Atlantic Ocean From Hurricane Waste Pollution

North Carolina’s polluted rivers and streams are flowing into the Atlantic Ocean, carrying decaying organic matter such as leaves and bark. This matter contains various bacteria and chemicals that can contaminate the water and make it dangerous for all living beings. Sign this petition to demand cleanup of the rivers and stronger protection of the ocean.

Source: Protect Atlantic Ocean From Hurricane Waste Pollution

Ocean Cleanup’s Plan to Remove 88,000 Tons of Plastic From the Pacific Garbage Patch Has Just Begun!

onegreenpeace.org
Aleksandra Pajda

Earlier this year, the non-profit The Ocean Cleanup was getting ready to put its system designed to remove plastic pollution from the ocean in motion. Now, the innovative technology is finally setting sail for the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and starting its important work with a two-week trial. With steady development, the organization hopes to remove as much as half of the 88,000 tons of plastic from the garbage patch in just five years.

On September 10th, the organization started towing its “Ocean Cleanup System 001” from San Francisco to a trial site which is located about 240 nautical miles (260 miles) away, Endgadget reports. The system will now be pushed by the winds and waves into a U-shape and start drifting on its own, marking the beginning of the test run. While the huge tube will float on the surface, a 10-foot long skirt hanging below will collect pieces of plastic from the water. Large pieces of plastic aren’t the only bits that the system can catch, the specially designed skirt can collect pieces as small as just a millimeter in size. Throughout the process, boats will help scoop out plastics from the system and deliver them to a recycling plant.

The entirety of the system will be monitored throughout the trial period in order to make sure that it fulfills its role and does not harm plankton nor any other marine life. After two weeks, the structure will be towed another 900 nautical miles to begin its main mission: cleaning up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

The Ocean Cleanup, founded in 2013 by Boyan Slat, hopes that System 001 can remove about 55 tons of plastic from the ocean per year. In comparison with the current size of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – which is made of some 88,000 tons of waste – this number may seem small, but the organization wants to eventually create 60 systems which together would be able to extract half of the garbage patch debris every five years. Deployed in this way, the technology would have an immensely positive impact on the waters – and, hopefully, it will be able to develop to the projected size.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is estimated to consist of around 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic. Over 8.8 million tons of plastic waste enters the already polluted oceans every year. This reality will not change unless we actively work to change it. To find out how you can help in your everyday life, check out One Green Planet’s #CrushPlastic campaign!

http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/ocean-cleanups-plan-remove-88000-tons-plastic-pacific-garbage-patch-just-begun/

Image source: The Ocean Cleanup/Facebook

California Moves to Ban Fishing Nets Blamed for Killing Numerous SpeciesNow

By Lorraine Chow

Silvertip Sharks (Carcharhinus albimarginatus) caught in gillnet. Jeff Rotman / Oxford Scientific / Getty Images

The California State Assembly unanimously approved a bill on Thursday that phases out the use drift gillnets in the state by January 2023.

The controversial fishing gear, which can stretch a mile long and suspend 100 feet underwater, is used by fishers to target sharks and swordfish, but the nets inadvertently entangle and kill scores of other marine animals, including endangered species.

The Assembly voted 78 to 0 on Senate Bill 1017, sponsored by state Sen. Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica). It passed 36 to 1 in the Senate in June. It now heads to Gov. Jerry Brown, who has until Sept. 30 to sign it into law.

“So grateful to everyone for their hard work pulling together a strong bipartisan vote in support of protecting marine-life from unnecessary death with SB 1017,” Allen tweeted Thursday.

Gillnet with white perch. NOAA / Chris Doley

Should the bill become law, it would create a buy-back program that offers up to $110,000 to fishers to give up their nets, NBC Bay Area reported.

California fishers said the ban threatens their livelihood and the buyout amount is not enough for them to transition to another type of fishing.

“I don’t know what I’d do,” Mike Flynn, who has used drift gillnets to catch swordfish for the past 40 years, told the publication. “There’s very few of us left, and we don’t seem to have a chance … we’re being villainized, unjustly.”

The news site reported that some 20 fisherman actively use the gear off the California coast, down from 141 active permits at its peak in 1990, according to NOAA.

