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Great Pacific garbage patch: giant plastic trap put to sea again

News, Pollution

Floating boom is designed to trap 1.8tn items of plastic without harming marine life – but broke apart last time

After 14 months without tourists, Kauai’s North Shore tests the waters again

Despite the economic value tourists bring to Hawaii, state officials also face growing pressure to balance tourism with preservation of the islands’ natural resources and culture. As part of that effort, Kauai is rolling out new regulations to limit tourist traffic on the reopened highway.

Sand mafias silence journalists in India

Up to 50 billion metric tons of sand and gravel are extracted every year worldwide. The inexhaustible need for sand from this rapidly-developing country is the breeding ground for illegal activities by what has come to be known as the “sand mafias”.

Scientists map huge undersea fresh-water aquifer off U.S. Northeast


In a new survey of the sub-seafloor off the U.S. Northeast coast, scientists have made a surprising discovery: a gigantic aquifer of relatively fresh water trapped in porous sediments lying below the salty ocean. It appears to be the largest such formation yet found in the world.

Melting of Himalayan glaciers has doubled in recent years

A newly comprehensive study shows that melting of Himalayan glaciers caused by rising temperatures has accelerated dramatically since the start of the 21st century.

These sled dogs aren’t walking on water, but something fishy is going on

Each year in June, just before all the sea ice has melted, climate scientists at the Danish Meteorological Institute head out by dog sled onto the Greenland sea ice to collect their instruments. Typically the dogs walk on ice for this task, but because of warming temperatures, this year the dogs were splashing in ankle-deep water.

Asian countries take a stand against the rich world’s plastic waste

News, Pollution

Amid a growing global movement against non-recyclable plastic, Vietnam and Thailand have said they will block all imported plastic waste in the next few years. Taiwan announced it would only accept plastic scrap if sorted into a single type, making it easier to recycle.

Japan wraps everything in plastic. Now it wants to fight against plastic pollution.

News, Pollution

Japan’s obsession with hygiene combined with its pride in “omotenashi,” or customer service, dictates that everything is meticulously wrapped, rewrapped and bagged in multiple layers of plastic.

Where does your plastic go? Global investigation reveals America’s dirty secret

News, Pollution

A Guardian report from 11 countries tracks how US waste makes its way across the world – and overwhelms the poorest nations.

Venice becomes the front line in the battle against overtourism

Inform, Pollution

Many Venetians believe that everyone should have a chance to experience the beauty of their city, but say that a constant swell of tourists is ruining the experience for everyone. Cruise ships have caused significant environmental damage to the city’s waterways and lagoons — sometimes colliding with other vessels.

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