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OpEd: Why The Arctic Ocean Must Be Quarantined

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#PARVATIFOUNDATION – Our world has come to an unprecedented pause in an attempt to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Doctors call it a “novel” coronavirus, which means that it is new to our population and none of us has immunity to it. The cost in human lives and the widespread havoc it wreaks is consuming our news cycle. But what many of us don’t realize is that our world has a ticking time bomb of pathogens, all of which would be “novel” to us, if released. For the sake of our collective future, we must keep them under ice.

The Arctic Ocean does not only keep our planet cool through the albedo effect, when its white ice reflects the sun’s heat away from the planet. It keeps the local permafrost, with its payload of pathogens, frozen. Within the ice and permafrost of the Arctic region are bacteria and viruses that have been kept dormant for millennia. But the ice is melting. Sections of the Arctic Ocean are now 4C too hot. Up to 95% of the summer ice is gone. And scientists have proven that frozen Arctic viruses as old as 30,000 years can be reactivated.

The warning shot was fired in 2016, when an anthrax outbreak was traced to the frozen carcass of a reindeer that died over 75 years ago and thawed in the summer heat. It tore through a herd of 2000 reindeer, took the life of a 12-year-old-boy, and required the hospitalization of dozens of others. If this trend continues, infections from time immemorial could re-emerge to devastate a world no longer immune. 

MAPS, the Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary, is a medical mask that keeps everyone around the globe safe from these frozen pathogens. However, today, the Arctic Ocean is under unprecedented threat from melting and from exploitation that breaks up the ice and inhibits its regrowth: shipping, commercial fishing, oil exploration, and military activity. To protect our global immunity, we must put the Arctic Ocean in quarantine now. We are seeing today the deadly consequences of delay in clamping down to prevent disease.

MAPS declares the entire Arctic Ocean north of the Arctic Circle an international peace park free from all forms of exploitation. Not only does it protect our planet’s air conditioner. Not only does it create a secure habitat for vulnerable species in a time that scientists say we must protect half the planet in order to prevent mass extinction. Not only does it safeguard 17 kinds of whales, who play an essential role in the ocean providing us half the oxygen we breathe. MAPS is urgently needed if we want to keep pandemics from becoming the new normal.

Captain Paul Watson of Sea Shepherd says, “The Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary must continue to hold the massive reserves of restless methane within its quiet lonely bosom where sleeping viruses remain safely captive. From the dark boreal forests to the groaning of the shifting floes, there is the constant whispering reminder that this stark and desolate world is the key to our survival.”

The all-volunteer international charity Parvati Foundation originated MAPS and is in dialogue with all nation leaders to sign the MAPS Treaty immediately. This Treaty updates the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea to ensure the Arctic Ocean is given the protection our whole world needs now more than ever. Two nations have already signed.

Parvati Foundation’s founder and CEO, the award-winning Canadian musician and author Parvati, says, “COVID-19 is an urgent reminder of the ways we are all interconnected. What each of us does affects everyone else. We must heed the wake-up call to protect our collective future with MAPS now.”

Magnetic Media is a Telly Award winning multi-media company specializing in creating compelling and socially uplifting TV and Radio broadcast programming as a means for advertising and public relations exposure for its clients.

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Mother’s Day has meaning Across the World, in the Region and right at here at Home

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May 11, 2024 – Mother’s Day has a rich history that dates back to ancient times when Greeks and Romans held festivals to honor mother goddesses. However, the modern Mother’s Day as we know it originated in the early 20th century.

The official Mother’s Day holiday in the United States was first proposed by Anna Jarvis in 1905, as a way to honor her own mother who had passed away.

Her efforts led to the first Mother’s Day celebration in 1908, organized by her at a church in West Virginia. The holiday gained popularity quickly, and in 1914, President Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day, a national holiday to honor mothers.

Since then, Mother’s Day has become a widely celebrated occasion around the world, with people expressing their love and appreciation for their mothers and mother figures through gifts, cards, and special gestures.

Mother’s Day is celebrated in various countries around the world, although the dates and traditions may differ. Among the many marking the celebration of mothers is the United States, Nigeria and United Kingdom (which had Mother’s Day in March), Canada, Australia, India, Mexico (marked Friday May 10), Brazil, Japan, South Africa and France (later this month May 26).  These are just a few examples, as Mother’s Day is observed in many other countries as well, each with its own customs and traditions for honoring mothers and motherhood.

In the Caribbean, Mother’s Day is also marked with vim and vigor and reverence.

When you talk about island nations like Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Turks and Caicos Islands and The Bahamas, among others, all observe Mother’s Day with celebrations that often include special church services, family gatherings, and the giving of gifts and cards to honor mothers and mother figures.

Traditional foods and music may also be part of the festivities staged in the neighbourhood or huge family groups will flock to their favourite dining spots for brunch.

It is not unusual to see Mother’s Day concerts, national awards ceremonies and luncheons making it a striking and joyous occasion for families eager to show appreciation for the important women in their lives.

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Caribbean News

Saudi Arabia E-Visa Access Broadened – Caribbean

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

Citizens from Barbados, The Bahamas and Grenada have been granted access to Saudi Arabia’s electronic visa, now being able to apply for their visas online or acquire them upon arrival at Saudi Arabia entry points, according to reports. So far, there are only 66 countries with access to the E-Visa.

 

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Health

Astrazeneca to withdraw vaccines – Health Side Effects

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer 

Astrazeneca says it is withdrawing its vaccines from the market worldwide, effective as of May 7 as it was reported to cause side effects such as blood clots and low blood platelet counts. This was first reported by the Telegraph. The Withdrawal they say is also due to the availability of other updated vaccines.

 

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