Marine Newsletter #17 – April 2011

Highlights from the Marine Programme at GRID-Arendal for April 2011

1. Featured Project

LifeWeb – Spatial planning for marine mammal protection
GRID-Arendal is a partner in the UNEP-administered project “Broad-scale marine spatial planning of mammal corridors & protected areas in Southeast and Northeast Pacific Region and the Wider Caribbean”, under the LifeWeb initiative.

A set of technical activities are now being organized to address data-related issues for the mapping and GIS analysis of marine mammal migration routes, critical habitats and human threats in these regions. These technical consultations, set to happen in May/early June, will bring together marine mammal and data management/GIS specialists to discuss the needs, availability and usability of geo-referenced data, methodologies for mapping marine mammal habitats, their status and threats, as well as the main messages the project aims to build through this mapping and data analysis exercise.

For more information, please contact Jean-Nicolas Poussart.

2. Events

Recent events
Seminars/meetings/conferences related to the marine environment where representatives from GRID-Arendal have participated:

  • Inauguration of the new office building of the Institute of Marine Research, Flødevigen Station, Hisøy, Arendal, Norway, 5 April.
  • International Polar Decade (IPD) workshop jointly organised by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Ministry of Natural Resources of the Russian Federation, St. Petersburg, Russia, 13-15 April.
  • Launch of report by the Aspen Institute Commission on Arctic Climate Change, Toronto, Canada, 14 April.
  • Presentation of the North Caspian Bio- and Geodiversity Masterplan, Ravenna, Italy, 28 April.

Upcoming events

1-5 May
Caspian Sea: Field trip to the areas of operation of the Agip Kazakhstan North Caspian Operating Company N.V. and to the Azhaiyk State Nature Reserve Wetlands.
For more information, please contact Peter Prokosch.

2 May
Arendal, Norway: Workshop on Green Shipping, with participants from the private sector, shipping industries, and insurance companies. The workshop will explore how GRID-Arendal's expertise in the Arctic, marine environment and green economy might be used as a starting point for a possible UNEP green shipping initiative.
For more information, please contact Tiina Kurvits.

2-6 May
Washington D.C., USA: Meeting with potential partners and funders for the Blue Carbon Initiative, to get input on a draft GRID-Arendal strategic plan for blue carbon.
For more information, please contact Steven Lutz.

3-5 May
Arendal, Norway: Workshop on engagement with the industrial sector operating in the Arctic. The workshop is designed to discuss progress on the Action Plan on engaging with industry in the Arctic; to identify new opportunities for engaging with industry across several themes including green shipping; and to provide staff with specific training in Arctic oil and gas industries and environmental management.
For more information, please contact Lawrence Hislop.

3. Other

Did you know that…
…humpback whales spread catchy songs to each other through the ocean? Male whales whistle mating tunes that either prove a hit or miss. Catchy "remix" versions of the songs quickly spread across the ocean, scientists have found.
Source: Guardian
…around 400 dolphins have been found dead on the shores of the Gulf of Mexico since February 2010? Most of them were newborn or very young, and scientists are still not sure what the cause could be.
Source: CNN

Picture of the monthBlue whale (Balaenoptera musculus), Svalbard.
Photo credit: Peter Prokosh, GRID-Arendal Photo Library.

Our favorite website of the month


If you would like your website to be featured here, please contact Rannveig Nilsen.

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For previous editions of this Marine Newsletter, please visit our Marine Programme website.

Friday 29 Apr 2011