Oceans in the News, 2009

This is a selection of stories, subject to the following rules. First, I don't guarantee close daily coverage of everything that happens (because I have things to do apart from maintaining this Web page). Second, the site has to be generally accessible. (Many journals make their pages accessible only to people who have paid a subscription to the written version.) Third, I try to choose sources that tend to keep their pages accessible for more than two weeks over those that do not. For example, I've had to limit stories from the New York Times. It is a fine paper, but its new policy is to take off its stories within DAYS and then charge for access to them. I'll attach a warning notice to each item that might have this problem.

Similar pages on the Geology Department web site are

Oceans in the News, 2009

  • December 29, 2009. Somali pirates continue to flourish. Terra Daily

  • December 18, 2009. Deepest underwater eruption yet filmed: on the Pacific floor near Samoa. National Geographic News

  • December 15, 2009. It was a bad year for red tides along US coastlines. BBC News Online
  • Matt Kaplan for National Geographic
  • Images on National Geographic site
  • Scientific American web site

  • December 12, 2009. How is the anchoveta fishery on the Peruvian coast? It is often cited as a classic boom-and-bust fishery. Well, it's just fine... But there is allegedly an El Niņo brewing offshore, which may change the situation. Terra Daily site

  • December 9, 2009. Giant iceberg drifting toward Australia. Terra Daily

  • December 9, 2009. New details of the great flood that ended the Messinian episode when the Mediterranean was dry. The paper is in Nature, so won't be generally available on the Web.

  • November 23, 2009. More deep-sea creatures photographed for the first time. National Geographic photo gallery

  • November 22, 2009. Glorious true-color satellite image of Maupiti Island, a South Pacific island with a lagoon and fringing reefs. NASA Earth Observatory

  • November 19, 2009. AN El Niņo seems to be strengthening across the Pacific Ocean. NASA Earth Observatory

  • November 17, 2009. Giant jellyfish are a problem in a Japanese fishery, but it's a growing global phenomenon. New Zealand Herald

  • November 17, 2009. Creatures caught on an expedition to deep-water seamounts in the Indian Ocean.

  • November 17, 2009. Somali pirate update: they are alive and well: prosperous, too.

  • November 13, 2009. Greedy and voracious Spanish fishermen strike again. New Zealand Herald

  • November 11, 2009. The world's deepest living fishes are photographed. BBC News

  • November 11, 2009. A "toxic" ship that was once the USS Independence has apparently been refused entry to the notorious Alang shipyard in India for breaking up. You wonder 1) whether it will mysteriously develop a leak and sink in the open ocean, or 2) enough bribe money will change hands so that it is admitted to Alang. What is clear that it must be really bad to be refused entry to Alang in the first place. Terra Daily. Previous stories:

  • November 9, 2009. More on the floating trash in the middle of the Pacific. New York Times. Download it now: it may not last long. Previous stories:

  • November 5, 2009. Hoping to raise (or loot) the wreck of H.M.S. Victory, which sank in the English Channel in 1744. (This was the predecessor of Nelson's famous flagship.) BBC News OnLine

  • November 4, 2009. Great white sharks congregate at a favorite place in the eastern Pacific. Terra Daily

  • October 31, 2009. Photos of sperm whale eating giant squid. National Geographic News

  • October 30, 2009. Algal blooms are indirectly killing seabirds along the Northwest coast. National Geographic News

  • October 22, 2009. The sunken town of Petropavli,on the Greek coast. New Scientist

  • October 15, 2009. A very large pod of orcas in British waters has learned to follow mackerel fishing boats and feed off those fish that evade the net. BBC News

  • October 9, 2009. Giant mucus blobs in the oceans.

  • September 30, 2009. Tsunami hits Samoa: about 100 people killed.

  • September 28, 2009. Update on the seaweed bloom in Brittany. Terra Daily Previous stories:

  • September 27, 2009. Jordan plans to go ahead with a Red Sea-to-Dead Sea pipeline. This will refill the Dead Sea, generate hydroelectricity, and provide desalinated water for Jordan. Terra Daily

  • September 25, 2009. Iceland plans to export 150 tons of whale meat to Japan, from the 125 fin whales it killed this summer. BBC News

  • September 25, 2009. Large shark sanctuary established by Palau. But they do need more than one patrol boat!

  • September 25, 2009. Very rapid coastal erosion on the Alaskan coast. Impressive! National Geographic video

  • September 23, 2009. Worms that eat for generations on whale carcasses on the deep sea floor. National Geographic News

  • September 22, 2009. The eastern Pacific black ghostshark; a bizarre new species found in deep water off the California coast. National Geographic News

  • September 21, 2009. Germany rules the waves! At least, they plan to try. Business Week

  • September 14, 2009. The Mafia has been systematically polluting the Mediterranean with radioactive waste. Terra Daily

  • September 11, 2009. Time for the annual slaughter of dolphins in Japan. Terra Daily

  • September 10, 2009. The things people will do when their seafood resources are largely fished out. BBC News

  • September 8, 2009. The world's first full-size floating wind turbine. BBC News

  • September 6, 2009. Great white sharks close Cape Cod beaches for the Labor Day holiday. New York Times

  • September 1, 2009. Photo gallery of beautiful deep-sea invertebrates from the Arctic Ocean. BBC News

  • August 20, 2009. A wonderful newly discovered group of deep-sea worms that let off bright green flash-grenades if they are attacked. The paper is in Science this week. National Geographic News

  • August 7, 2009. Topography of the ocean floor. This is an ad for a National Geographic TV show, but you may find useful seafloor images in it for teaching purposes. National Geographic photogallery

  • August 5, 2009. Excellent example of defensive mimicry, by a sea snake. The tail looks and behaves like a second head. BBC News

  • July 27, 2009. Smaller but more intense dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico this summer. NOAA News

  • July 27, 2009. Could we generate energy from the Gulf Stream? CNN

  • July 24, 2009. California refuses to allow offshore drilling. (After all, that same source will be there when we must have it, at $200 a barrel.) Reuters

  • July 24, 2009. Very well-preserved Roman ships discovered on the Mediterranean floor. BBC News

  • July 17, 2009. "Beaks" not "Jaws": San Diego swimmers encounter beaked squid. BBC News

  • July 1, 2009. Where giant rays congregate to feed.

