After 50 years, scientists return to Elephant Island off the coast of the Antarctic peninsula to do the seemingly impossible; count thousands of penguins.
245 kilometers off the frigid coast of Antarctica is an island where populations of chinstrap penguins live in the thousands. But these penguins are more than just cute, the health of the Antarctic ecosystem relies on their well-being. the scientists in this next documentary count them. Yeah. By hand, in the freezing cold, walking on steep cliffs. It’s been years since this last happened, and the data collected now will inform them of how one of the most remote places on earth is fairing.
The chinstrap penguin is a species of penguin that inhabits a variety of islands and shores in the Southern Pacific and the Antarctic Oceans. Its name stems from the narrow black band under its head, which makes it appear as if it were wearing a black helmet, making it easy to identify.
The Faughan Valley runs from the foothills of the Sperrin Mountains along the beautiful River Faughan to the outskirts of the city. Covering some 80 square miles, it has been identified as an area of strategic importance thanks to some precious natural features. The river and its tributaries have well-earned environmental designations in recognition of the huge variety of plants and animals. And pockets of precious ancient woodland – a habitat even rarer in Northern Ireland than elsewhere in the UK – dot this famously scenic land.
The #TowerOfPisa in #Tuscany, is one of the most visited tourist sites in #Italy. A historic monument, designated a Unesco world heritage site, that has confounded scientists and engineers since its creation. Even at the beginning of construction in August 1173, it started to lean, due to the soft ground that it was built on. Which is why it needs constant attention. Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic the conservation team are taking advantage of the lack of tourists to make progress with the maintenance of this iconic building. Our correspondent in Italy, Natalia Mendoza went to observe recent operations.
Thilafushi, an island of floating rubbish island in the Maldives, grows by a square meter a day. But diving instructor Shaahina Ali is trying to slow that growth by recycling and using floating barriers to hold back the rising seas.
For decades, the Maldives simply dumped the trash the tourists and the island country’s 400 thousand residents generated. Yet Shaahina Ali says that has to stop. Almost every day, the diving instructor and her allies go from island to island in the Indian Ocean. Working with an environmental organization, they have obtained trash compactors that make plastic waste transportable, allowing it to be shipped abroad for recycling. Ali also advocates avoiding disposable plastic. She gives lectures, advises hotel managers and even bends the ear of the Maldives’ president himself.
When she has time, Shaahina Ali goes scuba diving. Beneath the waves she sees environmental degradation – dying corals and fish caught up in plastic waste. She says, “We can’t afford to address just one problem. We’ve got to take care of everything at once because everything is connected to the sea.” But the island paradise is not only threatened by rubbish. Climate change is also causing the sea levels to rise, and the Maldives are at risk of sinking beneath the water.
That’s why conservationists are using floating barriers made of recycled plastic to help prevent flooding. In addition to the environmental group “Parley for the Oceans,” Ali has also won politicians to her cause. Last year saw a democratic change of government in the Maldives. “The new government no longer views environmentalists as annoying troublemakers. They see us as partners instead,” Ali says. But those trying to save the island are in a race against time. “If we don’t succeed,” says Shaahina Ali, “far more than a vacation paradise will be lost. We will lose our homeland.”
The numbat – a small and little-known Australian marsupial – is one of the world’s most endangered animals. Conservationists are working hard to save them by building vast, predator-free sanctuaries.
The numbat is an insectivorous marsupial. It is diurnal and its diet consists almost exclusively of termites. It was once widespread across southern Australia, but is now restricted to several small colonies in Western Australia. It is therefore considered an endangered species and protected by conservation programs.
Tetiꞌaroa is an atoll in the Windward group of the Society Islands of French Polynesia, an overseas territorial collectivity of France in the Pacific Ocean. Once the vacation spot for Tahitian royalty, the islets are under a 99-year lease contracted by Marlon Brando.
“My mind is always soothed when I imagine myself sitting on my South Sea island at night. If I have my way, Tetiaroa will remain forever a place that reminds Tahitians of what they are and what they were centuries ago.”
Marlon Brando first came to Tetiaroa while filming Mutiny on the Bounty and was immediately enchanted by the island’s rare beauty and the sense it gave him of being closer to paradise. Enthralled by the Polynesian way of life – and the leading lady Tarita, the love of his life – he resolved to find a way to own this piece of paradise and succeeded in his goal in 1967. It was in this natural wonderland that he settled down, and finally found a home.
Brando was passionate about preserving Tetiaroa’s natural beauty, biodiversity and cultural richness and was determined to find a way in which it could be a center for research and education, and a model of sustainability. He was convinced that this small atoll could bring good to the entire world.
In 1999 he asked Richard Bailey, a long-time resident of Tahiti who shared Brando’s passion for the environment and who had created some of the region’s finest resorts, to help him conceive a plan that would help Brando achieve his dream. Together, Brando and Bailey pursued a vision of creating the world’s first and foremost post-carbon resort—an island where innovative new technologies would enable a self-sustaining luxury environment for hotel guests, residents and scientific research. The Brando is the legacy of that shared vision.
In France’s overseas department of French Guiana, the Amazon rainforest covers 90 percent of land. It’s teeming with wildlife, but this unique biodiversity is in danger. Researchers and locals are doing their best to protect it, like in Favard, where the village healer passes on his knowledge to the younger generations and educates tourists on the need to protect the forest. Meanwhile, entomologists list different species of insects, a titanic job as this knowledge is still in its infancy. Finally, researchers are trying to understand what’s driving the decline in sea turtles.
French Guiana is an overseas department of France on the northeast coast of South America, composed mainly of tropical rainforest. The ruins of 17th-century Fort Cépérou overlook the capital, Cayenne, with its colorful Creole houses and street markets. Shops and cafes surround the palm-filled main square, Place des Palmistes. The Rémire-Montjoly suburb is lined with Atlantic coast beaches.
The Ocean Cleanup, a non-profit organization, is developing advanced technologies to rid the world’s oceans of plastic.
Every year, millions of tons of plastic enter the oceans primarily from rivers. The plastic afloat across the oceans – legacy plastic – isn’t going away by itself. Therefore, solving ocean plastic pollution requires a combination of stemming the inflow and cleaning up what has already accumulated.
Dutch inventor Boyan Slat founded The Ocean Cleanup at the age of 18 in his hometown of Delft, the Netherlands.
We are a registered charity as a ‘Stichting’ in the Netherlands, and a 501(c)(3) in the US.
The Ocean Cleanup’s team consists of more than 90 engineers, researchers, scientists and computational modelers working daily to rid the world’s oceans of plastic.
The Ashio Copper Mine (足尾銅山, Ashio Dōzan) was a copper mine located in the town of Ashio, Tochigi, (now part of the city of Nikkō, Tochigi), in the northern Kantō region of Japan. It was significant as the site of Japan’s first major pollution disaster in the 1880s and the scene of the 1907 miners riots. The pollution disaster led to the birth of the Japanese environmental movement and the 1897 Third Mine Pollution Prevention Order. The pollution incident also triggered changes in the mine’s operations that played a role in the 1907 riots, which became part of a string of mining disputes in 1907. During World War Two the mine was worked by POW forced labour.