Red Cross volunteer heads to Boston

Red Cross volunteer Sarah Perkins of Henrietta will head to Boston on Thursday to aid relief efforts.(Photo: Provided)

Henrietta resident Sarah Perkins knows a thing or two about disasters. As an American Red Cross volunteer for the last nine years, she’s assisted with local disasters like house fires, and aided national relief efforts after hurricanes, wildfires or tornadoes.

Now, the Red Cross is sending her to Boston to assess the damage after a snowstorm dropped 2 feet of snow on the city Monday.

Perkins has a varied background in careers like the military, law enforcement, ranching and typography.

“I thought, ‘There must be some reason why I’ve acquired all these skills and interests,’ ” said Perkins, adding that her expertise in these fields allowed her to work well on disaster scenes. “There’s so many ways and opportunities for me to serve it all comes into play here.”

Her job at the Rochester Red Cross chapter is disaster assessment going into disaster scenes after the fact and collecting information on damages and future needs, and tweaking future responses based on that data.

Perkins will leave early Thursday for Boston and plans to “hit the ground running,” she said.

One of the biggest demands there right now is shelters, and that will be an ongoing Red Cross effort for the next few days. She’ll have support from Red Cross leaders coming in from Buffalo and New Hampshire, and will work with local Red Cross teams to get the job done, she said.

Her first order of business will be to assess flood damage at homes along the coast, and her initial deployment will last for two weeks.

“But we never know how long we can be gone,” Perkins said she helped with Hurricane Sandy relief for 28 days in 2012.

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Red Cross volunteer heads to Boston

Beaches closed: Five-metre great white shark the biggest Newcastle has seen

The shark lurks behind a lifesaver on a jet-ski on Saturday. Photo: Nicholas Tonks

All Newcastle beaches will close again on Thursday, with council lifeguards emphasising that the great white shark cruising along the coast for five days was “of a size that has not been seen before around Newcastle”.

Estimates have the near fully-grown shark as being five metres long and about 1700kg, with a council spokeswoman stating authorities would like to have a 24-hour period with no sightings before beaches are again opened.

Newcastle Council aquatic services co-ordinator Peter Withers, who has served in the region for 37 years, said: “We’ve consistently seen the big one every day.Certainly it’s the biggest shark we’ve ever had and it’s hung around longer than any other shark,” hesaid.

People sit on Nobbys beach on Tuesday after it was closed. Photo: Darren Pateman

Newcastle would typically get as many as five shark sightings triggering beach closures annually, a number that hasn’t changed much in years, Mr Withers said this year notwithstanding.

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A late suspected sighting of the shark on Wednesday near Nobbys Head means the beaches will be closed for a record sixth consecutive day on Thursday.

Prior to that, there was a sighting by those on board a police vessel off Burwood and Merewether beaches.

A dolphin missing its tail was possibly killed by a shark. Photo: Craig Hollier

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Beaches closed: Five-metre great white shark the biggest Newcastle has seen

Shark closes Perth beaches

Sand refuge: Swimmers and paddlers were called from the water after the signal from a tagged tiger shark pinged receivers along the coast. Picture: Davin Storey

Swimmers have been evacuated from the water at popular beaches after a tagged tiger shark was detected at Floreat about 7.35am and City Beach at 9.07am.

Scarborough Beach has been reopened after it closed because of earlier tiger shark detection at Ocean Reef, Mullaloo and Scarborough.

It was closed for about an hour.

Surf Life Saving WA tweeted at 6.15am that the popular beach had been “closed by Lifeguards due to shark detection”.

For up to date information visit http://www.sharksmart.com.au .

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Shark closes Perth beaches

Disappearing beaches

Beaches and coasts are amazing wonders of nature. Indias coastline stretches for around 7,500 kilometres. Quite apart from the beautiful beaches, they also support an incredible diversity of wildlife like flamingos, shore birds, Olive Ridley turtles and red crabs.

Indias beaches are visited by millions of people every year too. But have we thought how our beaches are formed? They are formed because of the rivers. Thats why majority of our coastline have sandy beaches.

The rivers draining into the sea transport the large amount of sand that is gradually accumulated along their course. The sea currents moving from south to north direction in the Bay of Bengal and the vice versa in the Arabian Sea deposits the flowing sand along the coast.

The sea waves act as the engines of sand transportation. They drive the movement of sand to form beaches. The amount of sand and sediments deposited in our beaches is a whooping 1.2 billion tonnes every year! Isnt this an amazing natural phenomenon?

These beaches act as a defence mechanism for coastal villages from large waves and natural calamities. But they are destroyed permanently every year at an alarming rate because of construction activities right on the beach.

