Ocean dead zones may foreshadow mass extinction - 19 Dec 2010   
Ocean dead zones may foreshadow mass extinction - 19 Dec 2010  
Ocean dead zones may foreshadow mass extinction.
An Australian marine scientist is sounding the alarm about the spread of large, dead zones in the ocean.
Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, of the University of Queensland and the ARC Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS), says there is growing evidence that declining oxygen levels in the ocean have played a major role in at least four of the planet's five past mass extinctions.

With the number of dead zones having grown to more than 400 during the period of 2000-08, some are now as large as 70,000 square kilometers in size.

Noting the link between these oxygen-depleted zones and climate change as well as human activities such as agricultural runoff, Professor Hoegh-Guldberg stated that their presence can change things like the degree of mixing that goes on between surface and deep waters.

Concerned about the effect of these alterations, he said, “… The point is that our activities on land have a big influence on what goes on in the oceans and now we are starting to reap the harvest of those changes.

We are starting to see changes in the ocean's ability to produce oxygen and … food and … all of the ecosystem services that are so important to not only us, but all of the other organisms on the planet.”

Our thanks Professor Hoegh-Guldberg and all scientists working to understand the link between declining ocean life and climate change. May such alarming news prompt us to adopt sustainable lifestyles while we still have a chance.

During an October 2009 videoconference in Formosa (Taiwan), Supreme Master Ching Hai addressed the dead zone problem and reminded of the way to restore the seas and the planet.

Supreme Master Ching Hai: The number of oxygen-depleted oceanic dead zones has increased from only 49 in the 1960s to 405 in 2008.

And I am sure there are more now, there are much more sea dead zones right now. The dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico is one of the largest in the world. It is 22,000 square kilometers and was created mainly from agriculture runoff, including food raised for livestock and manure.

Around 212,000 metric tons of fish are estimated to die in the Gulf of Mexico dead zone every year.

Regarding the concrete instructions and guidance to avoid the planet's destruction, it's again: Be veg, go green, do good deeds and be loving. That's the loving way to live, that's the noble way to live.

We must develop our innate noble qualities, because after all, we are humane beings. And, it's the only way we can save the planet from destruction.

Extra News
Following the complete failure of October-December rains, Somali village elder Abdullahi Mahamud Nur reports that approximately 30,000 villagers in the central Mudug region are in need of food assistance due to drought, with some who have already fled to other areas.

In response to their urgent situation, Supreme Master Ching Hai is sending US$15,000, with her prayers and love, to go through a charity organization if our Association members are unable to help directly. This amount could acquire US$1.2 million in emergency supplies if bought in the United States, based on Somalia's cost of living.

In an effort to protect the tiny Preble's meadow jumping mouse, found only in the US states of Colorado and Wyoming, the US Fish and Wildlife Service designates additional areas of land as habitats necessary to its survival.

Bolivia's President Evo Morales asks that municipal officials help prioritize water conservation and irrigation projects to ease shortages caused by global warming, as he personally delivers some of the financial support being provided by the government.

British Transport Secretary Philip Hammond announces that starting January 1, 2011, nine different electric car models will be eligible for subsidies of up to £5,000, along with additional charging stations that are being installed to encourage the use of the eco-friendly vehicles.

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