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Offlineekomstop
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Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds
    #2950757 - 08/01/04 03:02 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/environment/story.jsp?story=546138

Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds
By Michael McCarthy Environment Editor

30 July 2004

Hundreds of thousands of Scottish seabirds have failed to breed this summer in a wildlife catastrophe which is being linked by scientists directly to global warming.

The massive unprecedented collapse of nesting attempts by several seabird species in Orkney and Shetland is likely to prove the first major impact of climate change on Britain.

In what could be a sub-plot from the recent disaster movie, The Day After Tomorrow, a rise in sea temperature is believed to have led to the mysterious disappearance of a key part of the marine food chain - the sandeel, the small fish whose great teeming shoals have hitherto sustained larger fish, marine mammals and seabirds in their millions.

In Orkney and Shetland, the sandeel stocks have been shrinking for several years, and this summer they have disappeared: the result for seabirds has been mass starvation. The figures for breeding failure, for Shetland in particular, almost defy belief.

More than 172,000 breeding pairs of guillemots were recorded in the islands in the last national census, Seabird 2000, whose results were published this year; this summer the birds have produced almost no young, according to Peter Ellis, Shetland area manager for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB).

Martin Heubeck of Aberdeen University, who has monitored Shetland seabirds for 30 years, said: "The breeding failure of the guillemots is unprecedented in Europe." More than 6,800 pairs of great skuas were recorded in Shetland in the same census; this year they have produced a handful of chicks - perhaps fewer than 10 - while the arctic skuas (1,120 pairs in the census) have failed to produce any surviving young.

The 24,000 pairs of arctic terns, and the 16,700 pairs of Shetland kittiwakes - small gulls - have "probably suffered complete failure", said Mr Ellis.

In Orkney the picture is very similar, although detailed figures are not yet available. "It looks very bad," said the RSPB's warden on Orkney mainland, Andy Knight. "Very few of the birds have raised any chicks at all."

The counting and monitoring is still going on and the figures are by no means complete: it is likely that puffins, for example, will also have suffered massive breeding failure but because they nest deep in burrows, this is not immediately obvious.

But the astonishing scale of what has taken place is already clear - and the link to climate change is being openly made by scientists. It is believed that the microscopic plankton on which tiny sandeel larvae feed are moving northwards as the sea water warms, leaving the baby fish with nothing to feed on.

This is being seen in the North Sea in particular, where the water temperature has risen by 2C in the past 20 years, and where the whole ecosystem is thought to be undergoing a "regime shift", or a fundamental alteration in the interaction of its component species. "Think of the North Sea as an engine, and plankton as the fuel driving it," said Euan Dunn of the RSPB, one of the world's leading experts on the interaction of fish and seabirds. "The fuel mix has changed so radically in the past 20 years, as a result of climate change, that the whole engine is now spluttering and starting to malfunction. All of the animals in the food web above the plankton, first the sandeels, then the larger fish like cod, and ultimately the seabirds, are starting to be affected."

Research last year clearly showed that the higher the temperature, the less sandeels could maintain their population level, said Dr Dunn. "The young sandeels are simply not surviving."

Although over-fishing of sandeels has caused breeding failures in the past, the present situation could not be blamed on fishing, he said. The Shetland sandeel fishery was catching so few fish that it was closed as a precautionary measure earlier this year. "Climate change is a far more likely explanation."

The spectacular seabird populations of the Northern Isles have a double importance. They are of great value scientifically, holding, for example, the world's biggest populations of great skuas. And they are of enormous value to Orkney and Shetland tourism, being the principal draw for many visitors. The national and international significance of what has happened is only just beginning to dawn on the wider political and scientific community, but some leading figures are already taking it on board.

"This is an incredible event," said Tony Juniper, director of Friends of the Earth. "The catastrophe [of these] seabirds is just a foretaste of what lies ahead.

"It shows that climate change is happening now, [with] devastating consequences here in Britain, and it shows that reducing the pollution causing changes to the earth's climate should now be the global number one political priority."


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InvisiblePapaverS
Madmin Emeritus?

Registered: 06/01/02
Posts: 26,880
Loc: Radio Free Tibet!
Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ekomstop]
    #2950797 - 08/01/04 03:22 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Sounds like another chapter in the displacement of natural selection by "human selection." As the climate changes; the environment is polluted by chemicals and antibiotics; the population continues to rise out of balance with the other species; and the earth's habitats are downsized and die the "death of a thousand cuts" by conduits of transportation and commerce; only the most robust and adaptable species will remain -- the "weed species." Those species which actually thrive in environments altered by mankind (i.e. raccoons, rats, squirrels, etc.).

