5 Positive News Stories to Lift Your Spirits This Week: Oceans Edition

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It’s time to take off your jumper, put on your flip-flops, and head down to the beach. For it’s World Oceans Day! No? Because it’s way too unbearably cold for such an activity? Well, fair enough, so how about you instead vibe out with these five delightful oceanic stories:

Ocean Currents Might Be the Next Solar

On May 31, Bloomberg reported that the Japanese company IHI Corporation successfully tested out a machine that transforms deepsea ocean currents into electricity. This was done using a subsea turbine that transmits the power it creates through seabed cables. It’s currently believed that this technology will be incredibly beneficial in the future. “Ocean currents have an advantage in terms of their accessibility in Japan,” Ken Takagi, a professor at the University of Tokyo Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, told Bloomberg. “Wind power is more geographically suited to Europe.”

Humpback Whale Season Kicks Off Early

According to The Guardian, whale spotters on Australia’s east coast are already discovering humpback whales migrating north. Not only is this event taking place earlier in the year than usual, but scientists believe it’s a cause for celebration. This is because the earlier detections are indicative that the humpback whales’ population is booming. 

In the 1960’s, it was believed that only about 300 eastern Australian humpback whales were alive. Since then, commercially hunting them has been banned, and their numbers are around 40,000. “All we had to do was stop killing them, we haven’t done much else apart from leaving them alone,” said the University of Queensland’s Prof Mike Noad. He additionally noted, “They’ve bounced back in a really healthy way themselves.”

TeamSeas Has Removed So Much Ocean Plastic

As per the Ocean Cleanup, TeamSeas is a campaign that takes rubbish out of rivers, coastal areas, and oceans. It was launched by YouTubers Mark Rober and MrBeast with the aim of removing around 13 million kilograms worth of garbage. In January 2021, they achieved this goal. However, this project is still alive and helping out the ocean. As of June 7, TeamSeas has removed over 14 million kilograms of rubbish, and it’s hot on the tails of hitting 15 million. 

Last Month, Phillip Island’s Penguins Set a Record

Fairy penguins are officially my favourite animal. Their size? Adorable. Their waddle? 10/10. The energy they give off? Well, it fills my heart with glee.

I was therefore stoked to learn that these fellows set a record on Phillip Island in May. Phillip Island Nature Parks research officer, Paula Wasiak, told the ABC, “We had the highest number of penguins cross last week with 5,219 penguins crossing our Penguin Parade beach within the 50 minutes of the count, which is amazing.”

Wasiak believes that fox eradication efforts and habitat work likely contributed to the record number of fairy penguins. She also noted, “What we can speculate, to the best of our abilities — it must be really excellent feeding conditions right now for the penguins close to shore.

A Rad Place Called Wonder Reef Opens

As I stated at the start, now might not be the best time to hit up the beach in your Billabongs. However, it could be the perfect time for you to put on a wetsuit. This is because a premium dive site is opening on the Gold Coast today. It’s called Wonder Reef, and this place stars nine buoyant sculptural reef flutes. “This one-of-a-kind diving attraction will attract divers from around the world,” said the Gold Coast’s mayor Tom Tate in a MyGC article. So, if you’re a diving stan, then this place might be your next hols destination.

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