cute little guys…
hoping to get down there in a day or so to check out the salmon…
just got back from vacation in Puerto Vallarta – enjoyed watching these crazy ‘zanates’ (otherwise known as a grackle) zip around and make weird noises all day – Zanate!
From Take Part:
Catching Shark Finners Red-Handed
How do you catch poachers in Costa Rica who cut the fins off sharks, throw the animals overboard to slowly die, and then sell the body parts to Asian restaurants that make shark fin soup?
One way is to surreptitiously attach satellite tracking devices to suspected poachers’ boats while they’re docked in port. Then track the vessels to a protected marine preserve 500 miles offshore, and sneak up on the poachers under the cover of darkness to video them violating national law.
This is precisely what happened on the final mission of The Operatives, the series that wrapped up its first season Sunday on Pivot TV, the television network owned by Participant Media, TakePart’s parent company.
Pete Bethune, the Operatives’ leader, gives a wrap up of the mission to Costa Rica’s Cocos Islands in his captain’s vlog. (Check out the video above.) The ocean surrounding the Cocos, a national park, is home to one of the world’s largest populations of hammerhead sharks, and that has attracted the shark finners.
“Sharks are apex predators,” said Bethune. “They take out the weak, old, and sick fish and help maintain the genetic strength of the species they predate upon. Remove all the sharks, and you take away a key element of the ecosystem that can lead to its collapse.”
Humans kill an estimated 63 million to 273 million sharks a year, according to a 2013 study.
The GPS-tagged video the Operatives captured will be turned over to Costa Rican law enforcement authorities.
for a moment, anyway. Don’t be surprised if it pops back into his %$&)(* within only a few months or less….
Google Inc. (GOOG:US) Chairman Eric Schmidt said the world’s biggest Internet search company made a mistake in funding a political group that opposes U.S. action on climate change.
Schmidt said Google paid the American Legislative Exchange Council as part of a lobbying campaign on an unrelated issue. Without elaborating on Google’s relationship with the group, Schmidt said facts about global warming aren’t in dispute.
“The people who oppose it are really hurting our children and grandchildren and making the world a much worse place,” Schmidt said on NPR’s “Diane Rehm Show” yesterday. “We should not be aligned with such people. They are just literally lying.”
Story: Google Cuts Ties With Right-Wing Group: ‘They’re Just Literally Lying’
Google confirmed in a statement yesterday that it won’t renew its ALEC membership at the end of the year.
The Mountain View, California-based company and others are under mounting pressure from organizations that back government policies to combat climate change to abandon the Council, which says it supports free-market policies, because of its approach to environmental issues.
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT:US) has withdrawn from ALEC, saying affiliating with group “which is actively fighting policies that promote renewable energy was incongruous,” according to a report in Bloomberg BNA last month.
Story: Yelp Takes a Quieter Approach to Breaking Up With ALEC
ALEC develops model legislation for state legislatures. It was behind Florida’s so-called Stand-Your-Ground law that drew scrutiny after Trayvon Martin was shot and killed by a neighborhood watch volunteer who later was acquitted of murder. It has also pushed to repeal state mandates for renewable energy use.
The group has written model legislation calling for an interstate research council to study possible beneficial effects of climate change and to examine how regulations capping carbon may hurt the economy.
Video: Why Did Google Support ALEC in the First Place?
“It is unfortunate to learn Google has ended its membership in the American Legislative Exchange Council as a result of public pressure from left-leaning individuals and organizations who intentionally confuse free market policy perspectives for climate change denial,” Lisa Nelson, ALEC’s chief executive officer, said in a statement.
Bill Meierling, the ALEC senior director of public affairs, said Google joined ALEC in August 2011 and was active in a communications and technology task force the group created to discuss broadband, privacy and e-commerce issues. The company paid ALEC about $10,000 a year.
Meierling disputed Schmidt’s suggestion that the group denies human activity is a cause of climate change. But he said ALEC has “significant concerns” rules proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency to limit carbon dioxide emissions from power plants would hurt the economy.
From The Seattle Times:
Thousands march in NYC, around globe over climate
Accompanied by drumbeats, wearing costumes and carrying signs, thousands of demonstrators filled the streets of Manhattan and other cities around the world on Sunday to urge policy makers to take action on climate change.
The crowds of marchers, which included actors Mark Ruffalo and Evangeline Lilly, wound through midtown Manhattan, joined along the way by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, former Vice President Al Gore and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.
The march was one of a series of events large and small held around the world — organizers said 40,000 marchers took part in an event in London, while a small gathering in Cairo featured 50-foot art piece representing wind and solar energy — two days before the United Nations Climate Summit. More than 120 world leaders will convene Tuesday for the meeting aimed at galvanizing political will for a new global climate treaty by the end of 2015.
The New York march drew people from all over the country. A contingent from Moore, Oklahoma — where a massive tornado killed 24 last year– took part, as did hundreds of New Yorkers affected by Superstorm Sandy, which the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the British meteorological office said was made more likely by climate change.
Myrtle E. Williams, a nurse at a nursing home in the Rockaways, said Sandy was a “real eye opener.” The storm nearly two years ago “made people wake up and say this is real devastating,” she says.
Williams said Sandy brought home the devastation people usually see on television from far away, like the Asian tsunamis and the hurricanes that hit southern states.
“I think people are becoming more aware when it happens to them,” she said. “When it comes to your door, you can equate with other people who are going through something just as devastating.”
Now the question she asks: “Can we make a change so that this will never happen again?”
In London, celebrities including actress Emma Thompson and musician Peter Gabriel joined tens of thousands of people in the march through the capital’s center.
Campaigners marched through the streets chanting “What do we want? Clean energy. When do we want it? Now.”
Speaking at the start of the march, Thompson said: “This is important for every single person on the planet, which is why it has to be the greatest grass roots movement of all time.
“This is the battle of our lives. We’re fighting for our children,” she said.
In Australia, thousands of people marched in cities across the country on Sunday as part of a global day of action on climate change. The largest rally was in Melbourne, where an estimated 10,000 people took to the streets with banners and placards calling on the Australian government to do more to combat global warming.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott was a particular target of the protesters. Abbott’s center-right coalition has removed a carbon tax and has restricted funding for climate change bodies since coming to power last year.