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Conservation + BioEconomy
Management of Natural Resources = #WaterSecurity (#Oceans, #Desertification, #Drought), #Energy (#Biofuels #Hydropower #SolarPower), #BioEconomy (#BioManufacturing, #Sustainability, #Biodiversity), #Transportation (#Shipping, #Bicycling), #Forests (#Deforestation), Conservation (#NationalParks, #UNESCO #WorldHeritage) . Senior Editor/Curator - Dr. Margaret Carroll Boardman
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Columbia Business School and Morgan Stanley Launch Sustainable Investing Fellowship

1 November 2013, CSRWire -- "Columbia Business School and Morgan Stanley today launched the Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Fellowship to develop the next generation of leaders in sustainable investing. Morgan Stanley Chairman and CEO James Gorman, a 1987 Columbia Business School Alumnus, announced the new program during the keynote address at Columbia Business School’s Program for Financial Studies Conference.


The Sustainable Investing Fellowship will offer a select group of Columbia students the opportunity to combine research and practice to design efforts that seek to drive capital toward investments that promote sustainable economic growth. Fellows will conduct supervised research with Columbia Business School faculty members and participate in an internship at Morgan Stanley to gain hands-on experience in product innovation, thought leadership, and investment strategy. ..."

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Talks on Antarctic Marine Reserve Fail to Reach Agreement

Talks on Antarctic Marine Reserve Fail to Reach Agreement | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

1 November 2013, New York Times, Dan Bilefsky -- "Talks aimed at creating one of the world’s largest marine reserves in the waters off Antarctica ended in failure in the face of resistance from Russia, China and Ukraine, delegates said.


n the talks, held in Hobart, Tasmania, under the auspices of theCommission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, the United States and New Zealand had proposed to create a 500,000 square mile, or 1.3 million square kilometer, ocean reserve in the Southern Ocean and the Ross Sea around Antarctica. The area’s pristine ecosystem helps sustain thousands of species, including whales, seals and penguins, as well as crustaceans and small fish.

The proposal before the marine commission needed support from 24 member countries and the European Union to be adopted, but it fell short because of the objections from the three countries, people at the talks said. ..."

Photo: Melting ice on a cliff off the coast of Cape Denison in Antarctica in 2009. Credit: Pauline Askin/Reuters

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Marian Locksley's curator insight, November 13, 2013 6:17 AM
Isle of Man-sized iceberg “could hit shipping lanes”, scientists warn: http://uk.news.yahoo.com/isle-of-man-sized-iceberg-%E2%80%9Ccould-hit-shipping-lanes%E2%80%9D--scientists-warn-100916998.html#Lu0Gnsu

 

 

 

 

13.11.13 ~ 

Vast Antarctic iceberg 'could threaten shipping' :   http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24912233

 

 

 

"I guess it doesn't want to be 'exploited', so keep away 'Ships who fish." !

 

 

 

 

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Deep-sea fishing regulations and a crucial European vote

Deep-sea fishing regulations and a crucial European vote | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

1 November 2013, The Guardian via The Observer, Richard Branson -- "The future of the deep ocean and its ecosystem depends on the EU leading the way on sustainable fishing and ocean conservation.


The fates of some of our oldest and most mysterious natural treasures will hang in the balance tomorrow as members of the European Parliament's committee on fisheries vote on a future deep-sea fishingregulation for the northeast Atlantic. It is a game-changing moment for the deep ocean. The EU has the world's biggest deep-sea fishing fleet. If it adopts a strong new deep-sea access regime that protects vulnerable marine creatures and habitats, and stops the horrendous by-catch of more than 100 of non-target species, it will be a turning point in the fight for sustainable fishing and ocean conservation


The EU can choose to lead the world in preserving the unique, and largely unexplored, wonders of the deep sea. Or it can allow a relatively small number of fishing vessels to continue to crush millennia-old ecosystems with giant nets and steel plates for very little or no profit.