The classic example for this is the Puducherry harbour. After it was built in the mid 1980s, the authorities realised that the harbour was too shallow for the ships to enter. So they abandoned it. Only smaller fishing boats use it today.

But just the two breakwaters that were built to form the harbour were enough to spark beach erosion. These breakwaters are long strips of construction with boulders. They jut out into the sea for many meters. One of the reasons these are built is to reduce the wave action so that the ships are anchored safely. The unintended consequence of constructions like these is erosion of beaches.

Because the sea currents move from south to north in the Bay of Bengal during the major part of a year, the incoming sand from the rivers is accumulated on the southern side of the breakwater while the northern part of gets eroded, in a matter of months.

This is the reason for erosion of the pristine beaches in Puducherry. With the protective barrier of beaches vanishing, the sea has engulfed fishing settlements, putting livelihoods at stake.

Even the temporary solution of depositing rocks along the beaches seals the opportunity for beach formation. This method not only destroys the hills and forests but also adds to further beach erosion.

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Disappearing beaches

Vanishing beaches: clouds on the horizon

he pristine beaches of Puducherry, a major draw among residents and tourists visiting the former French enclave, are now fast disappearing due to rampant erosion.

Large parts of the beaches along the coastline have been gobbled up by the sea since 1994.

The erosion has now started spreading along the northern side of the citys coastline threatening villages such as Periyamudaliarchavady and Bommayarpalayam in Tamil Nadu.

Probir Banerjee, member, Pondicherry Citizen’s Action Network (PCAN), said: The problem started in 1989 when the Puducherry government constructed two breakwaters. Though a sand bypassing system was provided at the harbour to regularly shift the sand from south to north, this has not been done resulting in erosion along the northern side.

The sand movement along the coast is said to be one of the highest in the country. The net displacement of sand northwards has been calculated at 0.5 million cubic metres a year.

Beaches on the northern side of the coastline are now starved of sand and have started disappearing. Puducherry was losing 0.5 to 1 km of beach every year, he said.

G. Vasu, a resident of Periyamudaliarchavady and member of Repo, an Auroville community, said the rate of erosion was 20 metres a year. Instead of tackling the origin of the problem, the government started constructing groynes and sea walls, which has only aggravated the erosion towards north.

The rubble-mounted sea walls constructed along the Puducherry coast had transferred the problem to Tamil Nadu, which was now facing massive erosion. Groynes should be considered only after taking into account various factors such as wave strength, angle of the waves and shore structure, he said.

Sea currents have become tough and people living on the coast are the victims of erosion.

Due to the construction of groynes, fishermen are unable to dock their boats along the shore. However, the authorities seem to be unaware of the destruction of the coastline, said R. Nagaraj, a fisherman.

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Vanishing beaches: clouds on the horizon

Piping plover stalling plans to replenish Fire Island beaches

FIRE ISLAND, N.Y., Oct. 8 (UPI) — A federally backed $207-million plan to replenish the sands along the beaches of New York’s Fire Island has been stalled, thanks to an ongoing lawsuit filed by the state chapter of the Audubon Society which argues the project would threaten the federally protected piping plover.

Proponents of the project, which is backed by the Army Corps of Engineers and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, argue that reinforcing the beaches with additional sand is essential to protecting the people and property of Fire Island — and preventing future storm damage from the likes of Hurricane Sandy.

In the lawsuit, the Audubon Society argues the beach rehabilitation project will “inhibit natural renewal of ephemeral pools, bay tidal flats and open vegetation,” and prevent “natural storm processes that create habitat to act unimpeded.”

“The burying of existing beaches under dredged material temporarily destroys available prey resources along the coast while the construction of dunes running parallel to the ocean fragments nesting habitat from optimal foraging habitat and prevents plovers from accessing bayside areas for foraging,” the plaintiffs add.

The Audubon Society and their allies say the project is also a massive waste of money — throwing away millions on a short-term and unreliable fix. But local supporters of the plan say environmentalists are valuing birds over people.

“They are asserting that habitat protection trumps the safety and security of the residents living in Mastic Beach and other low-lying South Shore communities,” state representative Tim Bishop, D-Southampton, said in a statement. “This is a position I simply cannot support. I believe the action of Audubon New York in this instance, particularly as the dredging contract was about to be awarded, is indefensible.”

At a hearing in federal court on Wednesday, a judge declined to lift the current injunction on the sand replenishment plans. The plaintiffs say they don’t want to thwart the project in its entirety, but only wish to spare two vital nesting grounds on Fire Island. As of now, it appears federal officials may have to rethink their plans before they’re able to move ahead with construction.

