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Crown Of Thorns Starfish Destroying Great Barrier Reef

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Waves of carnivorous starfish are eating their way through Australia’s Great Barrier Reef – and sugar cane farming is being blamed.

Researchers at Australia’s Institute of Marine Science (AIMS), just outside Townsville, Queensland, in north-east Australia, have mapped the pattern of destruction.

Dr Katharina Fabricius, coral reef ecologist and AIMS principal research scientist, said “Coral cover is half of what it was 27 years ago, coral cover is going down at an alarming rate.”

She said the biggest culprit was the Crown of Thorns Starfish (COTs).

“There are three main sources for the coral decline, one is storms, however 42% is attributed to Crown of Thorns Starfish – and just 10% due to bleaching. This compares with 70% due to bleaching for reefs elsewhere in the world , such as in the Caribbean.”

Bleaching occurs when corals are stressed by changes in conditions such as temperature, light, or nutrients. They expel the symbiotic algae living in their tissues, causing them to turn completely white.

Australian scientists are now looking at ways to reduce the destruction wreaked by starfish, which have the ability to smother coral and digest the fleshy parts.

“Crown of thorns are amazing creatures, they can grow to larger than a dinner plate, they have multiple arms and they’re covered in spines,” said Craig Humphrey, manager of the AIMS SEASIM project, the world’s largest marine environment simulator.

“They go onto a coral, invert their stomach and dissolve and digest the coral tissue.”

The SEASIM team is running a series of experiments on COTs to look at ways of lessening their impact on coral.

You can read more of this story here.

 

Source: www.bbc.co.uk/news

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Join DEMA for “Decoding Congress: How Politics Shape the Dive Industry”

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Join DEMA’s President & CEO, Tom Ingram, for an engaging discussion with Emily Coyle, a seasoned Washington lobbyist with over 25 years of experience in federal policymaking.

Learn how Congress does (and doesn’t) work, how politics influence policy outcomes, and their direct impact on the dive industry. Emily and Tom will also provide an update on the DIVE BOAT Act’s progress and answer attendee questions.

Don’t miss “Decoding Congress: How Politics Shape the Dive Industry” on June 25th at 12:00 PM PDT / 3:00 PM EDT.

Register in advance here and submit your questions for Emily.

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The Ocean Cleanup & Coldplay announce limited edition LP made using river plastic

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  • Limited ‘Notebook Edition’ LP release of new Coldplay album ‘Moon Music’ made using river plastic removed from the Rio Las Vacas, Guatemala by The Ocean Cleanup

  • First collaborative product the latest step in Coldplay’s support for global non-profit

  • Innovative product partnerships essential for long-term success of The Ocean Cleanup’s mission to rid the oceans of plastic

The Ocean Cleanup and Coldplay have confirmed that a limited ‘Notebook Edition’ LP release of the band’s album ‘Moon Music’ will be manufactured using plastic intercepted by The Ocean Cleanup from the Rio Las Vacas, Guatemala.

The mission of The Ocean Cleanup is to rid the oceans of plastic. To achieve this, the non-profit operates a dual strategy: cleaning up legacy plastic in the oceans and deploying Interceptors to capture trash in rivers and stop it entering the oceans.

Today’s announcement with Coldplay of this Notebook Edition LP is an example of the innovative product partnerships The Ocean Cleanup creates to give this plastic a new life in sustainable and durable products, ensuring the plastic never re-enters the marine environment.

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The Ocean Cleanup project deployed Interceptor 006 in the Rio Las Vacas in 2023 to prevent plastic emissions into the Gulf of Honduras. Interceptor 006 made significant impact and captured large quantities of plastic – which has now been sorted, blended, tested and used to manufacture Coldplay’s limited edition physical release. The final product consists of 70% river plastic intercepted by The Ocean Cleanup and 30% recycled waste plastic bottles from other sources.The successful production of the Notebook Edition LP using intercepted river plastic marks an exciting new phase in Coldplay’s broad and long-standing support for The Ocean Cleanup. Coldplay provide financial support for the non-profit’s cleaning operations, sponsor Interceptor 005 in the Klang River, Malaysia (which the band named ‘Neon Moon I’) and share The Ocean Cleanup’s mission with millions of their fans during their record-breaking Music of the Spheres tour.Coldplay and The Ocean Cleanup collaborated closely during the intensive testing and quality control process, alongside processing and manufacturing partners Biosfera GT, Compuestos y Derivados S.A., Morssinkhof and Sonopress.Having proven the potential of their partnership, The Ocean Cleanup and Coldplay will continue to explore new and innovative ways to combine their impact and accelerate progress in the largest cleanup in history.

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“Coldplay is an incredible partner for us and I’m thrilled that our plastic catch has helped bring Moon Music to life.” said Boyan Slat, Founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup. “Ensuring the plastic we catch never re-enters the marine environment is essential to our mission, and I’m excited to see how we’ll continue innovating with Coldplay and our other partners to rid the oceans of plastic – together.”

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About the Ocean Cleanup

The Ocean Cleanup is an international non-profit that develops and scales technologies to rid the world’s oceans of plastic. They aim to achieve this goal through a dual strategy: intercepting in rivers to stop the flow and cleaning up what has already accumulated in the ocean. For the latter, The Ocean Cleanup develops and deploys large-scale systems to efficiently concentrate the plastic for periodic removal. This plastic is tracked and traced to certify claims of origin when recycling it into new products. To curb the tide via rivers, The Ocean Cleanup has developed Interceptor™ Solutions to halt and extract riverine plastic before it reaches the ocean. As of June 2024, the non-profit has collected over 12 million kilograms (26.4 million pounds) of plastic from aquatic ecosystems around the world. Founded in 2013 by Boyan Slat, The Ocean Cleanup now employs a broadly multi-disciplined team of approximately 140. 

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