"There’s good news for the Chesapeake Bay this year. Underwater grasses are at the highest level on record — an important sign of water quality. Blue crabs are being harvested at a sustainable level — meaning there are enough to feed hungry Marylanders while still leaving plenty in the water to reproduce. More than a million acres of land in the Chesapeake watershed have been permanently protected from development since 2010 — preventing the polluted runoff associated with building houses, roads and shopping centers."
Fish & Fisheries
"For millenniums, ecosystems have withstood fires, floods, heat waves, drought and even disease by adapting and rebuilding their biodiverse communitiesBut according to new research, there is a limit to what even the largest and most resilient places can stand, and climate change is testing that limit by repeatedly disturbing one of the earth’s most precious habitats: the Great Barrier Reef."
"Voracious and almost without predators, the blue crab was first sighted in the Ebro Delta on Spain’s Mediterranean coast in 2012, and since then the population has expanded exponentially, wiping out native species and forcing the fishing industry to adapt and find new markets."
"A record number of dolphins have washed up on France’s Atlantic coast in the last three months, many with devastating injures."
"EPA chief Andrew Wheeler has promised not to weigh in on the Pebble mine proposal and toxic waste site cleanups connected to his former lobbying clients after media scrutiny."
The Society of Environmental Journalists is backing right-to-know lawsuits brought by journalism groups, and a collaborative press freedom tracker gets new funding. Meanwhile, at the Interior Department, one watchdog group angles for environmental impact statements on ANWR drilling, while others track possible conflicts of interest by the acting secretary. That and more in the latest WatchDog roundup.
"Environmental groups and women from Alaska and Louisiana say the Environmental Protection Agency has dragged its heels on issuing rules for oil spill dispersants, and they’re ready to sue to demand them."
"Fish in the Cuyahoga River, which became synonymous with pollution when it caught fire in Cleveland in 1969, are now safe to eat, federal environmental regulators say."
"Faced with reservoirs less than half full along the Colorado River, federal authorities and negotiators for Colorado and six other Western states on Tuesday finalized a landmark plan to share the burden of voluntarily using less water as growing cities and warming temperatures deplete the supply for 40 million people."
"If all goes as planned, a Massachusetts biotechnology company will soon begin importing salmon eggs from a Canadian hatchery to its plant in Indiana, where they'll grow into the first genetically modified salmon ever produced in the United States."