Ecosystem Destruction

Massive sand tubes being constructed in Walton County, Florida Massive sand tubes being constructed in Walton County, Florida under the ecologically-appealing euphemism of "dune enhancement devices." Photo: Gary Appleson, Caribbean Conservation Corporation.

A variety of threatened or endangered organisms use the beach as a vital part of their life cycle. The nearshore ecosystem extends from the meiofauna that exist between sand grains to the carnivorous fish that roam the surf zone.

Components include birds that feed and nest on the beach such as the piping plover (US east coast) and various turtles that lay their eggs here. The first steps in protecting birds, turtle nests and the rest of this ecosystem must be the protection of a natural, un-engineered beach.

Another major threat to beach ecosystems around the world is the ever increasing human population in coastal areas. The global migration of people towards the coast causes competition between humans and other species and humans usually negatively impact other species. New construction in coastal communities destroys beach ecosystems with every parking lot paved, road expanded, or sand dune lost. This increase also puts a burden on sanitation systems, transportation networks, and increases pollution in these diverse ecosystems.


Surfing in / Ecosystem Destruction

Some Relief for the Reef

United Nations experts will be presented with a petition that has more than 100,000 signatures on it, calling for an end to dredging and development near the Great Barrier Reef off Queensland.

Comments Off on Some Relief for the Reef

Sea-Level Rise, Subsidence, and Wetland Loss

A USGS video describes causes of wetland loss in the Mississippi River Delta.

Comments Off on Sea-Level Rise, Subsidence, and Wetland Loss

Landslide raises questions about $15.7 billion Exxon plan

A deadly landslide in the mountains of Papua New Guinea, near where U.S. oil major Exxon Mobil is building a $15.7 billion gas project, is raising fresh questions about the global energy industry’s scramble for ever harder-to-reach resources…

Comments Off on Landslide raises questions about $15.7 billion Exxon plan

In Patagonia, Caught Between Visions of the Future

Two competing visions of Patagonia stirring a national debate over the future and the soul of Patagonia itself…

Comments Off on In Patagonia, Caught Between Visions of the Future

Oil versus fish in idyllic Norwegian islands

The question of whether Norway should allow prospecting in the waters around Lofoten’s 1,000 or so islands, has pitted environmentalists and some fishermen against the country’s mighty energy sector.

Comments Off on Oil versus fish in idyllic Norwegian islands

Voyage to Pitcairn

A National Geographic Expedition to the remote Pitcairn Islands, including the famous Pitcairn and its 57 inhabitants, descendants from the Bounty mutineers, will embark in March-April 2012. This expedition is part of NG Pristine Seas project to explore, survey and help protect the last wild places in the ocean.

Comments Off on Voyage to Pitcairn

World Bank Urges Global Action to Save Oceans

The World Bank on Friday said the world’s oceans were at risk and called for a coalition of governments, NGOs and other groups to protect them, aiming to raise $1.5 billion in five years.

Comments Off on World Bank Urges Global Action to Save Oceans

Conservation Risk Highest Off Coasts of Canada, Mexico, Peru and New Zealand

University of British Columbia researchers have identified conservation “hot spots” around the world where the temptation to profit from overfishing outweighs the appetite for conservation.

Comments Off on Conservation Risk Highest Off Coasts of Canada, Mexico, Peru and New Zealand

Protecting oceans: It’s not Rocket Science

It’s not rocket science: closing areas of land and water to humans allows nature to recover and restore its fragile balance. The idea has been successfully tried and tested many times on land but it has taken years of destruction before the message has hit home for the oceans.

Comments Off on Protecting oceans: It’s not Rocket Science