2014 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

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Piping plover stalling plans to replenish Fire Island beaches

Tropical Storm Simon sending big waves to California beaches

Tropical Storm Simon off Baja Mexico is creating high surf along local beaches, prompting warnings of strong rip currents and possible coastal flooding.

The National Weather Service issued a warning Monday for high surf and strong rip currents along beaches from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara counties as Tropical Storm Simon weakens and whips its way toward Baja, Mexico.

Waves as high as 8 feet could slam into the coast from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara counties, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a high surf advisory for Monday. Long Beach could see “minor coastal flooding and beach erosion” through Tuesday night.

Though Simon has been downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm, and is expected to continue to weaken as it crawls toward land across cooler water, its winds are forecast to still send high tides, strong currents and dangerous sneaker waves to Zuma and Malibu beaches, forecasters warned.

The advisory is just the latest in what has become a particularly damaging summer for Southern Californias coastline. A year of strong Pacific storms has torn apart the seafloor along the coast, displacing huge swaths of underwater coastline, which has created stronger rip currents and tides than normal.

L.A. Countys coastline usually sees much of its sand replenished during the summer due to generous tides, while winter storms typically erode beaches. This year, that hasnt happened.

At the same time, a series of heat waves over the past few months has lured millions of beach goers into the water, resulting in lifeguards having to rescue thousands more swimmers than usual because of the dangerous ocean conditions.

For breaking California news, follow@JosephSerna.

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Tropical Storm Simon sending big waves to California beaches

Beaches face bathing ban as heavy rain ups e.coli risk

Swimming bans could be put in place at a number of beaches in Co Cork in the coming days if heavy rainfall sweeps slurry into the sea and raises e.coli bacteria to excessive levels.

Following advice from the HSE, Cork County Council yesterday put up warning notices at 14 beaches along the coast advising the public that water conditions might deteriorate to an extent that they exceeded permissible EU levels for the bacteria.

Officials said forecasts of heavy rain yesterday and again today meant there was a likelihood of contaminants being washed into the sea.

It was predicted that West Cork would be worst affected.

Met ireann forecasters predicted that 19.4mm of rain would fall in the region yesterday, with a further 17.9mm today.

Along the East and South Cork coasts less rain was forecast, but was deemed enough to have potential to cause sea water pollution.

Warning signs were put up by the council at nine beaches in West Cork: Barleycove, Cadogans, Coolmaine, Pallas, Tragumna, Traverra, Trahallan, Tom OBriens Strand, and The Warren.

The warning signs were also put up at Youghals Claycastle and Front Strand, Fountainstown, Garryvoe and Garretstown.

A number of beaches have been closed in the county already this year due to elevated levels of potentially harmful bacteria entering bathing water.

Earlier this month, a temporary bathing prohibition notice was put in place at Garryvoe, this time due to elevated levels of intestinal enterococci in the water.

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Beaches face bathing ban as heavy rain ups e.coli risk

Freedom Camping Act 2011 and unintended consequences

Regarding the Freedom Camping Act 2011 and unintended consequences

An open letter to Rt Hon John Key, Minister of Tourism, New Zealand regarding the freedom camping act 2011 and unintended consequences including high court challenge of Thames Coromandel District Council by the New Zealand Motor Caravan Association

Rt Hon John Key Minister of Tourism New Zealand 10/04/2014

Dear Sir,

Regarding the Freedom Camping Act 2011 and unintended consequences.

The freedom camping act was established largely at the behest of local bodies that found themselves powerless to control overnight camping in their districts. Media reports of unsuitable behaviour (defecation, littering & theft) were becoming more frequent and there was a clear indication from the Tourism Industry, Councils and residents that this new and growing trend was not good for tourism and not good for New Zealand.

The Minister for the environment recognised the need for control to be established and aimed to do so before the Rugby World Cup.

It may be that this timeline led to what has proven to be some unfortunate consequences.

It is important to recognise that there was very little authorised so called freedom camping before the act. Most ratepayers throughout NZ objected to subsidising these visitors, and councils actions and bylaws reflected that attitude, by way of their request for legislation to control so called freedom camping. While some (Gisborne) councils had in place management schemes, in others (Thames) request for service statistics show complaints concerning freedom camping to be the single most frequent reason for the call.

Secondly, proponents of unlimited freedom camping are want to point out that they have always done it and it is our birthright. Sadly, the always done it part is in a way correct, but the real truth of that statement is that it has also always upset those affected. Until the 1970s every summer holiday saw hundreds, if not thousands of holiday makers freedom camping along the coast of the Bay of Plenty from Opotiki to Waihou Bay. This wasnt a birthright as so many claim, this was trespass, pollution and desecration of wahi tapu sites. As soon as these locals found themselves sufficiently empowered, the practice was stopped.

