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Women bring light to remote villages on islands of Zanzibar
KINYASINI, Tanzania, 21 May 2019 (Reuters) - As a single mother, Salama Husein Haja was low in the pecking order in her village on Unguja, the largest and most populated island in the Zanzibar archipelago, and struggling to eke out a living for her family as a farmer.

Scientists fear impact of deep-sea mining on search for new medicines
LONDON, UK, 21 May 2019 (Guardian) - Bacteria from the ocean floor can beat superbugs and cancer. But habitats are at risk from the hunger for marine minerals.

Chagos Islands: isolated UK faces thrashing in UN vote on ownership
LONDON, UK, 21 May 2019 (Guardian) - The UK is facing a diplomatic rout at the United Nations on Wednesday when the general assembly is expected to vote overwhelmingly to demand Britain relinquish hold of one of the last vestiges of empire in the Indian Ocean.

Five sites recommended by IUCN for World Heritage List
GLAND, Switzerland, 20 May 2019 (IUCN) - Amongst them, France’s overseas territories, cover a whopping 67 million hectares of ocean and islands in the sub-Antarctic zone. This area surpasses the size continental France by nearly a quarter. The site protects one of the greatest concentrations of seabirds globally, with more than 50 million birds. With nearly 1.5 million hectares, Vatnajökull National Park spreads across 14% of Iceland’s territory.

Seychellois school children propagating native trees
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 20 May 2019 (SNA) - Seychellois school children are being given the capacity to participate in climate change resilience initiatives by managing native tree nurseries. 

Rise in global sea levels could have 'profound consequences'
LONDON, UK, 20 May 2019 (BBC) - Scientists believe that global sea levels could rise far more than predicted, due to accelerating melting in Greenland and Antarctica.

Philippine cities facing 'slow-motion disaster'
MANILA, Philippines, 20 May 2019 (AFP) - When Mary Ann San Jose moved to Sitio Pariahan more than two decades ago, she could walk to the local chapel. Today, reaching it requires a swim.

St Vincent $27 million geothermal energy project launched
KINGSTOWN, St Vincent, 20 May 2019 (|Caribbean News Now) - St Vincent and the Grenadines took a major step towards a cleaner and more secure energy future earlier this month by launching a multi-million-dollar geothermal energy-drilling project made possible with financing mobilised by the Caribbean Development Bank.

Montserrat Little Bay port development to boost economy
BRADES, Montserrat, 20 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - The government of Montserrat and the Caribbean Development Bank in cooperation with the United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Fund launched today with the Little Bay port development one of the largest projects in recent times in Montserrat.

Indian island residents vote with sinking hearts
GHORAMARA, India, 19 May 2019 (AFP) - Residents on Ghoramara fear that the votes they cast Sunday in India's election may be the last before their island sinks into the Bay of Bengal - a victim of climate change's growing toll.

Hopes dim for Manus, Nauru refugees with Australian election result
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 19 May 2019 (RNZ) - Refugees in Australia's offshore processing centres on Nauru and Papua New Guinea's Manus Island had their hopes pinned on a Labor victory yesterday. Labor's leader Bill Shorten had promised to expedite the resettlement of the remaining refugees in third countries, since they are banned from ever settling in Australia.

Skomer island's Manx shearwater census shows 10% rise
LONDON, UK, 19 May 2019 (BBC) - One of Wales' most important seabirds has increased in numbers by 10%, according to an island census. Skomer off Pembrokeshire is home to about half of the world's population of Manx shearwater birds.

China gaining foothold in the Bahamas, America's doorstep
NASSAU, Bahamas, 17 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - For over eight years, the US has gone without an ambassador to The Bahamas, the fact China is now taking advantage of an American void explains how US neglect for the island nation has given China a foothold on America’s doorstep.

Dominica's newest permaculture demonstration site
ROSEAU, Dominica, 17 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - Free Up Farm is a permaculture demonstration site which will showcase Moringa Olifera cultivation, workshops, permaculture design, farm-to-table dining, and long-term projects for interested youth, farmers and voluntarists.

World Bank offers Dominica US$27 million for geo-energy
ROSEAU, Dominica, 17 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - Dominica reached a new milestone in its feat to become “the world’s first climate-resilient nation,” when prime minister Roosevelt Skerrit and the World Bank regional director Tahseen Khan signed a financing agreement earlier this month worth US$27 million towards developing a 7MW geothermal plant on the island.

East Timor at the forefront of fixing the global recycling crisis
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 17 May 2019 (SMH) - The tiny nation of Timor-Leste hopes to become the world’s first ‘‘plastic neutral’’ country, after signing a deal to create a new chemical recycling plant with Australian technology.

The volcano that built Bermuda is unlike any other on Earth
WASHINGTON, US, 17 May 2019 (NatGeog) - No two volcanoes are the same, but they all form in the same handful of ways. All, it seems, except for the ancient volcano forming the foundations of the island of Bermuda.

Extreme weather puts traditional livelihoods in peril in Sri Lanka
JAFFNA, Sri Lanka, 17 May 2019 (Mongabay) - New assessments identify Sri Lanka’s northern region as a hotspot for climate change impacts, with the district of Jaffna named the top hotspot.

Solomon Islanders tried to stop the logging of their forests
HONIARA, Solomon Islands, 17 May 2019 (Mongabay) - A group of residents of Nende Island in the Solomon Islands claim corrupt government practices allowed a logging company to get a license to log the island’s primary forests, as well as cropland.

A new election brings little hope for Solomon Islands vanishing forests
HONIARA, Solomon Islands, 17 May 2019 (Mongabay) -Longstanding allegations of corruption plague forest governance in the Solomon Islands, with residents and NGOs claiming government officials are allowing logging to illegally penetrate primary forests on community and ancestral land.

