The Weekly Dive Vol. 27

Dive into the latest edition of The Weekly Dive, where we bring you the big ocean news!

California completes nation’s first statewide network of marine protected areas. With approval for northern California protections, expected to be enforced starting next year, the nation’s first comprehensive statewide system of ocean protections is complete. Between the Mexico and Oregon borders 16% of state waters will be protected in some way. [The Los Angeles Times]

Honduran president burns illegal shark fins. Demonstrating commitment to shark conservation and enforcement in Honduras, the president joined law officers in burning hundreds of confiscated fins that would have sold for up to $300 per pound. They were illegally caught in Honduran waters, which are a shark sanctuary. [The Washington Post] 

UN report: industrial development places Great Barrier Reef under imminent threat. Despite management successes, UNESCO noted a decline in the reef and said it will consider listing it as a World Heritage Site “in danger” by next year if regulations for both onshore and offshore development aren’t strengthened. [Reuters]  

US, EU pledge to improve fishing regulations, illegal tuna fishing continues. Officials met to discuss illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, and France and Spain ended the bluefin tuna season early. Meanwhile, Chinese and unidentified fleets continued fishing, highlighting the need for strong enforcement. [The New York Times; Treehugger] 

Shell gets permit to harass polar bears, other animals while drilling in Arctic. The National Marine Fisheries Service authorized Shell to drill near wild animals, including incidental harassment, though they must submit a report of all animal sightings and interactions. [The Arctic Sounder] 

SeaWorld must separate killer whales from trainers. A lawsuit by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration after the violent death of a trainer resulted in a ruling that SeaWorld was responsible and orca trainers must henceforth be separated from the whales by a physical barrier or equivalent protective measure during performances. [Orlando Sentinel] 

“Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food” wins environmental reporting award. The Grantham Award of Special Merit was granted to author Paul Greenberg for his book about the decline of four important fisheries. [MarketWatch]  

The aforementioned California MPA network came just in time for World Oceans Day! One fun way to spend June 8th if you live near the coast is by visiting a local marine park, as in the video below - or click here for some more great ideas!


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