Thursday, October 29, 2015

MAP News Issue 376, Oct 31, 2015

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The MAP News
376th Edition                                Oct. 31, 2015


FEATURE STORY

Haunted mangrove tunnel a scream
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USA - Despite being scared by the masked divers popping out at her, Ramallo enjoyed the experience. “It was a very fun tour,” she said. “It is really different. It is like a whole new experience. It is kind of cool.” Ramallo said it was fun sharing the experience with others on the tour. “In a haunted house you are kind of on your own,” she explained. “Here you get to meet new people.” Ramallo, a student at Florida Gulf Coast University, was driving down U.S. 41 when she saw the sign for the haunted kayak tours. That’s when she decided to give it a try. She had only kayaked once before, but said the trip is easy, even for beginners. “I saw the sign and thought it would be a lot of fun,” Ramallo said. “I wanted to do something in the spirit of the season. I wanted to do something different.” The tour has a haunted theme in which the guides lead guests through a spooky story. “The whole thing is diver related so the idea behind it is we have lost souls of divers that get lost in the mangroves,” Jett said. “We have divers set in the waterways and in the mangroves that scare them.” This is the first year Naples Marina and Excursions is doing the haunted tour. READ MORE
 
AFRICA
 
New Energy Saving Stove to Protect Environment
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RWANDA - During the just concluded Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) expo at Gikondo in Kigali, many visitors crammed around one stand marvelling at 'magical' stoves. These were not ordinary stoves as they are powered by only one piece of charcoal, hydrogen, and are connected to electricity or four radio batteries using a phone charger. "Considering daily feeding needs of a family, school fees, rent and other expenses, the high price of charcoal is very frustrating. Currently a bag of charcoal in Kigali costs over Rwf8,000. That is why I bought this stove that uses one piece of charcoal; it is really amazing," said Samuel Nyirimanzi, a father of five children residing in Kicukiro District. The stove, which costs Rwf15,000, can last for at least three years, according to the exhibitors. Fahadi Imanzi, the manufacturer of the stoves, said the "Rengera Modern Cooker Stove" uses only one unit of electricity per month (costing Rwf300) and one piece of charcoal per cooking. READ MORE
 
ASIA
 
To Cool Off, This Mangrove Fish Leaves the Water
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USA - The mangrove rivulus, a drab, elusive fish found from Florida to Brazil, has been observed flipping out of hot water and onto solid ground. In half a minute or less, its body temperature falls to match its new surroundings. This is the first time a fish has been shown to air-chill itself, scientists reported in the journal Biology Letters. And it must come in handy, since the rivulus’s home waters have been reported to reach a sweltering 100°F (38°C). These fish always have this escape route,” says study co-author Patricia Wright of the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada. “If the water starts to warm up, off they go.” A number of amphibious fish have the ability to catapult onto dry land, but the rivulus lives in the tropics and subtropics, where humidity is high and water and air temperatures are roughly the same. Researchers wondered why an overheated fish would jump from warm water to warm, humid air. READ MORE
 
The long struggle of an activist
THAILAND - Banjong Nasae wakes up every morning with lawsuits and death threats in the back of his mind and an image of himself with wrinkles and a receding hairline. But his spirit as a marine activist remains young and robust. “I don’t care if it’s multinational companies or large conglomerates. If their business or projects hurt the little people living along the southern coastal areas and deplete their marine resources, I have to get involved,” Mr Banjong declares. He is a Facebook personality whose views on the protection of marine resources and critiques of related policies are shared widely. The activist was honoured for his campaigns to preserve the sea and fishermen’s livelihoods with the Santiprachadham prize in August. The award was an exceptional one for Mr Banjong, a gung ho advocate known for his straightforward, even blunt, approach to getting his campaign message across. READ MORE
 
Activists urge government to scrap energy plan
THAILAND - The government's Power Development Plan 2015 (PDP 2015) stands to affect people unfairly, critics say. A group of 25 activists and local people from around the country demanded that the government revoke it and start again. It wants Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and the Energy Ministry to come up with a new plan based on public participation and transparency. They also urged the government to give priority to renewable energy. The PDP 2015 limits renewable energy capacity to 20% of overall supply. They said there should be no limit on renewable energy capacity. The group, consisting of locals and representatives from 18 networks affected by proposals under the plan to develop coal-fired power plants and the Salween and Mekong dams, handed a complaint letter to the ministry. The plan exaggerates the extent of future power demand and makes allowance for excessive power reserves, they said. More power plants and dams would have to be built than are necessary according to more conservative estimates. READ MORE
 
How shrimp farming wreaked havoc on Sri Lanka’s coasts
SRI LANKA – A swelling appetite for shrimps and prawns in America, Europe and Japan has fuelled industrial farming of shellfish in the past few decades. The industry now has a farm-gate value of $10bn (£6.4bn) per year globally and the prawn in your sandwich is much more likely to have come from a pond than from the sea. While the industry is dominated by the likes of China, Vietnam and Thailand, a large number of other countries have invested heavily in cultivation too. One is Sri Lanka, which saw the industry as a passport to strong economic growth and widespread employment. Just outside the world’s top ten producers, it accounts for approximately 50% of the total export earnings from Sri Lankan fisheries. More than 90% of the harvested cultured prawns are exported, going mostly to Japan. Yet the picture is decidedly mixed on a closer inspection. The country saw an explosion of unregulated aquaculture on the island in the 1980s and 1990s, bringing riches to a few and the hope of riches or at least an income to many more. But poor coastal management also brought white spot syndrome virus, a virulent disease that spreads in water and on the feet of birds, and can kill all the prawns in a pond in under a week. READ MORE
 
