Feeds

WW II U-boat attacks prompt new US response

Rusting wrecks poised to pollute

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

May 1943 is held by many to have been the turning point in the Battle of the Atlantic.

“Black May”, as it has come to be known, saw 43 U-boats destroyed by allied forces. That number that reduced the size of the German submarine fleet to levels that meant later convoys stood a far better chance of successful Atlantic crossings. The materiel they carried helped the war effort immensely.

70 years on, however, some of the ships sunk in the Battle of the Atlantic present a new problem.

To understand how, consider that the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's has just published a “Risk Assessment for Potentially Polluting Wrecks in U.S. Waters” (PDF, thanks to Mother Jones for the tip).

That report says “The vast majority of potentially polluting shipwrecks lost in U.S. waters can be tracked to a four-year period between 1941 and 1945 when Japanese and German submarines sought to destroy tankers and freighters along the relatively undefended U.S. coasts.” During the war those wrecks caused plenty of pollution: oil washed up on beaches.

Today, some of those wrecks are thought still to contain oil. Some just had fuel in their tanks. Others were tankers.

Hence worries expressed in the report about 36 “higher risk wrecks” that investigations – or lack of knowledge – suggest represent big pollution risks.

Of those vessels, we count at least 19 listed as having been sunk near the USA's east coast during World War II and the NOAA says their prevalence on the list of 36 “reflect the intensity of World War II casualties in the Battle of the Atlantic."

The after-effects of the battle seem, thankfully, to be preventable as the NOAA plans expeditions to investigate and, when possible, remediate the wrecks to prevent further pollution.

Karl Dönitz loses again! ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Criticism of Uber's journo-Data Analytics plan is an Attack on DIGITAL FREEDOM
First they came for Emil – and I'm damn well SPEAKING OUT
'It is comforting to know where your data centres are.' UK.GOV does NOT
Plus: Anons are 'wannabes', KKK says, before being pwned
Google's whois results say it's a lousy smut searcher
Run whois google.com or whois microsoft.com. We dare you, you PIG◙◙◙◙ER
Holy vintage vehicles! Earliest known official Batmobile goes on sale
Riddle me this: are you prepared to pay US$180k?
'Open source just means big companies can steal your code.' O RLY?
Plus: Flame of the Week returns, for one night only!
NEWSFLASH: It's time to ditch dullard Facebook chums
Everything hot in tech, courtesy of avian anchor Regina Eggbert
Hey, you, PHONE-FACE! Kickstarter in-car mobe mount will EMBED your phone into your MUG
Stick it on the steering wheel and wait for the airbag to fire
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.