[1THING] Blog: Posts Tagged ‘habitats’

[ 1THING Featured for October: Surfrider Foundation ]

Surfrider-Foundation_Logo-200pxThe Surfrider Foundation is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network.

Our ocean faces growing challenges from pollution, offshore development and climate change. At the same time, expanding industries, such as offshore oil drilling, threaten to crowd our ocean and degrade its health (and those who call it home!).

Every day poses new threats to our oceans and beaches. Our ocean and special places must be proactively protected before they are threatened and stem the tide before further damage is done to the ocean’s health.

This is precisely why Surfrider has built a network of passion-driven people who are on the ground and are the voice for our ocean and beaches. With one foot in the sand and the other in the water, Surfrider is the only non-profit organization who is 100% focused on our coasts.

Visit Surfrider.org to find out more and to donate now!

[ Help Save Endangered Sea Turtles ]

dreamstime_s_17043206Extinction is not a new concept.

In fact, species have been going extinct for millions of years from geological and climate changes. The issue now is from overconsumption, pollution, and habitat destruction brought on by humans causing more species to needlessly become extinct.

So why should we care about sea turtles extinction in particular?

For starters, sea turtles help maintain the health of sea grass by eating it. Healthy sea grass allows other oceanic species such as crustaceans, fish, and shellfish to be able to breed. This would impact a huge source of food for humans.

In addition, when sea turtles lay eggs in dunes, the shells and unhatched eggs left behind provide nutrients that facilitate vegetation growth. This strengthens the beach’s ecosystem as a whole and helps prevent erosion.

So help save sea turtles around the world by donating or purchasing some adorable sea turtle pillows here:

http://costaricaturtles.com/how-to-help/

Donation not enough for you? You can always become an alliance partner!

For more information, visit: http://costaricaturtles.com/

[ San Diego Coastkeeper Releases 2016 Water Quality Report ]

WaterQuality-dreamstimeSAN DIEGO, August 1, 2017— This week, San Diego Coastkeeper, an organization protecting and restoring San Diego County’s fishable, swimmable, drinkable water, published its 2016 San Diego County Water Quality Report. The organization’s data show an overall improvement in San Diego’s water quality for the first time since 2013.

“This is great news. Of course, a single year of overall better water quality readings does not mean San Diego’s water will keep improving. It takes many years for patterns to emerge,” says San Diego Coastkeeper Lab Manager Meredith Meyers. “That’s why our long-term water monitoring is so crucial. We can provide decision-makers with the big picture and that makes for more effective, data-based policy.”

Urban runoff continues to be the largest factor impacting people’s ability to safely fish and swim in San Diego County. Rain takes pollution from the surfaces of our streets into our storm drains, where it travels through to our rivers and streams and ultimately, to the Pacific Ocean. As a result, the overwhelming majority of San Diego’s waterways fail to the meet water quality standards that make them safe for recreation.

Though the cause of last year’s improved results can’t be directly identified, and Coastkeeper scientists caution against giving too much credit to any one theory, there are a few ideas about why water quality looked a little better in 2016.

“Temporary water conservation regulations, implemented in response to the drought, may have helped water quality improve. When San Diegans prioritize conservation over lush lawns, reduced fertilizer use and fewer lawn sprinklers overflowing onto sidewalks means less pollution washing from the street into our rivers and streams,” says Meyers. “It’s impossible to know for sure, but it’s one idea that makes sense.”

San Diego Coastkeeper collects monthly water quality data from across the County through its volunteer-powered Water Quality Monitoring program. The program, which is the largest of its kind in California, trains citizen scientists to collect vital water quality data to fill gaps and increase the amount of publically available data.. In 2016, 152 trained volunteers gave a collective 1,908 hours.

“Our Water Quality Monitors are more dedicated than ever. Participation was so consistent last year we were able to reduce the number of new volunteers we needed to bring on board to maintain the program,” says Meyers. “The dedication of our trained monitors has allowed us to put even more resources straight into the monitoring itself, and has improved the program as a whole.”

The organization uses a suite of indicators to calculate an overall 2016 Water Quality Score for different watersheds across San Diego County. For the first time since 2013, some of San Diego County’s watersheds surpassed the “Fair” rating on the Water Quality Index,” reaching “Good.” Each watershed below is linked to more details about the watershed’s 2016 water quality:

  • San Luis Rey                      82     Good
  • Buena Vista                        78     Fair
  • San Marcos (Batiquitos)      79     Fair
  • Escondido Creek                 72     Fair
  • Peñasquitos                       76     Fair
  • Rose Creek                           87     Good
  • San Dieguito                       78     Fair
  • San Diego                          72     Fair
  • Pueblo                                56     Marginal
  • Sweetwater                         74     Fair (20 percent improvement from 2015)
  • Otay                                70     Fair
  • Tijuana                                   N/A   (unsafe to test because of sewage contamination)

“Every year, our results continue to show that water quality is defined by all of us. There’s no single source of pollution poisoning our environment; it’s all of our daily actions that determine our water quality,” says Meyers. “Whenever you pick up a piece of litter, fix a leaky sprinkler or forgo chemical fertilizers in your garden, you make a real impact. We all have the opportunity to take small actions that matter.”