The little historical-diversity that we manage to keep will be largely token efforts (i.e. zoos), which have little to do with true diversity, and will only be maintained artificially, at great expense, but they will be nice for the kids to visit -- in their nano-pore surgical masks and buckyball extreme uv sun-block...

But hey, I'm not casting any judgments, or being gloomy, or anything. It just seems like the way things are going. I don't want anyone to take offense. Like the last time I mentioned that over-population, and its effects on the environment, may not be a very good thing... :smirk:


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Invisible@cro
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: Papaver]
    #2950858 - 08/01/04 04:16 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Who's getting upset?
Well said.

I have heard so many low key articles like this in the last couple years but it doesn't seem to get attention from anyone, oh well, I guess it's really not as important as who got married in Hollywood this week or what actress has a drug problem. :smirk:

Peace


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Offlinefanaticus
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: @cro]
    #2951048 - 08/01/04 06:35 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

That is heartbreaking indeed.

I have been seeing stuff around here too. When I am out on the coast (western washington), there is very few seabirds like there used to be. They used to flock and feed and interact. Now, it seems the few gulls that are there just stand there and stare out into the sea. I seem to read their minds. They are hungry and full of fear.

Here at Lake Quinault, this is suppossed to be a wild life refuge. It is quiet. There are few birds and the ones that are hear just seem to stand around. There are only two eagles and everytime I see them. they are not diving and catching fish (few fish in lake) and they usually are just sitting in their tall tree near their nest, just watching. They have no offspring.

Something is really wrong, and I hate it. Life is vanishing.

It is very depressing to contemplate it all. So what I do is just remember my trips on the shrooms and think about the glory that I have witnessed and that even if life is disappearing on this planet because of humanity, the universe is full of life and our little problem down here is most likely something that was inevitable from the beginning. If it wasn't for the visions I have had on the shrooms, I don't know what I would do. Maybe that is why so many people just get drunk and fucked up. I was just at a party tonight, and EVERYBODY was wasted. I still think that the spark of life is within us and that won't die, even when we check out, the light will be there to greet us. All we have to do is hang in there and live as best as we can and respect creation.

The Professor


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InvisiblePapaverS
Madmin Emeritus?

Registered: 06/01/02
Posts: 26,880
Loc: Radio Free Tibet!
Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: @cro]
    #2951416 - 08/01/04 12:44 PM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

@cro said:
oh well, I guess it's really not as important as who got married in Hollywood this week or what actress has a drug problem. :smirk:




Yes, I think the environmental issue just isn't "sexy" enough for prime-time. The Planet needs to hire a good ad agency and public relations firm (and maybe a few good body guards). :wink:


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Offlineekomstop
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ekomstop]
    #2953909 - 08/01/04 11:40 PM (12 years, 8 months ago)

I don't even know what to say about some of this stuff...I just can't conceive of how or why any government would care to throw away all kinds of money in order to play war when there are obviously more important things to worry about.

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/environment/story.jsp?story=546761

Seas Turn To Acid As They
Absorb Global Pollution
By Geoffrey Lean
Environment Editor
The Independent - UK
8-1-4


The world's oceans are sacrificing themselves to try to stave off global warming, a major international research programme has discovered.

Their waters have absorbed about half of the carbon dioxide emitted by human activities over the past two centuries, the 15-year study has found. Without this moderating effect, climate change would have been much more rapid and severe.

But in the process the seas have become more acid, threatening their very life. The research warns that this could kill off their coral reefs, shellfish and plankton, on which all marine life depends.

News of the alarming conclusions of the research - headed by US government scientists - follows the discovery, reported in Friday's Independent, of a catastrophic failure of North Sea birds to breed this summer, thought to be the result of global warming.

The disaster - forecast in The Independent on Sunday last October - appears to have been caused by plankton moving hundreds of miles to the north to escape from an unprecedented warming on the sea's waters. Sand eels - millions of which normally provide the staple diet of many seabirds and large fish - have disappeared, because they, in turn, depend on the plankton.

The new study warns of an even more alarming collapse throughout the world's oceans if climate change continues. It is the result of a mammoth research effort, which has taken and analysed 72,000 samples of seawater from 10,000 different places in the oceans since 1989.

Led by scientists working for the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Seattle, it has also involved teams of researchers from Australia, Canada, Spain, Japan, South Korea and Germany.

It has discovered, for the first time, that the seas and oceans have soaked up almost half of all human emissions of carbon dioxide, the main cause of global warming, since the start of the Industrial Revolution.

By doing so they have greatly slowed climate change, and almost certainly prevented it from already causing catastrophe.

