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Global Coral Reef Week: Conferences with Low Carbon Emission gain momentum during COVID-19

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#Providenciales, July 6, 2020 – Many coral reef scientists see exceptional value in sharing research with colleagues and the public, but also struggle with the high ecological and financial costs of attending traditional conferences. The ecological costs include carbon emissions from the travel of attendees. Thereby, a traditional conference designed to strengthen global knowledge on coral reefs directly contributes to the destruction of coral reefs.

With multiple widespread bleaching events in the past 5 years and the emergence of Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease as an immediate threat, we are truly at the point where we need all hands on deck to tackle climate change and the protection of our reefs. There are many things we can all do to contribute to the battle against the climate crisis. Frankly, we need to do them all. We needed to be doing them all decades ago. While we need societal and political support to be effective in slowing down the climate crisis and avoiding the worst predictions, coral reef scientists, managers, and enthusiasts can lead by example by changing our business-as-usual approach to conferences to decrease our carbon emissions. We cannot save the reefs through research alone. We also need to be part of the energy that drives the necessary unprecedented social change.

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When people asked the late Ruth Gates, ‘what can I do to help save the coral reefs?’ she advised that we pick something and do it. That’s what has been done with Global Coral Reef Week. The organizers decided it was time for the coral reef research community to have a conference format that did not require them to emit CO2 through flying. With a vision of virtually connecting a collection of local hubs across the globe, so that participants could network in person with their local colleagues while sharing their research with the global community, in August of 2019, Chelsie Counsell, Franziska Elmer & Judith Lang, committed their spare time to organizing Global Coral Reef Week.

With low CO2 emissions and high access to science as our core mission statement, they welcomed every location interested to host a local event. The School for Field Studies on South Caicos was one of these 16 international locations that decided to be part of the first ever Global Coral Reef Week. We excited about this idea because traditional conferences are often out of reach for local scientists and practitioners due to the financial costs of attendance.

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The world doesn’t always follow plans, and as COVID-19 continues to up-end everyone’s sense of normal, we are operating entirely virtually for the inaugural Global Coral Reef Week conference. We have over 100 contributed research talks and recorded workshops available for viewing on the Global Coral Reef Week YouTube channel, nine plenary talks followed by live discussion sessions with the speakers, three live sessions with multiple speakers dedicated to specific locations and topics, two virtual networking events, and a trivia event. Thanks to sponsorship from The Company of Biologists, Tradewind Colours, Marine Conservation without Borders, and donations from colleagues, this virtual conference is completely free. To date, over 1000 people have registered to participate in Global Coral Reef Week, partly due to immense advertisement in Brazil by Encontro Recifal Brasileiro.

People can visit www.coralreefweek.org and subscribe to receive email updates and links to content.

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.

News

Traffic Death again, a woman dies and two others hospitalised

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#TurksandCaicos, June 23, 2024 – Magnetic Media can inform that, yes there has been another traffic death in Providenciales and reports say it’s a woman who didn’t make it out of a three car smash up.

Almost, exactly 24 hours after a deadly collision was recorded in wee hours of Saturday morning came news, this morning, of a second death by motor vehicle accident.

“I can confirm the Police Control Room received a call during the early hours of this morning involving a serious accident on Leeward Highway. One person (female) died while others were rushed for medical treatment,” said Denyse Renne, media officer for the Royal TCI Police.

The Cheshire Hall Medical Center, which had already suspended visitation due to security concerns in the wake of four murders between Friday and Saturday in Provo, has restricted its Emergency Room to emergencies only.

TCI hospitals citing the unusually high demand for urgent medical care to multiple patients as the reason for the restriction.

While it is widely reported that the person who died in the traffic accident on Leeward Highway near Pratt’s Road is a female tourist, police say they’re investigating.

It’s been a total of six lives lost in startling incidents in the past day in Providenciales.  The tragic circumstances of the car accidents and sheer violence of the shootings have sent shockwaves throughout the country leaving residents utterly bewildered.

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Crime

Five Cays Shooting Death

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***MEDIA RELEASE***

June 22nd, 2024.

Homicide detectives of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force are actively investigating a murder in Five Cays, Providenciales.

Initial reports indicate that shortly after midday, the Police Control Room received several calls stating that gunshots were being heard in the area of the Community Center.

RT&CIPF officers responded to the given location and found the lifeless body of a male with what appeared to be gunshot wounds about the body.

The RT&CIPF is asking anyone with information that may help in this investigation to contact the closest police station, 911, the Serious Crime Unit at 231-1842, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-8477 to provide any information anonymously.

Additionally, individuals are encouraged to download the Crime Stoppers P3 app to share information.

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News

Rescued

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Media Release

June 22nd, 2024.

 

Two occupants of an aircraft were rescued around 3:28 p.m. today (June 22) following an intensive sea search around Providenciales.

The occupants –two males- are currently receiving medical attention.

The Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force can confirm that shortly after midday, the Air Tower received a report regarding an aircraft landing on water (ditching) approximately 11 miles from Northwest Point, Providenciales.

The aircraft had departed from the United States and experienced engine failure.

Having received reports of the incident, a Strategic Coordinating Group with representation from the RT&CIPF, the TCI Civil Aviation Authority, the Airport Authority, the Department of Disaster Management and Emergencies, and the Ministry of Health was activated to coordinate the search and rescue.

The group worked closely with partners from OpBat and received confirmation that a United States Coast Guard helicopter had successfully rescued the two persons after three hours.

The victims were brought ashore.

Acting Assistant Commissioner of Police Mat Newton said, “I wish to express my profound gratitude and acknowledge the invaluable support of our national and international partners.

“This successful rescue operation is a testament to our collective strength and coordination. With the full support from our US partners and the local marine community, I extend my heartfelt thanks to our OpBat partners and the crew of the US Coastguard helicopter, as well as the Marine Branch of the RT&CIPF, the staff of the Department of Environment and Coastal Resources (DECR), the Department of Fisheries and Resources Management, Caribbean Cruisin, and vessels from the TCI Search and Rescue Association.

“We are now in the process of initiating an investigation into the accident in close liaison with the Civil Aviation Authority.”

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