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|Towards a structured dialogue for EU islands|
BRUSSELS, Belgium, 20 June 2019 (CPMR) - As a first step towards an 'Islands Structured Dialogue', the CPMR Islands Commission and Greening the Islands, held a recent meeting in Brussels, with the support of the Committee of the Regions, to propose closer collaboration as a key step towards promoting low-carbon solutions on European islands.
|Living on Pitcairn showed me that island life is no paradise|
LONDON, UK, 20 June 2019 (Spectator) - Islands have a special appeal. We imagine that on an island we’ll somehow ‘get away from it all’. In the era of Brexit and climate concerns, Pitcairn Island in the Pacific, more than 3,000 miles from the nearest landmass, is flooded with requests from people hoping to settle there. I would advise them to think again.
|Chinese funded Yida project ignites opposition in Antigua|
ST. JOHN'S, Antigua, 20 June 2019 (Guardian) - Plans to construct a sprawling “Chinese colony” complete with factories, homes and holiday resorts across a pristine marine reserve in Antigua have ignited a storm of controversy on the Caribbean island.
|Why are Nike trainers washing up on beaches?|
LONDON, UK, 19 June 2019 (BBC) - Over the past year, from Bermuda and the Bahamas to Ireland and Orkney, hundreds of pairs of unworn shoes have washed up on beaches. But how did they get there, and why are scientists so interested in where they are being found?
|Fears Bougainville independence will open Pacific door for China|
PORT MORESBY, PNG, 18 June 2019 (The Australian) - Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne will visit Bougainville today amid fears an upcoming independence vote there could undermine regional stability and provide an opening for China to establish a strategic foothold in what could become the Pacific’s newest nation state.
|Shift to renewable energy could have biodiversity cost|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 18 June 2019 (Mongabay) - A new report cautions that mining of metals used in manufacturing renewable technologies like wind turbines, solar power, and electric vehicles has costs, including for biodiversity.
|Atlantic Ocean 'running out of breath'|
LONDON, UK, 18 June 2019 (BBC) - A huge international research programme has been launched to assess the health of the Atlantic Ocean. The iAtlantic project is the biggest ever mounted in the planet's second largest ocean.
|Canada's Great Bear Rainforest|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 17 June 2019 (Mongabay) - Over the past decade, First Nations have created a robust conservation economy in Canada’s Great Bear Rainforest, one of the largest old-growth temperate rainforests left in the world, that stretch across 6.4 million hectares of the remote British Columbia coastline and Haida Gwaii, also known as the Queen Charlotte Islands.
|Norway island wants to be world's first time-free zone|
SOMMAROY, Norway, 17 June 2019 (CNN) - With the Northern Hemisphere's summer solstice just around the corner on June 21, Sommarøy - meaning "Summer Island" - wants to swap its watches for flower garlands and declare itself the world's first time-free zone.
|Cambodia's islands are under threat|
KOH SDACH, Cambodia, 17 June 2019 (CSM) - Just a five minute boat ride from mainland Cambodia, Koh Sdach is surrounded by clear blue waters that have sustained fishing communities for generations. But decades of overfishing and indiscriminate waste disposal have taken a steep toll on the environment.
|New 'king' of fossils discovered in Australia|
ADELAIDE, Australia, 17 June 2019 (SPX) - Fossils of a giant new species from the long-extinct group of sea creatures called trilobites have been found on Kangaroo Island, South Australia.
|'Cryoegg' to explore under Greenland Ice Sheet|
LONDON, UK, 17 June 2019 (BBC) - UK scientists head to Greenland this week to trial new sensors that can be placed under its 2km-thick ice sheet. The instruments are designed to give researchers unique information on the way glaciers slide towards the ocean.
|Restoring the Caribbean to the paradise it used to be|
NAIROBI, Kenya, 14 June 2019 (UN Environment) - More than 100 million people in the wider Caribbean region live on, or near the coast in a complex ecosystem with the highest number of marine species in the Atlantic Ocean.
