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Environment

Government cancels auction of protected islands in UNESCO biosphere reserve

The fisheries ministry is cancelling auctions of four protected islands in the Baa Atoll UNESCO biosphere reserve following a social media outcry.

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More than 20 islands already facing water shortages

More than 20 islands across the Maldives are already facing water shortages, according to the National Disaster Management Centre.

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Europe bank offers Maldives €45 million loan for sustainable energy project

The government has obtained a €45 million loan from the European Investment Bank to finance renewable energy projects and upgrade electricity networks in the atolls.

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New artificial beach is a ‘health hazard,’ says youth group

The Dhi Youth Movement has warned that sewage outflow and medical waste from the nearby Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital disposed near the new west coast artificial beach pose serious dangers to swimmers. A snorkelling team from its cleanup project Damage Control had found an increase in sedimentation and dead corals as well as tubes and medical waste.

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Regulations introduced for connecting renewable energy to power grids

The new net metering regulation will allow residential and commercial customers who generate their own electricity from solar power to feed electricity they do not use back into the grid. The solar panel owner will be credited for the electricity added to the grid and billed for “net” energy use.

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Two northern islands hit by tidal swells

Ali Shaheem, vice president of the Komandoo island council, told The Maldives Independent that the swells have been continuing since 2:00am. One house was inundated by one and a half feet of water, he said, causing a power outage and forcing a family with three young children to temporarily move to another residence.

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UNDP launches app to report illegal waste dumping

Users from the capital and its suburbs Hulhumalé and Vilimalé can download the ‘MakeMyIsland’ app for free, take a picture, and report littering and unattended waste in public spaces to the concerned authorities, which will attend to the problem and send a notification through email.

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Reef frequented by whale sharks “destroyed” by resort’s excavation work

Excavation work carried out by LUX South Ari Atoll to clear a snorkelling channel on the island’s barrier reef has destroyed live corals, altered the current flow, and escalated the rate of erosion, divers say. It was approved by the tourism ministry after the resort’s proposal was twice rejected by the environment ministry.

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Funding call as Addu struggles with flood recovery

Some MVR3million (US$194,550) is required to help more than 300 households in southern Addu City recover from flood damage, but only MVR200,00 (US$12,970) has been raised so far, the city council has said.

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Addu City suffers worst floods in 40 years

Southern Addu City has suffered the worst storm damage in 40 years after 12 continuous hours of torrential rain left streets inundated and flooded some 200 households.

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Green climate fund grants Maldives US$23m for safe water

The UN’s climate fund has approved US$23.6 million for a project to ensure the delivery of safe freshwater to 105,000 people in the outer islands of the Maldives. The project is among the first eight investments approved by the Green Climate Fund (GCF), a global initiative established to provide financing from wealthy nations for adaptation projects in developing countries.

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Maldives pursues fossil fuels and clean energy at once

The government, noting the need for reducing oil dependency, has signed its second renewable energy project in a month, but has also asked a visiting American research vessel to conduct tests for oil and gas near a UNESCO biosphere reserve.

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Chinese company to install solar panels in Hulhumalé

The agreement was signed under the Accelerating Sustainable Private Investments in Renewable Energy (ASPIRE) project developed in collaboration with the World Bank, the environment ministry said.

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Government promises end to seasonal water shortages

The government is aiming to solve annual water shortages during the dry season in islands across the Maldives within two years, State Minister for Environment Abdul Matheen Mohamed said at a ceremony held to hand over rainwater harvesting systems to the island councils of Rasgetheemu, Angolhitheemu, and Vaadhoo in Raa atoll.

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US$4.2m project launched for mangroves, coral reef protection

The environment ministry yesterday launched a US$4.2 million Climate Change Adaptation Project to establish eco-tourism facilities to manage protected mangroves and coral reefs in Fuvahmulah and Addu City and generate economic benefits for local communities.

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Tidal swells not as bad as predicted

Tidal swells caused minor flooding in five islands in southern Gaafu Alif and Gaafu Dhaal atolls and Kolhufushi Island in Meemu atoll.

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Australian company to build wave farm in Hanimadhoo

An Australian mining company Stonehenge Metals has announced plans to install a 2MW wave energy farm off the coast of Hanimaadhoo Island.

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