Jamaica Observer http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/ JamaicaObserver.com, the most concise and in-depth website for news coverage on Jamaica and the Caribbean. Updated daily 7 days a week, 24 hours a day en-us copyright Jamaica Observer, 2011 India researches the value of Saltwater plants http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/India-researches-the-value-of-Saltwater-plants_19224492 Sesuvium portulacastrum, also called shoreline purslane or sea purslane; Paspalum vaginatum, also known as seashore paspalum, biscuit grass, saltwater couch, silt grass, and swamp couch; and prosopis juliflora, a kind of mesquite tree, are a few of the 350 known species of salt-tolerant plants that are candidates to become crops for the future. Local Environmental Wed, 26 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Overfishing, climate change double threats http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Overfishing--climate-change-double-threats_19224428 Washington, DC — The combination of overfishing and climate change may be putting the oceans' health -- and our own well-being -- at risk. As State of the World 2015 contributing author Katie Auth explained in the recent publication, protecting lives and livelihoods will require urgent and concerted action to improve the oceans' condition. Local News Fri, 21 Aug 2015 02:00:00 GMT Bird-shooting season opens this weekend http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Bird-shooting-season-opens-this-weekend_19224230 THE 2015 Game Bird-shooting Season opens this weekend, Saturday, August 22 and will run for five weekends, closing Sunday, September 20. Local Environmental Wed, 19 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Saltwater Crops the future? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Saltwater-Crops-the-future-_19224474 VEDARANYAM, India (AP) — On a sun-scorched wasteland near India's southern tip, an unlikely garden filled with spiky shrubs and spindly greens is growing, seemingly against all odds. The plants are living on saltwater, coping with drought, and possibly offering viable farming alternatives for a future in which rising seas have inundated countless coastal farmlands. Local Environmental Wed, 19 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Solar system to reduce cost at Ebony Park facility http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Solar-system-to-reduce-cost-at-Ebony-Park-facility_19223639 THE Government has commissioned into service a solar power system at the Ebony Park pumping station in Clarendon, which is to deliver energy worth some $564,000 annually and reduce electricity cost for irrigation by $6 million per year. Local News Mon, 17 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Ground broken for 100,000-gallon water tank at Mason River http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Ground-broken-for-100-000-gallon-water-tank-at-Mason-River_19224178 MINISTER of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change Robert Pickersgill broke ground Friday for construction of a 100,000-gallon concrete tank in Mason River, Clarendon. Local News Mon, 17 Aug 2015 01:00:00 GMT Bye, bye HCFCs http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Bye--bye-HCFCs_19223526 GOVERNMENT yesterday paid just over half a million dollars to spray-foam manufacturing company SEAL Sprayed Solutions for ceasing to import and use a chemical that contributes to ozone depletion and global warming -- hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). Local News Thu, 13 Aug 2015 02:00:00 GMT Seaweed no threat http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Seaweed-no-threat_19223340 GOVERNMENT'S environment regulator yesterday moved to distill fears that the wide swathes of brown seaweed washing ashore present risk to humans, but warned against ingesting it. Local Environmental Wed, 12 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Haunted by Copenhagen http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Haunted-by-Copenhagen_19223353 THE year was 2009. Chaos loomed outside the Bella Centre in Copenhagen, Denmark. Many people were unable to enter the venue of the 15th UN summit on climate change and were left standing in the cold. Local Environmental Wed, 12 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Rare seabird found in Dominica http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Rare-seabird-found-in-Dominica_19223388 A team of scientists from Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (EPIC) and Dominica's Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries have recorded -- for the first time -- 968 Diablotin, also known as the Black-capped Petrel, over the mountains of Dominica, a Lesser Antillean island for which the last confirmed date of nesting of that species is 1862. Local Environmental Wed, 12 Aug 2015 02:00:00 GMT Climate change caused by ocean, not just atmosphere http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Climate-change-caused-by-ocean--not-just-atmosphere_19222145 MOST of the concerns about climate change have focused on the amount of greenhouse gases that have been released into the atmosphere. Local Environmental Wed, 05 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT Gov't exporting second batch of organic bamboo charcoal http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Gov-t-exporting-second-batch-of-organic-bamboo-charcoal_19222287 THE country is to ship its second major supply of organic bamboo charcoal to the US this weekend, a 24,000-lb venture which is to rake in some $5 million, according to the Ministry of Industry, Investment, and Commerce. Local Environmental Wed, 05 Aug 2015 02:00:00 GMT Little Birders