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|Island tax haven firms own 23,000 UK properties|
LONDON, UK, 13 February 2018 (BBC) - A quarter of property in England and Wales owned by overseas firms is held by entities registered in the British Virgin Islands, BBC analysis has found.
|How microplastics are contaminating seabirds in the Aleutian Islands|
ANCHORAGE, Alaska, 12 February 2018 (Oceans Deeply) - A nearly decade-long University of Alaska project to monitor the ecology of puffins, crested auklets and other seabirds that flock to the storm-tossed Aleutian Islands has produced crucial baseline information about microplastics contamination in marine waters off Alaska.
|Duterte slams top Philippine tourist island as 'cesspool'|
MANILA, Philippines, 11 February 2018 (AFP) - The Philippines famous white-sand island destination Boracay is drowning in faeces and may need to be shut down to protect the health of millions of visitors, President Duterte has warned.
|Report warns of dire future for Coral Triangle reef fish|
LONDON, UK, 10 February 2018 (Guardian) - The US$1 billion a year Live Reef Fish for Food Trade (LRFFT) is threatening the future of key reef predator species like grouper, coral trout and Napoleon wrasse, according to a recent study.
|'Sinking' Pacific nation Tuvalu appears to be growing|
LONDON, UK, 9 February 2018 (IBT) - The tiny Pacific nation of Tuvalu has grown over 180 acres in the past 40 years, despite scientists warning that the islands will be uninhabitable by 2050 due to rising sea levels.
|Galapagos fights temptation of lucrative mass tourism|
PUERTO AYORA, Ecuador, 8 February 2018 (AFP) - With its iconic giant tortoises, crested black iguanas, huge ocean manta rays and a veritable menagerie of other cool creatures, the Galapagos Islands are one of the most beautiful places you will probably never visit.
|How a remote island in Alaska tackled domestic abuse|
LONDON, UK, 8 February 2018 (Guardian) - When Stacy Bourdukofsky’s abusive ex-husband touched down on the small island where they live to stand trial for strangling his girlfriend and whacking a man in the head with a bat, she was waiting to board the outbound flight on the same jet.
|Indonesia's Dayaks keep plantations, loggers at bay|
KAMBIYAIN, Indonesia, 8 February 2018 (Mongabay) - The village of Kambiyain lies deep within the forests of Indonesian Borneo, well off the national grid, and the nights here are typically dark and silent, save for the handful of homes with solar panels or diesel generators.
|Taiwan quake highlights hi-tech island's shoddy building past|
TAIPEI, Taiwan, 7 February 2018 (AFP) - Taiwan has built itself a reputation for cutting edge technology, efficient public transport and safe streets. But an earthquake has again highlighted the well-off island's history of shoddy construction and questionable safety standards.
|American Samoa gets 'prettier' landfill|
LONDON, UK, 7 February 2018 (BBC) - America Samoa has temporarily solved its increasingly urgent rubbish problem by getting a "prettier" landfill site, it's reported.
|Macron rejects Corsican language demand|
LONDON, UK, 7 February 2018 (BBC) - France's Emmanuel Macron has said he will not recognise Corsican as an official language on his first visit to the French Mediterranean island.
|Fishing with insecticide-laced mosquito nets|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 6 February 2018 (Mongabay) - Fishermen in the Dili district of Timor-Leste have found an extra perk of the insecticide added to their mosquito bed nets: the chemicals act as a Taser for shrimp.
|Beijing's militarisation of South China Sea in new detail|
BEIJING, China, 6 February 2018 (Guardian) - Beijing has been accused of building “island fortresses” in the South China Sea after a newspaper in the Philippines obtained aerial photographs offering what experts called the most detailed glimpse yet of China’s militarisation of the waterway.
|Shredded roofs, shattered lives|
ST. THOMAS, USVI, 6 February 2018 (WP) - More than four months after back-to-back hurricanes shredded the roof of his house, Charles Caines feels as if he’s “living in a tent in the jungle” and there is growing concern that a decades-long drive to build up a broad middle class has been snuffed out by the storms.