Bikini Atoll buys climate change bolthole land in Hawaii
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 17 May 2019 (RNZ) - The local government of Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands has bought hundreds of acres of land in Hawaii as a climate change bolthole.

Small Island Big Song
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 17 May 2019 (RNZ) - Small Island Big Song is an album that unites indigenous musicians from seafaring cultures across the Pacific & Indian Oceans. All the songs were recorded in nature, using traditional instruments and languages, creating a contemporary and relevant musical statement in the face of climate change.

Reef wipeout: surfers fight China-linked mega resort in Fiji
MALOLO ISLAND, Fiji, 17 May 2019 (Guardian) - It was one of the most surreal days of Jona Ratu’s life. On a May morning in 2018 he strolled down to the palm-fringed beach on a parcel of land he owns on idyllic Malolo island to find a digger parked on the coral reef.

Taiwan legalises same-sex marriages
LONDON, UK, 17 May 2019 (BBC) - Taiwan's parliament has become the first in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage following a vote on Friday.

The Puerto Rican island of Vieques still has no hospital
NEW YORK, US, 16 May 2019 (NBC) - Almost two years after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, the smaller island of Vieques still does not have a hospital. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has less than three weeks to explain to Congress why the agency has no concrete plans to help rebuild the facility.

Why islanders celebrate Rotuma Day
AUCKLAND, New Zealand, 16 May 2019 (RNZ) - Rotuma is a Fijian dependency but closer to Tuvalu than to Suva and, while it's influenced by Melanesian Fiji, the Rotuman culture is a little similar to that of Tonga and Samoa.

Enhancing resilience in Niue
APIA, Samoa, 16 May 2019 (SPREP) - Reducing risk, and saving lives and livelihoods in Niue is at the core of a new project launched this week in the island nation.  The project will enhance the access to and understanding of weather, climate and disaster information from their National Meteorological Service.  

Indonesian indigenous groups fear another land grab
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 16 May 2019 (Mongabay) - In the wake of Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s announcement that he intends to move the nation’s capital from Jakarta, some have expressed concerns that the plan could result in the seizure of lands belonging to indigenous communities.

Frontex mandate expanded
BRUSSELS, Belgium, 16 May 2019 (IPS) - The European Border and Coast Guard agency, Frontex, plans to deploy 10 000 armed border guards by 2027 to patrol the EU's land and sea borders.

UN chief Guterres concerned nuclear 'coffin' leaking into Pacific
SUVA, Fiji, 16 May 2019 (Al Jazeera) - The UN Secretary-General has raised concerns that a concrete dome built in the late 1970s on Enewetak Atoll in the Marshall Islands to contain waste from atomic bomb tests is leaking radioactive material into the Pacific.

Plastic piling up on remote islands in the Indian Ocean
WASHINGTON, US, 16 May 2019 (NPR) - When a marine biologist from Australia traveled to the Cocos Keeling Islands in the Indian Ocean to see how much plastic waste had washed up on the beaches, here's just part of what she found: "373,000 toothbrushes and around 975,000 shoes, largely flip-flops".

'One day we'll disappear': Tuvalu's sinking islands
FUNAFUTI, Tuvalu, 16 May 2019 (Guardian) - Rising seas are on the verge of swallowing two of the tiny archipelago’s nine islands, and the encroaching waves haunt locals’ dreams.

The pistachios that need police protection
BRONTE, Italy, 16 May 2019 (BBC) - Sicily is home to the world's most-prized variety of the seed - the pistacchio verde di Bronte, or green pistachio from Bronte.

Philippines recalls ambassador to Canada in row over rubbish
LONDON, UK, 16 May 2019 (BBC) - The Philippines has recalled its ambassador to Canada in an escalating row over the disposal of waste wrongly labelled as recyclable.

'Extraordinary thinning' of ice sheets revealed deep inside Antarctica
LONDON, UK, 16 May 2019 (Guardian) - Ice losses are rapidly spreading deep into the interior of the Antarctic, new analysis of satellite data shows.

In Indonesia, a flawed certification scheme lets illegal loggers raze away
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 16 May 2019 (Mongabay) - A massive series of seizures of timber from rare tree species has thrown into question the effectiveness of Indonesia’s existing mechanisms to tackle illegal logging.

Dominica closer to becoming world's first climate resilient nation
ROSEAU, Dominica, 15 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - Following hurricanes Erika and Maria’s devastation to Dominica, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit became a beacon of hope and rose to the challenge not only to ensure that more than 5,000 Dominicans will be able to relocate into new homes, he also embarked on an ambitious goal to ensure that Dominica becomes the world’s first climate resistant nation.

Trump's interior secretary: I haven't 'lost sleep' over record CO2 levels
WASHINGTON, US, 15 May 2019 (Guardian) - Last week the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii observed carbon dioxide levels of 415 parts per million in the atmosphere – the highest ever documented.

On the island of Java, a social forestry scheme creates jobs at home
KALIBIRU, Indonesia, 15 May 2019 (Mongabay) - For years, Parjan hoped his community might one day gain title to the Menoreh Hills. The green valley northwest of the Javan city of Yogyakarta was tilled and tended to by generations of the same families as sultans came and went.

Finca Conciencia is building food sovereignty on Vieques Island
NEW YORK, US, 15 May 2019 (Civil Eats) - “You are not allergic to bees, right?” asks Ana Elisa Pérez Quintero, who helps run Finca Conciencia, the only agro-ecological farm on Vieques, an island located about seven miles off the east coast of Puerto Rico, before we enter the property through a heavy wooden gate.

Meet the Arctic farmer hoping to make his town more sustainable
LONDON, UK, 15 May 2019 (BBC) - Longyearbyen, on the Arctic's Svalbard Islands, is a hostile natural environment for plants, with no daylight for three months each year.

