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  Past Month's News  
 
Bones linked to Scotland's Isle of Eigg massacre
LONDON, UK, 22 March 2017 (BBC) - Bones discovered in a cave on Eigg have been linked to a massacre of almost the entire island's population during a clan feud in the 16th Century.



Italian fishermen down rods in dolphin dispute
ROME, Italy, 22 March 2017 (AFP) - Italian fishermen, based on the islands of Lipari and Salina, north of Sicily, say dwindling stocks of squid are making it harder for the dolphins to bring in their own catches - so the famously clever mammals have started targeting their boats.



Tonga gives away thousands of chicks in anti-fat drive
LONDON, UK, 22 March 2017 (BBC) - The authorities in Tonga are delivering thousands of free chicks and ducklings to communities across the country to encourage people to cut down on fatty imported meat.



Community in chaotic Jakarta goes green to fight eviction
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 20 March 2017 (AFP) - Brightly coloured wooden and brick houses line a clean riverside path amid trees and vegetable gardens, a tranquil scene in the normally chaotic Indonesian capital Jakarta.



Hawaiian islands were losing species long before humans arrived
LONDON, UK, 20 March 2017 (IFLScience) - All over the world, islands are suffering catastrophic declines in animal and plant species, directly or indirectly from humanity's influence.



Sea turtles of Sao Tome: Selling what can’t be sold
WASHINGTON, US, 20 March 2017 (NatGeog) - Sea turtles have the dubious honor of being one of the few animals that rank high globally on both the charisma scale and the dinner menu.



On front line of climate change as Maldives fights rising seas
LONDON, UK, 20 March 2017 (New Scientist) - The new government, under president Abdulla Yameen, no longer seeks to purchase land elsewhere so the population could relocate should sea level rise make the islands uninhabitable, but is instead determined for the nation to stay put and resist the rising seas with geoengineering projects.



Unique islands, unique biodiversity
MANILA, Philippines, 19 March 2017 (BusinessMirror) - The Gigantes Islands are home to some of the most biologically diverse and richest coastal and marine resources, according to the Foundation for the Philippine Environment.



Scientists trace South Georgia's giant ice history
LONDON, UK, 19 March 2017 (BBC) - South Georgia is an island of astonishing beauty - of imposing landscapes, and bewildering numbers of penguins, seals and seabirds.



Vulnerable Seychelles black parrot hatchlings take to the skies
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 19 March 2017 (SNA) - Every year in the palm forests of Praslin, the second-largest island on the archipelago of Seychelles, a group of birds is monitored very closely during their breeding and hatching seasons.



Phillip Island penguins: Clamp on cats to make island pest-free
MELBOURNE, Australia, 19 March 2017 (Herald Sun) - A ferocious feral cat population would be wiped out and owners forced to keep their moggies indoors in an ambitious plan to make Phillip Island a pest-free zone.



Indonesian tribes gather amid push to protect homelands
TANJUNG GUSTA, Indonesia, 17 March 2017 (AFP) - Thousands of Indonesian tribesmen gathered on jungle-clad Sumatra island Friday, as indigenous people push the government to move faster to protect their ancestral homelands.



Derek Walcott: St Lucia's Nobel laureate poet dies
LONDON, UK, 17 March 2017 (BBC) - Nobel laureate poet Derek Walcott has died aged 87 at his home in the Caribbean island of St Lucia after a long illness, local media reports say.



UK ambassador to Indonesia summoned over coral damage
LONDON, UK, 17 March 2017 (BBC) - Indonesia has summoned the British ambassador after a ship operated by a British company ran aground on a coral reef, causing extensive damage.



Clean seas for a cleaner Pacific
SUVA, Fiji, 16 March 2017 (SPREP) - Globally, poor waste disposal practises contributes to 80% of marine debris, waste that travels up the food chain or then becomes an unwelcome part of the ocean, the very ocean that is our Pacific lifeblood.



A new home for Norfolk Island green parrot
SANTA CRUZ, US, 16 March 2017 (IC) - Conservationists are working on a new approach to protect the endangered Norfolk Island green parrot by relocating chicks to a nearby, invasive species-free island.



Caribbean islands count on coral to build up coastal resilience
TEPIC, Mexico, 16 March 2017 (Reuters) - Twice a week, fisherman Romould Compton puts on scuba gear to dive to the seabed and clean tiny elkhorns growing in the coral nursery off the Caribbean island of Carriacou, tending them until they can be transplanted to a damaged reef nearby.



No let-up in Cyprus bird poaching
LONDON, UK, 16 March 2017 (BBC) - British authorities in Cyprus have been criticised for failing to effectively tackle the poaching of songbirds on a military base.



Stopping global warming is only way to save Great Barrier Reef
LONDON, UK, 15 March 2017 (Guardian) - The survival of the Great Barrier Reef hinges on urgent moves to cut global warming because nothing else will protect coral from the coming cycle of mass bleaching events, new research has found.



Proposal to make EU islands front runners on clean energy approved
VALLETTA, Malta, 15 March 2017 (Times of Malta) - A preparatory action plan proposed by former Prime Minister Alfred Sant to make islands within the European Union front-runners on clean energy transition has been approved by the European Commission.



Scientists race to prevent wipeout of world's coral reefs
SOUTH ARI ATOLL, Maldives, 14 March 2017 (AP) - There were startling colors here just a year ago, a dazzling array of life beneath the waves. Now this Maldivian reef is dead, killed by the stress of rising ocean temperatures.



Orangutan stronghold under threat in Borneo
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 14 March 2017 (Mongabay) - A timber plantation company is illegally clearing one of Indonesia’s last coastal peat swamp forests, a carbon reservoir and biodiversity hotspot home to hundreds of endangered orangutans, say observers who are imploring President Joko Widodo’s administration to intervene.



Children tapped to end child marriage in Indonesia
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 14 March 2017 (IPS) - The Indonesian government is tapping children as advocates against child marriage in this Southeast Asian country where over 340,000 girls get married before they reach 18 years old every year.



Tasmanian bill to extend wilderness logging
LONDON, UK, 14 March 2017 (Guardian) - A proposal to allow logging access to more parts of Tasmania’s wilderness has sparked calls for federal government intervention.



Mama Yuli: The trans women's leader no-one messes with
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 14 March 2017 (BBC) - Mama Yuli is the leader and protector of Indonesia's transgender women - or Waria, as they are known. Though revered on some of Indonesia's thousands of islands, Waria are increasingly persecuted elsewhere, as a stricter type of Islam takes root.



50 reefs: A global plan to save corals from extinction
SYDNEY, Australia, 12 March 2017 (ENS) - Ninety percent of the world’s coral reefs are expected to disappear by 2050 due to climate change, pollution and poor fishing practices. Now, a unique philanthropic coalition has launched 50 Reefs, a plan to save the most critical reefs so once the climate stabilizes they can reseed the entire coral ecosystem.



Antigua-Barbuda takes leading role in clean energy
ST JOHN'S, Antigua, 11 March 2017 (Caribbean News Now) - The twin-island state Antigua and Barbuda has taken a leading role in terms of clean energy supply in the Caribbean.



SPARKS plugs gap in Caribbean climate research
KINGSTON, Jamaica, 11 March 2017 (IPS) -  Last year a new high-performance ‘Super Computer’ was installed at the University of the West Indies during climate change week. Dubbed SPARKS – short for the Scientific Platform for Applied Research and Knowledge Sharing – the computer is already churning out the ‘big data’ Caribbean SIDS need to accurately forecast and mitigate the effects of climate change on the region.



Artificial North Sea island
LONDON, UK, 10 March 2017 (Independent) - A vast artificial island is to be built at Dogger Bank in the North Sea, complete with a harbour, airstrip and homes, to help provide a vast new supply of renewable energy, under plans drawn up by two companies with the blessing of the European Union.



Brexit crisis motion at islands commission
LERWICK, UK, 10 March 2017 (Shetland Times) - Worries caused by the Brexit “crisis” were highlighted by councillor Jonathan Wills yesterday when he addressed an international islands commission warning that Shetland is among the communities facing increased uncertainty.



Great Barrier Reef bleached for unprecedented second year running
LONDON, UK, 10 March 2017 (Guardian) - A mass bleaching event is taking its toll on the Great Barrier Reef for an unprecedented second year in a row, a Queensland government agency has confirmed.



British-owned cruise ship wrecks one of Indonesia’s best coral reefs
LONDON, UK, 10 March 2017 (Guardian) - One of the main coral reefs at Raja Ampat, an Indonesian island chain home to perhaps the world’s richest marine biodiversity, was severely damaged last week when a Bahamian-flagged cruise ship smashed into it at low tide, according to an official report.



Breakthrough offers hope for Tasmanian devil cancer cure
LONDON, UK, 10 March 2017 (BBC) - Scientists have discovered a potential treatment for a cancer that has ravaged Australia's Tasmanian devil population.



Does a new era of bleaching beckon for Indian Ocean coral reefs?
LONDON, UK, 9 March 2017 (Conversation) - The Chagos Archipelago is a British overseas territory located in the middle of the Indian Ocean, consisting of 55 islands distributed across six atolls, and covering an area the size of France.



