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EnvironmentalResearchWeb Newswire #23
05.06.2014 00:00

Welcome to the environmentalresearchweb newswire. This week we bring you details of the Arctic river ice that's becoming less reliable, a rise in the amount of land growing crops for export, how local knowledge can minimize the impact of offshore wind farms, and more. Simply click on the headlines below to read the full stories.

Carbon-dioxide boost to grassland growth depends on seasonal rainfall
4 Jun, 2014
Australian grassland sees more growth in wet summers under higher carbon-dioxide but less growth in wet autumns and springs

Structural supercapacitors take a load on
3 Jun, 2014
Device could allow house walls to store energy.

Scooters punch above their weight when it comes to air pollution
2 Jun, 2014
Exhaust fumes react to create high concentrations of secondary organic aerosols

Americans care deeply about 'global warming' – but not 'climate change'
30 May, 2014
Yale researchers have found that the two terms, often used interchangeably, generate very different responses (from the Guardian)

Caught on video: is internet streaming greener than a DVD?
29 May, 2014
Online video streaming has a lower carbon footprint than watching DVDs collected by car, but future higher-definition video could change that

 
PRESS RELEASE HELCOM (May)
27.05.2014 00:00

Management plan developed for Luga River salmon, North-West Russia

Recovery of Baltic wild salmon population planned for Russian riveres

27 May 2014

Sustaining the wild salmon population in Luga River, North-West Russia – having a significant impact in preventing the decline of all the Baltic salmon – would be possible with better management plan, developed further today in St. Petersburg, Russia. Respective national authorities, experts from the research community and other local stakeholders are actively involved in weighing in possible scenarios based on the fresh results of one of the pilots of the HELCOM BASE project. The protection efforts in Luga will feed into the implementation of 2013 Ministerial commitments to further pursue HELCOM Baltic Sea Action Plan conservation goals for the Baltic salmon and sea trout.

The Luga River has key importance since it is one of the few remaining wild salmon rivers that runs into the Gulf of Finland ; besides it is free of migration barriers for ascending salmon, hence allowing the fish to reach the reproduction areas of the river. The Luga has recently been listed as one of the priority rivers in need of conservation and restoration measures by HELCOM Recommendation 32-33/1 (based on the outcome of HELCOM SALAR Project) and had also been listed previously as a priority salmon river by the former International Baltic Sea Fishery Commission (IBSFC).

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EnvironmentalResearchWeb Newswire #22
26.05.2014 00:00

Welcome to the environmentalresearchweb newswire. This week we bring you details of the Arctic river ice that's becoming less reliable, a rise in the amount of land growing crops for export, how local knowledge can minimize the impact of offshore wind farms, and more. Simply click on the headlines below to read the full stories.

Could 'sustainable' forest policy cause deforestation?
28 May, 2014
Europeans who comply with sustainable forestry management law could be driving forest loss in the Republic of Congo, researchers find

How did Australian drylands cause record land carbon sink in 2011?
27 May, 2014
La Niña rainfall and dryland greening trend boosted plant growth, scientists find

Deep-sea trawling harms wildlife and carbon cycling
23 May, 2014
Study of canyon in Mediterranean shows fishing decreases biodiversity and reduces carbon turnover

Doubling of Antarctic ice loss revealed by European satellite
22 May, 2014
Continent shedding 160 billion tonnes a year, CryoSat-2 shows, just days after warning over western ice sheet's collapse (from the Guardian)

 
PRESS RELEASE HELCOM (May)
25.05.2014 00:00

Baltic still one of the most polluted sea areas regarding radioactive contamination

Radioactivity in the Baltic Sea unbrokenly monitored for three decad

15 May 2014

Monitoring of radioactive substances in the Baltic Sea is one of the longest-lived, continuous activities of HELCOM, mainly thanks to the Expert Group on Monitoring of Radioactive Substances in the Baltic Sea (MORS EG), adjourning its 3-day Meeting today in Hamburg, Germany. Confidence level of HELCOM data on radioactivity is considered high, since the 28-year-old Expert Group has enabled the long term collection of unbroken data series from all coastal countries which are the Contracting Parties of the Helsinki Convention.