http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Little-Birders Children who participated in the birding camp at Hope Zoo and Gardens display some of the art they created and the trophies they won. The week-long camp, which was part of the activities of BirdsCaribbean’s 21st International Meeting, ended July 24. It used the internationally developed BirdSleuth curriculum to teach kids about various bird species and how to identify and conserve them. (PHOTO: LIONEL ROOKWOOD) Local Environment Wed, 05 Aug 2015 02:25:38 GMT The Winners are... http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/The-Winners-are----_19222274 CONGRATULATIONS, COLIN DOUGLAS AND MONIQUE MATHIS! You've beat the throng and correctly identified the Greater Antillean Grackle (Quiscalus niger), commonly called Cling Cling. Local Environmental Wed, 05 Aug 2015 02:00:00 GMT Antarctic dragonfish UNDER THREAT http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Antarctic-dragonfish--UNDER-THREAT_19222140 SCIENTISTS at University of California Davis and San Francisco State University have discovered that the combination of elevated levels of carbon dioxide and an increase in ocean water temperature has a significant impact on survival and development of the Antarctic dragonfish (Gymnodraco acuticeps). The research article was published in Conservation Physiology. Local Environmental Wed, 05 Aug 2015 02:00:00 GMT Caribbean formatting climate change strategy for Paris meeting http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Caribbean-formatting-climate-change-strategy-for-Paris-meeting_19221941 GROS ISLET, St Lucia — Government climate negotiators and civil society groups from the Caribbean who met with artistes and journalists here last week have discussed strategies to drum up local awareness and attract international attention as part of the region's preparation for the climate change meeting in Paris at the end of the year. Local News Mon, 03 Aug 2015 00:00:00 GMT National Indoor Sports Centre going solar http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/National-Indoor-Sports-Centre-going-solar-_19221630 The National Indoor Sports Centre is soon to be outfitted with solar panels to generate 100 megawatts of energy, as part of a $20 million pilot project under the Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining. Local News Fri, 31 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Minister: Climate change for region is about people's lives http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Minister--Climate-change-for-region-is-about-people-s-lives_19221494 GROS ISLET, St Lucia — The St Lucia Government is hosting a two-day meeting of journalists, singers, songwriters, and other artistes from the region, which is expected to help broaden awareness of and raise advocacy for climate change and the potential damaging effects it will have on the Caribbean. Local News Fri, 31 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Saving coffee with birds http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Saving-coffee-with-birds_19220055 FOR the Jamaican coffee farmer, birds can be more than colourful feathers and cheerful tweets; They can be the saviours of an industry which, though internationally acclaimed for the quality of its product, has been in decline for more years than some people care to admit. Local Environmental Wed, 29 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT And the winners are... http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/And-the-winners-are----_19221028 THANK you, readers, for your many submissions to last week's name the bird. Local Environmental Wed, 29 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT What's my name? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/What-s-my-name-_19220350 The first two individuals to correctly name the birds pictured here will win great prizes courtesy of the Jamaica Observer and our sponsors BirdsCaribbean. Local Environmental Wed, 29 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Farmers urged to sell organic coffee http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Farmers-urged-to-sell-organic-coffee_19220729 THE multi-billion dollar organic food industry is ripe with opportunities for Jamaican coffee farmers who are largely reeling from huge losses brought on by a stubborn drought and related forest fires. Local Environmental Wed, 29 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Weather-related disasters displace millions in 2014 http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Weather-related-disasters-displace-millions-in-2014_19220626 GENEVA, Switzerland — In the last seven years, an estimated one person every second has been displaced by a disaster, with 19.3 million people forced to flee their homes in 2014 alone. Local Environmental Wed, 29 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Archduchess spends $25 million in 14 months on foundaton, marine lab http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Archduchess-spends--25-million-in-14-months-on-foundaton--marine-lab_19220128 PORTLAND resident Archduchess Francesca von Habsburg-Lothringen has invested $25 million over the last 14 months in establishing the Alligator Head Foundation and Marine Lab. General News Sun, 26 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT And the winners are... http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/And-the-winners-are---_19219849 CONGRATULATIONS Valdis Vassell and Stacy-Ann Lowe for being the first two Jamaica Observer readers to correctly guess the name of the Jamaican endemic bird featured last Wednesday. The answer was in fact Northern Potoo, otherwise called the Jamaican owl. Local Environmental Wed, 22 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT