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Fossil fuels add to world’s marine dead zones

(Climate News Network, 6 Apr 2020) Air pollution from burning fossil fuels is adding to fertiliser run-off and sewage to kill marine life in global dead zones.

Cutting out coal-burning and other sources of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from heavy industry, electricity production and traffic will reduce the size of the world’s dead zones along coasts where all fish life is vanishing because of a lack of oxygen.

Researchers in Hong Kong report in the journal Environmental Science & Technology that cutting fossil fuel use in China would benefit not only the climate but also the fisheries along all the country’s coasts.

The finding is significant because many countries concerned about the loss of their coastal and lake fisheries caused by dead zones have been concentrating only on reducing agricultural fertiliser run-off from fields and sewage discharges, which are known to load the rivers with nutrients.

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Climate News Network, 6 Apr 2020: Fossil fuels add to world’s marine dead zones