|Pressure mounts on Hong Kong leader over extradition plan|
HONG KONG, 14 June 2019 (AFP) - Hong Kong's embattled leader faced mounting pressure on Friday to abandon a deeply unpopular plan to allow extraditions to China as key allies urged a rethink following unprecedented political unrest.
|Ecuador gives US military permission to use Galapagos island|
LONDON, UK, 14 June 2019 (Independent) - Ecuador has given the Pentagon permission to use the tiny airport on San Cristobal island to “fight drug trafficking”, angering critics in the South American country who say the agreement is unconstitutional.
|The siege of Prince Edward Island|
TORONTO, Canada, 13 June 2019 (The Star) - Most islands have a base of granite, or another hard rock, but we don’t have that here says Adam Fenech, director of the University of PEI Climate Lab. Bit by bit, Prince Edward Island, made of sandstone and sand, is slowly washing into the sea and everybody knows it, Fenech says.
|Residents and refugees feel abandoned on Greek island of Samos|
NEW YORK, US, 13 June 2019 (New Yorker) - Samos is one of five islands that house refugees in the eastern part of Greece. It is known for its wine, its small size, and, now, for chronic overcrowding. This year, the situation has been growing worse as more migrants have arrived by boat from Turkey to join the four thousand refugees who are already here.
|Island states unite to end pollution|
WASHINGTON, US, 13 June 2019 (UN Environment) - Backed by $61 million in funding from the Global Environment Facility, with partner co-financing of over $389 million, the Implementing Sustainable Low and Non-Chemical Development in Small Island Developing States program – or ‘ISLANDS’ – will support 27 island states across the Caribbean, the Pacific and the Indian Ocean to manage the growing impacts of chemicals and wastes on their unique environments.
|Leaders of island nations are fighting to stop climate change|
WASHINGTON, US, 13 June 2019 (Time) - The journey to the Fijian village of Vunidogoloa is arduous. It requires a flight across the Pacific to the nation’s remote international transit hub, a 140-mile connection on a rickety 19-seat plane to a smaller island, an hourlong drive past other rural villages and finally a short walk guided by a man with a machete to reach a ghost town forced into retreat by climate change and the rising seas that come with it.
|Bermuda land snail: An animal 'back from the dead'|
LONDON, UK, 13 June 2019 (BBC) - Thousands of critically endangered greater Bermuda land snails have been released into the wild after being rescued from the edge of extinction, with a little help from a British zoo.
|Islands in Panama offer glimpse into animal innovation|
MINNEAPOLIS, US, 12 June 2019 (PRI) - It’s the end of a long dry season on the islands of Coiba National Park, a marine reserve of 38 islands near the Pacific coast of Panama that became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
|Coral bleaching and the perilous forecast for Pacific reefs|
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 12 June 2019 (RNZ) - The reefs that ring the French Polynesian islands of Mo'orea and Tahiti are in the grip of a massive coral bleaching event, described by both locals and scientists as one of the most devastating they've encountered.
|Is REDD ready for its closeup? Reports vary|
SAN FRANCISCO, 12 June 2019 (Mongabay) - As the world’s governments look to curb global warming, protecting what’s left of Earth’s tropical forests is crucial. That means REDD+ could have a huge role to play - but debate is currently raging as to whether or not REDD-based projects can actually deliver the level of emissions reductions necessary to avert runaway global climate change.
|Big brands breaking pledge to not destroy forests|
PARIS, France, 11 June 2019 (AFP) - A rainforest area the size of Spain will be destroyed by firms growing consumer staples like palm oil in the decade to 2020, industry's self-imposed deadline to end deforestation, Greenpeace said Tuesday.