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Freedom Camping Act 2011 and unintended consequences

Isla Vista Beaches Closed Through The Weekend

ISLA VISTA, Calif. –

The beaches along the coast of Isla Vista will be closed off to the public this coming weekend during the so-called “Floatopia” or “Deltopia” event.

The Santa Barbara County Community Services Department made the announcement Thursday.

The past beachside bacchanals, known as “Floatopia,” attracted thousands of partiers and left a large-scale mess that included mounds of trash and human waste.

University of California police and Santa Barbara County sheriff’s deputies said the last un-permitted event of 2009 caused public health and safety concerns.

The following year, up to this year, the IV beaches have been closed off during the weekend event. However, partiers moved their location to Del Playa, which led to the name change of “Deltopia.”

County officials say this year’s event is not a sanctioned event and there are no approved permits issued.

The beaches along Isla Vista will be closed Saturday and Sunday; the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department will enforce the closure.

On the beach today, NewsChannel 3 spoke with some young people who were tanning and drinking.

“We come out here and have a lot of fun,” said Peter Sanders from Fullerton. Pointing to a large bottle of Old English 800, a malt liquor he said, “Of course we recycle. We do our part.”

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Isla Vista Beaches Closed Through The Weekend

Great whites frolick near beaches

A hooked juvenile white shark breaching while being led away from the surf zone for tagging off Bennetts Beach in 2011. Photo: CSIRO

Up to 250 juvenile great white sharks are living off the NSW coast and spending a lot of time off beaches in depths of one to five metres, CSIRO research has found.

Tagged great whites have been tracked swimming along the coast from Lake Macquarie to Seal Rocks. These sharks are ”abundant along a section of coastal waters in the Port Stephens region” from about September to January each year, the study says.

The sharks are residing along three beaches: northern Stockton, which is south of the Port Stephens estuary, and Bennetts (also known as Hawks Nest Beach) and Mungo Brush to its north. Satellite tracking showed juvenile white pointers occupied waters from inshore to depths of 120 metres, about 25 kilometres offshore.

A juvenile white shark with a tag on the dorsal fin, ready for release. Photo: CSIRO

”They spend a significant amount of time in the surf zone in water depths of one to five metres, where they are readily observable and frequently encountered by the public,” a CSIRO report said.

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Research in 2010 and 2011, based on tagging and monitoring, estimated the sharks spend ”an average of 36.5 per cent” of their time off Port Stephens in ”near-shore waters including the surf zone”.

In 2012-13, great whites were recorded spending 20 per cent of their time in the surf zone.

”This study provides further confirmation the Port Stephens region is a key nursery area for juvenile white sharks in eastern Australia,” the report said.

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Great whites frolick near beaches

Beaches beginning to bulk up | Video

By the time hurricane season arrives next summer, several South Florida beaches will be bigger, providing better protection to coastal property and offering more room for sunbathers to lay their blankets.

A vast amount of sand is already starting to be spread on shorelines from Jupiter to Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, with about 200 dump trucks showing up Tuesday in northern Pompano Beach.

“Palm Beach County depends on our beaches for our name, for our economy, for tourists and recreation, to protect the six billion dollars worth of real estate along the coast,” said Leanne Welch, supervisor of the county’s shoreline programs. “We have found that every dollar we spend returns anywhere from $8 to $9 to the local economy.”

The beach restoration project in northern Broward will bolster a five-mile stretch from just south of Hillsboro Inlet to Commercial Boulevard, an area that lost a considerable amount of sand when Hurricane Sandy brushed past South Florida last year.

The work, expected to be completed in January, will add sand to the dry beach, making the beach taller rather than wider, at least initially. Where now the top of the dry beach is six or seven feet above sea level, the project will raise it to about 10 feet, said Eric Myers, Broward County’s beach erosion administrator.

Adding sand gives the beach a better chance of recovering if sand is washed away, since much of that sand could just wash back onto the beach.

“Beaches are naturally dynamic, moving in response to storms and other influences,” Myers said. “Beach renourishment is one way to try ensure that these functions continue to be provided.”

To avoid disrupting traffic, the trucks will arrive over the course of several hours, assembling at a staging areas off Atlantic Boulevard and continuing on to the beach when called.

The Army Corps of Engineers is paying the entire $7.1 million cost.

Next week in southern Boca Raton, a dredge will scoop up offshore sand and pump it onto the beach. Within the next few weeks, a project will begin to pump sand from the ocean floor onto beaches in Ocean Ridge, Delray Beach, northern Boca Raton and Jupiter.