After each month’s water sampling, San Diego Coastkeeper updates its online, color-coded water quality map. See June 2017’s water quality results.

Read the full water quality report for 2016 here.

As a trained Water Quality Monitor, volunteers can learn how to generate vital, scientifically sound data to better inform decision-makers and the public. Visit San Diego Coastkeeper’s website to learn more, sign up for training, to view the 2017 water quality-monitoring schedule and to donate to help the organization continue doing this important work.

 

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San Diego Coastkeeper

Founded in 1995, San Diego Coastkeeper protects and restores fishable, swimmable and drinkable waters in San Diego County. For more information, visit San Diego Coastkeeper online at http://www.sdcoastkeeper.org.

 

[ Conservation International ]

ConservationIntnl-FliprAn acre of rainforest contains up to 86 different species of tree, with the amphibians, birds, insects and mammals that depend on them.

Forests are our respite. Our places of peace. Our natural air filters. Our water factories. Our medicine cabinets. We literally can’t live without them. Despite their immense value, nearly half of the world’s forests have been lost.

What’s worse, we’re cutting them down at greater rates each year to plant crops, graze cattle and generate income from timber and other forest products.

No matter where you live, forests make your life possible. When a forest is lost anywhere, people feel it everywhere.

Conservation International’s Mission:
Building upon a strong foundation of science, partnership and field demonstration, Conservation International(CI) empowers societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature, our global biodiversity, for the well-being of humanity.

CI’s solutions:
For nearly three decades, CI has worked to ensure the world’s most important forests are protected for future generations. That work has helped to place nearly 40 million hectares (nearly 99 million acres) of forests under protection.

CI has been working to make the sustainable use of forests the foundation of healthy societies around the world. They’re carrying out science that’s helping to better understand forests’ value, and they’re working with local communities to test new ways of conservation that provide more benefits to people.

Find out more about Conservation International and how you can help create a healthier, more prosperous, more productive planet here.

[ Featured For April: Friends of the Earth ]

Friends-o-the-Earth591x218Friends of the Earth is an international environmental protection organization that “strives for a more healthy and just world”. Their work pushes for reforms politically on a large scale as well as smaller community networks focused on the preservation of shared Earth resources.

“We understand that the challenges facing our planet call for more than half measures, so we push for the reforms that are needed, not merely the ones that are politically easy.” – FOE

Together they have 75 national member groups collaborating for the international conservation effort, representing more than two million activist in more than 60 countries. In the United States, FOE works with Congressmen, state authorities and community groups in all 50 states to urge policymakers and community leaders to “work towards a healthy envirornment for all people.”

Throughout their 47-year history, Friends of the Earth has been working “to change the perception of the public, media and policy makers” and institute global environmental protection efforts. Their main efforts go specifically to curbing the environmental degradationon drivers like public investment, granting corporations the right to pollute, or other factors on federal and state levels.

What Makes FOE Different:
– They fight for what’s needed over the longer term for all creatures on our planet, not for what is easy or popular in the short term
– They are a loud and fearless voice for the environment and have been for 47 years
– They act globally and locally, with a worldwide networks of activist in 75 countries (and counting)
– They know that solving deep-rooted environmental problems requires exposing and fighting the economic forces that fuel them
– They employ a variety of tactics such as policy analysis, grassroots activism, litigation and creative communication to win their campaigns fairly.

What FOE Has Achieved:
– Limits the Air pollution from Ships
– Persuaded Thousands of Grocery Stores to Commit to Not Selling Genetically Engineered Salmon
– Stopped Construction of Dangerous Nuclear Reactors
– Exposed Corruption in the Review of the Keystone XL tar sands oil Pipeline.

On an international level they have collaborated to bring projects like the Climate Justice and Energy Program giving communities the right to choose thier own sustainable energy sources, and working with the UN negotiators to agree on climate finance and ending deforestation.

They also have started a Food Sovereignty program aimed to halt genetically modified organisms from human consumption. FOE is also responsible for the Forest and Biodiversity program that campaigns against illegal logging and deforestation and works with communities to manage their forest as well as opposing and exposing the negative impacts of monoculture plantations of cromps like sugar cane, palm oil and soy.

In a statement on their website FOE describes their battles to protect the environment as, “Hard work. But the pressures facing our planet and it’s people are too important for us to compromise.”