|Western Isles in race to open UK's first commercial spaceport|
LONDON, UK, 11 June 2019 (BBC) - The project led by Western Isles Council is separate to bids to build ports in Sutherland and in Shetland. It has been proposed the Western Isles' Spaceport 1 be located at Scolpaig on the north-west coast of North Uist and up to 70 jobs could be created at the site which would be used for small satellite launches.
|Australian crocodiles blamed for spate of deaths in Timor-Leste|
LONDON, UK, 11 June 2019 (Guardian) - The people of Timor-Leste have a crocodile problem. The reptiles are revered in the island, which lies north-west of Australia in the Timor Sea. Residents refer to the animals as “grandfathers” and crocodiles are honoured with shrines around the country.
|Plant extinction 'bad news for all species'|
LONDON, UK, 11 June 2019 (BBC) - Almost 600 plant species have been lost from the wild in the last 250 years, according to a comprehensive study. The biggest losses are on islands and in the tropics, which are home to highly valued timber trees and tend to be particularly rich in plant diversity.
|Bumpy ride for conservation in PNG due to lack of roads|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 10 June 2019 (Mongabay) - The four-wheel-drive is king of the road in Papua New Guinea. Driving anywhere outside the capital, Port Moresby, is a whiplash roulette of swerving around zigzag crevices and blindsiding potholes.
|Islands of climate innovation|
ORANJESTAD, Aruba, 10 June 2019 (Project Syndicate) - Large developed countries often continue to finance new fossil-fuel projects in small island states that are disproportionately affected by climate change. Donors and lenders should instead help these islands to become laboratories for testing innovative clean-energy technologies.
|What the 'Blue Zone' island of Sardinia can teach us|
NEW YORK, US, 10 June 2019 (NBC) - When explorer, researcher and author Dan Buettner first started investigating the concept of Blue Zones (the five regions across the globe where people live the longest), he was immediately captured by Sardinia, an Italian island in the Mediterranean Sea.
|Millions of locusts wreak havoc in Sardinia|
LONDON, UK, 10 June 2019 (BBC) - A huge plague of locusts is wreaking havoc on the Italian island of Sardinia in the worst insect invasion in more than 60 years, local media report.
|Scientists close in on hidden Scottish meteorite crater|
LONDON, UK, 10 June 2019 (BBC) - Scientists think the time has come for a full geophysical survey of The Minch, to see if the Scottish strait is hiding an ancient meteorite crater. The idea that such a structure lies between the Western Isles and mainland Scotland was first raised back in 2008.
|Transition to a Green Economy lacks political will|
BANGKOK, Thailand, 10 June 2019 (PACNEWS) - A broad-ranging concept that continues to evolve as needs are identified and interlinked, a ‘Green Economy’ is described by the United Nations as low carbon, resource efficient and socially inclusive.
|China targeting Pacific isles for strategic bases|
SUVA, Fiji, 9 June 2019 (PACNEWS) - After decades as an unconsidered backwater, the South Pacific Islands have become a strategic frontline in a multi-nation contest for power and influence in Greater Asia.
|Caribbean nations boost protection for largetooth sawfish|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 8 June 2019 (Mongabay) - The largetooth sawfish, a large ray with a chainsaw-like nose extension, is among the largest fish in the world, growing more than 6.5 meters (20 feet) in length. This majestic ray is also among the most threatened species of sharks and rays in the world.
|Visiting one of the last protected wilderness areas on earth|
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 8 June 2019 (Stuff) - Travelling approximately 450 kilometres due south of the South Island of New Zealand brings you to a wild and extraordinary land. Maungahuka, better known as the Auckland Islands, are the largest and tallest of New Zealand's sub-antarctic islands, a place so remote that few every journey there.
|Sri Lanka to ban chainsaws, timber mills|
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, 7 June 2019 (AFP) - Sri Lanka will ban imports of chainsaws and shut timber mills within five years to protect forests, President Maithripala Sirisena's office said Friday.