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Beaches beginning to bulk up | Video

Beaches beginning to bulk up

By the time hurricane season arrives next summer, several South Florida beaches will be bigger, providing better protection to coastal property and offering more room for sunbathers to lay their blankets.

A vast amount of sand is already starting to be spread on shorelines from Jupiter to Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, with about 200 dump trucks showing up Tuesday in northern Pompano Beach.

“Palm Beach County depends on our beaches for our name, for our economy, for tourists and recreation, to protect the six billion dollars worth of real estate along the coast,” said Leanne Welch, supervisor of the county’s shoreline programs. “We have found that every dollar we spend returns anywhere from $8 to $9 to the local economy.”

The beach restoration project in northern Broward will bolster a five-mile stretch from just south of Hillsboro Inlet to Commercial Boulevard, an area that lost a considerable amount of sand when Hurricane Sandy brushed past South Florida last year.

The work, expected to be completed in January, will add sand to the dry beach, making the beach taller rather than wider, at least initially. Where now the top of the dry beach is six or seven feet above sea level, the project will raise it to about 10 feet, said Eric Myers, Broward County’s beach erosion administrator.

Adding sand gives the beach a better chance of recovering if sand is washed away, since much of that sand could just wash back onto the beach.

“Beaches are naturally dynamic, moving in response to storms and other influences,” Myers said. “Beach renourishment is one way to try ensure that these functions continue to be provided.”

To avoid disrupting traffic, the trucks will arrive over the course of several hours, assembling at a staging areas off Atlantic Boulevard and continuing on to the beach when called.

The Army Corps of Engineers is paying the entire $7.1 million cost.

Next week in southern Boca Raton, a dredge will scoop up offshore sand and pump it onto the beach. Within the next few weeks, a project will begin to pump sand from the ocean floor onto beaches in Ocean Ridge, Delray Beach, northern Boca Raton and Jupiter.

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Beaches beginning to bulk up

N Korea tells South to leave islands

16 March 2013 Last updated at 10:42 ET

A North Korean propaganda website has warned of strikes against Southern islands and advised residents to leave.

The Uriminzokkiri website, linked to the regime, mentioned targets including Yeonpyeong island, which was attacked by Northern forces in 2010.

Pyongyang has made a series of threats since its last nuclear test in February prompted the UN to tighten sanctions.

The US said on Friday it would refocus missile defences to its west coast to counter the North’s threats.

Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel said 14 more batteries would be placed in Alaska by 2017, adding to 30 already in place along the coast.

On 12 February the North tested a nuclear device, which is believed to be its third such test.

The UN Security Council condemned the move and tightened sanctions on the regime.

Before and after the UN announcement, Pyongyang promised reprisals for the sanctions, including a threat to launch a pre-emptive nuclear strike against the US.

North Korean media has also been vitriolic against the South.

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N Korea tells South to leave islands

Thousands of sharks shut Florida beaches

Beaches along the south Florida coast were closed temporarily after thousands of migrating sharks were spotted close to the shore.

Swimmers were ordered out of the water after the sharks – mostly blacktips and spinners – moved into the area as they head north during their annual migration.

The beaches reopened on Thursday, though unseasonably chilly temperatures kept most swimmers away anyway.

Craig Pollock, a lifeguard supervisor in Palm Beach, said: ‘We don’t have a sandbar. A lot of times when we have a sandbar the sharks stay off of the shore a little further.

‘Every year we expect annual shark migration to come through this area.’

Researchers at Florida Atlantic University counted 15,000 sharks – many as close as 200 yards from the shoreline.

Video footage showed dozens of the predators swimming through breakers along the coast line.

Beaches in Boca Raton, Boynton Beach and Singer Island were closed, with double red flags warning swimmers to keep out of the water.

Beachgoer Elizabeth Horowitz said: ‘Sharks are not to be reckoned with.’

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Thousands of sharks shut Florida beaches

Three beaches closed today in Palm Beach County due to sharks

Three Palm Beach County beaches were closed today because of shark sightings near the shore, according to Palm Beach County Ocean Rescue.

Beaches at the South Inlet in Boca Raton, Gulfstream Park near Boynton Beach and Ocean Reef in Singer Island were closed to swimmers, Ocean Rescue Capt. Phil Wotton said.

The closings came a day after Palm Beach town lifeguards closed a beach there after dozens of sharks were spotted. The sharks have been showing up along the coast in increasing numbers in recent weeks as they migrate north.

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Three beaches closed today in Palm Beach County due to sharks