|Are we too late to save the elusive birds of this PNG island?|
CAMBRIDGE, UK, 5 February 2018 (BirdLife) - Perched on the outer edge of the Malay Archipelago, and sheltered from the vast expanse of the Pacific only by the thin strip of New Ireland, Papua New Guinea’s New Britain boasts an impressive diversity of fauna and flora.
|Crofters on Lewis fight windfarm proposal|
LONDON, UK, 4 February 2018 (Guardian) - Hundreds of crofters are fighting an attempt by the energy giants EDF and Wood Group to build a windfarm on the island of Lewis.
|Maldives orders army to defy judges|
LONDON, UK, 4 February 2018 (BBC) - The Maldives government has ordered the security forces to resist any move by the Supreme Court to arrest or impeach President Abdulla Yameen.
|Philippines gripped by dengue vaccine fears|
LONDON, UK, 3 February 2018 (BBC) - Fears over a dengue vaccine in the Philippines have led to a big drop in immunisation rates for preventable diseases, officials have warned.
|China plans to allow gambling on Hainan island|
HAIKOU, China, 3 February 2018 (Straits Times) - China is drafting a proposal to allow gambling on Hainan Island in what would be an unprecedented move that could reshape gaming in China's territories and transform the economy of a strategic southern province.
|Wet season storms cause chaos on Tiwi Islands|
DARWIN, Australia, 2 February 2018 (ABC) - On the Tiwi Islands, around two hours ferry-ride north of Darwin, 2,000 mainly Aboriginal residents spent three days this week with no access to fuel, internet, or phones after a Telstra tower was damaged.
|Chatham Islands residents evacuated due to fire|
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 2 February 2018 (RNZ) - Chatham Islands is an archipelago in the Pacific about 800km east of the South Island and nineteen households have been evacuated ahead of a fast-spreading fire.
|Tahiti downplays floating islands reports|
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 2 February 2018 (RNZ) - This week an opposition assembly member, Valentina Cross, spoke out against the project of the US-based Seasteading Institute in the lagoon of Atimaono.
|Nigel the lonely gannet dies as he lived|
DUNEDIN, New Zealand, 2 February 2018 (Guardian) - Nigel lived for years on his own on uninhabited Mana Island off the north of New Zealand, surrounded by concrete replica gannets.
|Transgender women flee Indonesian city in fear|
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 2 February 2018 (Guardian) - Transgender people have been fleeing the sharia-ruled Indonesian province of Aceh amid fears of further violence, an exodus that comes in the same week the national parliament proposed criminalising gay and all extramarital sex.
|How tiny nation became Isis recruiting ground|
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, 2 February 2018 (Guardian) - Five years ago, Tariq Abdul Haqq was one of a Trinidad and Tobago’s most promising young boxers, a Commonwealth Games medallist with Olympic dreams.
|In pursuit of the tortoise smugglers|
LONDON, UK, 2 February 2018 (Guardian) - In February 2016, Richard Lewis, a wildlife conservationist working in Madagascar, was contacted by a veterinary clinic with an unusual request. “Someone went to a vet and said: ‘Can you take a microchip out of a ploughshare?’” Lewis recalled. “So they called us.”
|Kiribati mourns biggest disaster|
LONDON, UK, 2 February 2018 (BBC) - The sinking of the MS Butiraoi just over two weeks ago is thought to have claimed at least 81 lives, among them many children and teenagers.
|An ecotourism revolution in Madagascar|
CAMBRIDGE, UK, 2 February 2018 (BirdLife) - Until now, only a few intrepid ecotourists have ventured out to Mahavavy-Kinkony in Madagascar, a habitat packed with extraordinary and rare wildlife. But that looks set to change with a new initiative to expand birding tourism – for the benefit of both wildlife and local livelihoods.
|Pacific nations drowning in Chinese debt|
SYDNEY, Australia, 1 February 2018 (The Australian) - Aggressive lending of hundreds of millions of dollars on discounted terms by China in the South Pacific is leading to financial distress in the region and causing island nations to grapple with debt repayment.
