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

Scientists Argue Against Conclusion That Bacteria Consumed Deepwater Horizon Methane

Some scientists cast doubt on a widely publicized study that concluded that a bacterial bloom in the Gulf of Mexico consumed the methane discharged from the Deepwater Horizon well. The debate has implications for the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem.

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Mediterranean Sea Invaded by Hundreds of Alien Species

More than 900 new alien species have been encountered in the coastal environments of the eastern Mediterranean Sea in recent decades.

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Division over future of Chagos islands and islanders

Meeting in London addresses environmental issues surrounding the ban on inhabitation of the Indian Ocean archipelago. The central question was how to balance the archipelago’s environmental importance with its original inhabitants’ argued right to go home.

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Hong Kong bans trawling to save fish stocks and marine environment

A decision welcomed by conservationists, as a crucial move to save fish stocks and revive the city’s depleted marine environment.

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Environmental controls of giant kelp in the Santa Barbara Channel, California

Forests of giant kelp are located in temperate coastal regions throughout the world. They are among the most productive ecosystems on Earth, and giant kelp itself provides food and habitat for numerous ecologically and economically important near-shore marine species.

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New Rights Challenge to Belo Monte Dam in Brazil

A group of independent Brazilian scientists, who recently studied the environmental impact report, concluded that the project was not viable. The XingĂș river basin is home to four times more biodiversity that the whole of Europe.

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Corals Moving North to Escape Warming

Corals are dying in tropical areas, but now it appears they are expanding their range poleward. However, even if range expansion of corals does occur, the amount of dying corals in tropical areas may be much greater than the new settlements in the temperate regions.

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European Coastal Pollution Harms Ecosystems, Study Finds

The bodies of harbour seals (Phoca vitulina), which live in estuaries or along coastlines where industrial activities take place, are highly contaminated. This is the result of a European study, involving Spanish participation, which warns of the danger to all the other species that share their ecosystem from ports throughout Europe, even in the Mediterranean.

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Illegal Sand-Mining Threatens Sea Turtle Population, St Kitts-Nevis

The biodiversity of St Kitts and Nevis, including the sea turtle population, is under threat due to the increase in illegal sand-mining that is taking place.

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