A beach advisory leaves it up to users as to whether they wish to risk going into the water. In the case of a beach closure, the state and/or local government decides that water conditions are unsafe for swimmers and other users. There is no central database that provides information on beach closures and advisories in real time. The best way to find information on the current water quality of a particular beach is to plan ahead.
Marine debris is a pervasive problem facing our ocean and Great Lakes. Of all the trash that ends up in these important water bodies, plastics are the most common. Globally, we are consuming more and more single-use plastic items, but many countries lack the waste infrastructure to process it, resulting in plastic debris entering our waterways. In places where there is good infrastructure, intentional littering or improper disposal may have the same results.
In the latest issue of the education journal The Earth Scientist, Climate Steward educators share their stories, innovations, and resources that you can incorporate into your classroom or education setting. One example is the Biggest Reducer program, developed to educate students about the growing problem of food-related waste and incite them to take action to reduce waste production during their daily lunches.
Climate change and ocean acidification are among the top threats harming coral reefs. Will our reefs recover? In the long term, coral reefs around the world will benefit the most from the reduction of greenhouse gases. In the short term, we can improve coral reef resilience by addressing local stressors, like runoff from land-based sources of pollution and overharvesting of fish.