UK MEPs are at the centre of this decision. Of the 25 members of the committee on fisheries, five from the UK: Struan Stevenson, John Stuart Agnew, Chris Davies, Diane Dodds and Ian Hudghton could make or break the result. UK citizens should be watching very closely and demand that our representatives support a healthy ocean, and a sustainable and viable fishing industry.


Photo: A fisherman takes a nap on his boat after deep-sea fishing all night in El Callao, Peru. Credit: Rodrigo Abd/AP

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Brazil wants to build enough wind turbines to power Sao Paulo within 7 years

Brazil wants to build enough wind turbines to power Sao Paulo within 7 years | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

1 November 2013, Treehugger, Michael Graham Richard -- "Brazil's economy is growing fast, and it is expected to need an increase of 50% in power generation capacity over the next decade.


... Currently, the country gets quite a lot of its electricity from hydro, but because it is becoming more reluctant to build new dams on its numerous rivers, it is now turning to another plentiful source of energy: Wind power. The country doesn't have much of it right now, but a big wind turbine boom seems to be starting.


Large parts of Brazil as so windy - both with high and consistent wind speeds - that this is a perfect fit.


...The current goal is to generate 10% of the country's electricity from the wind by 2021, or enough to pretty much power Sao Paula, South-America's largest city with 11 million people (almost 20 million in the metro area). ..."


Photo credit: CC BY 2.0 Flickr

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How Aruba Plans to Be Energy Independent by 2020

How Aruba Plans to Be Energy Independent by 2020 | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

1 November 2013, Sustainable Brands, Carrie Thompson -- "Aruba is making good on its goal of energy independence.


'Energy independence' is a term we hear a lot of politicians throw around, but not too many actually follow through on their plans or promises.


Aruba, however, is actually making good on its goal of energy independence. The tiny Caribbean country is not only addressing its energy concerns but is actually on track to become fully energy independent by 2020, thanks to a number of clean-energy investments and initiatives. ..."

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In Brazil, the wind is blowing in a new era of renewable energy

In Brazil, the wind is blowing in a new era of renewable energy | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

30 October 2013, Juan Forero, Washington Post -- "Blessed with what experts call the “perfect wind” for power generation, the nation is building its capacity.


With its abundant dams and rivers that carry more fresh water than any other country, Brazil — big and bountiful — essentially runs on hydropower. But it turns out that the country can also count on a good strong breeze.

Wind is emerging as a prize for energy planners here who see the howling gusts that arrive from the east as a way to offset the fresh limits imposed on hydropower. ..."


Video: In Northeastern Brazil, energy companies are erecting wind farms to capitalize on the constant winds that have challenged farming families for generations.

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Rebranded as the Rainforest Trust, green group launches push to protect 6M acres of Amazon rainforest

Rebranded as the Rainforest Trust, green group launches push to protect 6M acres of Amazon rainforest | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

30 October 2013, Mongabay -- "The Rainforest Trust, which from 1988 until last month was known as the World Land Trust-US, has kicked off an effort to preserve some 2.4 million hectares (5.9 million acres) of rainforest in a remote part of the Peruvian Amazon. 

The fundraising drive, which aims to raise $2.9 million, is the largest ever for the organization, according to Paul Salaman, Chief Executive Officer of Rainforest Trust. ..."


Read more at http://news.mongabay.com/2013/1030-sierra-del-divisor-peru.html#i9kr3mRJok01lGAM.99

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World's First 1 Megawatt Wave Energy Power Plant Launched in South Australia

World's First 1 Megawatt Wave Energy Power Plant Launched in South Australia | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

30 October 2013, Inhabitat, Ross Brooks -- "Australia’s Oceanlinx just launched the world’s first 1 megawatt wave power plant in Port MacDonnell, South Australia. The wave energy converter was developed with support from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), and it will undergo tests over the next 12 months to determine how well it feeds into the national power grid. If all goes well the initiative plans to follow up with a 10 megawatt version of the device. ..."

