Picture of the week: Hammerhead fantasy

Picture of a Great hammerhead taken at Bimini, Bahamas,  after some color filtering to create a more dramatic effect.

News: Dead coral rejuvenated

For the first time ever, scientists have found corals that were thought to have been killed by heat stress have recovered: a glimmer of hope for the world's climate change-threatened reefs. This was discovered by a team led by Diego Kersting at the Columbretes islands near Spain. It concerned the species  Cladacora caespitosa, which stands out as the only reef-building Madreporaria species in the Mediterranean and adjacent Atlantic (picture left by Veronique  Lamare)  In some areas of the Adriatic  Mediterranean sea, these corals may even occupy significant zones. The question, however, is the implication of this finding for other types of corals in the tropical oceans.

Higlighted: climate change refugees: a new class of displaced people?

The Marshall islands an independent nation made up of five islands and 29 atolls equaling about the size of Washington, D.C., are home to an estimated 72,191 people (see also my earlier Blog). Its residents have fled toxic radiation and now face the threat of rising sea levels and to suffer the greatest and most immediate consequences of climate change. A new class of displaced people, so-called “climate change refugees,” has emerged as some populations find their environments increasingly threatened by extreme climate conditions.

News: First success with Ocean Clean up project

A huge floating device designed by the team of  Dutch scientist Boyan Slat to clean up an island of rubbish in the Pacific Ocean that is three times the size of France has successfully picked up plastic from the high seas for the first time. The next step is to scale up the current device and make it more durable so it can retain plastic for up to a year or possibly longer before collection is necessary. Some marine biologists like Rebecca Helm have expressed concern that sweeping up the plastic might also have an impact on drifting small organisms like larval fish called  neuston, using the plastic islands as their territory. Suggesting that some collateral damage might occur when Ocean cleaners sweep up the plastic debris with their mega-nets.

Highlighted: Climate change is reshaping the world’s Oceans and Ice IPCC says.

On Wednesday, the IPCC panel of the United Nations released a major report on the state of the planet's oceans and ice. The 900-page IPCC report which compiles the findings from thousands of scientific studies outlines the damage climate change has already done to the planet’s vast oceans and fragile ice sheets and forecasts the future for these crucial parts of the climate system.

Highlighted: E-book update

This ‘E-book’  contains an updated collection of around 80  blog articles for the last three years.   I here provide two separate content lists, a list in which the articles are ordered according to the five most often recurring themes, and a chronological list. A simple click on the title will hopefully guide you to the article of your choice. For download,  click  next to the  PDF icon below