The Weekly Dive Vol. 54
Dive into the latest edition of The Weekly Dive, where we bring you the big ocean news!
Fish with 2,500 times the radiation limit found at Fukushima. Two years after the nuclear disaster at the power plant in Japan, a “murasoi” fish was found to contain the cesium equivalent of 254,000 becquerels per kilogram, which is 2,540 times the Japanese government limit for seafood. In October, 40% of fish caught nearby were contaminated over safe limits. [The Huffington Post]
Climate change is bringing bigger surf to Southern Hemisphere. Indonesia, Australia’s east coast, and other places are in line to get bigger waves more frequently due to an increase in sea surface temperature and westerly winds in the Southern Ocean. This has implications for beach shape and erosion in coastal areas. [Nature]
A pod of orcas trapped in Hudson Bay sea ice escaped to open ocean. The 12 whales were hundreds of miles from where they should have been this time of year because the area froze much later than usual. A lucky breakup of ice floes opened a path for the whales to open ocean after three days.
Oil & gas industry suit overturns federal protections of polar bears in Alaska. A US Federal court in Alaska has overturned the US Fish and Wildlife designation of 187,000 miles of coastline as critical polar bear habitat, due to "procedural deficiencies". The state’s governor praised the decision as good for its economy. [Outside Magazine]
Plastic exfoliating beads to be phased out of beauty products. Unilever has decided to eliminate plastic exfoliating beads from skin products such as soaps, since they are a major source of ocean microplastic pollution. [The Examiner]
World’s largest wind farm planned off Fukushima. The new farm, scheduled for completion in 2020, will be the first capable of producing 1 gigawatt of power, using 143 turbines mounted on floating steel frames. The current largest is off of Suffolk in the UK and uses 140 turbines to produce 504 megawatts. [Phys.org]
NOAA 3D map shows Civil War ship wreck. Previously unknown details of the USS Hatteras, which was sunk in the Gulf of Mexico 150 years ago, were revealed by state of the art sonar mapping. [NOAA]
Tiny reef fish swim as fast as large tuna. Flapping their wing-like pectoral fins in a figure eight pattern allows tiny bluelined wrasses to swim as fast as large open ocean fish, which are propelled by their tails, even while using 40% less energy to do so. [Phys.org]