Read more: World's First 1 Megawatt Wave Energy Power Plant Launched in South Australia | Inhabitat - Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building 

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Walmart Now Produces More Solar Power Than 38 U.S. States

Walmart Now Produces More Solar Power Than 38 U.S. States | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

30 October 2013, Sustainable Brands, Mike Hower -- "

Walmart now has more than 180 renewable energy projects in operation or development around the world and generates 89 megawatts (MW) of solar across 215 locations, according to a report last week by the Solar Energy Industries Association. This is enough to power 22,250 U.S. homes and is more than is produced in 38 U.S. states. 


Earlier in 2013, Walmart partnered with SolarCity to install solar on another 60 stores in California, part if the company’s goal to have solar power on 75 percent of its stores in the state. The company also is testing other projects, such as micro wind, large-scale wind farms, solar water heating and solar thermal to maximize the renewable energy potential of each location.


In March, the company announced that achieved its goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 20 percent in all facilities built before 2005 a year earlier than expected. ..."

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Western U.S. states, British Columbia team up to battle climate change

28 October 2013, Reuters, Rory Carroll -- " The leaders of the three U.S. states along the Pacific Coast and the Canadian province of British Columbia agreed on Monday to align carbon-cutting policies in the coastal region, which together is equivalent to the world's fifth-largest economy.Under the agreement aimed at aligning climate change strategies, the U.S. states of Oregon and Washington will move to set their first pricing on carbon emissions.California, which has a cap-and-trade program, and British Columbia, which has a carbon tax, will continue current carbon pricing programs under the deal. ..."
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Latvia and Estonia among EU's top-5 countries covered by forests

Latvia and Estonia among EU's top-5 countries covered by forests | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

28 October The Baltic Course -- "Estonia and Latvia are among the European Union's top five countries covered by forests and other wooded areas, according to a study carried out by the European Commission, informs LETA.


The study shows that there are only five countries in the EU, where forests cover more than 50% of total land area – Sweden (76%), Finland (72%), Estonia (61%), Slovenia (60%) and Latvia (56%).

 

... Forests cover 159 million hectares in the EU, 38% of the bloc's territory.

 

These data are published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union and are based on a large scale land survey, the Land Use/Cover Area frame Survey (LUCAS), conducted most recently in 2012.  ..."

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Making rubber from dandelion juice

Making rubber from dandelion juice | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

28 October 2013, Science Daily via Faunhofer Institute for Moleular Biology -- "Rubber can be extracted from the juice of the dandelion. Yet the decisive breakthrough to industrial manufacturing is proving to be a tough step. Working jointly with industry and science, the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME has optimized the cultivation and production engineering over the past few years. Now the researchers -- in collaboration with Continental -- are building the first ever pilot system to extract vast quantities of dandelion rubber for making tires: an important milestone on the path to rubber procurement in Europe. ..."

GR2's insight:

Cited reference: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft (2013, October 28). Making rubber from dandelion juice. 

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Ethiopia opens Africa's largest wind farm to boost power production

Ethiopia opens Africa's largest wind farm to boost power production | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

26 October 2013, Reuters, -- "Africa's biggest wind farm began production in Ethiopia on Saturday, aiding efforts to diversify electricity generation from hydropower plants and help the country become a major regional exporter of energy.


The Horn of Africa country - plagued by frequent blackouts - plans to boost generating capacity from 2,000 MW to 10,000 MW within the next three to five years, much of it coming from the 6,000 MW Grand Renaissance Dam under construction on the Nile.


The plan also consists of raising wind power generation to more than 800 MW and geothermal capacity to less than 100 MW.

The 210 million euro ($289.68 million) Ashegoda Wind Farm was built by French firm Vergnet SA with concessional loans from BNP Paribas and the French Development Agency (AFD). The Ethiopian government covered 9 percent of the cost. ..."