Mangrove afforestation to protect fragile shoreline
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BANGLADESH - Mangrove plantation is under way on the banks of Raimangal and Kalindi rivers spread across two blocks of North 24-Parganas - Hingalganj and Sandeshkahli II - where vast areas of farm land were devastated due to high salinity after Aila hit the areas, resulting in massive livelihood loss. The plantation is on 8.64 hectares of land near the river embankment to protect the coastal zones from erosion. Mangroves will maintain coastal water quality, preserve the ecosystem and protect the coastal zones besides providing livelihood to thousands of people living along the coast, district magistrate of North 24-Parganas, Manmeet Kaur Nanda, said. Many mangrove belts along the coast are severely degraded or have completely disappeared after Aila blew over the area in 2009. The project, named Greenline, was launched three months ago under the rural employment guarantee scheme cell. READ MORE
 
AMERICAS
 
Rookery Bay, USGS team up to study dying Goodland mangroves
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USA – A Goodland mangrove forest that is dying off is now at the center of a long-term research partnership between Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and the U.S. Geological Survey. USGS awarded a grant to the research project for a minimum of three years to assess the 225-acre hydrologic restoration, partially underway, at Fruit Farm Creek, which is a mangrove forest site within Rookery Bay Reserve near Goodland. Construction of State Road 92, which began in 1938, altered natural tidal flushing to mangrove wetlands in the area, causing the die-off over decades. The mangroves were left in a drowning state as a change in water flow from building the road allowed water to get into the area, but no longer was flushing out at a rate that allowed the mangroves to breathe, researchers said. Stormwater runoff and other factors exacerbated the problem, not allowing the roots of the black mangroves to shoot out of the water to get oxygen. READ MORE
 
The mystery of South Florida’s runaway mangroves
USA - Behind the manicured hedges of Coconut Grove and Coral Gables, a bit of a horticultural mystery has taken root, one tied to one of the most famous names in botany: David Fairchild. During the heady days of botanical gardens, when plant explorers scoured the globe in search of exotic trophies to display back home, Fairchild collected two hardy mangrove trees while traveling in Indonesia. In the 1940s, he planted the trees, radiant specimens of Bruguiera gymnorrhiza with flaming, lipstick red flowers, at his house on Douglas Road, now a little jewel of a botanical garden known as The Kampong. Thirty years later, horticulturists at the more expansive and renowned botanical garden that bears his name off Old Cutler Road planted a second Asian species, Lumnitzera racemosa. For decades, the trees flourished, showcasing the flowery beauty of exotic mangroves. But at some point, something bad happened. They escaped. It turns out that not all mangroves — coastal trees Florida wildlife managers have taken great pains to protect — are good. READ MORE
 
OCEANA
 
Australia could lose mangroves to sea level rise, research warns
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AUSTRALIA – Parts of Australia could lose their coastal mangroves to sea level rise before the end of this century, according to new research. The loss of the quintessential coastal tree with built-in snorkels could have major knock-on effects for fisheries and nearby communities. "Without mangrove forests, fish decline, there's reduced coastal protection, there's reduced coastal carbon sequestration," lead researcher Catherine Lovelock, who is a professor of biological sciences at the University of Queensland, said. "Mangroves provide a whole range of ecosystem services." In Australia, there are approximately a million hectares of coastal mangrove forests. A rough estimate of the value of the services they provide to Australians has been put at $194 billion each year. Australia has the second largest area of mangroves in the world, behind Indonesia. And it is not just Australia's trees that would be affected. READ MORE
 
 
CORRECTION NOTICE
RE The OCT 17th MAP News story "Mangrove park near new airport on cards” The "view source" connection was an old (2010) IUCN connection that had nothing to do with the airport project. Lewis Environmental Services, Inc., in the USA, worked for the planning authority for a short time, but is no longer involved.

LAST WORD(S)

Hi Alfredo Quarto & Jim Enright,

I wanted to inform you that last week, we did Mangrove Rehabilitation presentations in 5 schools in Savusavu, a copra & tourist town on Vanua Levu, Fiji Islands. More specifically, we did it on Nawi Island - a private island development with Homes, a Marina and Resort. 

We used a  lot of materials from MAP's videos on Youtube to make our presentations super simple and easy to explain to students the benefits, threats and sustainability of Mangroves.

We started Nawi Island's Mangrove Rehabilitation program last year and about 80% of propagules planted has taken successfully. We just finished this years program inviting Year 8 students and teachers to the island along with government officials and all stake holders. The program has started even before our ground breaking ceremony to ensure sustainability is part of the developments DNA.

I am reaching out to MAP incase there is something you want to ask or relay which will make our understanding and project better. Mangroves taken out so far is being reused creatively on the island construction - from making floors and furniture to Bure (Reception House) beams. I can share more if you guys are interested.

Our Facebook page has coverage for both this years and last years programs. 
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.955357644539915.1073741832.767925969949751&type=1&l=a9c571ad97

Hope to hear from you guys. And big thanks for the great videos on Youtube.

Best regards,
ameel Akhtab
Business Development/Digital Manager
PO Box 101, 2 Copra Shed Marina, Savusavu, Fiji Islands
m  +679 772 6575   |   p  +679 885 3600
nawiisland.com
facebook.com/nawiisland

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