Lost at sea Ecological assessment around a sunken shipping container
The vast majority of the deep seafloor is unseen, and completely remote from human experience. But it is not immune to the impacts of human activities. Around the world, coastal and international cargo ships make hundreds of thousands of trips annually. Each ship may transport thousands of standard shipping containers, resulting in hundreds of millions of container trips per year. These numbers are only growing with increased global population. Most of this cargo arrives at its destination safely as scheduled. However, the routes traveled by cargo ships can be treacherous, and container loss is difficult to prevent.
ItÃ•s estimated that thousands of containers are lost each year as they are transported along international shipping routes. While this is a small percentage of the containers being transported, the impact on the health of our ocean is uncertain. During a remotely operated vehicle dive in June 2004, MBARI scientists came upon one of these lost containers. The tracking information printed on the container was used to determine that it was lost just four months prior, from the cargo vessel Med Taipei. Because the container was found within the boundaries of Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, there was particular interest in.
Determining the circumstances of its loss. The Med Taipei, sailing from the Port of Oakland, reported that fifteen containers were lost within the sanctuary boundaries during a strong winter storm, and another nine were lost before reaching port in Long Beach. Coming across a shipping container in the deep sea is akin to finding a needle in a haystack. A partnership between MBARI and the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary has taken advantage of this unique opportunity to learn more about the presumed effects of a single container on deepsea ecosystems. Scientists returned to the site seven years later to investigate the communities of animals on and around the container.
The seafloor near the found shipping container is dominated by relatively longlived soft coralsÃ‘sea pens, sea whips, and anemonesÃ‘and a sea cucumber, called the sea pig. However, the container was found to be well colonized by animals typically found on rock outcrops in the region, as if it were an island of hard substrate in a sea of soft sediment. The most abundant animals on the container were tubebuilding worms. Numerous young scallops were also present. The container seemed to provide a useful hard surface for a marine snail to lay its egg cases on. While all of these animals are found on hard surfaces in nearby areas, the abundance and.
Diversity of animal species on the containerÃ‘and the seafloor up to 10 meters awayÃ‘was lower than that typically encountered in the area. This reduced biodiversity may be due in part to the absence of some animals found in rocky habitats in the region including longlived sponges, corals, and feather stars none of which were observed during our survey of the container. The absence of sponges and corals suggests that either, seven years is a relatively short timeframe for colonization by some deepsea animals, or, the potential toxicity of the containerÃ•s zincbased paint could deter more sensitive animals from settling on its.
Surface. We are just beginning to look into the potential toxicity associated with this container. The lower number of animals close to the container may be related to several processes, including changes in nearbottom currents around the container, its role as a refuge for some species, and changes in the influence of predators and scavengers near the container. The presence of lost shipping containers on deep seafloor ecosystems is a consequence of human activities that is rarely seen or even considered. This study sheds light on the importance of basic research to understand the structure and function of deepsea habitats.
Longterm views of natural deepsea ecosystems can help us better understand the impacts of human influence on the deep seafloor.
Prefabricated EcoHouse Case History
Case History: Prefabricated Houses Prefabricated houses, as opposed to houses built conventionally from the ground up, have a history that goes back at least 175 years, when some of the first were shipped out to Australia and South Africa from England. One of the largest programmes of prefabricated house building was in the United Kingdom, following the destruction of World War II. Over 150,000 were constructed in various designs, typically 2bedroom units with around 60 square metres of floor space.
They came predecorated, with a fitted kitchen and bathroom connected to a service unit. They were made to a much higher specification than the houses they replaced. They cost in the region of Â£1200 to build, which was more than a conventional brickbuilt house at that time. They were expected to last only for 1015 years, although some are still occupied today, seventy years later. Today, similar construction techniques are widely used for temporary buildings such as site offices.
And for â€œmobile homesâ€�. For permanent housing, people look to prefabricated construction either for or style and quality for example in the German Huff Haus or for low cost. A prefabricated house might cost â‚¬40,000 excluding the land; a similar, conventionally built house might cost â‚¬60,000. The SML house, â€œSMLâ€� standing for â€œSmall, Medium, Largeâ€�, is a demonstration project by the Universidad Cardenal Herrera in Valencia; 0:01:50.100,0:01:55.000 this adds a third factor flexibility. The idea is that the building can change in size to match the changing needs of the occupants.
The configuration we are about to see is a â€œMediumâ€� design a 74 square metre house with kitchen, bathroom, livingdining area, home office and bedroom, together with a service module and an enclosed patio area. The SML House could be made larger by adding more modules, or smaller by removing modules. Construction The six modules were prefabricated at a size that makes them suitable for road transport. A metal base has been preassembled. This allows for any variations.
In level on the site and also creates a service area underneath the modules. One of the main advantages of the house, starting from its concept, is that it’s designed so it can be located anywhere that is irregular, the ground does not have to be uniform. You see, the foundation is formed with a large number of screw jacks so we can adapt to unevenness in the ground. The loading on the screw jacks is very light so there is not much tension.
The house is built in modules so we can transport it on a modified truck We can erect these modules in larger or smaller combinations depending on the requirements of the project. Once the modules are installed, which takes a very short time usually between 1 hour and 1 hour 15 minutes per module the module is completely sealed, meaning we can work in bad weather. But the big advantage is that we can adapt to a ny terrain, however irregular.
Another advantage is orientation we can align the house as we want it so it can make best use of solar power and the house can be selfsufficient and not need any mains electrical supply. So now, the way the house is oriented, it’s selfsufficient and fully functional. A key objective was to demonstrate that the house could generate enough electrical power to be self sufficient, so there are photovoltaic panels on the roof of each module. And also on walls that face towards the sun.