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White House Will Focus on Climate Shifts While Trying to Cut Greenhouse Gases

White House Will Focus on Climate Shifts While Trying to Cut Greenhouse Gases | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

1 November 2013, New York Times, Justin Gills -- "White House aides said President Obama would sign an executive order on Friday morning directing federal agencies to make it easier for states to build resilience against storms.


...White House aides said President Obama would sign an executive order on Friday morning directing federal agencies to make it easier for states and communities to build resilience against storms, droughts and other weather extremes. For instance, when federal money is being spent on projects like roads, bridges, flood control and many others, the plan would encourage greater attention to the likely climate conditions of the future, which might require making the structures stronger or larger. ..."

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Morgan Stanley Establishes Institute for Sustainable Investing

1 November 2013, CSRWire for Morgan Stanley -- "Morgan Stanley Chairman and CEO James Gorman today announced the establishment of the Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing. The Institute will build on Morgan Stanley’s ongoing work to advance market-based solutions to economic, social and environmental challenges, operating from the foundational principle that sustainable investment can only achieve significant scale by attracting a broad range of private sector capital. Through product innovation, thought leadership and scholarship aimed at expanding opportunities for sustainable investing, the Institute will seek to drive capital toward investments promoting sustainable economic growth.


The Institute for Sustainable Investing will pursue three focus areas: financial products and solutions that enable clients to invest in sustainability-focused strategies seeking risk-adjusted financial returns; groundbreaking thought leadership that will help mobilize capital toward sustainable investing opportunities; and strategic partnerships with the public, private and nonprofit sectors designed to build capacity and best practices within the field of scalable sustainable investing. ..."

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The Evolution of Sustainability Planning in Grand Rapids

The Evolution of Sustainability Planning in Grand Rapids | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

1 November 2013, TriplePundit, Harris Alibašić -- "Through the careful development of a sustainability plan, Grand Rapids, Michigan has become one of the most sustainable communities in the United States.


Through the careful development of a sustainability plan, the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan has become one of the most sustainability planning-oriented communities in the United States.


In a presentation entitled Taking Sustainable Cities Seriously: How Cities Choose their Paths Towards Sustainability to the Community Sustainability Partnership Summit held in Grand Rapids on May 10, 2006, Kent Portney predicted that the City of Grand Rapids was “poised to enter the real elite of the country – a regional and national leader for mid-sized cities.” These words sounded prophetic and visionary at the same time. The city became a national leader, among a select few, focusing on sustainability.


in 2006, the city passed a resolution establishing a sustainability policy for city-owned buildings, standardizing requirements for construction, renovation, and management, requiring the potential use of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) principles, water conservation, and energy use reduction. It is no coincidence that the Grand Rapids area is home to some of the largest concentration of LEED certified buildings per capita in U.S., with many first in LEED design, the first LEED-certified Art Museum, and a building with the most LEED points in the world. The city’s Water Department’s administration building was the first LEED-certified building in Michigan. ..."

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Pacific Coast Leaders Sign Historic Climate Action Plan

Pacific Coast Leaders Sign Historic Climate Action Plan | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

31 October 2013, TriplePundit, Gina-Marie Cheeseman -- "The leaders of California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia gathered on Monday to sign a historic climate action plan. Called the Pacific Coast Action Plan on Climate and Energy, California Governor Jerry Brown, Washington Governor Jay Inslee, Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber, and British Columbia Premier Christy Clark signed the plan at the Fourth Annual Leaders’ Forum of the Pacific Coast Collaborative. The plan grew out of the Pacific Coast Collaborative whose membership consists of the three West Coast states and British Columbia. The three states and the Canadian province have a combined population of 53 million and GDP of $2.8 trillion, making the region the world’s fifth largest economy. ..."


Photo credit: California, Office of Governor.


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Great Barrier Reef draft strategic assessment released

Great Barrier Reef draft strategic assessment released | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

31 October 2013, ABC Rural (Australia) -- "Comment is being sought on the draft strategic assessment for the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.


Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt has released the draft ...[He]

was joined by Queensland Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney and Environment Minister Andrew Powell in Townsville, North Queensland.


The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) undertook the marine component of the assessment to consider the impact of activities on the water of the park. The Queensland Government carried out an assessment of the coastal zone component.


Mr Hunt says the most significant challenge facing the reef is reducing sediment, nitrogen and nutrient flows. ...


According to the Australian Institute of Marine Science, the Great Barrier Reef has lost half of its coral cover in the last 28 years, mainly to cyclones, the Crown of Thorns starfish and coral bleaching.

Nutrient run-off from agriculture, industry and domestic activity are also implicated and Queensland farmers have adopted techniques to reduce their impact. There are also concerns about the impact of the rapidly developing coal seam gas industry and coal mining expansion.

This has drastically boosted port and other production along the north Queensland coast, in particular, the expansion of the Abbot Point coal port 25 kilometres north of Bowen. ..."


Photo: Wetwand and estuary surrounding the Abbott Point Coal Terminal.  The expansion of this coal facilities will hinge on the draft startegic assessment for the Great Barrer Reef.  Credit: Greenpeace via ABC Rural.

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While U.S. Fills Potholes, China Plans Transport Boom

While U.S. Fills Potholes, China Plans Transport Boom | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

30 October 2013, Forbes, Jeff McMahon -- "While the U.S. struggles to maintain its transportation infrastructure, China is planning a massive expansion of highways, rail lines, and airports, transportation ministers from both countries said in Chicago Wednesday.


While the U.S. struggles to maintain its transportation infrastructure, China is planning a massive expansion of highways, rail lines, and airports, according to transportation ministers who painted contrasting portraits Wednesday of their respective countries.


“Although we’ve already obtained lots of achievement in China’s transport development, we see increasing demand for an even bigger transport system in China,” Vice Minister Gao Hongfeng said at public lunch during the 6th U.S.-China Transportation Forum at Chicago’s Westin Hotel.


The U.S., meanwhile, is struggling to maintain the transportation infrastructure it already has developed.

“Where I think we’re falling down on the job is the basic public funding to maintain the infrastructure that we have now,” said U.S. Deputy Secretary of Transportation John D. Porcari. ..."


Photo:  A highway traverses Beijing, China. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife

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Lockheed signs deal to design largest ocean thermal electric plant

30 October 2013, Reuters, David Alexander -- "Leading U.S. defense contractor Lockheed Martin signed a contract on Wednesday to design the biggest power station fueled by differences in ocean temperatures, a 10-megawatt plant that would provide electricity for a new Asian resort.


The contract between Lockheed and Beijing-based Reignwood Group, a Chinese consumer products and lifestyle firm, is the initial 10-month stage in a 3-1/2-year effort to build the green energy electric plant, which would generate power using a process known as ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC).


"This is just more or less the tip of the iceberg and what both parties are most interested in is ultimately getting the plant built so we can offer it to other customers. And that's where the business is for Lockheed," said Dan Heller, vice president of new ventures for Lockheed's Mission Systems and Training unit. ..."

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Starbucks, Unilever Push White House to Follow Through on Climate Action Plan

Starbucks, Unilever Push White House to Follow Through on Climate Action Plan | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

30 October 2013, Sustainable Brands, Mike Hower -- "One year after Superstorm Sandy devastated the East Coast, 20 major U.S. brands including Starbucks, Unilever and Mars, Inc. are calling for the White House to follow through on climate change preparedness efforts outlined in the Climate Action Plan announced by President Obama on June 25.


The corporate signatories of the letter cited the economic impacts of severe weather events on company operations and called for ongoing and significant investments to be made in strengthening climate change resiliency both in the United States and the world’s most vulnerable countries. Many of the signatories are members of Business for Innovative Climate & Energy Policy — a group of businesses advocating for meaningful energy and climate legislation.


Business depends on the stability of global supply chains for growth and profitability, which climate change can disrupt...."