Life in the North Atlantic depends on this floating seaweed
WASHINGTON, US, 15 May 2019 (NatGeog) - The Sargasso Sea, part of the vast whirlpool known as the North Atlantic gyre, often has been described as an oceanic desert - and it would appear to be, if it weren’t for the floating mats of sargassum.

UN chief issues climate plea from Pacific 'frontline'
LONDON, UK, 15 May 2019 (Guardian) - Governments around the world must introduce carbon taxes, halt plans for new coal plants and accelerate the closure of existing ones if damage to the Pacific from climate change is to be limited, the UN secretary general has told Pacific leaders on his first visit to the region.

'Super corals' give glimmer of hope for world's dying reefs
TOKYO, Japan, 14 May 2019 (AFP) - Hawaiian "super corals" that have recovered despite living in warm and acidic water offer a glimmer of hope that dying reefs across the world could be saved, a new study says.

Jakobshavn Isbrae: Mighty Greenland glacier slams on brakes
LONDON, UK, 14 May 2019 (BBC) - European satellites have detailed the abrupt change in behaviour of one of Greenland's most important glaciers.

The hidden world of the doctors Cuba sends overseas
LONDON, UK, 14 May 2019 (BBC) - With more than 30,000 Cuban doctors currently active in 67 countries - many in Latin America and Africa, but also European nations including Portugal and Italy - Cuba's authorities draw up strict rules in an attempt to prevent citizens defecting once abroad.

UN agency meets to tackle pollution and emissions by ships
LONDON, UK, 14 May 2019 (Guardian) - This week is the 74th meeting of the marine environmental protection committee of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and it represents one of the best hopes of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from a large and growing sector.

Seychelles food waste reduction programme
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 14 May 2019 (SNA) - The “Don’t Waste Eat!” food waste reduction programme was launched in July 2018 by the Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Foundation, in cooperation with Betterfly Tourism - a software publisher for tourism profession.

Montserrat launches video on climate change and fisheries sector
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, 13 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - The Caribbean Natural Resources Institute (CANARI), in collaboration with Montserrat stakeholders, have created a new video entitled “Our Changing Fisheries: Voices from Montserrat.”

Saving Lofoten Islands: Norway's turn towards biodiversity
LOFOTEN ISLANDS, Norway, 13 May 2019 (Al Jazeera) - Norway has earned billions of dollars exporting oil and gas, and it still boasts of vast untapped resources. Many of them lie in areas which are rich in biodiversity and there is growing pressure to stop drilling for oil.

PM's claim Coalition saved GBR condemned as ridiculous
LONDON, UK, 13 May 2019 (Guardian) - Scott Morrison has credited his government as having “saved” the Great Barrier Reef, a claim rejected as “ridiculous” by scientists, environment groups and the Queensland government.

Governments look to 'Smart Islands' for solutions
NEW YORK, US, 13 May 2019 (Forbes) - While cities are often seen as centers of innovation, a growing number of islands are quietly leading the way in smart technology. 

Sicilians have affinity for the Islamic world in their DNA
PALERMO, Italy, 13 May 2019 (Al Jazeera) - The sound of about two dozen children practising Quran recitations fills the otherwise empty Islamic Cultural Center of Via Roma in Palermo, Italy.

Greece responds strongly to Turkish statement on Aegean islands
ATHENS, Greece, 12 May 2019 (Kathimerini) - Greece’s foreign ministry has responded strongly to a claim by its Turkish counterpart that Greece wants to drag NATO into a dispute between itself and Turkey.

Their islands are being eroded and so are their human rights
MASIG ISLAND, Australia, 12 May 2019 (NYT) - Every weekend, Yessie Mosby visits the sandy, washed-out graves of his ancestors to gather their scattered bones. Their shallow burial place, just yards from the shore of Masig Island, north of mainland Australia, has been eroded by rising seas.

Solomon Islands disappearing beneath rising sea
SYDNEY, Australia, 12 May 2019 (9News) - In the past 20 years, sea levels in the Solomon Islands have risen over 15 centimetres. It doesn't sound like much, but it's led to many islands losing critical land mass. Others have disappeared completely.

Cuba's gay rights activists take to the streets defiant and proud
HAVANA, Cuba, 12 May 2019 (Guardian) - The annual gay pride parade in Cuba’s capital is usually an upbeat, vivacious conga. Since it was launched in 2007, it has provided a moment for gay and transgender people to celebrate their sexuality, identity and assert their right to exist in public space.

Experimental farmer on Cocos Islands
PERTH, Australia, 12 May 2019 (ABC) - Despite having no soil, no capital, cripplingly high freight costs and a brace of ducks he doesn't know what to do with, a micro-farmer is determined to build a viable agricultural business on the Cocos (Keeling) Islands.

Tesla's busted solar panels tell a cautionary tale
VIEQUES, Puerto Rico, 11 May 2019 (HuffPost) - It looks like something out a brochure advertising what renewable energy could offer a remote, storm-ravaged island.

Obituary: Sprent Dabwido, Nauru's former president
LONDON, UK, 11 May 2019 (BBC) - When Sprent Dabwido died on Wednesday aged 46, it was in rural eastern Australia, 2,300 miles from home. His home was the tiny Pacific island nation of Nauru, roughly halfway between Australia and Hawaii, which he led as president for two years.

Cuba forced into rationing as US sanctions and Venezuela crisis bite
LONDON, UK, 11 May 2019 (Guardian) - The Cuban government has announced that it is launching widespread rationing of chicken, eggs, rice, beans, soap and other basic products in the face of a grave economic crisis.

