A sea turtle floats trapped in a derelict fishing net off the west side of Oahu, Hawaii, June, 4, 2016. Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew Young and Seaman Cameron Ables, members of Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point rescued three sea turtles trapped in the derelict fishing net and brought the net to shore for disposal. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew Young/Released)
Today we celebrate World Oceans Day, a global day of ocean celebration and collaboration for a better future. This year’s theme is “Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet.” Individuals and organizations across the planet are taking action to prevent pollution in our oceans.
The Coast Guard is known worldwide as America’s premiere lifesavers on the water. Rescues take many shapes ranging from a cruise ship passenger in distress to the crew of a fishing vessel foundering in a storm. Recently two Coast Guardsmen performed a different sort of rescue on their off-duty time. This resulted in not just three lives saved, but protected marine life, kept waters free of hazards, and ultimately cared for our oceans.
The word for sea turtle in Hawaiian is “honu.” Conservation efforts have allowed the population of green sea turtles to rebound somewhat, but they remain threatened and are covered by the Endangered Species Act of 1973.
Petty Officer 1st Class Matt Young and Seaman Cameron Ables rescued three honu from a derelict fishing net off the west side of Oahu Saturday.
“As we approached, we saw a mass of net and fishing line with three turtles entangled and we decided to take action,” said Young. “We both slid into the water with knives in hand.”
Young attended to the first turtle he saw while Ables attended another. They found clear fishing line wrapped around the fin and head of the first turtle. It could swim a little, but it couldn’t go far from the mass of netting. Young cut the line and the turtle pulled itself free and swam away. Ables moved heavy netting aside, freeing the remaining turtles.
Realizing this mass of derelict net and line was still a hazard to other marine life and safe navigation, they made the decision to bring it to shore by attaching a line to it and towing it in. The weight and size of the netting made moving and steering their 16-foot boat a challenge. When they reached approximately 1,000 yards from shore, Young and Able swam the net to shore.
“We would swim about 12 feet then the swell would pull us back 6 feet,” said Young. “Lucky for us we are professional swimmers!”
Originally from Connersville, Indiana, Young has been in the Coast Guard for 14 years and swims competitively in races such as the annual Alcatraz race across San Francisco Bay. Ables is from Clovis, California, and has been in the Coast Guard for about 14 months. He was a varsity swimmer and water polo competitor in high school, but didn’t really develop a deep love for the ocean before being stationed in Hawaii.
As they came closer to shore, the seabed became shallow enough for them to grab rocks by hand or brace their feet on rock ledges and hold the net from being pulled out by the big swell.
Derelict nets present a real hazard to marine life of all sizes throughout the world. It can entrap and drown them. Since 1996 the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has removed more than 904 tons of marine debris from the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands alone, not including Oahu or the other main Hawaiian Islands.
The synthetic net and line materials that Young and Ables came upon had unintentionally trapped the turtles because the nylon and polypropylene materials were slow to degrade. Much of the fishing gear recovered through cleanups can be recycled or diverted into energy through local initiatives, but the best-case scenario is that it doesn’t become lost or abandoned and a threat to marine life in the first place.
After their good deed Young and Ables continued their original trip up the coast.
“It’s a good feeling to save lives, all lives. Cameron and I swam back out to my boat and karma gave us an awesome day on the water swimming with more turtles, dolphins and spotted eagle rays,” said Young.
World Oceans Day is a reminder that we all need to do our part year-round, like Young and Ables, because the ocean impacts the health of our environment and economy.
It is sad that so many innocent people lost their lives yesterday. US is supposed to have the Best Military in the world and we can't handle these rats from Middle East?? Obama want to give Asylum and to get 100,000.00 people /refugees to settle in US? Why would we knowingly help these people to settle in U.S.? They will make Washington, DC like their Caliphate. They will screw America as they did to Europe!! What is wrong with our politicians? They are poor leaders or are fooling us for reasons they don’t share.
WAKE UP PEOPLE, THESE REFUGES ARE LIKE the TROJAN HORSE. THEY WILL MAKE WASHINGTON, DC THEIR NEW CAPITAL.
The Clinton Foundation is the greatest criminal enterprise and money-laundering operation in existence today. It's nothing more than a slush fund for the Clintons and their minions/stooges.
