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Government pledges protection for world's coral reefs
The Coral Reef Life Declaration encourages countries to join forces to protect coral reefs.

The UK has officially joined the Coral Reef Life Declaration

The UK government has pledged to safeguard the world’s coral reefs from climate change and rising sea temperatures.

Speaking at the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton on Monday (9 April), environment minister Thérèse Coffey announced that the UK had officially joined the Coral Reef Life Declaration.  

“Few people know the waters around the UK contain riches to rival the tropics – with our waters home to a vast array of cold water coral reefs that protect important marine life,” she said.

“Through tapping into the UK’s world-leading marine science and working with our partners across the Commonwealth, we will help to safeguard this vital habitat and protect our oceans for future generations.”

The Coral Reef Life Declaration encourages countries to join forces to protect coral reefs. Launched by Prince Albert II of Monaco in October 2017, it has already been signed by 12 countries, including Fiji, Australia and the Seychelles.

The oceans surrounding the UK are home to cold-water corals which are more than 8,000 years old. The only known coral reef in English waters is located off the Cornish coast and is protected as a Marine Conservation Zone. There are also extensive reefs off the West coast of Scotland.

The announcement comes one week ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, where member states will gather in London to agree further global measures to protect our oceans.

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Nominations for 2019 RSPCA Honours Awards now open

News Story 1
 People across the UK are being urged to nominate a standout animal champion for the 2019 RSPCA Honours Awards.

The awards recognise those who have worked tirelessly to improve animal welfare, campaigned on behalf of animals, or shown true bravery. Previous winners include comedian John Bishop, who was awarded Celebrity Animal Champion of the Year, and 11-year-old Lobby Cantwell, who raised more than £1,000 for the charity through mountain climbs and bike rides.

To submit a nomination or find out more about the awards visit the RSPCA website. Nominations will remain open until 4 pm on Friday, March 15.  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
New £1m project to investigate dairy cow lameness

Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) is leading a new £1 million research project to investigate the causes of lameness in dairy cows.

One in three dairy cows are affected by lameness every day in the UK, costing the industry an estimated £250 milion annually.

The project will take three years to complete and is due to finish by November 2021.

Professor Georgios Banos of SRUC commented: “In addition to pain and discomfort to the animal, lameness is associated with decreased milk production and inflated farm costs.

“Among cows raised in the same environment, some become lame while others do not. Understanding the reasons behind this will help us develop targeted preventive practices contributing to enhanced animal welfare and farm profitability.”