The Weekly Dive Vol. 60


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

 

Protections for three critically endangered shark species pass CITES vote. The proposal to regulate (though not ban) international trade of these sharks passed, and awaits final authorization, marking a step forward for marine conservation by the organization. Despite opposition from Asian nations, the proposal was helped by new support from South American and West African countries. [BBC] 


Polar bear protections rejected. The CITES conference for the regulation of international trade of wildlife turned down a US proposal, supported by Russia, to protect polar bears. Canada, the only nation that allows exports of polar bear parts, argued that hunting is sustainable and economically important. [The Guardian]


California Coastal Commission rejects Navy’s plan to increase sonar use. The Navy aimed to increase its use of underwater sonar and explosives – known to be harmful to marine wildlife, especially whales and dolphins – in training exercises in Southern California waters. The Commission’s decision will mean continued negotiations with the Navy on the issue. [The Los Angeles Times]


Melting Arctic: North Pole shipping could be possible by mid-century; Canada faces dramatic glacier loss. Arctic summer sea ice could be so low by mid-century as to allow open water shipping traffic. Meanwhile, Canada’s Arctic Archipelago could irreversibly lose 20% of its glaciers by the end of the century, adding to sea level rise. [Ars Technica; Science Daily]


Global temperatures hit 4,000 year high. According to a new study that is the most complete reconstruction of global temperature to date, temperatures will continue to rise. Within this century, they are expected to exceed any levels in the last 12,000 years, since before the last ice age. [The New York Times]


Texas may ban shark fin trade while Hong Kong sees declines. Texas would be the sixth US state to ban trade in shark fins, and the first red state to do so. Eliminating the shark fin trade in Hong Kong is far from completed but trade is slowly decreasing as younger generations move away from the practice of finning. [The Huffington Post; BBC] 


Ocean acidification hitting US coastlines harder in Northeast. A study comparing acidification along the east coast, found that the Gulf of Maine ecosystem is less resistant and more susceptible to acidification than the Gulf of Mexico, though it’s not yet clear why. [The Huffington Post]

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