Best of our wild blogs: 20 Oct 18

Our Crazy Rich Shores: Pulau Hantu
Celebrating Singapore Shores!

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Malaysia: Fungus killing sea turtles within the nest

jo timbuong The Star 20 Oct 18;

KUALA TERENGGANU: The local turtle population is not only threatened by predators and careless human behaviour. Researchers at Universiti Malaysia Terengganu have found a deadly microorganism silently working from inside the nest as well.

In a study spanning about 10 years, a team led by Dr Siti Nordahliawate Mohamed Sidique, senior lecturer of microbiology and plant pathology, found that an aggressive fungus of the Fusarium species has been infecting the eggs, ruining every chance of survival.

“We believe the fungus releases a micro-toxin that attacks the turtle embryo. We’re conducting more research on this,” said Dr Siti.

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Plastic piling up in Japan after China waste ban: survey

AFP Yahoo News 18 Oct 18;

Japan said Thursday it was facing a growing sea of plastic waste with limited capacity to process it after China stopped accepting foreign waste imports.

The environment ministry said about a quarter of major regional and municipal governments surveyed reported seeing accumulating plastic waste, sometimes going beyond sanitary standards.

The costs of processing waste plastic were rising, according to more than 100 local governments and 175 waste processing firms that responded to a ministry survey.

The world's developing nations are also scrambling for ways to process plastic refuse after China stopped accepting it.

Nearly three-quarters of all plastic waste produced globally since 1992 has ended up in China and Hong Kong, according to a study in the journal Science Advances.

But since January, China has closed its borders to most paper and plastic waste in line with a new environmental policy pushed by Beijing.

Before the ban, Japan exported about 1.5 million tonnes of plastic waste per year, most of it to China.

The Japanese ministry said it will expand domestic capacity to process plastic waste, while also preventing illegal dumping.

The government also intends to boost efforts to encourage recycling, the survey added.

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