We love your focus on illegal fishing since we are a third generation Florida Commercial Fishermen family. Your article about the Chinese was spot on. Chinese fishermen are widely known for being destroyers of natural acquatic habitat that include coral reefs causing it to drive away fishery resources within its territorial waters not to mention the gears they used that entangle sea otters and get them to drawn. They also illegally engage in trading tortoise that are considered endagered. For this reason, they are forced to fish outside of their own boundaries and ruin other countries' environment. They feel they are untouchables.
Bob, Mary and Lou Wlliams
To reach the Venus Project Research Center, a utopian compound created by a 100-year-old futurist, drive through vast stretches of fields, orchards, and dirt roads in south-central Florida. There's little cell phone service and no signs of other humans on the way to a white gate. A sandy path flanked by lush tropical trees leads to a cluster of white dome-like structures. Inside one sits Jacque Fresco, hunched on a couch within his own model of an ideal society.
The compound itself is intended to show what the outskirts of a city built in the image of the Venus Project might look like. "We didn't build what we wanted to build, we built what we could afford to build," says Meadows, who gives tours of the grounds. The couple, who met 40 years ago when Meadows came to hear Fresco talk, purchased the property in 1979. It had previously been a tomato farm. They planted hundreds of trees, dredged the land, and began building examples of mass-produceable housing.
"We labored in obscurity for a long time," says Meadows. Everything was financed with money they scraped together doing various odd jobs, such as freelancing as model builders for architecture firms and medical equipment companies.
As for Fresco, he remains convinced his computer-governed city can become reality. "We already have the technology to do it," he says, speaking with the group after the tour. What’s lacking, as he sees it, is the will. Once modern life gets truly hard, Fresco believes there will be a revolution that will clear the way for the Venus Project to be built. “There will be a lot of people getting shot, including me,” he says wryly. “I’m surprised I haven’t been shot already.”
By 6:30 p.m., the 100-year-old visionary is starting to fade. It’s been a long birthday week. “Thanks so much for coming,” he tells us. “Now I’m gonna hit the sack.”
On a late Sunday night more than 300 people came under attack
Please stop cutting the old electric poles in half and putting up new more expensive ones.
It is dangerous for the workers and the public.
Put the lines underground now when it is easy to do during construction. This will be vital when the next hurricane hits.
Remember Charley when there was no electricity and water for two weeks and nobody could get back to save their belongings.\
Transformers will be safe from lighting.
Precious space will be more available for transportation.
Traffic visibility will increase; think about the views of our precious island and gulf without them.
Please use pervious pavers on our sidewalks and boulevard and side streets( or just turn it back to hard packed sand) to solve our storm water issues and thus prevent discharges into our estuary as well as save on our water bills and the need to spend 60 mil more on storm water treatment loans.
The value and ascetics to our island will increase greatly.
Please explain why we are not using alternative methods of construction such as trenchless and directional technology as outlined on page 14 of Tetra Tech's water facilities report resulting in minimal disruption and further damage to our economy.
Why can't construction go full force 24/7 especially during off season?
Why are we not asking for Emanate Domain on the sugar land instead of a water treatment component for C-43 in order to prevent a disaster such as the 1928 hurricane event?
Why did weekly town manager reports stop being published in the town hall's archives in 2015?
What happened to the letter from Tetra Tech to the town and their reference to not being paid?
The time is now, it is not too late.
We have the opportunity to be one of the greatest places on earth.
Choose Utopia not Myopia
Too often, the true meaning of Memorial Day gets lost amid all the holiday sales and backyard barbecues. But as you gather with friends or simply enjoy some time off, it’s important to remember why we set aside this day each May.
It’s a day to remember the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in our nation’s armed forces. It’s a day to pay tribute to them for their courage and selflessness. And it’s a day to thank them for their service and pray for the loved ones they left behind.
I spent Monday in Mims, Florida and attended a Memorial Day ceremony at the new Cape Canaveral National Cemetery. The courageous warriors laid to rest there are true American heroes, as are all who lost their lives in service to their country. It’s important that we, as a nation, pause to remember them and the sacrifices they’ve made — after all, that’s what this day is really all about.
Bill Nelson U.S. Senator