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International Update Volume 42, Issue 16

TWO INVOLVED IN NZ SPILL SENTENCED

New Zealand

The captain and navigator of a cargo ship that ran aground were each sentenced to seven months in jail on Friday for their involvement in what authorities have called New Zealand's worst maritime disaster. The two had already pled guilty to operating the ship dangerously and to altering documents, and a preliminary report by transportation investigators found that they had taken shortcuts to reach the port by deadline, eventually causing the ship to run aground on the Astrolabe reef.

UK COURT OF APPEALS DISMISSES POLLUTION SUIT

United Kingdom

A UK court of appeals dismissed a suit against the government alleging that it acted illegally by failing to reduce air pollution. In the appeal by Client Earth, three judges accepted the charity's argument that the UK government was in breach of its duties to ensure nitrogen dioxide pollution met legal standards. However, the court agreed with a previous decision that it was up to the European Commission, not Britain, to decide whether the government's intention to delay compliance was admissible.

FRANCE AND SPAIN END BLUEFIN SEASON; US FINDS RADIOACTIVITY IN TUNA COMING FROM JAPAN

France, Japan, Spain

France and Spain banned bluefin tuna fishing for the rest of the season after the industry exhausted its quota more quickly than anticipated. Vessels that use sonar to locate the fish have become so efficient that they can fill a season's quota in just 10 days, and the limit was reached within the first two weeks of this year's season. Small-scale fishing for the tuna, using hooks, nets, and traps, will be allowed to continue for the moment. In the Pacific, bluefin found off the coast of the United States carried radioactive contamination from Japan's crippled nuclear plant.