|South Georgia MPA enhancement comes into effect|
MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay, 7 June 2019 (MercoPress) - Following an announcement in December 2018, a suite of enhanced measures to the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands Marine Protected Area include a large increase in the proportion of the 1.24 million km2 MPA within which all commercial fishing activity is prohibited.
|The battle for Greece's marine life|
ATHENS, Greece, 7 June 2019 (Guardian) - Before the giants of oil and gas joined the litany of threats facing Greek sperm whales, the plight of the world’s largest-toothed animal was little known.
|The end of the Arctic as we know it|
LONDON, UK, 7 June 2019 (Guardian) - The first fragment of ice appears off the starboard bow a few miles before the 79th parallel in the Fram strait, which lies between Greenland and the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard.
|Abu Dhabi's Masdar brings renewable energy to Caribbean island|
ABU DHABI, UAE, 7 June 2019 (The National) - For decades, residents of Union Island, part of St Vincent and the Grenadines, had to endure the noise and pollution that comes with a diesel power plant, as well as a coating of black soot over everything in their homes.
|Scottish blue belt zones to protect minke whales|
LONDON, UK, 7 June 2019 (BBC) - Special protections are planned for minke whales and basking sharks in their feeding grounds around Scotland. A consultation has been launched on creating four new Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) covering 5,000 square miles of sea.
|Working together to protect and restore our ocean|
APIA, Samoa, 6 June 2019 (SPREP) - Demonstrating “One in Spirit” while commemorating World Oceans Day this Saturday, will be made possible through a clean-up of the Apia Waterfront. This is the second of three clean-up activities that are part of the Greening the Games actions to be undertaken in preparation of the Samoa 2019 Pacific Games.
|Understanding the human side of climate change relocation|
MONTREAL, Canada, 5 June 2019 (The Conversation) - In Papua New Guinea, the Carteret Islands are facing intense environmental degradation, coastal erosion and food and water insecurity due to anthropogenic climate change and tectonic activity.
|The RAF weathermen who helped save D-Day|
LONDON, UK, 5 June 2019 (BBC) - D-Day could have been one of the biggest disasters in military history were it not for the decisions of a weatherman and data from a little-known RAF squadron operating on Tiree, a small island off Scotland's west coast.
|Carnival ordered to pay $20 million criminal penalty|
MIAMI, US, 5 June 2019 (Caribbean News Now) - Carnival Corporation has reached a tentative settlement with federal prosecutors in which the world’s most extensive cruise line eagerly consented to pay a $20 million in fines for some of its ships persistently polluting the oceans notwithstanding vowing years ago to discontinue.
|Seychelles protecting even more of its waters|
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 5 June 2019 (SNA) - Seychelles has designated 26 percent of its territorial waters as marine protection areas to complete the second phase of the debt for conservation finance deal with The Nature Conservancy.
|Scotland's Argyll Coast and Islands have been declared a Hope Spot |
NAPA, US, 4 June 2019 (Mission Blue) - Scotland’s Argyll Coast and Islands have been declared a Hope Spot – the first in mainland United Kingdom – by international nonprofit Mission Blue to shed light on the immense beauty, rich history and vibrant life along the country’s west coast.
|Highest CO2 levels in human history recorded in Hawaii|
WASHINGTON, US, 4 June 2019 (UPI) - The highest carbon dioxide concentration levels in human history have been recorded at Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii. During the month of May, CO2 levels averaged 414.8 parts per million - levels not present on Earth in millions of years.
|Seaweed farmers ride the rough tides of climate change|
PALAWAN, Philippines, 3 June 2019 (Mongabay) - Twenty years ago, people in this fishing village in the municipality of Quezon, on the Philippine island of Palawan, would just walk to the shore, throw a net, and haul in an abundant catch of big fish for their own meals and to sell in the local market.
|Australia pledges $250m to Solomon Islands|
LONDON, UK, 2 June 2019 (Guardian) - Scott Morrison has declared “stepping up is all about showing up” as he unveiled the latest plank of the Australian government’s Pacific strategy during a visit to the Solomon Islands.