Nearly all countries agree to stem flow of plastic waste
LONDON, UK, 11 May 2019 (Guardian) - Almost all the world’s countries have agreed on a deal aimed at restricting shipments of hard-to-recycle plastic waste to poorer countries, the United Nations announced on Friday.

Danish isle eyes fossil fuel-free future
SAMSO, Denmark, 10 May 2019 (Reuters) - Eleven years after showing the world how to meet electricity needs entirely from renewable energy sources, the island is embarking on the next step. Dubbed Samso 3.0, it aims to stop the use of fossil fuels completely by 2030, 20 years before the European Union is set to achieve that goal.

The Caribbean civil society SDGs knowledge platform is now live
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, 10 May 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - The Caribbean Civil Society SDGs Knowledge Platform is now live.

Climate change impacts to the people of Tigtabon Island
MANILA, Philippines, 10 May 2019 (350 Pilipinas) - Tigtabon is an island barangay in Zamboanga City located in Mindanao, south of the Philippines. It has a total land area of 267,452 square meters and a population of 3,817 as of the 2015 census. Among the inhabitants of the Tigtabon island are the Sama Badjao indigenous peoples who are loosely called “sea people” or “sea nomads” because of their boat dwelling lifestyle.

Three tiny islands in the Outer Hebrides to get new flags
EDINBURGH, UK, 10 May 2019 (Scotsman) - They are the tiny islands with big identities. Now communities on Eriskay, Benbecula and North Uist (the latter being where GIN is based) are coming together to design new flags for each of the Hebridean islands that will reflect the culture, history and values of the place they call home.

Court decision deals major blow to Big Island bio-energy plant
HONOLULU, Hawaii, 10 May 2019 (HNN) - The state Supreme Court has dealt another setback to a company building a huge bio-energy plant on the Big Island - although this wasn’t the company’s fault.

Future support for nature in UK Overseas Territories
LONDON, UK, 10 May 2019 (GOV.UK) - A ten week Call for Evidence has been launched by the UK Government today to gather knowledge on safeguarding nature in the UK OTs. Many of the OTs are globally significant in their ecological richness, containing over 90 per cent of the UK’s marine and terrestrial nature.

How life in Antarctica thrives on penguin poop
WASHINGTON, US, 10 May 2019 (AFP) - For more than half a century, biologists studying Antarctica focused their research on understanding how organisms cope with the continent's severe drought and the coldest conditions on the planet.

Solomon Islands to refloat ship after oil spill
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 10 May 2019 (RNZ) - Since early February, bulk carrier, Solomon Trader, has been wedged on a reef off Rennell Island, where it has spilled an estimated 100 tonnes of oil.

Sardinia and Malta are hotbeds of songbird poaching
CAGLIARI, Italy, 10 May 2019 (NatGeog) - As a choir of songbirds creates a melodic soundtrack, 10 anti-poaching activists are hiding out among dense shrubs in the mountains overlooking this city on the southern Italian island of Sardinia.

A Malagasy community races the timber mafia to save its forest
VOHIBOLA, Madagascar, 10 May 2019 (Mongabay) - The Vohibola forest is one of the last remaining primary forests along Madagascar’s eastern coast, supporting a large variety of endemic species found nowhere else on Earth.

How half a tonne of cocaine transformed the life of an island
LONDON, UK, 10 May 2019 (Guardian) - In 2001, a smugglers’ yacht washed up in the Azores and disgorged its contents. The island of São Miguel was quickly flooded with high-grade cocaine – and nearly 20 years on, it is still feeling the effects.

Wariness over Joko Widodo vow to get tough on land disputes
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 10 May 2019 (Mongabay) - In the space of a few days, Indonesian President Joko Widodo has vowed to side with local communities in their disputes over land with large companies - yet also moved to shield some of the very worst aggressors from scrutiny by obscuring their land holdings.

Scientists test radical ways to fix Earth's climate
LONDON, UK, 10 May 2019 (BBC) - Scientists in Cambridge plan to set up a research centre to develop new ways to repair the Earth's climate. It will investigate radical approaches such as refreezing the Earth's poles and removing CO2 from the atmosphere.

Evolution brought rare flightless bird species back from the dead
WASHINGTON, US, 9 May 2019 (UPI) - Evolution produced the same flightless bird species twice, with each occurrence separated by tens of thousands of years. The phenomena, called iterative evolution, helped bring the flightless rail species back from the dead.

The Colombian teen fighting to protect her island's coral reefs
BONN, Germany, 9 May 2019 (DW) - Yassandra Marcela Barrios Castro is talking to a small group of fishermen on the shore of Tierra Bomba, an island off the coast of Cartagena in northern Colombia.

The worrying future of Greece's most Instagrammable island
ATHENS, Greece, 9 May 2019 (The Economist) - Influencers love Santorini’s blue domes and dramatic landscapes but the tourists who follow in their wake are proving hard to manage.

Cyprus's emblematic wild sheep lock horns with mountain farmers
GERAKIES, Cyprus, 9 May 2019 (AFP) - Surveying his orchard in the Troodos Mountains, Cypriot farmer John Papadouris is convinced the island's treasured wild sheep would have destroyed his crop without action.

Yemen government accuses UAE of landing separatists on Socotra
DUBAI, UAE, 9 May 2019 (Reuters) - The Yemeni government has accused the United Arab Emirates of landing around 100 separatist troops on a remote island in the Arabian Sea this week, a claim the UAE denied, deepening a rift between nominal allies in Yemen’s war.

Foreign buyers snap up Sicilian homes at auction
PALERMO, Sicily, 9 May 2019 (Guardian) - The Sicilian town that put its empty houses up for sale for €1 each to try to reverse its decline, has sold 16 of them to foreign buyers. Though they sold for slightly more than €1.