  • June 29, 2009. BBC blog about the Japanese killing dolphins. BBC blog site

  • June 25, 2009. Don't live on a barrier island, yet again. This time it's "cottages" on the beach near Chatham, Cape Cod. Boston Globe

  • June 23, 2009. Whale-watching generates billions of dollars a year. BBC News OnLine

  • June 22, 2009. Fish farming in Norway. Terra Daily

  • June 17, 2009. Will the Maldive Islands disappear as ocean levels rise? The answer is not that simple! San Francisco Chronicle

  • June 16, 2009. Greenland, aided and abetted by Denmark, wants to start hunting humpback whales. No doubt the Japanese will buy the meat. Terra Daily

  • June 4, 2009. The anatomy of a Somali pirate attack. BBC News Online, with lots of other links. Previous story: March 20, 2009.

  • June 4, 2009. The Royal Navy blows up a pirate boat (but releases the pirates). BBC News OnLine

  • June 4, 2009. A Florida judge rules that American treasure-hunters must return the treasure they looted from the wreck of the Mercedes, a Spanish frigate.

  • June 3, 2009. A robot submarine explores the Challenger Deep, the deepest ocean floor there is. BBC News

  • May 26, 2009. Iceland begins its 2009 whaling season. Terra Daily

  • May 26, 2009. How the oceans once teemed with huge fish and whales. Terra Daily. This is known in scientific circles, but it's good to have it out there for general readers.

  • May 24, 2009. Medieval fisheries in Northwest Europe. These results have already been published: this "news" piece is hype for a conference. Even so, here it is in a simple summary. BBC News

  • May 22, 2009. The top ten beaches in the United States. National Geographic photogallery

  • May 7, 2009. National Geographic best pictures of underwater life for 2009. National Geographic

  • May 6, 2009. Undersea eruption near Guam.

  • May 6, 2009. New robot submarine can explore great ocean depths. BBC News OnLine

  • May 6, 2009. The cause of the giant Olympic algal bloom on the Chinese coast. It turns out that the bloom was a "weed" alga that grows in the many new aquaculture ponds along that coast: but it "escaped". BBC News OnLine

  • May 5, 2009. A new design for harnessing wave power: the Anaconda. BBC News

  • May 5, 2009. Life thrives on a newly discovered sea-floor volcano near Guam. Live Science

  • May 3, 2009. Evidence that a tsunami may have hit New York and the Hudson Valley 2300 years ago. No mention of a publication!! BBC News OnLine

  • April 28, 2009. The Wilkins ice shelf of Antarctica is unstable, and is beginning to break up. Terra Daily, with links to satellite imagery. Previous stories: see April 7, 2009.

  • April 24, 2009. Yup'ik Eskimo plan to abandon the Alaskan coastal village of Newtok and relocate 9 miles inland. It's a mixture of melting permafrost, melting offshore ice, and flooding that make the site uninhabitable.

  • April 17, 2009. Oystermen in Chesapeake Bay, 21st century style. CNN

  • April 13, 2009. Japan kills 680 whales in the Antarctic: short of its target number. Reuters in Scientific American News

  • April 7, 2009. Another dramatic ice break-up on the Antarctic peninsula.

  • March 23, 2009. Twentieth anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill: and the damage persists.

  • March 20, 2009. Update on Somali pirates. I haven't posted much about the pirates lately, but they are as active as ever. Here is the latest seizure, featured on BBC News. And the brutal fact is that the many Navy ships patrolling the area have orders that prevent them from being effective: BBC News, February 23, 2009. Where's Jack Aubrey when we need him?

  • March 10, 2009. The ocean may rise more than we thought as warming continues. These authors are top people, by the way. We do need a paper, not just a meeting presentation. BBC News OnLine

  • February 8, 2009. Aquaculture on the Chinese coast. NASA Earth Observatory

  • February 2, 2009. Google Earth expands to include the oceans. National Geographic News

  • February 1, 2009. American company has found the wreck of HMS Victory, a British ship that sank in a storm in the English Channel in 1744.

  • January 29, 2009. Swarms of invading jellyfish with very strange biology. National Geographic News

  • January 29, 2009. Who sets up pirate ransoms for the Somali hijackers? BBC News OnLine. Previous story: January 12, 2009.

  • January 28, 2009. How a dolphin prepares a cuttlefish before it eats it. The paper is in PLoS One (freely accessible).

  • January 27, 2009. Iceland announces a major increase in its whaling target for the next five years.
  • January 12, 2009. Somali pirates drown with their ransom cash: but one family recovered a body laden with soggy banknotes... BBC News. For previous stories, see December 17, 2008.

  • January 7, 2009. The deep-sea spookfish has eyes that are assisted by mirrors. The paper is in Current Biology. BBC News

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