Caribbean gearing up for marine resources treaty
BELMOPAN, Belize, 9 March 2017 (IDN) – The countries of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) have been fine-tuning their positions ahead of the next United Nations preparatory meeting to establish an international legally-binding agreement on sustainable use of marine resources.



Tesla built a huge solar energy plant on the island of Kauai
NEW YORK, US, 8 March 2017 (The Verge) - The Kauai project consists of a 52 megawatt-hour battery installation plus a 13 megawatt SolarCity solar farm.



Brown tree snakes are decimating Guam forests
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 8 March 2017 (Seeker) - A non-native snake species that has already wiped out most of Guam's tree-dwelling birds is also decimating the Pacific island's forests.



Maldives deny Saudi islands sale as anti-Riyadh protests grow
LONDON, UK, 8 March 2017 (NewArab) - The Maldives has denied it has sold a small group of islands to Saudi Arabia, after growing anti-Riyadh protests in the Indian Ocean island state.



An indigenous group reforests its corner of coastal New Guinea
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 7 March 2017 (Mongabay) - Located on the Siretsy river delta in Papua’s Asmat district is the picturesque hamlet of Yepem, the 655 residents of this coastal enclave on the shore of the Arafura Sea continue to eat traditional foods and practice cultural arts despite the rest of Asia’s gallop into the 21st century.



Wildlife numbers plummet on remote Melville Island
RENMARK, Australia, 7 March 2017 (ABC) - An alarming drop in native animal numbers on the Northern Territory's remote Melville Island has been blamed on feral cats and fires, researchers say.



A Christmas miracle? Perhaps someday
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 6 March 2017 (Mongabay) - Even as two lizard species have vanished forever from Christmas Island, conservationists are working hard to save the remaining reptiles.



Caribbean awaits Trump moves on climate funding, Paris deal
KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, 5 March 2017 (IPS) - Caribbean leaders worry that with climate change sceptic Donald Trump in the White House, it will be more difficult for small island developing states facing the brunt of climate change to secure the financing necessary to adapt to and mitigate against it.



148 outlying Japanese islands to get more support
TOKYO, Japan, 5 March 2017 (Japan News) - The government will designate 148 outlying islands close to Japan’s national borders as “inhabited outlying border islands,” aiming to maintain territorial integrity by increasing the number of inhabitants.



Maldives plan to embrace mass tourism sparks criticism and outrage
MALE, Maldives, 3 March 2017 (Guardian) - When Mohamed Nasheed, the young, first democratically elected president of the Maldives, said in 2008 that he was seeking to buy a new homeland to save his people from being inundated by rising sea levels, it made the country of 1,200 coral islands the moral leader in the UN climate talks and helped persuade rich countries to act.



The two sides of Indonesia’s Baluran National Park
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 2 March 2017 (Mongabay) - Where the savannahs in the southern area of Baluran National Park are stocked more and more with wildlife such as Javan rusa, Water buffalo, and, thanks to breeding efforts, Banteng, those in the northern part are stocked with cattle.



Indonesia pledges $1bn a year to curb ocean waste
LONDON, UK, 2 March 2017 (Guardian) - Indonesia has pledged up to $1bn a year to dramatically reduce the amount of plastic and other waste products polluting its waters.



Some Virginia barrier islands are shrinking by the day
WACHAPREAGUE, US, 2 March 2017 (Pilot) - The Atlantic Ocean streams through an inlet about four miles east of this Eastern Shore town, and hardly a week goes by without Rick Kellam motoring a skiff out that way.



Tiwi Islands Sistagirls prepare to wow Sydney Mardi Gras
SYDNEY, Australia, 2 March 2017 (ABC) - It took decades of fighting for recognition and several suicides before the Northern Territory's Tiwi Islands community finally accepted a group of Aboriginal transgender women.



Study could help Caribbean protect and restore super reefs
MIAMI, US, 1 March 2017 (Miami Herald) - Not all reefs are created equal, a distinction that fish seem to recognize but until now scientists largely overlooked.



From Spice Isle to blue innovation hub: Grenada’s vision for the future
NEW YORK, US, 1 March 2017 (UNDP) - The Caribbean country of Grenada, known by many as ‘Spice Isle’ for its production of nutmeg, cloves and other exotic spices is now setting its sights on being known as a world leader for innovation in the ‘blue economy’.



Will changes to Indonesia’s mining law hurt or help the environment?
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 1 March 2017 (Mongabay) - A recent change to Indonesia’s mineral export regulations has seen it locked into a high-stakes public confrontation with Freeport-McMoRan Inc., the U.S. company that operates one of the world’s biggest gold and copper mines in the province of Papua.



Caribbean leaders want swifter action on climate funding
ROSEAU, Dominica, 1 March 2017 (IPS) - When Tropical Storm Erika hit the tiny Caribbean island of Dominica on Aug. 27, 2015, it killed more than two dozen people, left nearly 600 homeless and wreaked damages totaling more than a billion dollars.