Amid aquaculture boom, report guides investors toward sustainability
ARLINGTON, US, 8 May 2019 (Mongabay) - A new report released today 'Towards a Blue Revolution', aims to guide the private sector, NGOs and policymakers toward better aquaculture strategies that can both meet the growing global seafood demand and operate “in harmony with ocean ecosystems.”

Block Island offshore wind farm improves fishing & tourism
RHODE ISLAND, US, 8 May 2019 (Clean Technica) - When the plan to install wind turbines off the coast of Block Island, 12 miles from the shore of Rhode Island, was announced, there were the usual concerns.

New Caledonia readies for election
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 8 May 2019 (RNZ) - Six months after New Caledonia voted against independence from France, this weekend's provincial elections will offer a new opportunity to test the same question.

U.S. Marines target forest in Guam
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 8 May 2019 (Mongabay) - The U.S. Marine Corps is building a base on Guam that will destroy 400 hectares of limestone forest, habitat for numerous endangered species. As mitigation, the military is funding forest “enhancement” to remove invasive species from fenced zones and restore seed dispersal by native birds.

Scenes from the new Cold War unfolding at the top of the world
WASHINGTON, US, 8 May 2019 (NatGeog) - Today, the Arctic is routinely described as an emerging frontier, and many polar nations, along with a few that have no Arctic borders, are angling for access to the region’s rich stores of fish, gas, oil, and other mineral resources.

Wave power firm chooses King Island for model generator
HOBART, Australia, 8 May 2019 (The Advocate) - King Island residents will soon reap an unusual benefit from the relentless rolling waves off the Island's east coast. Wave Swell Energy Ltd plans to switch on a 200 kilowatt power generator, which will sit in the ocean off the coast near Grassy.

Sustainable tourism: why the Faroe Islands closed for maintenance
LONDON, UK, 8 May 2019 (Guardian) - When the north Atlantic islands shut for a weekend to all but ‘voluntourists’ doing conservation projects, it was a win-win for locals and visitors.

Fiji PM slaps down Liberal MP John Alexander's climate advice
LONDON, UK, 8 May 2019 (Guardian) - Fiji’s prime minister, Frank Bainimarama, has slapped down the Liberal MP John Alexander for suggesting Australia should prioritise helping people in the Pacific move to higher ground to avoid sea-level rise over reducing its use of coal.

A landmark for the Blockchain Island
VALLETTA, Malta,  7 May 2019 (Cointelegraph) - Malta becoming the "Blockchain Island" is no longer a distant dream but a reality, which - within a very short time frame and through our tireless commitment to incorporate, use and embrace this new, emergent technology - has propelled our country to the forefront of the blockchain sphere; reaffirming our position as a main point of reference for other countries that will inevitably follow.

Modern sculpture meets ancient Greece in unique island exhibition
DELOS, Greece, 7 May 2019 (AFP) - A stone's throw from the Greek island of Mykonos lies Delos, an uninhabited islet a world away from its neighbour's glamorous nightlife.

The search for a matriarchy on a remote Greek island
KARPATHOS, Greece, 7 May 2019 (CNN) - White and pastel-washed buildings set atop rugged hills overlook clear, blue water. The sun sets in breathtaking fashion. The Karpathos moon is so full and bright that intrepid traveler Katie Sehl figured it for a lamp or a giant spotlight the first time she saw it.

US climate objections sink Arctic Council accord in Finland
LONDON, UK, 7 May 2019 (BBC) - US objections to wording on climate change prevented Arctic nations signing a joint statement at a summit in Finland, delegates said.

The danger to Taiwan's high seas fishermen
TAIPEI, Taiwan, 6 May 2019 (The Interpreter) - On February 20, the Taiwan-flagged Wen Peng became the site of an alleged double murder at sea. According to Taiwan’s Fisheries Agency, a conflict broke out about 900 nautical miles off the south coast of Sri Lanka between fishermen and the boat’s chief officer, who allegedly killed one Filipino and one Indonesian.

Scientists carry out genetic study on people of Lakshadweep Islands
HYDERABAD, India, 6 May 2019 (TH) - Lakshadweep is an archipelago of 36 islands, scattered over approximately 78,000 square km of the Arabian Sea, 200-440 kms off the south-western coast of India, with population of approximately 65,000. However, the first human settlement of this archipelago is not clear.

TRASS Seychelles turns 10
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 6 May 2019 (SNA) - Terrestrial Restoration Action Society of Seychelles (TRASS), the only environmental not-for-profit based on the second-most populated island of Praslin, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year by leading forest restoration efforts by producing 15,000 trees annually.

Most communities not seeing promised oil palm payoff in Borneo
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 6 May 2019 (Mongabay) - A new study analyzing standards of living over a 14-year period across more than 5,000 villages in Indonesian Borneo finds that oil palm development can have both positive and negative impacts on various aspects of a village’s well-being.

Lord Howe Island tense as rat baiting begins
LONDON, UK, 6 May 2019 (Guardian) - For the past few weeks little plastic boxes have been popping up on Lord Howe Island. By mid-May the boxes will be filled with poison-laced grain pellets as part of an ambitious attempt to eradicate rats and mice from the world heritage-listed island.

Humans 'threaten 1m species with extinction'
LONDON, UK, 6 May 2019 (BBC) - On land, in the seas, in the sky, the devastating impact of humans on nature is laid bare in a compelling UN report.

The woman walking on the edge of hidden islands
LONDON, UK, 6 May 2019 (BBC) - Islandeering shares the same psychology as climbing to the summit of a mountain, according to Lisa Drewe, the woman who invented the term.

Tiny Tuvalu desperate for skin protection
LONDON, UK, 5 May 2019 (Guardian) - Tuvalu is on the frontline of climate change but locals must fly to Fiji if they want to buy sunscreen.

