Trending: January 12, 2022

AltaSea: Trending Newsletter

January 12, 2022 Edition

A monthly round-up of news and trends important to the AltaSea community.


LAEDC’s Stephen Cheung On LA’s “Blue-Green” Build Back Better Regional Grant Challenge (VERDEXCHANGE)

Los Angeles was selected in December by the US Economic Development Agency as a finalist in the $1 billion Build Back Better Regional Challenge. AltaSea is part of the coalition of LA stakeholders—led by the LA County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC)—which is competing with regions nationwide for up to $100 million in ARPA grant funding to implement equitable and sustainable economic recovery strategies–the largest economic development initiative from the US Department of Commerce in decades. VX News interviewed LAEDC COO & WTC LA President Stephen Cheung, who was designated Regional Economic Competitiveness Officer to coordinate the coalition partners and leverage resources to develop and scale blue and green growth innovations within Southern California’s goods movement ecosystem. Cheung elaborates on that vision and the resources LA will leverage to achieve it.

La Tierra y Su Futuro (Univision)

AltaSea and its partners are doing some interesting and innovative work in aquaculture and the blue economy. To learn more, check out this program which aired on Univision on February 2nd.

AGCC’s ‘Artists At Work Initiative’ Provides Year-long Residencies (Random Lengths News)

Angels Gate Cultural Center or AGCC will be serving as a cultural hub as part of the Artists At Work or AAW initiative.

AGCC will host artists Nancy Woo and Taylor Griffith for year-long artist residencies, and work with AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles and Strength Based Community Change or SBCC as its social impact partners. AAW is organized by The Office Performing Arts + Film with the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture, through $3 million in funding from the Mellon Foundation.

Pacific Playground (Paulo & Amélia Ferro)

Paulo and Amélia Ferro were both born in Europe, becoming American Citizens over 40 years ago. They have lived in different continents and are passionate about the present and future health of the marine environment. Paulo’s professional activities revolve around autonomous technologies and Amélia is an educator. They currently reside in California and, whenever possible, they dive the Catalina channel to film its rich marine life. Their intention is to raise awareness of the beauty and abundance of the local waters, in order to encourage their protection and prevent their depletion. Paulo has been an avid diver from childhood, with vivid memories of Flipper and of the great Jacques-Yves Cousteau. He has logged numerous dives in several beautiful places around the world, where he has witnessed first-hand the rapid decline of the marine ecological balance. The couple’s love for the ocean and for photographic imagery remains unabated, and their intention is to cooperate with AltaSea in environmental-protection initiatives.


We study ocean temperatures. The Earth just broke a heat increase record. (The Guardian)

I was fortunate to play a small part in a new study, just published in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, which shows that the Earth broke yet another heat record last year. Twenty-three scientists from around the world teamed up to analyze thousands of temperature measurements taken throughout the world’s oceans. The measurements, taken at least 2,000 meters (about 6,500ft) deep and spread across the globe, paint a clear picture: the Earth is warming, humans are the culprit, and the warming will continue indefinitely until we collectively take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Researchers capture footage of rare deep sea fish with translucent head (The Hill)

Video footage of a deep sea fish with a translucent head was recorded during a recent dive off the coast of California.

A 55-second video captured between 2,000 and 2,600 feet beneath the ocean surface contains closeups of the rarely seen barreleye fish’s translucent head and tail and glowing green eyes.

The dive was organized by Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which said it has seen the barreleye fish only nine times in 5,600 dives. Light seen in the video was produced by one of MBARI’s remote operating vehicles.

Scientists Produce 3D Maps Of Oxygen-Deprived ‘Dead Zones’ In Pacific Ocean (Zenger News)

Scientists have used new methods to create 3D maps of large oxygen-deficient zones (ODZs) in the Pacific Ocean. These naturally occurring zones can limit marine ecosystems and fisheries, and are a source of nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas.

Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) produced an atlas of the largest of these desolate areas in the tropical Pacific. They show not only the ODZs’ volume, extent and depth but also things on a finer scale such as streams of healthier, oxygenated water that enter areas nearly devoid of life-giving oxygen.


‘Ocean battery’ targets renewable energy dilemma (TechXplore)

A wind turbine sitting idle on a calm day or spinning swiftly when power demand is already met poses a problem for renewables, and is one researchers think can be tackled under the sea.

In one vision, offshore wind farms could use seawater to essentially store energy until it’s needed, helping wean humanity off fossil fuels.

“We came up with a solution that we call the ocean battery,” Frits Bliek, CEO of Dutch startup Ocean Grazer told AFP while showing off the system at the CES tech fair in Las Vegas.

Amid the growing push away from climate-warming energy sources like coal, stockpiling green energy is key, experts say.

4 reasons ocean industry should embrace data sharing (Word Economic Forum)

For centuries, many ocean industries have operated far from land – out of sight and often out of mind. High resolution satellite imagery, drones, tracking systems, and a global push for accountability are starting to pull back the curtain on industrial ocean practices.

While ocean industries do not have much control over surveillance technologies, they can participate directly in the movement towards more transparency by taking an active role in data sharing. Doing so not only increases operational accountability, but will increase public trust, profitability, and even operating efficiency and sustainability.

Marine litter-detecting robots with underwater capability developed by Nagasaki Univ. team (The Mainichi)

A Nagasaki University team has developed camera-equipped robots that can ascertain the state of marine litter on and under the water — technology they hope will pave the way to automatic collection of such garbage in the future.

The team, led by the university’s Vice President Ikuo Yamamoto, a professor of robotics, aims to produce working models that can be put to use next autumn.

The impact of marine debris on the ecosystem is becoming serious. The problem is expanding on a global scale, and according to one estimate, the weight of plastic waste in oceans will top that of all fish by 2050.


The Top Ten Ocean Stories of 2021 (Smithsonian Magazine)

The year in ocean news brought about quite a few surprises, including the discovery of a self-decapitating sea slug and the return to popularity of sea shanties. We learned that whales poop a lot more than previously thought and that their excrement is essential for ocean ecosystems, and that even large sharks can glow. Technology allowed us to reach the deepest depths of the oceans, travel to the eye of a hurricane and a whole lot more. In order to remind you of the biggest saltwater moments of the past 12 months, the National Museum of Natural History’s Ocean Portal team has rounded up the ten biggest ocean stories.

An Ambitious Vision for the Future of Scientific Ocean Drilling (Eos)

The summer of 1966 was a watershed time in the geosciences. On 24 June that year, as the formative ideas and observations of plate tectonic theory were continuing to gel in so many discussions and publications, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the regents of the University of California signed the momentous contract establishing the first phase of the Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP).

The purpose of DSDP was scientific exploration through the collection of seafloor core samples from around the world. These cores would help researchers study seafloor compositions and ages, explore for natural resources, and otherwise inform a variety of questions about Earth’s deep-ocean environs.

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