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Thai soldiers connected pipes to reroute water away from the Tham Luang Cave on Saturday.CreditSakchai Lalit/Associated Press

After 12 members of a youth soccer team and their coach were trapped in the Tham Luang Cave in northern Thailand nearly three weeks ago, their plight, and then their rescue, captured the world’s attention.

Read more: Does Climate Change Have Anything to Do With Floods in Thailand?

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Last year, a bold initiative set out to locate coral reefs most likely to survive global warming. That turned out to be far easier said than done – but now scientists hope the results will rally attention to regions where there’s hope to save crucial marine ecosystems.

It was only after coral reef ecologist Emma Kennedy accepted a postdoctoral position at a prestigious research group in Australia that she learned details of her assignment.

Working with a team of top scientists led by her boss at the University of Queensland’s Global Change Institute, she and a colleague would have a year to develop of list of 50 coral reefs that had the best shot at surviving climate change until – or if – global temperatures stabilized under the terms of the Paris climate accord. Identifying those reefs now could help rally people to protect them from more prosaic but still deadly threats like overfishing and pollution. The thinking was that larvae from those reefs could also help repopulate other reef areas that don’t survive.

It was always going to be a bold endeavor, but at first, Kennedy thought the idea of picking 50 reefs in a year was more like mission impossible.

“I went home and thought maybe I should quit now because it’s just too big of a challenge,” she said.

A flurry of attention followed when the 50 Reefs project laid down its own gauntlet in a public announcement. With half of coral reefs lost around the world in the last 30 years and up to 90 percent projected to die in the next, the initiative brought in three foundations, a team of more than a dozen scientific advisers and major conservation groups in an urgent, collaborative effort to create the “first global plan to save the most biodiverse ecosystem on the planet,” according to the February 2017 press release.

damsel-in-distress2

Read more: Inside the Mission to Find 50 Reefs That Could Survive Climate Change

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For a church official, the country abiding by its commitment to climate agreement is more important than the number of delegates that it will send to climate conferences.

Father Edu Gariguez (photo from CBCPNews) MANILA BULLETIN

“What is important is the serious commitment of the government to abide by its commitment to climate agreement,” Father Edu Gariguez, executive secretary of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines National Secretariat for Social Action-Justice and Peace, said in an interview.

“The government committed to reducing 70% carbon emission in its INDC (Intended nationally determined contributions) for the Conference of Parties or COP 21, yet it is opening more coal-fired power plants in the country,” he added.

Read more: Church official: ‘Country abiding to its commitment to climate agreement is important’

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By August 2018, only electric tricycles will be allowed to ferry passengers in Boracay as part of the Malay municipal government's bid to promote environment-friendly public transportation.

MANILA, Philippines – Only electric passenger tricycles (e-tricycles) should be seen plying the streets of Boracay by August this year when the Malay town government in Aklan enforces the phaseout of motorized public tricycles in the island.

Read more: Boracay shifts to e-tricycles by August

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QUEZON CITY --- World Food Expo (WOFEX), the biggest and most effective food show in the Philippines today, will bring together distinguished speakers, personalities, and organizations in the area of food and agriculture industry to discuss food sustainability and agricultural development as one of the possible solutions against climate change.

Read more: WOFEX 2018 highlights food sustainability as solution to climate change

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A flooded rice field. Credit: Photo: Nonie Reyes / World Bank

The world population is expected to grow to almost 10 billion by 2050. With 3.4 billion more mouths to feed and the growing desire of the middle class for meat and dairy in developing countries, global demand for food could increase by between 59 and 98 percent. This means that agriculture around the world needs to step up production and increase yields. But scientists say that the impacts of climate change—higher temperatures, extreme weather, drought, increasing levels of carbon dioxide and sea level rise—threaten to decrease the quantity and jeopardize the quality of our food supplies.

Read more: How climate change will alter our food

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Shorter-lived species might have more time to adapt to changes in ocean pH than longer-lived species. NYT PIC

JUST as humans rely on their sense of smell to detect suitable food and habitats, avoid danger, and find potential mates, so do fish — only instead of sniffing scent molecules floating through the air, they use their nostrils to sense chemicals suspended in water.

Read more: Fish to lose sense of smell?

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Entering uncharted waters; ocean conservation is the key to the future. REUTERS PIC

THE ocean contributes US$1.5 trillion (RM6.05 trillion) annually to the global economy and assures the livelihood of 10 to 12 percent of the world’s population. But there’s another reason to protect marine ecosystems — they’re crucial for curbing climate change.

Read more: An ocean of resources to fight climate change

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Malaysia has its share of natural disasters, such as the earthquake at Mount Kinabalu in 2015.

MALAYSIA’s efforts to reduce disaster risk are a step in the right direction as the country can no longer claim to be free from natural disasters.

Read more: Focus on disaster risk reduction

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There must be careful consideration when carrying out tourism activities and development work near mangrove areas, especially those designated as Unesco sites. FILE PIC

Today is the International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem.

Read more: Mass tourism hurts mangroves

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