|British aid response to plague in Madagascar|
LONDON, UK, 1 February 2018 (Guardian) - Penny Mordaunt, the international development secretary, has claimed that “heroic” British efforts to tackle an outbreak of plague in Madagascar helped to save thousands of lives.
| King tide inundates Torres Strait island|
LONDON, UK, 1 February 2018 (Guardian) - Yam Island in the Torres Strait has been inundated by a king tide, driven in part by the super blue blood moon overnight.
|Is Grenada's iconic nutmeg production now in Russian hands?|
ST GEORGE’S, Grenada, 31 January 2018 (Caribbean News Now) - Hard on the heels of predictions of a Chinese takeover of Grenada if the Grenadian government adopts a multibillion dollar Chinese development blueprint, comes a new report suggesting that the promotion, export and exploitation of Grenada’s iconic nutmeg production may now be in Russian hands.
|Corals thrive on remotest islands in the Galapagos|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 31 January 2018 (Mongabay) - The Galapagos Islands are not widely known for their coral reefs as most visitors to the islands’ waters seek big charismatic residents like sharks, manta rays, sea lions and whales, or unique creatures like marine iguanas.
|Indonesia touts a drop in deforestation|
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 31 January 2018 (Mongabay) - The Indonesian government has reported a second straight annual decline in the country’s deforestation rate, but continues to confound with its definition of what constitutes a forest.
|Sumatran villagers cling to their customs as coal mines encroach|
SEKALAK, Indonesia, 30 January 2018 (Mongabay) - The inhabitants of Sekalak village, in this forested region of southern Sumatra, have for generations passed down the legend of Puyang Baju Lantung, a man who was said to have transformed into a tiger to serve as the community’s guardian.
|Can Sri Lanka's elephants and humans learn to live together?|
LONDON, UK, 30 January 2018 (Guardian) - On this small, densely populated island, clashes between elephants and humans are rapidly increasing. Rangers and villagers are working to find ways to avoid the conflict and the devastating, at times deadly, impacts on both sides.
|BVI tourism showing signs of recovery after Hurricane Irma|
LONDON, UK, 30 January 2018 (Guardian) - It sounds like an exaggeration but when Hurricane Irma knocked out the British Virgin Islands (BVI) on 6 September 2017 the winds did reach 215mph – faster still inside the tornadoes spinning on the edge of the storm’s eye.
|Santorini: an archetypal Greek island fantasy|
LONDON, UK, 29 January 2018 (BBC) - Giannis Bellonias was standing on the edge of a craggy cliffside in Imerovigli, a village built on the apex of Santorini’s vertigo-inducing caldera, waiting for sunset from the infamous lookout known as the ‘balcony to the Aegean’.
|Nauru gets big climate support |
WASHINGTON, US, 29 January 2018 (UPI) - The island nation of Nauru, among the world's smallest and most vulnerable to rising sea levels, gets backing for a climate-proof port, lenders said.
|The island where 19th Century land ownership is at risk|
CODRINGTON, Barbuda, 28 January 2018 (BBC) - Around the dominoes table, spirits appear high but faces are weary. It is not long before the light-hearted banter is replaced by the topic currently dominating every conversation in Barbuda.
|The island that switches countries every six months|
LONDON, UK, 28 January 2018 (BBC) - Next week, France will hand over 3,000 sq m (9,942 sq ft) of its territory to Spain without a single shot being fired. But in six months' time Spain will voluntarily hand back the land to France.
|Shetland radar base nearing completion|
LONDON, UK, 26 January 2018 (BBC) - A new RAF radar facility that will track Russian military aircraft approaching the north of the UK will be operational soon, the MoD has said. The £10m Remote Radar Head facility is being built at Saxa Vord on the island of Unst in Shetland.
|Thousands of Turkish Cypriots demonstrate against Ankara|
ATHENS, Greece, 26 January 2018 (Guardian) - Thousands of Turkish Cypriots chanting “we want our country back” have taken to the streets of Nicosia despite heavy rain, after calls for a mass demonstration against Ankara’s heavy-handed policies towards the breakaway republic.
