Healthy Oceans vs Climate Change

International coalition advances marine conservation as part of the solution to climate change

WASHINGTON, Nov. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — A large international coalition today urged the United States to support marine conservation options that will help mitigate climate change.

The ‘Blue Climate Coalition,’ comprised of sixty-six conservation groups and interests and over 150 marine scientists and professionals, from 33 countries, issued communications today addressed to President Obama and the United States Senate.

MangrovesTogether, the coalition letters request the option for marine conservation solutions to climate change to be considered in national climate change legislation and international climate change treaties, and support for marine science research that further explores this concept. Continue reading

First high seas MPA in the Antarctic Region

The first high seas Marine Protected Area (MPA) in the Antarctic region has been declared in an area south of the South Orkney Islands. The proposal was successfully pitched by the UK delegation to the meetings last week of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) in Tasmania. The South Orkneys MPA is situated in the northern Weddell Sea, east of the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula — a prime area for feeding humpback whales.

At just under 94,000 sq kms, the protection of the South Orkneys MPA is of a significant size. Overnight the global area of protected waters, with this announcement, increased by 4% according to Louisa Wood, from the IUCN Global Marine Programme. The global area of protected waters now stands at 0.92% of the world ocean — still far behind the land with as much as 12% protected, according to some estimates. Continue reading

Seafood Choices Alliance – Seafood Summit 2010

Seafood Summit 2010 – Challenging Assumptions in a Changing World
31 January – 2 February 2010
Paris, France

Seafood Summit brings together global representatives from the seafood industry and conservation community for in-depth discussions, presentations and networking with the goal of making the seafood marketplace environmentally, socially and economically sustainable.

Paris_webWhile many industry events offer companies networking opportunities to showcase their products and services, Seafood Summit is different. It is the only venue that connects large and small companies from a diverse array of industries with leaders from the conservation community to bridge the gap between the latest science and the reality of the seafood marketplace. Summit attendees include international representatives with vested interest in the seafood industry, including: fishermen, fish farmers, wholesalers, distributors, retailers, food professionals (chefs, restaurateurs), conservation organizations, academic scientists, media, and policy makers. Continue reading

Healthy Oceans Binding Carbon

Oceans play a significant role in the global carbon cycle. Not only do they represent the largest long-term sink for carbon but they also store and redistribute CO2. Some 93% of the earth’s CO2 (40 Tt) is stored and cycled through the oceans.

Blue CarbonThe ocean’s vegetated habitats, in particular mangroves, salt marshes and seagrasses, cover <0.5% of the sea bed. These form earth’s blue carbon sinks and account for more than 50%, perhaps as much as 71%, of all carbon storage in ocean sediments. They comprise only 0.05% of the plant biomass on land, but store a comparable amount of carbon per year, and thus rank among the most intense carbon sinks on the planet. Blue carbon sinks and estuaries capture and store between 235–450 Tg C every year – or the equivalent of up to half of the emissions from the entire global transport sector, estimated at around 1,000 Tg C yr–1. By preventing the further loss and degradation of these ecosystems and catalyzing their recovery, we can contribute to offsetting 3–7% of current fossil fuel emissions (totaling 7,200 Tg C yr–1) in two decades – over half of that projected for reducing rainforest deforestation. The effect would be equivalent to at least 10% of the reductions needed to keep concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere below 450 ppm. If managed properly, blue carbon sinks, therefore, have the potential to play an important role in mitigating climate change. Continue reading

Fun new items in the MarineBio Gear Shop

Like everyone else, we’re trying to find ways to stay afloat in this crazy economy. To help support MarineBio and to be the envy of all of your friends – check out the new items in the MarineBio gear shop: http://www.zazzle.com/marinebio

You’ll find everything from apparel, our new 2010 calendar, stickers and cards, mugs, mousepads, and even skate boards!  All proceeds from purchases go toward maintaining the MarineBio Network. All MarineBio Gear can be fully customized, for example you can change shirt styles and colors, and even what the designs look like or say! Have an idea for a design related to marine life, conservation or ocean science? Tell us about it and we’ll notify you when it’s online!