Find out more about ‘Friends of the Earth’ here.

[ The Global Environment Facility ]

The Global Environment Facility

We frequently say going green will only work when it helps save the “green” – as in cash. The GEF is uniquely positioned in that space where financial investments are made to help the environment.

TheGef_591x218About The GEF

The Global Environment Facility (GEF), is a catalyst for action on the environment. Through its strategic investments, the GEF works with partners to tackle the planet’s biggest environmental issues.

• A UNIQUE PARTNERSHIP of 18 agencies — including United Nations agencies, multilateral development banks, national entities and international NGOs — working with 183 countries to address the world’s most challenging environmental issues. The GEF has a large network of civil society organizations, works closely with the private sector around the world, and receives continuous inputs from an independent evaluation office and a world-class scientific panel.
• A FINANCIAL MECHANISM for 5 major international environmental conventions: the Minamata Convention on Mercury, the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD), the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
• AN INNOVATOR AND CATALYST that supports multi-stakeholder alliances to preserve threatened ecosystems on land and in the oceans, build greener cities, boost food security and promote clean energy for a more prosperous, climate-resilient world; leveraging $5.2 in additional financing for every $1 invested.


Achievements

Over the past 25 years, the GEF has supported a range of notable achievements:

• Creation of more than 3,300 protected areas covering 860 million hectares, an area larger than Brazil.
• Conservation-friendly management of more than 352 million hectares of productive landscapes and seascapes
• 790 climate change mitigation projects contributing to 2.7 billion tons of GHG emission reductions.
• Sustainable management of 34 transboundary river basins in 73 countries.
• Improved cooperation and governance of one-third of the world’s large marine ecosystems.
• Sound management and disposal of 200,000 tons of highly toxic Persistent Organic Pollutants.
• Climate change adaptation to reduce the vulnerability of more than 15 million people in 130 countries.

The Future

• Environmental threats are growing on a global scale. Although the GEF has had a huge impact in addressing these threats, it recognizes the need for a more comprehensive vision.

• The 2020 Strategy positions the GEF as a champion of the global environment. It sets out a blueprint for tackling the root causes of environmental degradation through core projects and innovative pilots, while delivering cost-effective, high-impact results. To do all this, the GEF will mobilize local and global stakeholders — from national and local governments to the private sector to civil society, including indigenous peoples and research institutions.

Get more information at https://www.thegef.org

[ Polar Bears International ]

Our 1THING featured organization for February, 2017, Polar Bears Intenational is made up of volunteers and scientists working together to inform about the plight of the polar bears and the environment they live in.

Vision

We envision the long-term survival of polar bears and the unique part of the world they call home. We see this iconic species roaming the sea ice for generations to come.

Mission

Our mission is to conserve polar bears and the sea ice they depend on. Through media, science, and advocacy, we work to inspire people to care about the Arctic, the threats to its future, and the connection between this remote region and our global climate.

Strategic Objectives

  • Serve as the global resource for information regarding polar bears and their habitat.
  • Be the leading voice on climate warming impacts to polar bears and their Arctic home while actively seeking solutions through education, advocacy, and action.
  • Conduct, support, and share scientific research that informs polar bear conservation.
  • Educate an international audience about polar bears conservation and provide mentorship for the actions that will help ensure their survival.
  • Proactively and effectively communicate science-based information on polar bears and their conservation.
  • Maintain transparency in fiscal management and sound business policies and practices.

You’ll find more information on their web site, http://polarbearsinternational.org

 

[ ReWild Unveils Restoration Options for Mission Bay ]

Mission Bay, San Diego

Mission Bay, San Diego

SAN DIEGO, September 28, 2016 — Last night, ReWild Mission Bay – a project of San Diego Audubon and its partners to enhance and restore up to 170 acres of wetlands in the North East corner of Mission Bay – unveiled eight possible options for restoration. Based on community suggestions from two public workshops earlier this year, the draft plans were presented to more than 135 community members to collect input. To view the potential alternatives, please click here.

“Our community has been very vocal about its support for restoring and protecting this iconic part of San Diego that so many people love and cherish,” said Rebecca Schwartz Lesberg, project manager for ReWild Mission Bay. “These eight designs reflect what the community has asked for and identified as important to keep Mission Bay healthy and enjoyable for all uses and for generations to come.”

The September 27 public workshop was the third in a series of four. ReWild Mission Bay will work with scientists and engineers to determine the feasibility of the eight initial restoration alternatives. Refined versions of the alternatives presented on Tuesday, or combinations of features from several different alternatives, may move forward to become final restoration designs. Residents can expect one more public workshop in late 2016 or early 2017 to weigh in on these designs before they are finalized.

“This is an unprecedented opportunity to protect our communities from sea level rise, expand habitat for endangered birds, help our kids get out in nature, and provide cleaner water for all San Diegans to enjoy in Mission Bay,” said Schwartz.