Navassa Island: The U.S.'s 160-year forgotten tragedy
WASHINGTON, US, 5 May 2019 (HNN) - On December 8, 1859, to forestall a Haitian attempt to take possession of Navassa, a Caribbean island south of Cuba, U.S. Secretary of State Lewis Cass made a momentous decision. He officially recognized an American ship captain’s claim filed under the Guano Islands Act of 1856. 

Experts discuss EbA in Seychelles climate change strategies
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 3 May 2019 (SNA) - The inclusion of marine and coastal ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) into Seychelles’ climate change strategies was the topic of discussion by local experts who met recently.

Call for lasting ban on trade in Malagasy precious timber
NEW YORK, US, 3 May 2019 (Mongabay) - For over a decade Madagascar has wrestled with a thorny question: What to do with stockpiles of illegal precious timber in government custody? A new analysis contends that selling off the confiscated timber would fuel rather than curb illegal felling and trade of endangered tree species.

Bigger catches for a fishing village protecting its mangroves
SUNGAI NIBUNG, Indonesia, 3 May 2019 (Mongabay) - For years, weak law enforcement and low public awareness meant environmentally dangerous practices were commonly employed in countries like Indonesia.

Water's circular economy project making headway on three islands
ATHENS, Greece, 3 May 2019 (Kathimerini) - Greece is taking a lead in developing a circular economy through the EU-funded Hydrousa project, a scientific program aimed at the extraction of water from unconventional sources to be used for irrigation and even for human consumption on the country’s islands.

What's the future for Sri Lanka's 'lost' population of whales?
LONDON, UK, 3 May 2019 (Guardian) - Unlike western nations, Sri Lanka has never had a culture of using whales as a resource – until now. The whales that come to this part of the Indian Ocean each spring have hitherto escaped unwanted human attention.

Biodiversity heroes: The teenagers saving Madagascar's wildlife
LONDON, UK, 3 May 2019 (BBC) - The island nation of Madagascar has a dubious accolade: it is the world-leader in deforestation. Now, some of the island's teenagers have started a farming revolution - working to stop food production from destroying the island's rich rainforest.

On Java's coast, a natural approach to holding back the waters
NEW HAVEN, US, 2 May 2019 (Yale E360) - The Indonesian island of Java has lost 70 percent of the mangroves that once protected its coast from erosion and flooding. Now villagers are using natural wooden barriers to try to restore the mangrove forests and save their lands and homes from being washed away.

ADB launches $5-billion action plan for 'blue economies'
NADI, Fiji, 2 May 2019 (Philstar) - With commercial fish stocks seen to disappear by 2048 and 90 percent of coral reefs by 2052, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) launched here yesterday a $5-billion initiative to finance an action plan for promoting ocean health and so-called blue economies.

Mozambique holiday isle left in ruins by cyclone
IBO, Mozambique, 1 May 2019 (AFP) - From the air, Ibo island on the Quirimbas Archipelago off Mozambique's northeast coast, was speckled with flattened homes and water-logged farmland, testament to the destructive force of Cyclone Kenneth.

Aquaculture projects threaten Myanmar's remaining mangroves
TANINTHARYI, Myanmar, 1 May 2019 (Mongabay) - Most of the waterways surrounding the islands of the Mergui archipelago in the Andaman Sea are lined with mangroves, and the one leading into the island of Kala from the east was no different.

Corbyn condemns May's defiance of Chagos Islands ruling
LONDON, UK, 1 May 2019 (Guardian) - Jeremy Corbyn has written to the prime minister condemning her decision to defy a ruling of the UN’s principal court which concluded that Britain should hand back the Chagos Islands to Mauritius.

Early warning systems helping to build resilience in Tuvalu
SUVA, Fiji, 1 May 2019 (SPREP) - In 2015, Tropical Cyclone Pam located near Vanuatu, over 1,000 kms away from Tuvalu, yet it caught Tuvalu unaware as it wreaked havoc in all of its nine islands.  This has led to the development of forecasting model software to help ensure this never happens again.

Building the world's biggest MPA
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 30 April 2019 (Mongabay) - In July 2017, the South Pacific nation of the Cook Islands made a bold bid to convert its entire territorial waters, the exclusive economic zone, into a mixed-use marine protected area.

The role of soft power in China's influence in the Pacific islands
HOBART, Australia, 30 April 2019 (The Strategist) - Just why the concept of soft power has become such an accepted explanation for the spread of Chinese influence in the Pacific islands is something of a conundrum.

The last chance for Madagascar's biodiversity
BANGOR, UK, 29 April 2019 (Phys.org) - Scientists from around the world have joined together to identify the most important actions needed by Madagascar's new government to prevent species and habitats being lost for ever.

Renewables to become the norm for the Caribbean
KINGSTON, Jamaica, 29 April 2019 (IPS) - Jamaica and other SIDS are embracing renewable energy as part of their plans to become decarbonised in the coming decades. The Prime Minister of Jamaica, Andrew Holness, has committed the island nation to transitioning to 50 percent renewable energy by 2030.

Green sea turtles are bouncing back around U.S. Pacific islands
WASHINGTON, US, 29 April 2019 (Smithsonian) - Surveys show the species increasing 8 percent near Hawaii and 4 percent elsewhere, though hawksbill turtles aren’t faring as well.

Indonesia plans to move capital city out of crowded Java island
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 29 April 2019 (Reuters) - Indonesia’s president has decided to move the capital of the world’s fourth most populous country away from the crowded main island of Java, but has yet to finalize a new location.