|Australia to build undersea internet link to Solomon Islands|
CANBERRA, Australia, 26 January 2018 (ABC) - Australian taxpayers will foot the bill for a new high-speed internet cable between Australia and Solomon Islands, after national security concerns were raised about a Chinese state-owned company contracted to build the project.
|A third of coral reefs entangled with plastic|
LONDON, UK, 26 January 2018 (BBC) - Plastic is one of the biggest threats to the future of coral reefs after ocean warming, say scientists. More than 11 billion items of plastic were found on a third of coral reefs surveyed in the Asia-Pacific region.
|The ups and downs of marine protected areas|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 25 January 2018 (Mongabay) - To find out if marine protected areas achieve their environmental and socioeconomic goals, we read 42 scientific studies and talked to seven experts to ascertain their conservation effectiveness.
|Japan opens museum on disputed islands|
TOKYO, Japan, 25 January 2018 (AFP) - The Japanese government has opened a museum in Tokyo devoted to two sets of disputed islands, a move likely to spark anger from South Korea and China, which also claim sovereignty.
|Indonesia to strengthen environmental impact assessments|
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 24 January 2018 (Mongabay) - The Indonesian government says it will revamp the process of carrying out environmental impact assessments, amid increased scrutiny over the legitimacy of many of these analyses in environmental and land disputes across the country.
|Deep sea mining: Charting the risks of a new frontier|
BREMEN, Germany, 24 January 2018 (DW) - Our growing demand for resources has prompted companies to turn to mining in the depths of the oceans. With help from robots, a team of German scientists is racing to map the potential environmental damage.
|How Hurricane Maria forced Puerto Ricans to change their hair|
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico, 24 January 2018 (Guardian) - Not long after Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico, unleashing floodwaters, flattening homes and knocking out the power supply, Consuelo Quezada noticed another, more subtle, change to life on the island.
| A new population of red handfish discovered in Tasmania|
LONDON, UK, 24 January 2018 (Guardian) - Divers in Tasmania have discovered a new population of red handfish, doubling the known population of the elusive and extremely rare fish and raising hopes that more may be found.
|Legal recognition for communities occupying conservation areas|
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 23 January 2018 (Mongabay) - The Indonesian government has acquiesced to the reality that local and indigenous communities already manage land within conservation areas, saying it will begin formalizing this de facto stewardship this year.
|New global registry of invasive species is launched|
LONDON, UK, 23 January 2018 (Guardian) - From yellow crazy ants on Christmas Island to little fire worms in the Galapagos, the deliberate or accidental introduction of non-native species is the biggest driver of biodiversity loss on islands and world heritage sites, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.
|Mesoamerican Reef gets improving bill of health|
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 22 January 2018 (Mongabay) - A recent report tracking the health of the Mesoamerican Reef indicates that conservation efforts might be helping to turn the tide for the reef itself and the people who depend on it.
|Scottish Islands Bill receives backing from rural affairs committee|
EDINBURGH, UK, 22 January 2018 (Holyrood) - In a new report MSPs endorsed the Islands Bill, but recommended the Scottish Government includes a provision to carry out an impact assessment where evidence suggests the existing law has a significant detrimental impact on the islands.
|Indonesia and Malaysia react to EU ban on palm oil in biofuels|
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 19 January 2018 (Mongabay) - Officials in Indonesia and Malaysia, the world’s biggest producers of palm oil, have lambasted the European Parliament’s decision to phase out the commodity from motor fuels over the next three years due to environmental concerns.
| Coral reefs at make or break point|
LONDON, UK, 19 January 2018 (Guardian) - The battle to save the world’s coral reefs is at “make or break point”, and countries that host them have a special responsibility to take a leadership role by limiting greenhouse gas emissions, plastic pollution and impacts from agriculture, the head UNEP has said.
|Swallowed by the sea|
KUTUBDIA, Bangladesh, 19 January 2018 (NYT) - Anyone who doubts climate change should come to this lovely low-lying island, lapped by gentle waves and home to about 100,000 people.