"The oceans are performing this tremendous service to humankind by reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere," says Dr Christopher Sabine, one of the leaders of the research. But, he adds, this is coming at a great cost because the act of salvage "is changing the chemistry of the oceans".

The research concludes that "dramatic changes", such as have not occurred for at least 20 million years, now appear to be under way. They could have "significant impacts on the biological systems of the oceans in ways that we are only beginning to understand".

As the water naturally absorbs carbon dioxide from the air, it forms carbonic acid. And the acid then mops up calcium carbonate, a substance normally plentiful in the oceans that sea creatures use to make the protective shells that they need to survive.

The scientists say that if the world goes on producing more and more carbon dioxide, this shell formation will become increasingly difficult, while the world will heat up anyway.

The results are incalculable, because so may shelled creatures live in the seas, ranging from clams and corals to the plankton and other tiny creatures that form the base of the entire food chain of the oceans.

The surface waters and upper 10 per cent of the oceans - which contain most of the life - are the most acidic, the research shows. The acidity also varies around the world. The North Atlantic - the nearest ocean to the world's most polluting countries, is the most affected; the southern ocean that encircles Antarctica the least.

When the scientists took a species of snail from the relatively unpolluted waters of the far north of the Pacific, near the Arctic Circle, and put it in seawater with carbon dioxide levels similar to those found elsewhere, the animals' shells began to dissolve.

Dr Peter Brewer, of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute - who was not himself involved in the research - calls the results "a wake-up call". He adds: "The numbers are crystal clear. The analysis is impeccable. There is no uncertainty about this. These impacts of a high carbon dioxide ocean are real, and are measurable today."

The research also explodes a heavily touted "solution" to global warming. Critics of international action, including members of the Bush administration, say that there is little need to curb carbon dioxide emissions because the gas could be collected and injected into the oceans for disposal. However, the study shows that this cure could be even worse than the disease.

A Sea Song
By Martin Newell
'IoS' Poet in Residence

The sand eel goes without his tea
Because of human industry
So guillemots are starving
And the puffin's eating nothing
The kittiwake and skua
May not grow to be mature
And the sea's got indigestion now

Chorus
Must I go down to the sea again?
To the lonely sea in tears
The sky is strangely empty
And the silence hurts my ears

Now the arctic tern - the mother
Thinks a tern deserves another
But she ain't disposed to breeding
With her troubles over feeding
The ocean still is heaving
But the creatures are all leaving
And the sea's got indigestion now

See, there isn't any potion
You can give a gippy ocean
Like a Gaviston or Rennie
And we ain't come up with any
Since the businesses we banked on
Have been murdering the plankton
So the sea's got indigestion now

The day before the siren went
We thought about environment
We talked about restrictions
And made various predictions
But market forces beckoned
So the oceans all came second
And the sea's got indigestion now.

? 2004 Independent Digital (UK) Ltd


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OfflinePsilygirl
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ekomstop]
    #2954581 - 08/02/04 02:11 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

well, looks like the more dramatic effects of something scientists have known for over a decade now are beginning... even if we stop emitting today, we are going to see major environmental impacts from our consumption and combustion of fossil fuels.

human society needs to begin shifting away from a consumption without thought lifestyle... not only to save the environment, but ultimately, i believe, ourselves... and contrary to belief, there is still hope, and we can do something about this

i could debate forever on this issue, but i think incidents such as these speak for themselves. and all the wildfires this summer... and retreating glaciers... etc, etc...

thanks for sharing this article, these issues are not far and remote, but much more important and real than anyone in the media or government would let you believe.


--------------------
"Love says 'I am everything.' Wisdom says 'I am nothing.' Between the two, my life flows."


Puget Sound Mycological Society


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Invisiblequestion_for_joo
i'm left. youall can bite me
Registered: 04/30/03
Posts: 1,591
Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: Psilygirl]
    #2955293 - 08/02/04 08:39 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Sea engulfing Alaskan village

It is thought to be the most extreme example of global warming on the planet.

Some estimate that the sea moves inland three metres a year
The village of Shishmaref lies on a tiny island on the edge of the arctic circle - and it is literally being swallowed by the sea.

Houses the Eskimos have occupied for generations are now wilting and buckled.

Some have fallen into the sea. Not only is the earth crumbling underfoot, but the waves are rising ominously all around.

As we walked across the narrow strip of beach that was his playground as a kid, village elder Tony Weyiouanna pointed to a series of barricades that have been erected over the years in the hope of stemming the tide.

.....


