‘No Space for Us’: Greeks Fight Beach Takeover by Pricey Sun Chairs – the New York Times

Restaurants take over the coast in Santorini, Greece © 2023 Deepika Shrestha Ross

It is peak tourist season in Greece, and on the pristine Monastiri beach on the northern tip of Paros island, a phalanx of lounge chairs with red umbrellas covers the sand. At 70 euros for a pair of front-row seats near the crystalline waters, less than half were taken on a recent day, as Greeks and tourists alike who did not want to pay instead sheltered from the sun under nearby trees….

There Might Be Less Plastic in the Sea Than We Thought. But Read On – the New York Times

Plastic input into the oceans: Despite knowledge of the role played by rivers, there are no global estimates of the amount of man-made debris reaching the ocean at river mouths. Therefore, of the estimated 4.8 to 12.7 million tonnes of litter which enter the marine environment in 2010 from land-based sources within a 50 km-wide coastal zone (Jambeck et al., 2015) Illustration by Maphoto/Riccardo Pravettoni, courtesy of GRID-Arendal CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via https://www.grida.no/resources/6906).

There’s less plastic pollution flowing into the ocean from land than scientists previously thought, according to a study published Monday in the journal Nature Geoscience.

The researchers estimated that about 500,000 metric tons of plastic end up in the ocean each year, with about half from land. The other half comes from the fishing industry in the form of nets, ropes, buoys and other equipment…

Opinion | Interactive: The Plan to Save New York From the Next Sandy Will Ruin the Waterfront. It Doesn’t Have To – the New York Times

Animation illustrates the potential effects of anticipated sea level change to coastal communities by 2100 (Courtesy of US Army Corp of Engineers).

Last September, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers unveiled its proposal to protect the greater New York and New Jersey metro area from the next catastrophic flood. It is an epic plan that includes dozens of miles of floodwalls, levees and berms along the shoreline and 12 storm surge barriers — arrays of movable gates — across entrances to waterways throughout the region.

The plan is estimated to cost a staggering $52.6 billion. It’s by far the most expensive project ever proposed by the Corps.

The trouble is that despite its great ambitions, the Corps’s plan demonstrates the shortcomings of relying on massive shoreline structures for flood protection…

In the Bahamas, a Constant Race to Adapt to Climate Change – the New York Times

The western edge of the Abaco's on the way into Marsh Harbour in the Bahamas (by Daniel Piraino CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 via Flickr).

Rising seas and the ongoing threat of hurricanes and storm surges have forced the Caribbean nation to become a laboratory for climate adaptation.

At the United Nations climate summit in Egypt last year, Prime Minister Philip Davis of the Bahamas emerged as one of the most impassioned speakers among the more than 100 heads of state in attendance.

“We have to believe that a safer, better future is possible,” he told the gathering. “We believe that action — real, concerted action — can save the planet and save our human race…”

A Plan to Avert a Vast Oil Spill Off Yemen Finally Moves Ahead – the New York Times

Average surface oil concentration of 1,000 simulated spills in the winter (a,b,c) and in the summer (d,e,f) from the study "Public health impacts of an imminent Red Sea oil spill"(illustration by authors Benjamin Q. Huynh, Laura H. Kwong, Mathew V. Kiang, Elizabeth T. Chin, Amir M. Mohareb, Aisha O. Jumaan, Sanjay Basu, Pascal Geldsetzer, Fatima M. Karaki, David H. Rehkopf, CC BY 4.0 via Wikimedia).

A decaying tanker holds about four times the amount of oil leaked in the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster. Experts have warned that it is an ecological time bomb that could explode or disintegrate at any moment…The tanker is moored north of the port city and was once the site of fierce battles in the country’s eight-year-old war, which created one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises…

The Tiny Craft Mapping Superstorms at Sea | Interactive – the New York Times

USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) operates with a Saildrone Explorer in the Red Sea (by Cpl. DeAndre Dawkins, US Navy CC BY 2.0 via Flickr).

Shortly after dawn on Sept. 30, 2021, Richard Jenkins watched a Category 4 hurricane overrun his life’s work. The North Atlantic storm was a behemoth — 50,000 feet tall and 260 miles wide. Wind circled the eye wall at 143 miles per hour; waves the size of nine-story apartment buildings tumbled through a confused sea. Puerto Rico lay 500 miles to the southwest; Bermuda was 800 miles straight ahead. Eighty miles northwest, the 23-foot boat that Jenkins had designed and built over the last decade struggled to stay upright…

What China Has Been Building in the South China Sea – the New York Times

Mischief Reef Dredging, February 1, 2015 (by DigitalGlobe, via CSIS Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative)

China has been rapidly piling sand onto reefs in the South China Sea, creating seven new islets in the region. It is straining geopolitical tensions that were already taut.

China’s activity in the Spratlys (Islands) is a major point of contention between China and the United States and was a primary topic of discussion between President Obama and President Xi Jinping of China during the Chinese president’s visit to the White House in September. On Monday, the United States sent a Navy destroyer near the islands, entering the disputed waters…

If Your House Were Falling Off a Cliff, Would You Leave? – the New York Times

Chalet style cottages perched precariously on the North Sea cliff, south of the old Hornsea Road at Skipsea (© Paul Glazzard CC BY-SA 2.0 via Geograph).

On a stormy day in the spring of 2021, the sea defenses on the beach below Lucy Ansbro’s cliff-top home in Thorpeness, England, washed away. Then, the end of her garden collapsed into the North Sea…“We lost three and a half meters of land,” said Ms. Ansbro, a 54-year-old television producer, sitting in her kitchen on a recent morning. “Every time I went out, I didn’t know if the house would still be here when I came back…”