The bill’s passage comes just months after conservation group Mercy For Animals and the Ban Death Nets coalition released grisly undercover footage showing the harmful impact of driftnet fishing on marine life.

Mercy For Animals celebrated the vote and urged Gov. Brown to join other governments that have outlawed the nets. “California is the last remaining U.S. state to allow driftnets, which have already been phased out off the U.S. East Coast and banned by Oregon and Washington states, the United Nations, and countries around the world,” the group stated on their website.

World Animal Protection released a report highlighting that 640,000 metric tons of fishing nets are lost or discarded in our oceans each year, trapping and killing countless marine mammals, including endangered whales, seals and turtles. Shallow coral reef habitats also suffer further degradation from the gear, which can take up to 600 years to decompose.

Earlier this week, fishermen found roughly 300 dead sea turtles off the southern Pacific coast of Mexico. The olive ridley turtles, which Mexico classifies as being at risk of extinction, were entangled in an abandoned illegal fishing net.#turtlesbit.ly/2NzxXF8

Mexico’s office of the federal attorney for environmental protection said the turtles were found in a 393-foot long net that is not approved for fishing, according to the Associated Press.

https://www.ecowatch.com/california-bans-fishing-nets-gillnets-2600792569.html?utm_source=EcoWatch+List&utm_campaign=385f9967e3-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_49c7d43dc9-385f9967e3-86074753

Adopt a Plastic Straw Upon Request Policy · Change.org

change.org
Adopt a Plastic Straw Upon Request Policy · Change.org
Sophia and Amanda started this petition to Dunkin’ Donuts
2 minutes

Our names are Amanda and Sophia. One day in science class, we came upon an article on plastic straws. The article stated that Americans use more than 500 million straws a day- and throw them away. That is equivalent to 125 school buses filled with plastic straws. We also learned that by 2050, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.

Those numbers concern us. So when we joined the Earth Club at our school, the leader suggested using change.org, which is how we came upon this website. All 500 million of these plastic straws end up in a landfill or worse, the ocean. When plastic straws get into the ocean, the fish mistake it for food, eat it, and get sick or die. In fact, science shows that when you eat fish, you might as well be eating plastic!

We both think that Dunkin Donuts is a very tasty and an influential company. By choosing this business, we hope to make them take this issue very seriously. These shops have a lot of people coming in every day, almost all of them getting cold beverages containing plastic straws. However, those straws add up to the landfill and get into the ocean. Dunkin’ Donuts is a very successful company, so if they stopped giving out straws (and retained some available for customers with disabilities), won’t others follow their lead?

So please sign this petition and share it with your friends to help the environment, and the world we all live in. Remember, #StrawsSuck! Thank you!

https://www.change.org/p/dunkin-donuts-adopt-a-plastic-straw-upon-request-policy/sign?utm_medium=email&utm_source=aa_sign_human&utm_campaign=385680&utm_content=&sfmc_tk=Y65ELrEVwnOSO7%2bDYTtOcVK%2fbDbHFP1HR4TLOmZza5g8gexy405l7FX6EyjcgUeW&j=385680&sfmc_sub=61374949&l=32_HTML&u=64740345&mid=7233053&jb=1906

When You Refuse A Straw, You Refuse Oil. And Vice Versa.

Written by Sami Grover

When I first started writing for TreeHugger more than a decade ago, I spent a good deal of time worrying about which environmental problems were actually worth worrying about. When a rap video about banning plastic bags went viral, I gently made the case that we might have bigger things to worry about:
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On a case-by-case basis I have no problem with banning the single use plastic bag. But, given all the environmental challenges ahead of us—from peak oil to climate change to clean water issues—and given the uphill struggle we face getting any kind of action in Government, I do think it is worth asking how much political capital we want to spend on laws that address one of the most visible symptoms, but not the root problem of excessive fossil fuel use.

Since then, the issue of single-use plastics seems to have blown up in the public consciousness. And from hotel chains banning straws to plastic bag taxes drastically cutting the amount of bags being found in the ocean, there’s very real progress being made against the problem of ocean plastic pollution.