Planning for the next thematic assessment of long-term changes in radioactivity in the Baltic Sea, covering years 2011–13, was the main topic of the Meeting, along with the review of Cs-137 related core indicator as well as several fresh scientific reports by the Contracting Parties and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The region’s first joint efforts concerning radioactivity started in early 1980s by a project under IAEA, while MORS Expert Group had its first meeting shortly before the Chernobyl accident – in 1986.

 

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EnvironmentalResearchWeb Newswire #21
22.05.2014 00:00

Welcome to the environmentalresearchweb newswire. This week we bring you details of the Arctic river ice that's becoming less reliable, a rise in the amount of land growing crops for export, how local knowledge can minimize the impact of offshore wind farms, and more. Simply click on the headlines below to read the full stories.

Interest in climate change has waned, Google Trends reveals
21 May, 2014
Web search data show searches for terms “global warming” and “climate change” peaked in 2007.

Dispute arises over rejected climate-science paper
20 May, 2014
University of Reading physicist's claims rejected by journal publisher

Producing beef emits 28 times as much greenhouse gas as growing wheat – with VIDEO
19 May, 2014
Cutting food subsidies could be key to reducing meat industry’s emissions

Human litter found in Europe's deepest ocean depths
16 May, 2014
Seabed survey reveals depth of marine litter problem by mapping waste in Atlantic and Arctic oceans and Mediterranean (from the Guardian)

Fast solar wind boosts lightning rates
15 May, 2014
Discovery – and link to Sun’s 27 day cycle – could improve thunderstorm forecasting

 
PRESS RELEASE HELCOM (May)
21.05.2014 00:00

HELCOM NEWS

HELCOM and cruising industry launch joint survey on sewage delivery in the Baltic

21 May 2014

HELCOM and Cruise Lines International Association Europe (CLIA) have launched a joint information gathering on sewage delivery in the Baltic Sea Region in advance of the 2014 summer season. The survey aims to collect detailed data on sewage delivery needs and available facilities, based on each visit. The two main sources of such information are cruise ships and ports visited by such ships.

The survey is connected to the 2011 International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) designation of the Baltic Sea as a ”special area” for passenger ships in terms of MARPOL Annex IV (on sewage from ships) based on a proposal from the region. Less untreated sewage released to the sea would help reduce harmful nutrients polluting the Baltic Sea environment.

In the new survey the participating cruise ships are invited to fill in their experiences with port reception facilities (PRF), as well as their own sewage delivery needs, when visiting ports in the Baltic Sea region. Ports are encouraged to provide their observations on the use of their sewage PRFs to supplement the information provided by the cruise industry.

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EnvironmentalResearchWeb Newswire #20
15.05.2014 00:00

Welcome to the environmentalresearchweb newswire. This week we bring you details of the Arctic river ice that's becoming less reliable, a rise in the amount of land growing crops for export, how local knowledge can minimize the impact of offshore wind farms, and more. Simply click on the headlines below to read the full stories.

Environmental research round-up
14 May, 2014
Highlights from Environmental Research Letters (ERL), including simulating urban heat islands, predicting winter winds, thawing permafrost, geoengineering and more.

