People have tried before and failed, which makes the recent effort by a group of students all the more remarkable. About four years ago, law students from eight Pacific islands—all threatened by climate change—urged nations including Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji to go to the World Court with their complaint that countries weren't doing enough to fight global warming.
Because of climate change, Vanuatu—a chain of islands in the South Pacific—could be uninhabitable by the middle of this century. | Credit: eGuide Travel
It was just weeks ago that the member states of the United Nations agreed upon an international treaty that will, when ratified, protect the biodiversity of the high seas, but it was learned last week that the world's oceans are still not safe. The UN International Seabed Authority will soon begin accepting applications from companies and countries to mine the seabed floor, which according to the Associated Press, is opposed by many because of the potential harm to marine environments.
The nodules strewn across the seafloor are phosphorites with ferromanganese crusts and were deposited millions of years ago. They grow about two millimeters every million years. | Credit: NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, 2019 Southeastern U.S. Deep-Sea Exploration
“If the oceans had lungs, this would be one of them.” That’s a description by Matthew England at the University of Sydney, Australia, about the cold, salty, oxygen-rich water near Antarctica that drives how currents move around the planet.
Credit: Christopher Michel/Creative Commons
The Ocean Race is described as the longest and perhaps most dangerous sporting event in the world. It’s a marathon where sailors compete for months and travel 32,000 nautical miles around the globe in some of the planet’s toughest waters, including the Southern Ocean that encircles Antarctica.
Credit: The Ocean Race