This success alone has caused me to rethink the musings of my younger, more opinionated self. After all, even if global climate change is the most pressing overarching problem we face, there’s little doubt that ocean ecosystems will be better able to adapt if they are not simultaneously inundated by a sea (sorry!) of plastic trash.

But even this backtracking misses the more important reason that I was wrong. And that’s the fact that by refusing or restricting single-use plastics, consumers and organizations are directly undermining the fossil fuel economy too. As Lloyd noted before, thanks to fracking, fossil fuel companies are now awash with feedstocks for plastics and they are busy expanding the production pipeline massively. So every time you refuse a plastic straw or bag and—more importantly—push for corporate and/or government action to limit plastic consumption, then you are not just making a contribution to trash-free seas. You are also striking a small blow against oil demand and thus helping to mitigate the climate crisis too.

Of course, the opposite is true also. Every time you ride a bike, or choose transit, or opt for electrified transportation, you are not only cutting back on carbon emissions, but you’re disrupting the economy that’s flooding us with plastic too. BP has just admitted that plastic bans might curb demand growth, and it’s also keeping an eye on vehicle electrification and its impact on future profits. Accelerating the adoption of both simultaneously seems like an excellent way to send Big Oil a message.

https://www.care2.com/causes/when-you-refuse-a-straw-you-refuse-oil-and-vice-versa.html

Related:

How to Tackle the Plastic Straw Problem Without Ignoring Disabled People
The Starbucks Plastic Straw Ban Isn’t as Great as It Seems

This post originally appeared on TreeHugger

Campaign | Oceana

oceana.org
Campaign | Oceana
2-3 minutes

The oceans face a massive and growing threat from something you encounter everyday: plastics. An estimated 17.6 billion pounds of plastic leaks into the marine environment from land-based sources every year—this is roughly equivalent to dumping a garbage truck full of plastic into the oceans every minute.

A garbage truck’s-worth of plastic ends up
in the ocean every minute

As plastics continue to flood into our oceans, the list of marine species affected by plastic debris expands. Tens of thousands of individual marine organisms have been observed suffering from entanglement or ingestion of plastics permeating the marine environment—from zooplankton and fish, to sea turtles, marine mammals and seabirds.

Plastics never go away. Instead, they break down into smaller and smaller pieces, which act as magnets for harmful pollutants. When eaten by fish, some of those chemical-laden microplastics can work their way up the food chain and into the fish we eat.

Plastics in our oceans threaten the viability of critical marine ecosystems, but marine plastic pollution is not just a problem for our oceans. The extent to which we, too, are being affected by the plastics that have become so ubiquitous in our environment—in our food, water and air—is a topic of extensive research.

Unfortunately, one of the most popular solutions to plastic pollution falls far short. A meager 9 percent of all the plastic produced has been recycled. Recycling alone is not enough to solve the plastics crisis. To have an impact, we must reduce the amount of single-use plastic being produced at the source. Oceana’s plastics campaign will urge companies to adopt alternatives for single-use plastic packaging.

https://oceana.org/our-campaigns/plastics?utm_campaign=Advo&utm_content=20180813PlasticsTweet&utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=Social&utm_id=LPghIAIuvUvUEM

Petition · Rick Scott: Florida’s Gulf Coast is Dying! Millions of Dead Fish, Sea Turtles, Manatees and Dolphins! #ToxicTide · Change.org

Florida’s Gulf Coast is Dying! Millions of Dead Fish, Sea Turtles, Manatees and Dolphins!
Florida Naturekeepers, Inc. started this petition to Governor Rick Scott

We are witnessing the death of our entire ecosystem.

First to die were the fish: smaller fish first then medium sized and all the way up to 250 lb Goliath Groupers. (Endangered)

Then went the endangered sea turtles: first the newly hatched babies and now the adults.

Then the sharks began to die: from harmless nurse sharks all the way up to whale sharks. (1st ever recorded whale shark to die from this.)

Then the manatees started dying: another of our endangered species. (With the body count nearing the thousand’s.)

Now the dolphins are washing up on shore and the birds have disappeared.

