A monthly round-up of news and trends important to the AltaSea community.
SPECIAL FOCUS: SUSTAINABLE SEAFOOD
Sustainable Seafood (California Academy of Sciences)
Many species of ocean life are under threat of extinction due to decades of industrial overfishing of the world’s oceans. Making the right food choices will help to ensure ocean health and sustainable seafood harvests.
Seafood Watch (Monterey Bay Aquarium)
The easiest and most important thing you can do is ask the question: “Do you serve sustainable seafood?” Let your favorite businesses know that ocean-friendly seafood’s on your shopping list. These companies in your community play a crucial role in the conservation of ocean resources and they listen to their customers. Ask them to support sustainable seafood and start making a difference today!
Earth’s oceans were once thought to be inexhaustible sources of food, but we now know that they cannot sustain the demands we are placing on them. Overfishing has led to the depletion of once abundant fish and shellfish species. Yet seafood is a healthy and desirable choice in our diets. So what is an ecologically conscious, seafood-loving cook to do?
Mysterious new orca species likely identified (National Geographic)
At the bottom of the world, in some of the roughest seas, live mysterious killer whales that look very different from other orcas.
Now, for the first time, scientists have located and studied these animals in the wild. The orcas are “highly likely” to be a new species, says Robert Pitman, a researcher with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The scientific team made the finding in January about 60 miles off the coast of Cape Horn, Chile, at the very tip of South America—a region with the “world’s worst weather,” Pitman adds.
One day in the future, you may take a pill to treat an illness – and owe your recovery to the tiny microbes that flourish in the slippery layer of mucus that coats fishes.
It is critically important to find the next generation of antibiotics. The incidence of bacterial infections resistant to current antibiotics continues to climb. The World Health Organization has warned that this issue will only become more serious, and a recent study anticipates that by 2050 drug-resistant infections will affect more people than cancer.
But how do you find a new antibiotic?
Unclog the Oceans: Breaking Up With Plastic (Newsweek)
It finally happened: China is no longer accepting our recycling. I didn’t even know that China had been taking our recycling. Makes sense, though, as China has long had a booming economy, and they are keen to continue to feed it by dominating lucrative areas of trade. The $200 billion recycling industry surely offered prime opportunities to pioneering businesses wanting to profit off what others throw away.
For the US, it’s cheaper and easier to ship our used plastic, metal, and paper 7,000 miles across the open ocean than to deal with it at home. Make sense? It does to most developed nations. But it’s never been a perfect game, with most global plastics ending up in landfills or in our parks and waterways.
SUSTAINABLE AND INNOVATIVE BUSINESS
On a recent afternoon in February, a group of engineers sat in a boat in the Bahamas with a laptop and a game controller, driving a small robot as far as 200 feet below the surface of the water. The goal: to capture lionfish, an invasive species that is threatening local marine life.
The robot is the newest iteration of the Guardian, a machine developed by Colin Angle, the inventor of the Roomba. He developed the machine after he heard about the destruction the venomous fish was creating in local ecosystems.
Under a partnership announced among Swedish furniture giant IKEA, shipping group CMA CGM, the Port of Rotterdam and non-profit the GoodShipping Program, the first container ship will refuel with the new biofuel on March 19.
The biofuel took three years to develop by GoodFuels, and is made from “forest residues” — waste from paper and pulp production — and waste cooking oil. It is expected to cut CO2 emissions by up to 90 percent and “virtually eliminate” sulfur oxide emissions compared to standard marine fuel, without requiring any modifications to ship engines.
Instead of having garbage bins all around the beach, a barbed wire and mesh gigantic fish sculpture was designed named “Goby”.
A see-through giant structure was placed on the beach with the sign “Goby loves plastic, please feed him”. Goby has made it fun and exciting to recycle. The kids just love feeding him.
Kristal Ambrose is a changemaker. She has participated in research conferences around the world and has been recognized for her fight in ending plastic pollution. Kristal’s advocacy and the work of a Bahamian non-profit she founded have also been featured in international publications showcasing the work of environmental innovators.
Rally for Future Leaders of STEM (AltaSea)
Saturday, April 13
10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
2456 South Signal St. Berth 58, San Pedro
One of the great pioneers of the seas, Dr. Bob Ballard is best known to the public for discovering the RMS Titanic wreck, but in the world of ocean science Bob is just as renowned for discovering hydrothermal vents and “black smokers.” Pushing the boundaries of ocean engineering, technology, and education, there is no greater inspirational ocean explorer in the world than Bob Ballard and it is a rare opportunity for future and current generations of STEM leaders to be able to see him speak at AltaSea.
AltaSea is a proud participant of City of STEM and dedicates this Open House to the next generation of scientists, engineers and oceanographers. Join us in turning to the ocean to solve some of mankind’s most pressing challenges.
Click here for more information.
Earth Day Celebration (Cabrillo Marine Aquarium)
Saturday, April 20 – 9:00AM to 12:00PM
Take action to help our local environment for Earth Day! Learn about the impact of microplastics and help clean our community’s beautiful Cabrillo Beach on #CMAtakeactionday.
• Beach Cleanup: 9 am – 12 pm (Registration: 9 am – 11:30 am)
• Interactive activities on the beach including a nurdle and microplastic challenge with prizes, a sand crab station, a beach wrack station, a bird watching station and grunion hatching on the hour.
• Kayak Kleanup — B.Y.O.B (Bring Your Own Boat and provide your own life vest) If you are interested in the kayak kleanup, please email email@example.com
• Free 4 hour parking for beach cleaners Help make this a “ZERO WASTE” event – bring your own gloves, trash buckets and re-usable water bottle!
Free; open to all ages.
Earth Day Sail (Los Angeles Maritime Institute)
Saturday, April 20 – 5:00PM – 7:30PM
This sail is being done in conjunction with docents from the Marine Mammal Care Center and the International Bird Rescue as part of the City of STEM celebration in Los Angeles. During the sail they will share their knowledge of the local seashore fauna and experiences in rescue and rehabilitation. Get answers to all your questions about the local wildlife and the challenges to our local environment from experts in the field!
The Los Angeles Maritime Institute (LAMI) provides these sails both as educational experiences for all ages and to fund their proven youth education programs at sea.
Tickets are $60 for adults, $30 for children under 12. A 10% LAMI Membership discount applies!
You can purchase tickets by calling the LAMI office at 310.833.6055 or Purchase online using Eventbrite.