Through ReWild Mission Bay, San Diego Audubon is facilitating a three-year planning process that includes collecting community input and conceptualizing plans to restore the wetlands along Pacific Beach Drive and on both sides of Rose Creek. By May of 2017, this process will have produced at least three versions of a community-informed, scientifically defensible wetlands restoration plan for the North East corner of Mission Bay. San Diego Audubon is working closely with the City of San Diego, the California State Coastal Conservancy, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and the University of California’s Natural Reserve System on the effort. Next steps include final approval, environmental review and permitting before the restoration of the area’s wetlands.

Wetlands — including marshes, mud flats, riverbanks and more — play an important role in San Diego’s quality of life, as they attract wildlife, foster a diverse ecosystem, improve water quality and protect communities from flooding by providing a cushion during high tides. Today, only five percent of the historic 4,000 acres of Mission Bay wetlands remain, making ReWild Mission Bay a critical and time-sensitive project for the area.

For more information on ReWild Mission Bay and the project timeline, please visit http://www.rewildmissionbay.org.

[ How Picking Up After Your Dog Can Protect the Environment ]

(StatePoint) Dog waste doesn’t vanish when it rains. Classified as an environmental pollutant by the Environmental Protection Agency, it gets washed into nearby waterways and can make people, wildlife and other dogs sick.

PHOTO SOURCE: (c) Earth Rated

PHOTO SOURCE: (c) Earth Rated

Indeed, one gram of dog waste can contain over 23 million bacteria, and no matter where you live, the ecosystem isn’t built to handle the extra waste.

Being a responsible dog owner includes picking up after your pet using thick, leak-proof bags to prevent contamination of local water. Don’t flush it either; many towns can’t handle dog waste bacteria when treating wastewater, and even flushable poop bags can clog plumbing.

Under today’s FTC regulations defining requirements for product labeling, there are currently no dog waste bag manufacturers that can claim biodegradability, since the bags cannot be proven to break down completely in a landfill within a specified timeline. Some companies however, continue to label their bags as “biodegradable,” which doesn’t guarantee they’re different from unlabeled counterparts.

Look for responsible companies doing their part to reduce their footprint and give back to the community. For example, Earth Rated, an affordable option, uses recycled materials in packaging and in the core of their rolls of dog waste bags.

More dog waste pick-up tips are available at www.earthrated.com

Don’t forget: After you bag it, properly dispose of it.

[ San Diego Audubon Announces Everest International Consultants as ReWild Mission Bay Project Consultant ]

https://www.flickr.com/photos/diversey/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/diversey/

Firm to develop plans to enhance and restore up to 170 acres of wetlands in Mission Bay

SAN DIEGO, January 5, 2016 – San Diego Audubon Society, an organization dedicated to fostering the protection and appreciation of local birds, wildlife, and their habitats, announces Everest International Consultants as its ReWild Mission Bay project consultant.

ReWild Mission Bay aims to restore the wetlands in the northeast corner of Mission Bay along Pacific Beach Drive at the mouth of Rose Creek.

“We selected Everest International for the ReWild project because they understand the importance of recreation, public access, and community input in developing restoration plans for the area,” says Rebecca Schwartz, project manager for ReWild Mission Bay. “The Everest team will balance data analysis, alternative plan development, and stakeholder outreach to protect and restore this part of Mission Bay.”

The Everest International team, including Nordby Biological, AECOM, and New West Land Company, has extensive experience in estuarine biology and ecology, coastal processes, habitat architecture, and wetlands engineering, which it will use to ensure ReWild develops creative and sustainable restoration alternatives.

As the project leader, San Diego Audubon will now work with Everest International to spearhead the second half of a three-year planning process that includes collecting community input and generating plans to restore precious wetlands on this part of Mission Bay.

In 2016, Everest International will work with San Diego Audubon and partners, stakeholders, and community members to document existing and historical conditions, identify opportunities and constraints, and design restoration plans. By May 2017, this process plans to yield at least three versions of a community-informed wetlands restoration plan. From there, the City of San Diego will need to approve a plan. Next steps include permitting and, ultimately, restoration of the area’s wetlands.

Wetlands, including marshes, mud flats, riverbanks, and more, play an important role in San Diego’s quality of life as they attract wildlife, foster a diverse ecosystem, improve water quality, and protect communities from flooding by providing a cushion during high tides. Today, only five percent of the historic 4,000 acres of Mission Bay wetlands remain, making ReWild Mission Bay a critical and time-sensitive project for the area.

Rewildmissionbay.org serves as a resource to anyone curious, interested, or passionate about restoring Mission Bay wetlands with a wealth of information and opportunities to get involved.

 

For more information about Everest International Consultants, click here.