US Southeast Atlantic coast facing high threat of sea-level rise
ORLANDO, US, 29 April 2019 (SPX) - New research shows 75 percent of the Atlantic Coast from North Carolina to Central Florida will be highly vulnerable to erosion and inundation from rising tides by 2030, negatively impacting many coastal species' nesting habitats.

As rain grows patchier, Andaman and Nicobar island farmers adapt
CHOULDARI, India, 29 April 2019 (Reuters) - Tapan Mondal used to grow rice, when the rainfall over India’s Andaman and Nicobar Islands was still reliable in the dry season, showering the thin layer of island soil with enough moisture for crops to survive until the monsoon.

Major IPBES report to highlight natural and human emergency
LONDON, UK, 28 April 2019 (BBC) - Scientists and government officials meet this week in Paris to finalise a key assessment on humanity's relationship with nature. The Intergovernmental Panel for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, or IPBES, will issue the first report of this type since 2005.

Life on the tiny Scottish island of Ulva
LONDON, UK, 28 April 2019 (Independent) - Ulva - a rugged seven-by-three-mile crown a couple of minutes over the water from its bigger Inner Hebrides neighbour Mull – has, for two centuries, been an island in decline.

Marker Wadden, the manmade Dutch archipelago
LONDON, UK, 27 April 2019 (Guardian) - It takes about an hour on the ferry, across often choppy waters, to reach the newest bit of the Netherlands. For those sailing in from the port of Lelystad, the first sign of the Marker Wadden is a long finger of sand dunes designed to protect against flooding.

Bahamas needs strong legislation to prevent cruise line pollution
NASSAU, Bahamas, 26 April 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - The Bahamas tourism minister Dionisio D’Aguilar is very concerned about allegations emerging from a US court case that Carnival cruise ships had dumped nearly half a million gallons of sewage in Bahamian waters in 2017.

The real cost of using petro-based plastics
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, 26 April 2019 (Caribbean360) - Barbados imported over 100 million individual plastic bags in 2017 – that is enough plastic to wrap around this island 368 times. It also imported 150,000 pounds of plastic cups, equivalent to 43 ZR vans that same year, and 140,000 pounds of plastic straws, equal to the weight of nine 40-foot containers.

Chile's 'Blue Cop' will push leaders to protect oceans to heal climate
LONDON, UK, 25 April 2019 (CHN) - Chile plans to use this year’s UN climate talks to focus attention on the world’s most important carbon sponge – the oceans.

How the island of Zlarin is ditching single-use plastics
ZAGREB, Croatia, 25 April 2019 (Resilience) - As the European Union votes to ban single-use plastics by 2021, one small island in the Adriatic Sea is already making good progress.

Creating a high-tech island to save the Kakapo
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 25 April 2019 (Mongabay) - Scientists in New Zealand are combining tracking, genomics, and drone technologies to save the kakapo, the giant flightless parrot nearly eradicated by invasive predators, such as dogs, rats, and cats brought by human settlers.

China's island cities: Treasure or trouble for Asia?
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, 25 April 2019 (AFP) - A high-rise city the size of central London rising out of the ocean next to Sri Lanka's capital is laying down another marker for China's global infrastructure ambitions whose epic scope is sounding alarm bells in Asia and beyond.

New plan gives Pacific people chance to stay home
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 25 April 2019 (Newsroom) - For Pacific countries like Kiribati, the threat of climate change means an uncertain future for the islands, and the people that occupy them.

Tribe has radical plan to feed a pod of starving orcas
SAN JUAN ISLAND, US, 25 April 2019 (Guardian) - Today wild Chinook fisheries are in decline, and the orcas are starving. Julius is the chairman of the Lummi Nation, a tribe pushing an unorthodox policy. They are feeding salmon to the wild whales.

Photographer Margaret Fay Shaw remembered in new film
LONDON, UK, 25 April 2019 (BBC) - A new film celebrating the life and work of one of the world's first female photographers and cinematographers is to be given its premiere next month in South Uist during the island's Moladh Uibhist weekend.

Coffee waste 'could replace palm oil'
LONDON, UK, 25 April 2019 (BBC) - A pair of Scottish entrepreneurs are aiming to go global with their hope to replace palm oil using coffee waste.

Antarctica: Thousands of emperor penguin chicks wiped out
LONDON, UK, 25 April 2019 (BBC) - Thousands of emperor penguin chicks drowned when the sea-ice on which they were being raised was destroyed in severe weather. The catastrophe occurred in 2016 in Antarctica's Weddell Sea.

In Indonesia, a paper giant shuffles a litany of land conflicts
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 24 April 2019 (Mongabay) - One of the world’s biggest paper producers has left a trail of conflicts in its two-decade pursuit to develop pulpwood plantations on land also claimed by local communities in Indonesia, activists say.

Protests erupt in Solomon Islands
SYDNEY, Australia, 24 April 2019 (ABC) - Legislators have appointed political veteran Manasseh Sogavare as the Prime Minister of Solomon Islands - for the fourth time - but his victory has already stoked tensions in the capital Honiara.

Indonesia trains its citizens to deal with sea-mammal strandings
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 24 April 2019 (Mongabay) - In November 2017, when locals spotted 10 sperm whales stranded on a beach on the island of Sumatra, they had no idea what to do.

PEI elevates Green party to opposition in Canadian first
TORONTO, Canada, 24 April 2019 (Guardian) - A Green party will form the official opposition for the first time in Canadian history, following a closely watched election in the province of Prince Edward Island. The unprecedented result signifies a major milestone for the environmentally oriented political party.

Seabird guano speeds up coral growth
NEW YORK, US, 24 April 2019 (Scientific American) - When marine biologist Candida Savage was collecting samples of nitrogen and other nutrients in the coastal waters of Fiji, she was jarred by what she found at one horseshoe-shaped coral reef: The nitrogen levels were off the charts.