|UK's Chagos Islands descendants feel like 'lost nation'|
LONDON, UK, 1 June 2019 (BBC) - More than 50 years ago, Britain claimed sovereignty over the Chagos Islands and evicted its entire population to make way for a joint US military airbase. Decades later, Chagossian families in Britain say they are now being torn apart by UK immigration law.
|Christmas Island kept in dark on Sri Lankan asylum seekers|
LONDON, UK, 31 May 2019 (Guardian) - The shire president of Christmas Island has slammed “secrecy” surrounding the reported arrival of 20 Sri Lankan asylum seekers last week, saying local authorities were kept in the dark about their whereabouts.
|Gotland is trying to make renewables a reliable part of its energy mix|
LONDON, UK, 31 May 2019 (CNBC) - On the Swedish island of Gotland, which is home to dozens of wind turbines, researchers from several organizations - including major Swedish utility Vattenfall, Schneider Electric, and the KTH Royal Institute of Technology - have worked on a project called Smart Grid Gotland, which wrapped up in 2017.
|The sea-cooled eco-resort that's nearly mosquito-free|
LONDON, UK, 31 May 2019 (BBC) - The Brando is one of the most luxurious eco-resorts on the planet, nestling on an atoll in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It's the last place you might think to find pioneering technology. But you'd be surprised.
|Hong Kong wants to build massive artificial islands|
HONG KONG, China, 30 May 2019 (The Economist) - Hong Kongers have less residential space than the people of any other big city: 15 square metres each. The Chinese territory is also the world’s most expensive property market.
|Climate change link to puffin deaths|
LONDON, UK, 30 May 2019 (BBC) - Climate change played a role in the deaths of thousands of puffins in Alaska, according to a study. The bodies of dead, emaciated puffins began washing up on beaches on Saint Paul Island in autumn 2016 and scientists believe the birds starved to death when the fish they eat migrated north with rising sea temperatures.
|Channel Islands 'among worst tax havens' worldwide|
LONDON, UK, 29 May 2019 (BBC) - A new list of corporate tax havens has named Jersey as the seventh most "aggressive" in the world. The Tax Justice Network created the ranking by assigning a "haven score" based on 20 different criteria.
|Cyprus begins lionfish cull|
NICOSIA, Cyprus, 29 May 2019 (Guardian) - Cyprus has held its first organised cull of lionfish after numbers of the invasive species have proliferated in recent years, threatening the Mediterranean ecosystem and posing a venomous danger to humans.
|High radiation levels found in giant clams of Marshall Islands|
MAJURO, Marshall Islands, 28 May 2019 (LATimes) - Researchers have found high levels of radiation in giant clams near the Central Pacific site where the United States entombed waste from nuclear testing almost four decades ago, raising concerns the contamination is spreading from the dump site’s tainted groundwater into the ocean and the food chain.
|Jewish pilgrimage to the island of Djerba|
SHEFFIELD, UK, 28 May 2019 (The Conversation) - Many hundreds of years ago on the small Tunisian island of Djerba, a poor young Jewish woman called Ghriba lived as an outcast, separated from the other Jews on the island.
|Sicily's 'doctor of migrants' has won a seat in EU elections|
PALERMO, Italy, 28 May 2019 (Guardian) - An Italian man known as the “doctor of migrants” on the Sicilian island of Lampedusa has won a seat in Sunday’s European parliament elections, bucking a trend towards the extreme right across the south of the country.
|South-east Asia vows to return mountains of rubbish from west|
LONDON, UK, 28 May 2019 (Guardian) - For the past year, the waste of the world has been gathering on the shores of south-east Asia. Crates of unwanted rubbish from the west have accumulated in the ports of the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam while vast toxic wastelands of plastics imported from Europe and the US have built up across Malaysia.