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OfflineMystiq_Shaman
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Registered: 07/10/04
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ekomstop]
    #2955300 - 08/02/04 08:53 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

I notice all these things that happens but for some reason I belive there is a reason for everything and that in the end everything will make perfect sense but its not in my lifetime and not in my intrest to know the reasons. Mother Earth usually knows what she does.

ok so half the world is going to hell sooner or later but it is not so much I can do about it, I put my trust in nature. But its sad to see alot of things, like these birds, might end up this way.


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InvisibleAdom
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: Mystiq_Shaman]
    #2955306 - 08/02/04 09:02 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Mystiq_Shaman said:
Mother Earth usually knows what she does.





She should try to hit up every major city with a disastor..It would be a good start.


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Invisiblequestion_for_joo
i'm left. youall can bite me
Registered: 04/30/03
Posts: 1,591
Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: Mystiq_Shaman]
    #2955310 - 08/02/04 09:09 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Mystiq_Shaman said:
I notice all these things that happens but for some reason I belive there is a reason for everything and that in the end everything will make perfect sense but its not in my lifetime and not in my intrest to know the reasons. Mother Earth usually knows what she does.

ok so half the world is going to hell sooner or later but it is not so much I can do about it, I put my trust in nature. But its sad to see alot of things, like these birds, might end up this way.




No offense my friend but this attitude is lazy and cowardly. Shit is going to happen in your lifetime and it's because the majority of people on the planet have the same outlook as you.


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InvisibleAdom
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: question_for_joo]
    #2955316 - 08/02/04 09:14 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

99% of the morons around here won't even particapate in a recycling program. I think we are horribley fucked, especially since our government doesn't make this an issue, the flock doesn't have a clue how serious this is.


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InvisibleMOTH
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: Adom]
    #2955317 - 08/02/04 09:20 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Exactly, it's always good to do your part (I try to) but if the rest of the population doesn't jump on the bandwagon little will be accomplished.

Living by example can sometimes encourage others to do the same though.


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Invisiblequestion_for_joo
i'm left. youall can bite me
Registered: 04/30/03
Posts: 1,591
Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: Adom]
    #2955319 - 08/02/04 09:21 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Everyone can do better in some ways and calling people morons isn't going to help. When was the last time you rode a bicycle to get to a destination instead of driving your car?


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OfflineMystiq_Shaman
x.o.

Registered: 07/10/04
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: question_for_joo]
    #2955322 - 08/02/04 09:24 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

question_for_joo said:
friend but this attitude is lazy and cowardly. Shit is going to happen in your lifetime and it's because the majority of people on the planet have the same outlook as you.




How is it lazy and cowardly? And what do you expect should be done? The world is overpopulatet so the correct solution to alot of problems would be to kill a bunch of humans. But this can not be done, its not even up for debate, because who are going to die and who are going to kill them. So the world keeps getting overpopulated and we keep building factories and we keep poluting, and you can yell stop poluting until you grow roots but nothing is going to change before we completly change our lifestyle and we solve the problems with all the people on this planet. So you can call me lazy as much as you want , if you have a solution i be more than happy to help

btw, i keep ethnogens and endangered plants in stock with goal to spread the genes so these plants wont die out, . I do more than many. But i cant fix a hole in the sky.


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InvisibleAdom
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: question_for_joo]
    #2955327 - 08/02/04 09:27 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

About 6 times in the last two weeks bud, calling names doesn't help but people are morons and people who won't participate in recycling are stupid and have nothing but my pity.


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Anonymous

Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ekomstop]
    #2955433 - 08/02/04 10:41 AM (12 years, 8 months ago)

its heartening for me read this thread. change begins with a change in the way people talk about stuff.

i've been shopping cars lately. thinking about some deficit spending on a toyota preius. come to find out that the waiting list for a preius is between 12 and 24 months with a $500 deposite.

BUT...

they will sell you a corrolla TODAY! or better, a land rover. they got a herd a' land rovers, they're givin' em away.

SO...

oh.. same story for ford's new hybrid... they'll sell you a bronco tho, TODAY!

SO...

i don't know. traffic is so bad around here now-a-days. may be time to move to china and telecommute. :confused:


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Invisiblequestion_for_joo
i'm left. youall can bite me
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ]
    #2956010 - 08/02/04 01:31 PM (12 years, 8 months ago)

My parents got a Prius recently. They had to wait about 12 months. It's cool though, so far they've driven it 1,300 miles only had to fill up the tank about 3 times.


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InvisibleMyInsanityTrip
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Re: Disaster at sea: global warming hits UK birds [Re: ekomstop]
    #2956082 - 08/02/04 01:52 PM (12 years, 8 months ago)

haha, birds are dumb anyway.


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