Zoologists identify two new bird species in Indonesia
DUBLIN, Ireland, 24 April 2018 (UPI) - Researchers have discovered two new bird species on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. The two species belong to the white-eyes family.

Climate change tests on Orkney's Neolithic sites
LONDON, UK, 24 April 2019 (BBC) - International scientists are meeting in Orkney to develop a system for assessing the risks to world heritage sites posed by climate change.

Cuba's government mocked by stampede of ostrich memes
LONDON, UK, 24 April 2019 (BBC) - An animal exotic to most Cubans has become an online obsession - but not for the reasons one of the island's revolutionary heroes was hoping.

Hawaii's islands are under threat from rising sea levels
NEW YORK, US, 23 April 2019 (Fox News) - Known for its scenic landscape, tropical climate and beautiful beaches, Hawaii is a tourist destination for people around the world. But concerns have arisen that its iconic Waikiki Beach could soon be underwater as rising sea levels caused by climate change overtake its white sand beaches and bustling city streets.

NZ plans for inevitable climate-related migration
SOUTH TARAWA, Kiribati, 23 April 2019 (PINA) - Ioane Teitiota caught the world’s attention in 2015 when he fought to become the world’s first climate refugee. He desperately tried to keep his family in New Zealand, and applied for refugee status but that was unsuccessful and he was forced to return to Kiribati.

Pacific climate migration a political tug of war
SOUTH TARAWA, Kiribati, 23 April 2019 (PINA) - Driving along the lone road of Kiribati’s capital, there’s a slight rise about halfway between the airport and Betio village at the other end of the hook-shaped atoll. At its peak there’s a sign advertising a quirky point of difference.“Mauri & welcome to Eita. The highest point on South Tarawa 3 metres above sea level."

World Bank's coal divestment pledge not stringent enough
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 23 April 2019 (Mongabay) - Indonesia provides a litmus test for the World Bank’s commitment to divest from coal, with a recent report revealing its continued indirect financing of some of Indonesia’s most destructive coal-mining companies.

Less rainforest, less rain: A cautionary tale from Borneo
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 23 April 2019 (Mongabay) - A recent study finds that massive deforestation across Borneo, in large part for oil palm plantations, has led to higher temperatures and less precipitation over the past 60 years.

Tasmanian lakes have 'disturbing' contamination levels
SYDNEY, Australia, 23 April 2019 (ABC) - A recent study has shown some Tasmanian lakes in the protected Wilderness World Heritage Area have heavy metal contamination levels among the highest ever recorded.

Anti-salmon farm protest takes to the water at King Island
SYDNEY, Australia, 22 April 2019 (ABC) - Opposition to a controversial salmon farm on King Island has escalated with more than 100 people taking part in a protest to protect a world-class surf break.

Peat protection rule may be a double-edged sword
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 22 April 2019 (Mongabay) - A logging prohibition in Indonesia aimed at protecting peatlands threatens a supply crunch for two of the world’s biggest paper producers that could drive them to source wood from as-yet-untouched forests elsewhere in the country, a recent study indicates.

Poachers threaten precious Madagascar forest and lemurs
VOHIBOLA, Madagascar, 22 April 2019 (AFP) - Under a leaden sky, six rangers walk silently in single file through Vohibola, one of the last primary forests in eastern Madagascar.

Greek researchers enlist EU satellite against Aegean sea litter
LESBOS, Greece, 22 April 2019 (AFP) - Knee-deep in water on a picture-postcard Lesbos island beach, a team of Greek university students gently deposits a wall-sized PVC frame on the surface before divers moor it at sea.

Housing crisis on Arran leaves hundreds of islanders without homes
LONDON, UK, 22 April 2019 (Guardian) - The Arran Economic Group hopes to be the first community organisation in Scotland to use government funds to build dozens of affordable homes aimed at local workers, which will be given out based on economic rather than social need.

Bornholm is going trash free by recycling all of its waste
WASHINGTON, US, 22 April 2019 (NatGeog) - Imagine a whole community reusing or recycling every last scrap of waste. That may sound utopian, but perhaps not on the Danish island of Bornholm.

The mayor fighting to save her island home from climate change
NEW YORK, US, 22 April 2019 (Time) - In January 2018 floods, the sea wall that Australia built to protect the residents of Yam Island collapsed. Residents of the island - just over 1 square mile - which lies off the coast of mainland Australia, waded through the floodwaters as quickly as they could, grabbing whatever belongings they could.

The extinction clock ticks for the little-known Philippine pangolin
PALAWAN, Philippines, 22 April 2019 (Mongabay) - In the wilderness of the Philippines’ southwestern island province of Palawan, dubbed the country’s last biodiversity frontier, lives a scaly mammal found nowhere else on Earth: the Palawan or Philippine pangolin.

Researchers calculate decades of 'scary' Greenland ice melting
WASHINGTON, US, 22 April 2019 (AFP) - Measuring melting ice is a fairly precise business in 2019 - thanks to satellites, weather stations and sophisticated climate models.

Island lizards are expert sunbathers but it's slowing their evolution
BLACKSBURG, US, 22 April 2019 (ScienceDaily) - The idea that evolution can be slow on islands is actually somewhat strange. Ever since Darwin's journey to the Galapagos, islands have been recognized as hotspots of rapid evolution, resulting in many ecologically diverse species.

On one island, a microcosm of Vietnam's environmental challenges
CAT BA ISLAND, Vietnam, 22 April 2019 (Mongabay) - Cat Ba is home to both a national park and a UNESCO Man and Biosphere Reserve. In many ways, it is a microcosm of the major environmental issues Vietnam currently faces: wildlife conservation, forest preservation, overtourism, unchecked development, plastic waste and more.