The convergence of four unique harmful blooms, including the deadly Cyanobacteria resulting from unfiltered toxic water being released en masse into the ocean from Lake Okeechobee, are killing Florida’s endangered coastal marine life, including large mammals, faster than the bulldozers can haul away the endless mountains of dead carcasses lining the beaches that reappear daily for hundreds of miles. We demand that Governor Rick Scott take immediate and drastic action to ensure this #ToxicTide never happens again.

Sign and share today to tell Governor Scott to join 22 other states in creating an action plan to tackle harmful blooms.

We are witnessing the collapse of our entire ecosystem and we will not sit idly by and do nothing, so today we stand together and fight back to #SaveFL! We fight back for our fish. We fight back for our manatees. We fight back for our dolphins. We fight back for our turtles. We fight back for our families. We fight back for our way of health and our way of life. Today we say ‘No More Death’ and we fight back to #SaveFL from the #ToxicTide!

Many reports claim that this is merely a naturally occurring Red Tide, that it’s not a serious public safety issue and that it has nothing to do with human pollution – this is false. The government and some media outlets are trying to sweep this under the rug and lull you into a false sense of safety.

In reality, we are under attack from four unique blooms, two of which are toxic: Red Tide, Cyanobacteria, Brown Seaweed and Red Seaweed. These combine to create the perfect recipe for the toxic soup that is decimating our marine life, sending people to the hospital, causing permanent neurological and immunological damage to many of our most vulnerable loved ones, and causing human death in some instances.

Conditions are so dangerous and critical that Governor Rick Scott issued a State of Emergency to attempt to “combat” the toxic blooms. However, declaring a State of Emergency does nothing to address the root issues of agricultural runoff from Florida’s Big Sugar industry, Radioactive Phosphorus Mining, lack of oversight for septic-tank use, fertilizer use by resorts and golf courses, and the warming waters of climate change (a term Governor Rick Scott banned government employees and agencies from using) contributing to this life-threatening situation.

That is why Governor Scott needs to follow the lead of 22 other states, like New York and Michigan, by creating an immediate action plan to address the destruction of our environment and mitigate the causes of toxic blooms in Florida’s priority waterbodies.

The State of Emergency temporarily halted the release of water from Lake Okeechobee, but that only lasted until people changed the channel. The toxic water releases began again to the tune of 1 billion gallons a day refueling the #ToxicTide as it continues to spread throughout the Gulf of Mexico and along the coast, creating a massive Dead Zone that will likely take the better part of this century to heal.

On Sanibel Island beach alone, as of 8/12/18 they have collected over 276 TONS of dead marine life in just under two weeks. This is one of hundreds of such beaches.

For the future health of Florida’s marine life and residents, sign and share today to tell Governor Scott to act now to establish an action plan for harmful toxic blooms.

https://www.change.org/p/rick-scott-florida-s-gulf-coast-is-dying-millions-of-dead-fish-sea-turtles-manatees-and-dolphins-toxictide/sign?placement=aa_email&pt=AjpQZXRpdGlvbjoxMzQyOTE0NDoxNTM0MjU0OTY2OhMsCyxbLAU6OTdlMzg1ODk=&utm_medium=email&utm_source=aa_sign_human&utm_campaign=400461&utm_content=&sfmc_tk=Y65ELrEVwnOSO7%2bDYTtOcUPa4K0uPXuE9UGoyLd3LMEYyMyP3bI%2bGFqEL4dckt9M&j=400461&sfmc_sub=61374949&l=32_HTML&u=64995281&mid=7233053&jb=1926

WE WILL NOT BACK DOWN!

Petition:Science Transparency Advocacy | Ocean Conservancy

img_20180528_13115494816219.jpgtakeaction.oceanconservancy.org
Science Transparency Advocacy | Ocean Conservancy
2 minutes

Don’t be Fooled. Help Take Action for Science

Last spring, then-EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt proposed new regulations and told us they would help “strengthen transparency in regulatory science.” Sounds good, right? Wrong! Take a closer look and you’ll see that this is just a play on words. Instead of helping science—it would actually create rules that would make it harder to share important science and needlessly slow down scientific advancements.

