Previous Ocean and Water News

Ocean acidification is deadly threat to marine life 10-23-17

If the outlook for marine life was already looking bleak – torrents of plastic that can suffocate and starve fishoverfishing, diverse forms of human pollution that create dead zones, the effects of global warming which is bleaching coral reefs and threatening coldwater species – another threat is quietly adding to the toxic soup. Read more at The Guardian

A 1775 Map Reveals the Extent of Human Impact on Florida’s Coral Reefs 10-2-17

More than 240 years ago, the mapmaker George Gauld put pen to paper and drew the Florida Keys. The scant frill of islands curls across the ocean, surrounded by minute notations of depth—and surprisingly detailed descriptions. Read more at The Atlantic

Against the Stream: The Future of the Federal Clean Water Rule 8-10-17

High up in Washington’s Cascade Range, snow feeds the creeks that descend toward the coast, flowing intermittently in summer and gaining strength again the following spring as they coalesce into the Cedar, Snohomish, and Stillaguamish rivers that dump into Puget Sound. Read more at Undark

The Fight Over the ‘Waters of the U.S.’ Rule: What You Need to Know 07-24-17

The Waters of the U.S. rule, which the Trump administration is planning to undo, improves federal protection for about 22 million acres of wetlands in the contiguous U.S., as well as upwards of two million miles of streams. Read more at Men’s Journal

Chesapeake losing its oyster reefs faster than they can be rebuilt 01-29-17

There aren’t enough shells to go around for wild fishery, aquaculture and sanctuaries

The Chesapeake Bay has an oyster problem — but more fundamentally, it has a shell problem. Read more on Bay Journal

Soaring ocean temperature is ‘greatest hidden challenge of our generation’ 9-5-16

IUCN report warns that ‘truly staggering’ rate of warming is changing the behaviour of marine species, reducing fishing zones and spreading disease

The soaring temperature of the oceans is the “greatest hidden challenge of our generation” that is altering the make-up of marine species, shrinking fishing areas and starting to spread disease to humans, according to the most comprehensive analysis yet of ocean warming. Read more on The Guardian

Mussels Disappearing From New England Waters, Scientists Say 8-29-16

New England is running out of mussels. A 2016 scientific study said the mussels, which are beloved by seafood fans, have declined dramatically in the Gulf of Maine. Read more on ABC News

RC Campus Network member Saint Leo Survey Finds Water Contamination Cases & Supply Questions Worry the Public 7-6-16

After hearing about contaminated public drinking water supplies in Flint, Mich., and a handful of other communities, more than half of respondents in a national poll say they are very or somewhat concerned about the safety of their own hometown’s water supply, the Saint Leo University Polling Institute found. Read more at

Florida Just Flushed Its “Toilet” Lake Onto Its Beaches 2-23-16

Just in time for tourist season, both of Florida’s coasts are being flooded by dark, polluted water that’s killing ocean creatures and turning away would-be swimmers, fishermen, and other visitors. Last month was South Florida’s wettest January since 1932. Because of the heavy rain, the water levels in Lake Okeechobee in central Florida rose to about a foot above what’s normal for this season …Full article

Scientists now link massive starfish die-off, warming ocean 2-21-16

Scientists studying what is killing starfish from Alaska to Mexico are beginning to put some of the pieces of the puzzle together. They’ve linked warmer ocean temperatures to the devastation of the wasting disease. It was the starfish arms walking off on their own that alerted biologist Steven Fradkin that something was terribly wrong at Starfish Point at Olympic National Park …Full article

January Was Record Warm, and That’s Bad News For Marine Life 2-18-16

Ocean temperatures are soaring — and that is bad news for many forms of marine life, including rock lobsters, according to two new studies from Cornell. Indeed, one of studies warns that the same warming-driven disease that was “a contributing factor to lobster fishery collapse in southern New England,” may soon threaten Maine since coastal waters are warming rapidly …Full article

Agriculture is Big Threat to Water Quality These Farmers Are Doing Something About It 12-27-15

Agriculture, with its fertilizers, has emerged as the biggest threat to water quality in many parts of the U.S. Some farmers are trying new conservation strategies …Full article

Farms Near Lake Erie Get Millions 11-30-15

Waste-producing operations receive funds despite algae fears …Full article

7 Important Ocean Trends, and What We Can Do About Them 6-8-15

More than 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered in water. About 97% of it exists in our oceans. But the oceans aren’t just full of aquatic creatures and colorful coral that comprise the perfect snorkel scenery. Major problems lurk on top of, and especially beneath the surface – problems that need our attention. That’s why we need World Oceans Day …Full article

Ocean Assets Valued at $24 Trillion but Dwindling Fast 4-22-15

A new report highlights the economic value of Earth’s marine environments According to a new WWF report Reviving the Ocean Economy: the case for action—2015, the goods and services from coastal and marine environments amount to about $2.5 trillion each year. That makes the ocean the 7th largest economy in the world in terms of Gross Domestic Product …Full article

Chesapeake Bay Recovering But Still Under Stress 2-3-15

Report Finds (Reuters) the ailing Chesapeake Bay is slowly recovering from pollution and overfishing but still has problems that include a drop by half in a key segment of the blue crab population, a report on the largest U.S. estuary said. The health snapshot from the Chesapeake Bay Program said the 64,000-square-mile watershed covering 6 states and the District of Columbia was threatened by rising sea levels, warmer water and urban development …Full article

Something Terrible is About to Happen to the Ocean’s Coral 1-28-15

Coral reefs provide habitat to 25% of sea-dwelling fish species. Coral scientist C. Mark Eakin, coordinator for the Coral Reef Watch program at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has been sounding a warning since last year that the globe’s corals appear to be on the verge of a mass-scale bleaching event. Bleaching happens when corals lose contact with an algae that feeds them nutrients. When water warms above normal levels, corals tend to expel their algae lifeline and in doing so, lose their brilliant colors-hence the term “bleaching.” During the last mass bleaching event, we lost almost a fifth of the world’s coral reefs …Full article

New Video from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Shows Perennial Sea Ice is Melting 1-21-15

Perennial sea ice stays frozen year round but is melting at a steady rate since 1979. the chart below show the decline using measurements taken every September, when the ice reaches its minimum for the year.

Ice is relective and helps beam much of the sun’s energy back into space. The darker ocean aborbs the heat and this contributes to the warming of the world’s oceans …more

2014 State of the Nation’s River Report: River Friendly Growth

Potomac Conservancy’s 2014 State of the Nation’s River report calls for urgent action to preserve local water quality in the face of rapid urbanization and deforestation. The report draws attention to several threats facing the Potomac including:

  • Loss of Healthy Forests in the rural parts of the region
    • Sprawl in growing suburban communities
    • Aging sewer infrastructure in the urban area Full article and report

Groundbreaking Maps Detail Acidity of the Earth’s Oceans 11-11-14

A team of scientists at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and the University of Colorado at Boulder have published a groundbreaking set of maps that offer a comprehensive picture of the acidity of the Earth’s oceans as they absorb climate change-causing cargon emissions, causing changes to marine ecosystems …Full article and maps

Groundbreaking Maps Detail Acidity of the Earth’s Oceans 11-1-14

A team of scientists at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and the University of Colorado at Boulder have published a groundbreaking set of maps that offer a comprehensive picture of the acidity of the Earth’s oceans as they absorb climate change-causing cargon emissions, causing changes to marine ecosystems …Full article and maps

July Ocean Temperature Hits Record High—Again 8-18-14

As Jellyfish Come in Waves Off Maine Coast, Questions Follow 7-16-14