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Reckless Bill Passes House of Representatives

Posted Mon, Jul 1, 2013 by Nancy Sopko to gas, House of Representatives, offshore drilling, oil, seismic airgun testing, vern buchanan

HR 2231 could nearly double U.S. offshore drilling, threatening tens of thousands of marine animals like this common bottlenose dolphin.

Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R.2231, the Offshore Energy and Jobs Act, a reckless bill that would nearly double U.S. offshore drilling, force new lease sales off the coasts of Virginia, South Carolina and Southern California, and gut critical environmental safeguards.  H.R.2231 is yet another giveaway to Big Oil that puts offshore drilling above all else while gutting critical environmental safeguards and doing nothing to make us more energy independent.


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Scottish Government Welcomes New Wind Subsidies!

Posted Thu, Jun 13, 2013 by Rachel Keylon to gas, legislation, offshore oil, offshore wind, Scotland, scottish government, seismic testing, united states, us

Scotland hopes to boost development of offshore wind through new federal subsidies. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

In a move to promote the development of offshore wind, the Scottish government has introduced new wind subsidies.  Offshore wind is a renewable energy source which will help us transition from polluting fossil fuels to a clean and renewable energy future.  For years, Oceana has been working to promote the responsible development of offshore wind energy in the U.S. because we believe that this untapped resource can help mitigate the effects of global climate change and ocean acidification while at the same time boosting our economy with good-paying American jobs.


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What Do Historic CO2 Levels Mean for the Oceans?

Posted Tue, May 14, 2013 by Matt Huelsenbeck to air pollution, carbon dioxide, climate change, co2, gas, ocean acidification, ocean pollution, oil, pollution, seismic airgun testing

“Keeling Curve” shows CO2 levels increase from 1958-2013. (Source: Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD)


For the first time in human history, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels passed 400 parts per million
(ppm) of carbon dioxide at the historic Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii. This is the same location where Scripps Institution of Oceanography researcher Charles David Keeling first established the “Keeling Curve,” a famous graph showing that atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations are increasing rapidly in the atmosphere. CO2 was around 280 ppm before the Industrial Revolution, when humans first began releasing large amounts of CO2 to the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels. On May 9, the reading was a startling 400.08 ppm for a 24-hour period. But without the help of the oceans, this number would already be much higher.


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Record-Setting Water Temps Changing Marine Ecosystems

Posted Wed, May 1, 2013 by Matt Huelsenbeck to east coast, fossil fuels, gas, marine ecosystems, northeast, oil, petition, record setting, seismic airgun testing, temperature, water temperatures, white house

Map showing shifts in distribution of many fish stocks in the Northeast U.S. (Credit: Janet Nye, NEFSC/NOAA)

The oceans are heating up, and marine ecosystems are changing because of it. Long before climate scientists realized the extent of impacts from carbon dioxide emissions, ocean scientists were taking simple temperature readings. Now those readings are off the charts, showing an ocean thrown out of balance from human-caused climate change. Sea surface temperatures hit a 150 year high off the U.S. East Coast from Maine to North Carolina during 2012. 

These abnormally high temperatures are fundamentally altering marine ecosystems, from the abundance of plankton to the movement of fish and whales. Many marine species have specific time periods for spawning, migration, and birthing based on temperature signals and availability of prey. Kevin Friedland, a scientist in NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center’s Ecosystem Assessment Program, said “Changes in ocean temperatures and the timing and strength of spring and fall plankton blooms could affect the biological clocks of many marine species, which spawn at specific times of the year based on environmental cues like water temperature.”


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