Environment News

This summer may see first ice-free North Pole from PhysOrg.com
(AP) — There’s a 50-50 chance that the North Pole will be ice-free this summer, which would be a first in recorded history, a leading ice scientist says.

Climate change causing significant shift in the species composition of coastal fish communities from PhysOrg.com
A detailed analysis of data from nearly 50 years of weekly fish-trawl surveys in Narragansett Bay and adjacent Rhode Island Sound has revealed a long-term shift in species composition, which scientists attribute primarily to the effects of global warming.

Thirty false killer whales beached in Thailand; most saved from PhysOrg.com
Thirty false killer whales swam ashore on a beach near the Thai resort isle of Phuket, but local residents and hotel staff saved all but one of them, a marine official said Friday.

Continental plan to protect the monarch’s migratory journey from PhysOrg.com
Canada, Mexico and the United States are joining forces to protect and conserve the Monarch butterfly, which has become a symbol of North America’s shared environment.

Damages Cut Against Exxon in Valdez Case

The Supreme Court on Wednesday reduced what had once been a $5 billion punitive damages award against Exxon Mobil to about $500 million. The ruling essentially concluded a legal saga that started when the Exxon Valdez, a supertanker, struck a reef and spilled 11 million gallons of crude oil into the Prince William Sound in Alaska in 1989.

The decision may have broad implications for limits on punitive damages generally. Punitive damages, which are meant to punish and deter, are imposed on top of compensatory damages, which aim to make plaintiffs whole.