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Environment – Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Tuesday, April 28, 2015   
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It took two months of reflexions (?) for the International Sailing Federation ISAF after the news that the Rio Administration stopped the water cleaning activities due to financial problems to come up with a statement. Unless there are immediate and efficient actions to solve the water quality problem sufficiently, ISAF will relocate the race area on the open sea outside the Guanabara Bay. However, the boats would have to cross the poisoned bay every day and the water quality on the open sea is not beyond concerns either. To be noted, that every year, swimming is prohibited for several months at Copacabana Beach because of the dangerous water quality. Wind and waves on the open sea would be more challenging, especially for the 49er skiffs and the Nacra-17. For months, Lars Grael BRA double Olympic medalist, has been proposing that Olympic sailing would be moved to Buzios, the dream venue of Brazil 150 km North of Rio, away from any city.
The report.
Environment – Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Wednesday, April 15, 2015   
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The Race for Water Odyssey (R4WO) reached New York City on Thursday, concluding its Atlantic crossing in a journey that will take its six-man crew over 40,000 nautical miles as they attempt to draw up the first global assessment of plastic pollution in the oceans. The 'Race for Water' MOD70 trimaran with Steve Ravussin SUI as skipper has been underway for two months now on her journey around the globe. While being in New York, representatives of the R4WO foundation will participate in UN Sessions and Meetings to discuss the huge problem of plastic waste pollution. The UN Session can be followed live on the Internet at 19 hrs UTC.
The report and the video of the arrival in New York.
Environment – Tuesday, November 18, 2014
Tuesday, November 18, 2014   
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Last weekend, a protest action of Greenpeace against deep-sea oil drillings off the Canary Islands got out of control with violent attacks of the Spanish Coast Guard, ramming the ribs of the environental activists several times. Two severely injured had to be rescued by helicopter and hospitalised. Legal steps have been initiated.
Here the video.
Environment – Friday, March 21, 2014
Friday, March 21, 2014   
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Several environmental organisations concerned about the pollution of the seas organise the world-wide beach cleaning initiative during the coming weekend, the 18th annual operation. 766 projects, most of them in Europe, are on the program, and everybody interested in can participate. In addition to the (beaches / coastlines/ seabed) clean-up operation of - mostly plastic - garbage, educational tools provided by Surfrider that will inform participants about the problems of macro waste and will encourage participants to adopt more ecologically responsible behavior. The organisation website. The bad news are, that the EU Environmental Commision has rejected an initiative to limit the use of plastic bags. Read also the Surfraider Foundation website for details.
Environment – Friday, March 7, 2014
Friday, March 7, 2014   
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During this winter 2013/4, the French Atlantic Coast was hit by an ununsual number - over 40 - of heavy storm fronts, some in record force. Over the past weekend, it was the depression 'Christine' causing floods and erosion of the beaches. Here a summary of the French TV news. Preparing the coming Bénéteau Figaro regatta season, Nicolas Lunven and Eric Péron FRA used the storm of the weekend before for a training in a 47-60 kn breeze and 7 meter waves, Here a video clip taken from a helicopter.
Environment – Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Wednesday, February 26, 2014   
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The Maersk Svendborg lost over 500 containers after being battered by huge waves and 60-knot winds in the Bay of Biscay, about 75 miles south-west of Land's End, but most, around 85%, were empty. The full extent of the damage wasn't realised until the ship docked in Malaga, southern Spain, last week. One container was washed up in Devon full of cigarettes and police had to close the area, reminding people that all such items are private property and if found must be reported. Not doing so is a criminal offence. Read more ..... .
Environment – Sunday, December 1, 2013
Sunday, December 1, 2013   
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Two weeks ago the delicate operation of emtying the fourth reactor of the nuclear power plant in Fukushima started. Not operating during the Tsunami the reactor reamained intact, but the builing is severly damaged and will not survive a next earthquake. An 11-minute video shows the risks of this operation. For the cleaningup the operating company hired job- and homless people who are not aware of the risks and who even dont have a health insurance. read the report. Fukushima Update continues to report almot daily from Japan. Already now the Pacific is contaminated for some 10'000 years, which will especially affect the animals in the sea, already now fish caught at the Californian coast shows higher radioactivity as usual.
Environment – Saturday, November 9, 2013
Saturday, November 9, 2013   
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Lately, a dead sperm whale had stranded in the Netherlands with 25 kg plastic litter in his stomach, responsible for his death. Millions of fish, seabirds, sea animals, turtles die every year because of the plastic garbage floating in the Seas around the world. A video and an article by
Environment – Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Wednesday, October 23, 2013   
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Exactly 10 years before, when Newcastle yachtsman Ivan Macfadyen had sailed exactly the same course from Melbourne to Osaka and on to San Francisco, all he'd had to do to catch a fish from the ocean between Brisbane and Japan was throw out a baited line, but today, the Pacific Ocean is dead. No fish, no seabirds, no live. The engin needed in windless conditions was only usable at daytime, to steer clear of all the waste swimming around. His report.
Environment – Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Wednesday, March 20, 2013   
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Ocean gyres concentrate plastic pollution in five main areas of the world's ocean and various research groups are bringing back alarming data documenting plastics impacts for the seas' fauna and flora. For some years, a number of sea protection organisations have been organising beach cleaning campaigns in spring every year, where thousands of tons of plastic garbage is collected. This year, almost 1'000 actions have been announced. The first ones will begin on the coming weekend. A report.
Environment – Friday, March 1, 2013
Friday, March 1, 2013   
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All participants of the Vendée Globe mentioned in their daily reports the first Albatrosses escorting them on their way across the Soutern Oceans. The English sailing icon Ellen MacArthur GBR has been speaking up for the protection of the endangered water birds since the end of her racing career. In addition to the threat of the up to 150 km long nets of commerical fishing, it is above all the floating plastic garbage hurting the Albatrosses. In 80 % of the stomacs of dead birds is plastic litter. A movie concerning this problem will be published this autumn. Here the trailer.
Environment – Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Tuesday, January 10, 2012   
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Maritime NZ are reporting this morning that the 130metre stern section of the MV 'Rena' is reported to be slipping off the Astrolabe Reef. They have previously stated that if this happens they expect the section to sink, following up the section breaking off over the weekend. The two sections that were shown as visibly cracked, split in two, and were reported to be 30 meters apart. That break up released cargo, containers and oil - a situation that will be repeated if the stern section sinks. Of concern to the sailing community is the fact that the Volvo Ocean Race fleet will pass down the east coast of the North Island in two months time. Many of the containers are not accounted for from the 'Rena', and have either sunk or are still in varying degrees of submersion. The article with a video clip in Sail World.