Caribbean nation joins global movement to protect sharks
In a strong move for the marine conservation movement, the government of the Bahamas has banned commercial fishing for sharks, as well as selling, exporting, or importing shark meat. The archipelago has one of the most diverse and healthiest shark populations in the world, and this move will ensure a healthy future for the often maligned creatures. Not only is it a good move from a conservation and marine ecosystem standpoint, but also from a tourism standpoint as thousands of people visit the region annually to dive with sharks and other marine wildlife.
According to the Pew Environment Group, 73 million sharks are killed annually, and often just for their fins to be used in shark fin soup. As apex predators in the sea, their survival is crucial for the health of the entire ecosystem, and the government and people of the Bahamas should be praised for their sound decision making.
- Mitchell Flexo
Photo: A shark in waters off the Bahamas. (AP via NYT)
This is what roughly one degree of global temperature rise–the current state of the climate–looked like in 2017: Wildfires torched Southern California after fire season should have ended. Earlier in the year, another large fire started in Greenland, a country mostly covered in ice. In the Alps, where glaciers and permafrost are melting, landslides sent rivers of sludge into......read more
Ahhh, 2017. If there’s one thing we can all agree on about this seeming disaster of a year, it’s this: It’s almost over. For many of us, it was a year lived moment to moment — with white knuckles and outrage dialed up to 11. It was the year America’s leaders turned their backs on the rest of the world and abandoned fellow citizens in a time of......read more
I remember spotting my first red-breasted merganser in Brooklyn as it paddled along the bulkheads lining Jamaica Bay. It was a strangely warm February day, snow lingered amid the shoreline grasses and the bird peeked in and out of a drifting, intermittent fog. I was an excited young bird-watcher, and any bird was worth looking up in one of the three field guides I carried with me. I had been......read more
One year ago, on June 1, President Trump dismayed the world by announcing his intention to withdraw the United States from the global Paris climate agreement. He has since shown no inclination to ease up on his efforts to nullify virtually every initiative the Obama administration took to limit greenhouse gases from power plants, cars, trucks, and oil and gas operations. His......read more
Meet Rock Novak - the caretaker, the mayor, the sheriff, the judge and the undertaker of the ghost town, Ballarat. Is it a clever documentary or a bleak satire? ...read more
For generations — maybe since the gold rush — California has been where our dreams gather, the Elysian coast where palm trees sway in the ocean breeze and entire industries rise to sate our fantasies and our appetites. A bite of an orange is endless summer. Now, in this scariest of seasons, California is also where our nightmares collect. At the moment, the largest fire in the......read more
If we keep burning coal and petroleum to power our society, we’re cooked — and a lot faster than we thought. The United Nations scientific panel on climate change issued a terrifying new warning on Monday that continued emissions of greenhouse gases from power plants and vehicles will bring dire and irreversible changes by 2040, years earlier than previously forecast. The......read more
During the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump won over voters in coal country by claiming he would keep mines open, and retain coal as a prominent energy source in the U.S. His argument was an economic one: He knew that miners were worried about their jobs, and that many did not see a path forward should the mines close. But closing mines does not......read more