Orkney steps up calls for more autonomy
LONDON, UK, 28 February 2017 (BBC) - Orkney councillors have backed calls for the islands to be given greater control over their own affairs.



Seychelles Blue Bond initiative earns kudos
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 28 February 2017 (Nation) - Seychelles Blue Bond as an innovative mechanism for financing the Blue economy has received the 2017 Ocean Innovation Challenge award.



Kalaodi, Tidore’s eco-village
KALAODI, Indonesia, 28 February 2017 (Mongabay) - August through September is clove harvest season here in this corner of the Maluku Islands. The scent of clove flowers pierces the air over the winding, precipitous roads that lead to Kalaodi.



Marshall Islands first to ratify global HFC greenhouse gas pact
OSLO, Norway, 28 February 2017 (Reuters) - The Marshall Islands in the Pacific Ocean became the first nation on Tuesday to ratify a 2016 accord to cut the use of powerful factory-made greenhouse gases, saying the survival of the nation was at risk from climate change.



Survival of 10,000 orangutans in Borneo oil palm estates at stake
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 27 February 2017 (Mongabay) - Ever since the palm oil industry started its industrial-scale expansion in South-East Asia it has been under pressure from environmental activists and NGOs for its negative impacts.



The impacts of industrial-scale sand mining
LONDON, UK, 27 February 2017 (Guardian) - The most dramatic impact of ocean sand mining is surely felt in Indonesia, where sand miners have completely erased at least two dozen islands since 2005.



Campbell Island: Mysteries of the Sub-Antarctic
AUCKLAND, New Zealand, 27 February 2017 (NZ Herald) - The identity of a woman abandoned on Campbell Island shortly after it was discovered in 1810, is one of the greatest mysteries of the Sub-Antarctic.



Maritime boundary dispute between Timor-Leste and Australia
MELBOURNE, Australia, 27 February 2017 (IPS) - Timor-Leste wants the permanent maritime border between itself and Australia to lie along the median line. This would give sovereign rights to Timor-Leste over the potentially-lucrative Greater Sunrise oil and gas fields.



Puerto Rico’s Playuela beach could become a sprawling hotel complex
WASHINGTON, US, 26 February 2017 (NatGeog) - One of Puerto Rico's most iconic beaches, Playuela, is at the center of a controversy dividing the island's residents.



UN campaigns to turn the tide on ocean plastics
BALI, Indonesia, 26 February 2017 (ENS) - An unprecedented global campaign to eliminate major sources of marine litter within five years was launched this week by UN Environment, the United Nations agency formerly known as UNEP.



OMG measurements of Greenland give us a glimpse of future sea rise
LONDON, UK, 24 February 2017 (Guardian) - If you meet a group of climate scientists, and ask them how much sea levels will rise by say the year 2100, you will get a wide range of answers.



Rail link in Andaman Islands could threaten tribals
BENGALURU, India, 24 February 2017 (Asia Times) - Anthropologists are concerned over the implications of a proposed railway line linking Port Blair, the capital of the island chain, with Diglipur, the largest town of North Andaman Island.



Kiribati rejects Russian's proposal over islands
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 24 February 2017 (RNZ) - The Kiribati government has rejected a proposal by a Russian businessman and monarchist who wanted to use three of the country's uninhabited islands to revive the Romanov empire.



Sub-antarctic islands offer glimpse of pest-free New Zealand
OTAGO, New Zealand, 24 February 2017 (RNZ) - Maggie Barry returned today from leading a four-day Department of Conservation (DOC) delegation to Enderby and Auckland Islands, which are 465 kilometres south of Bluff.



How Denmark's Samso island switched to zero carbon
LONDON, UK, 23 February 2017 (Guardian) - Anyone doubting the potential of renewable energy need look no further than the Danish island of Samsø.



Study finds more than 350k trees illegally felled in Madagascar
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 23 February 2017 (Mongabay) - A study released this month by TRAFFIC, an NGO that monitors the wildlife trade, finds that governance has been so lacking in the forests of Madagascar in recent years that hundreds of thousands of trees have been illegally cut down in protected areas.



Oceans and SIDS: First think opportunity, then think blue
NEW YORK, US, 22 February 2017 (UNDP) - SIDS are thinking differently, especially when it comes to the ocean. Their self-characterization as Large Ocean States is more than symbolic, more than just words.  It represents a re-think on opportunities and challenges for small island states.



Wings on King project will reveal environmental health of King Island
LAUNCESTON, Australia, 18 February 2017 (Examiner) - A new initiative to be launched on King Island in April will track the long-term health of the environment to better inform management.