Concrete pilings best for oysters
13 May, 2014
Using concrete rather than pile-wrap structures along shorelines could remove need for artificial reefs

Electromagnetic noise could set European robin adrift
12 May, 2014
Disruptive interference seen over a broad range from 20 kHz up to 5 MHz

Water-cycle changes will hit half world’s population
9May, 2014
‘Hotspots’ likely in south-eastern China, India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, and Nigeria, Benin, Ghana and Togo

Climate change is clear and present danger, says landmark US report
8 May, 2014
National Climate Assessment, to be launched at White House on Tuesday, says effects of climate change are now being felt (from the Guardian)

 
PRESS RELEASE HELCOM (May)
15.05.2014 00:00

Land-Based Pollution Group to address major regional issues in 3-day meeting

Seeking further solutions for less nutrient inputs to the Baltic Sea

15 May 2014

Better sewage sludge handling, which would improve phosphorus recycling and reduce its losses to the Baltic marine environment, as well as the monitoring results of phosphogypsum waste handling site in Wiślinka, Poland, have been key items in the Meeting of the HELCOM Land-Based Pollution Group (LAND), continuing today in Gdansk, Poland. Since the early 2000s the LAND Group has been meeting yearly, to discuss actions to limit emissions and discharges of nutrients from land-based sources from the Baltic Sea catchment, including transboundary pollution. The Group involves the major regional actors including all coastal governments, EU, HELCOM Observers and other key stakeholders.

The 2013 HELCOM Ministerial Declaration called for sustainable use of nutrients in the Baltic Sea Region. To respond to this call, the Gdansk Meeting 14-16 May is considering the draft HELCOM Recommendation on sewage sludge handling which is being prepared by Germany and Sweden. Waste water treatment sector generates vast amounts of sludge with high nutrient content that could be utilised sustainably with due environmental precautions. Having a set of specific requirements on sewage sludge handling would also respond to the topical issue of nutrient recycling.

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PRESS RELEASE HELCOM (May)
14.05.2014 00:00

Meeting of the HELCOM Nature Protection and Biodiversity Group continues until Friday

Protection of Baltic Sea biodiversity taking steps forward

14 May 2014

The species, habitats and biotopes with the highest risk of extinction in the Baltic Sea will get better protection through a new, up-to-date Recommendation, as agreed by the 2013 HELCOM Ministerial Meeting, and the first draft plans are now discussed in the on-going Meeting of the Nature Protection and Biodiversity Group (HELCOM HABITAT 16/2014) in Gothenburg, Sweden. The HABITAT Group, in its annual 4-day Meeting, also addresses a great number of other issues under the overall goal of the Baltic Sea Action Plan – a favourable status for the Baltic Sea biodiversity.

The significant HELCOM Projects’ accomplishments last year on Red Lists of species, habitats and biotopes and related classifications will show the way to the EU level within the project “Establishment of a European Red List of Habitats”, which will be discussed in the Meeting. The main aim of the Project is to provide reliable and timely information on the status and trends of biodiversity across Europe, starting by selecting national biotope experts and reviewing the adaptability of the widely used international IUCN criteria. HELCOM will take the lead in the Baltic Sea.

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PRESS RELEASE HELCOM (May)
13.05.2014 00:00

All relevant sectors onboard for developing the sensitive water-basin

Poland and Russia move ahead for joint management of Vistula Lagoon

13 May 2014

For the first time, the joint management plans of the Vistula Lagoon, located between Poland and Russia, is discussed by such a wide array of stakeholders, representing transport, tourism, fisheries management, environmental protection, maritime spatial planning and business sectors.  The 2-day Forum in Kaliningrad, Russia is organized by HELCOM BASE and VILA projects and brings together Polish, Russian and international stakeholders to agree upon the baseline situation and start the plans. The initiative contributes to the achievement of good environmental status for the Baltic Sea, sustaining a wide range of human, economic and social activities in the region, as an overall goal of HELCOM Baltic Sea Action Plan.

Vistula Lagoon is separated from the Gulf of Gdansk by a long sandy Spit, forming a variety of landscapes. The Lagoon has unique natural features and it provides a shallow-water sink for a large catchment area, making the ecosystem of the Lagoon very sensitive to any human disturbances. The waterbody remains one of 52 HELCOM “hot spots”, as the pollution load being accumulated in the lagoon for years from its vast catchment significantly influences the water quality of the Baltic Sea.

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