• Are ecolabels greenwashing your farmed salmon?

    With so much attention on climate change and biodiversity in the media today, it is hard not to be skeptical as to whether companies are taking advantage of these paradigms for their own profit by “greenwashing” their products. Greenwashing is the common term for the practice whereby an organization presents information that gives them an air of environmental responsibility but makes no real contribution to reducing the impacts of threats like climate change, pollution, loss of biodiversity.

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  • Supermarket Science: How Consumer Choices Could Affect Ocean Biodiversity

    Can you help ease the global biodiversity crisis through the choices you make at your local fish market? A recent report by US-based nonprofit Eating with the Ecosystem suggests that the answer is a resounding “Yes!”

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  • Donald Hobern: Cataloguing the Planet’s DNA

    DNA barcoding has revolutionised science. Ask anyone working in evolution or taxonomy these days what the biggest changes are the they’ve seen in their discipline, chances are it’ll be to do with gene sequencing and DNA processing. I sat down with Donald Hobern, Executive Secretary of iBOL and former Executive Secretary of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) and Director of the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA). Donald joined iBOL just as they launched BIOSCAN, a $180 million dollar program which aims to accelerate the cataloguing of the world’s biodiversity in DNA form. We spoke about BIOSCAN, the technology behind bringing occurrence and genetic data together, and how the work iBOL and GBIF do ties into the bigger picture of global conservation and sustainability.

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  • STOP BUILDING CAIRNS

    We’ve all seen them, either on Instagram or out on the hiking trails and in creek beds. Sure, it may look cool in your time lapse video, but did you

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  • Using eDNA to Monitor Fish Dispersal

    This week’s guest post by Christopher Hempel of the University of Guelph looks at the use of environmental DNA in measuring the dispersal of a reintroduced fish species.

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  • Pinning it on the Polar Bear

    It’s an image that is ubiquitous in the media when the words ‘climate change’ pop up. The lone polar bear, drifting through the sea on a single ice floe. It is an effective image, evoking emotions like pity, loneliness and general despair for the plight of what has become the flagship species of what seems like the entire Arctic. But is associating the health of an entire ecosystem with one species useful, or dangerous?

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Current Issues

Are ecolabels greenwashing your farmed salmon?

With so much attention on climate change and biodiversity in the media today, it is hard not to be skeptical as to whether companies are taking advantage of these paradigms for their own profit by “greenwashing” their products. Greenwashing is the common term for the practice whereby an organization presents information that gives them an air of environmental responsibility but makes no real contribution to reducing the impacts of threats like climate change, pollution, loss of biodiversity.

Pinning it on the Polar Bear

It’s an image that is ubiquitous in the media when the words ‘climate change’ pop up. The lone polar bear, drifting through the sea on a single ice floe. It is an effective image, evoking emotions like pity, loneliness and general despair for the plight of what has become the flagship species of what seems like the entire Arctic. But is associating the health of an entire ecosystem with one species useful, or dangerous?

From the Experts

Donald Hobern: Cataloguing the Planet’s DNA

DNA barcoding has revolutionised science. Ask anyone working in evolution or taxonomy these days what the biggest changes are the they’ve seen in their discipline, chances are it’ll be to do with gene sequencing and DNA processing. I sat down with Donald Hobern, Executive Secretary of iBOL and former Executive Secretary of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) and Director of the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA). Donald joined iBOL just as they launched BIOSCAN, a $180 million dollar program which aims to accelerate the cataloguing of the world’s biodiversity in DNA form. We spoke about BIOSCAN, the technology behind bringing occurrence and genetic data together, and how the work iBOL and GBIF do ties into the bigger picture of global conservation and sustainability.

Stories from the Coalface & Paper of the week

Locating Shark’s Teeth in the Phone Book

Supervisors: they’re our mentors, bosses, idols. Sometimes, they can seem almost super-human – they know everything, and find every single flaw in your work. So it can be easy to forget that your supervisors and various other higher-ups are not necessarily a species of perfect, paper mass-producing, hyper-creative geniuses, but in reality just experienced people, who still make mistakes and have “brain-farts”. The following is a personal encounter I had which serves as proof.