You can help! There is an open public comment period on the EPA’s proposal, but we’re running out of time. We only have three days to speak up before the comment period closes. Will you speak up for science and the health of the ocean by taking action today?

If enacted, the proposed rule would prohibit the use of confidential data—like health studies—in EPA’s rulemaking processes unless that private information is made public. The rule uses the language of “scientific transparency” to prohibit the agency from consulting a wide swath of peer-reviewed scientific research.

If adopted, the policy would essentially bar the EPA from consulting most large-scale medical studies when creating rules about air pollution, toxic chemicals, and water contaminants. The proposal could also force the agency to revoke decades of clean-air protections.

https://takeaction.oceanconservancy.org/page/28233/action/1?_ga=2.87828625.842113781.1534225633-641794172.1534225633&ea.tracking.id=18KPHPEAXX

Speak up today!

Petition: Grieving Orca Mom Highlights the Plight of Southern Resident Killer Whales

by: Care2 Team
recipient: Gov. Jay Inslee

41,248 SUPPORTERS -45,000 GOAL
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last couple weeks, you’ve probably heard about Tahlequah, part of the the southern resident killer whale (SRKW) clan, that for nearly 20 days, has been carrying around her calf which died shortly after birth. Researchers, conservationists and animal lovers have been transfixed by the drama, and mourning with Tahlequah over her tragic loss.

The death of the calf is an ominous sign for a clan of orcas that only numbers around 75 and is the only killer whale population protected by the Endangered Species Act.

The SRKW clan of whales is split into three related pods that live within the Salish Sea off the coast of Washington. The pods — J, K and L — vary, in size and have different habits but are part of the same extended family and communicate using sounds used by no other killer whale population.

Tahlequah is part of the J pod, but she isn’t the only pod member whose well-being has worried the public. This week researchers discovered that Scarlet, another killer whale from the same pod, looked severely malnourished. And yesterday an emergency mission was put in motion to deliver antibiotics to the ailing whale.

Scarlet and Tahlequahs struggle is symbolic of the plight of the entire SRKW population. The clan has experienced a remarkable and currently unexplained decline over recent decades. Between 1995 and 2001 for example, they lost more than 20% of their population.

Scientists currently have several theories as to why they are disappearing including lack of prey, stress caused by whale watching boats and exposure to high levels of toxicants.

While researchers race against the clock to find the actual causes, what can’t be delayed is action to help these amazing creatures. The governor has promised to take action to save the SRKW population, but we need keep pressure on to ensure that everything is done to protect these beautiful marine mammals.

Sign the petition and tell Gov. Jay Inslee that you want Washington state to do all it can to save the southern resident killer whales.

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/595/758/511/

 

Plastics aren’t just polluting our oceans — they’re releasing greenhouse gases

by Emily Hunter

I’m a French-Canadian postdoctoral scholar at the University of Hawaii, Manoa and part of the School of Ocean and Earth Science & Technology (SOEST). As part of our team’s research, we found that, as plastic decomposes, it is producing a new source of greenhouse gas pollution not included in previous climate models. These emissions are only expected to increase — especially as more plastic is produced and accumulated in the environment and degrades over time.

Researchers from the University of Hawaii, Manoa have discovered startling new evidence that the plastics on land and in the ocean release greenhouse gases as they break down. In this article, scientist Sarah-Jeanne Royer tells us about what she found in the field and why it’s now even more important to break free from plastic. © Sarah-Jeanne Royer

Greenhouse gases have a direct impact on climate change — affecting sea level rise, global temperatures, ecosystem health on land and in the ocean, and storms, increasing flooding, drought, and erosion. Most plastic is created from natural gases, so the release of greenhouse gases from plastic waste might not seem surprising. Even so, the University of Hawaii is actually the first group publishing data about the link between greenhouse gases and plastic in the environment.

Of particular concern is a type of plastic called low-density polyethylene, which is the highest emitter of climate-wrecking greenhouse gases. It’s commonly found in the most produced, used, and discarded single-use plastics making their way into our oceans and waterways today. Our research shows that as this plastic breaks down in the ocean, the greenhouse emissions increase dramatically — up to 488 times morethan in pellet form, the term used to describe ‘raw’ plastic before it’s been made into an end product like a bag or water bottle.

Unfortunately, that’s not all. Plastics exposed directly to sunlight in the air — like on land at beaches, coastlines, fields, and playgrounds — make an even greater contribution to greenhouse gas emissions. So while we urgently need to keep plastics out of the ocean to stop the negative impacts of pollution on marine life and coastal communities, that’s not enough. On land, discarded plastics still release greenhouse gases and contribute to climate change even while no one is watching.

 

This research has big implications for waste management as well as potential climate change impacts. Plastic pollution is already reaching crisis levels, and this new information only makes the problem more urgent to address — and fast. Considering the amounts of plastic washing ashore on our coastlines, along with the amount of plastic exposed to environmental conditions, to protect our planet against climate change, we need to stop plastic production at the source.

Greenpeace UK Oceans campaigner Tisha Brown holds up plastic straws collected during a beach cleanup activity on Freedom Island, Philippines.

Sarah-Jeanne Royer is a French-Canadian postdoctoral scholar at the University of Hawaii, Manoa and part of the School of Ocean and Earth Science & Technology (SOEST). To learn more about her research on plastics and greenhouse gas emissions, read the full published report here

https://www.greenpeace.org/new-zealand/story/plastics-arent-just-polluting-our-oceans-theyre-releasing-greenhouse-gases/

A Mother’s Cry to Justin Trudeau Please Sign the Petition

greenpeace.org
https://www.greenpeace.org/canada/en/story/3817/a-mothers-cry-to-justin-trudeau/

by Keith Stewart
It’s been absolutely heartbreaking to watch (and hear).

Photograph: Michael Weiss/Hysazu Photography

For the past nine days a grieving mother orca has carried the body of her dead calf.

The calf was the first in years to be born into the endangered Salish Sea orca population, but it died within just hours. The mother Orca however refused to leave her baby behind and instead carried its body with her. She pushed it by herself for days.

When she started falling behind the rest of the pod — the pod joined her in pushing and supporting the infant’s body.

It’s a truly inspiring and heartbreaking story – watching another species mourning its loss in such a dramatic manner. It speaks to the deep love that a mother has for her child, and the importance of a community especially in a time of grieving.

Unfortunately, while we all try to deal with this immediate loss, the future of the pod is also dire.

This population of orcas is on the edge of extinction. There are only 75 Southern resident orcas left in existence. Another adolescent has already been observed as extremely emaciated and because of dwindling food supplies, and increased marine traffic, the entire population is at risk.

Add to this already bleak situation the pipeline Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau just pledged to buy for $4.5 billion – the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion (TMX). TMX is a massive new tar sands pipeline that would bring a very toxic substance called bitumen from Alberta, Canada to British Columbia and right through the heart of the whales’ habitat.

Only 75 Southern Resident Orcas remain.

One of the reasons these orcas are struggling to survive is because the Chinook salmon they depend on for food are in decline. Without enough salmon to eat, the orcas are literally starving to death. They’re severely emaciated — observers can even see the ribs of some of the whales.

The TMX pipeline would cross over 1300 streams and rivers on its way to the ocean and would put this key food supply even further at risk.

If it goes ahead, the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion could also turn the home of the 75 remaining orcas into a tar sands tanker superhighway – bringing over 400 tankers through their critical habitat every year.

The noise from a sevenfold increase in tanker traffic may interfere with the orca’s ability to find what little food there is left to eat. It will put them at greater risk of being struck by a tanker. And a catastrophic oil spill could be the final nail in their coffin (as the Exxon Valdez spill devastated other orca pods).

These whales can’t just move on to another area. Their home is in the Salish Sea. We can’t let it be put at risk.

Justin Trudeau promised to protect these beautiful animals (in fact it’s a Federal responsibility). Buying a pipeline that would further endanger these fragile creatures and virtually ensure their demise isn’t the way to do it.

The whales are crying out for our help. Listen to their cries.

Tell Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to protect the orcas and stop the pipeline bailout.

With hope,

Mike

PETITION:Add you name today at: https://act.gp/2MdSyS3