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Latest Science

A team of scientists have released an intriguing study on harnessing OTE in the Pacific n the Journal of Geosciences.  Hyeon-Ju Kim, Ho-Seung Lee,  Seung-Taek Lim and Michael Petterson have authored "The Suitability of the Pacific Islands for Harnessing Ocean Thermal Energy and the Feasibility of OTEC Plants for Onshore or Offshore Processing"

..."An engineering principle, termed Rankine cycle power generation, can use the thermal gradient to generate power. Whilst at the moment OTEC is not a large-scale commercial reality, a number of organizations are developing small-scale OTEC plants, both land and sea-based, with the vision that, one day, the plants will become large enough to attract commercial interest..."  Read here

This Study by UNESCAP explores the key areas around which regional platforms can rally interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral solutions for the ocean. It highlights the lack of data and statistics on the ocean, the growing demand for moving towards inclusive and green maritime shipping, deteriorating fish stocks and gaps in fisheries management and the mounting pressure of marine plastic pollution.  The theme study calls for enhanced sharing of ocean data and stronger investment in national statistical systems for collecting and harmonizing ocean data. It underscores the need for enforcing international conventions, norms and standards in relation to maritime shipping, sustainable fisheries and marine pollution. Finally, it proposes strengthening regional platforms such as the Asia-Pacific Day for the Ocean as avenues for building partnerships, facilitating knowledge and data-sharing and supporting the implementation and monitoring of global agreements.  Read here.

Simon Bullock, James Mason & Alice Larkin (2021) reveal in their recent publication "The urgent case for stronger climate targets for international shipping, in Climate Policy, that if the shipping sector is to play a part in meeting the Paris Agreement Goals, the IMO must strengthen its targets.

Excerpts from the abstract : The article re-assesses the international shipping sector’s initial greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets against the Paris Agreement goals. The analysis is based upon the latest data from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and International Maritime Organization (IMO) and uses the concept of carbon budgets to evaluate proportionate 1.5°C emissions pathways for the sector. The consequences of the resulting Paris-compliant pathways for shipping’s existing mitigation targets and strategy are discussed. The article concludes that significantly stronger short- and longer-term targets need to be set for the sector to be compatible with the Paris Agreement’s goals: 34% reductions on 2008 emissions levels by 2030, and zero emissions before 2050, compared with the sector’s existing target of a 50% cut in CO2 by 2050. Crucially, strengthening the target by the IMO’s strategy revision date of 2023 is imperative. The long asset lifetimes of ships and shipping infrastructure limit the speed of transition such that a delay of even a few years will dictate an untenable rate of decarbonization and increased risk of pushing the already challenging Paris goals out of here.

The planet lost about 14% of its coral reefs between 2009 and 2018, a startling figure that reflects the dire threats to the iconic creatures as climate change continues to ravage sensitive ecosystems around the globe.

new report, released Monday by the Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network, found mass coral bleaching events linked to warmer temperatures remained the greatest threat to sensitive reefs. The study is the largest analysis of global coral reef health ever done, and includes observations along reefs in more than 70 countries over the last 40 years.

Nick Visser of the Huff Post reports on this serious issue.