|Seabirds treble on Lundy after island is declared rat-free|
LONDON, UK, 28 May 2019 (Guardian) - For years, they were the scourge of seabirds seeking to nest on Lundy. But since rats were expunged from the island off the coast of Devon 15 years ago, the seabird population has trebled to 21,000 birds.
|How Taiwan cut waste by 30%|
TAIPEI, Taiwan, 27 May 2019 (HuffPost) - Five nights a week across Taipei, the opening bars of Beethoven's Fur Elise signal the start of a modern tradition. Roused by the music booming from garbage trucks as they rattle along the bustling streets, residents rush to the curb clutching bags of pre-sorted trash - blue for garbage, white for recyclables.
|Increasing the Pacific's capacity to deal with waste related issues|
APIA, Samoa, 27 May 2019 (SPREP) - Representatives from 15 Pacific islands have come together for the PacWaste Plus Inception Meeting, where they will have the opportunity to meet with the PacWaste Plus Programme team and learn more about what the project’s activities and projected outcomes for their country will be.
|Sisal finally eradicated from Aldabra atoll|
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 27 May 2019 (Nation) - Seychelles' remote Aldabra atoll is free of an invasive alien plant species 40 years after eradication efforts started on four islands in the atoll group.
|Australian PM to visit Solomon Islands|
SYDNEY, Australia, 27 May 2019 (Reuters) - Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison will visit the Solomon Islands next week as Western nations seek to rein in China’s influence on the tiny Pacific island. With the US and its allies keen to ensure China does not increase its foothold in the Pacific, protecting diplomatic recognition for self-ruled Taiwan has emerged as a flashpoint in regional ties.
|Logging ravaging the Solomon Islands forests|
HONIARA, Solomon Islands, 25 May 2019 (AT) - The Solomon Islands is the biggest exporter, after Papua New Guinea, of round logs to China, where they are processed and sold as tropical hardwood products around the world.
|France acknowledges Polynesian islands forced into nuclear tests|
PARIS, France, 24 May 2019 (Telegraph) - France has officially acknowledged for the first time that French Polynesians were effectively forced into accepting almost 200 nuclear tests conducted over a 30-year period, and that it is responsible for compensating them for the illnesses caused by the fallout.
|How the Galapagos Islands became a guilt-free paradise|
LONDON, UK, 24 May 2019 (Independent) - Since Darwin wrote On the Origin of Species in 1859, based on his observations during his 1835 visit to the islands – and with July 2019 marking 60 years since 97 per cent of the Galapagos Islands were protected as a national park – this equatorial archipelago has become a global icon for wildlife enthusiasts.
|Exposing coal-fueled politics in Indonesia|
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 24 May 2019 (Mongabay) - In the days leading up to the Indonesian presidential election in April, a documentary film exposed how the two candidates were deeply tied to the country’s coal oligarchs.
|Skye becomes huge hit on social media site Instagram|
GLASGOW, UK, 24 May 2019 (Herald) - The Isle of Skye has become a huge hit on the social media site Instagram after research showed it is the top European road trip destination with nearly double the hits of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
|Midway Atoll to be bombarded with rodenticide|
NEW YORK, US, 24 May 2019 (Guardian) - The US government is moving ahead with a plan to strafe Midway with poison aimed at eradicating mice that are on a deadly rampage through one of the world’s most important sites for seabirds.
|Farmers have less leisure time than hunter-gatherers|
CAMBRIDGE, UK, 23 May 2019 (SPX) - Hunter-gatherers in the Philippines who adopt farming work around ten hours a week longer than their forager neighbours, a new study suggests, complicating the idea that agriculture represents progress.
|Lord of the Isles medieval home in Islay recreated|
LONDON, UK, 23 May 2019 (BBC) - The lost medieval home of the Lords of the Isles has been reconstructed in virtual reality. During the Middle Ages, the lords ruled the Inner and Outer Hebrides and parts of Scotland and Ulster.