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Conflict of interest threatens Great Barrier Reef

Conflict of interest threatens Great Barrier Reef | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

29 October 2013, ABC Rural (Australia), Leigh Sales -- "As the Great Barrier Reef battles to keep its World Heritage listing, evidence suggests its board hasn't followed advice to ban port developments and now there are questions being asked about the connections of some boardmembers.


Australia's most loved environmental asset, the Great Barrier Reef, has faced many threats over the years. Everything from marine pollution to predatory starfish have endangered the world heritage listed site. Now massive port development s and dredging are fuelling concerns and UNESCO is considering listing the reef as in danger. Against this backdrop 7:30 has learned of disturbing accusations about the body charged with protecting the reef, the Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. Our investigation has revealed two of the Authority's board members have links to mining and resources companies that could benefit from port developments. They also have links to the family of infamous NSW politician Eddie Obeid who is currently facing another corruption inquiry.

At the same time, the authority board is accused of watering down its policy on protecting the reef against such developments. Conor Duffy has this exclusive report. ..."


See original source for video of the complete investigative report.

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Asian carp have reproduced in Great Lakes watershed

Asian carp have reproduced in Great Lakes watershed | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

29 October 2013, CBC News (Canada ) -- "Scientists said Monday they have documented for the first time that an Asian carp species has successfully reproduced within the Great Lakes watershed, an ominous development in the struggle to slam the door on the hungry invaders that could threaten native fish.


An analysis of four grass carp captured last year in Ohio's Sandusky River, a tributary of Lake Erie, found they had spent their entire lives there and were not introduced through means such as stocking, according to researchers with the U.S. Geological Survey and Bowling Green State University.


... The Obama administration has spent nearly $200 million to shield the lakes, focusing primarily on an electrified barrier and other measures in Chicago-area waterways that offer a pathway from the carp-infested Mississippi River watershed to Lake Michigan. Critics say more is needed and are pressing to physically separate the two systems.


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is scheduled to release a report in coming months on a long-term solution. ..."

 

Photo: Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources confirmed one grass carp was caught in the Grand River near Lake Erie earlier this year. (Fisheries and Oceans Department)

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For the price of a mile of highway, you too can have a bike-friendly city

28 October 2013, The Guardian, Elly Blue -- "Portland, Oregon is America's iconic cycling city, but I'm happy to say we're being swiftly overtaken as everywhere else gears up.


...Bikes, by contrast, are a bargain for taxpayers and users alike. For a few thousand gallons of paint and a bit of signage and concrete, you can get yourself a bike-friendly city – and tens of thousands of smiling riders to go with it. It's been famously said (and fact-checked) that Portland's entire bicycle system, the one that makes us the most bike-friendly city in this country, the one that makes us one of the healthiest cities in the country and that has cushioned a few of the blows of the recent recession, has cost about $60m over the years. That's the same cost as – wait for it – one single mile of urban freeway. ..."

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Sri Lanka's tropical beaches: A development trap?

Sri Lanka's tropical beaches: A development trap? | Conservation + BioEconomy | Scoop.it

25 October 2013, Al Jazeera, William G. Moseley and Vinod Malwatte -- "Due to shifting coastlines, sustainable and environmental measures are vital in planning ecotourism initiatives.


After over 25 years of internal conflict ended in Sri Lanka in May 2009, the country finally seemed poised to capitalise on its beautiful beaches and tropical landscapes. Named as the New York Times top tourist destination in 2010, and receiving similar accolades from the Lonely Planet in 2013, the country has experienced a tourist boom.


Unfortunately the government has embarked on an aggressive, top-down tourism development campaign, allocating valuable coastal land assets to local investors and international resort chains that do not have the interests of local people in mind. Surrounding communities must be involved if development is to be fostered and flora and fauna managed sustainably. ..."


Photo: The country's rich biodiversity is at risk if the locals are not allowed input in development plans [Vinod Malwatte/Al Jazeera]

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