DEPLETED COD STOCKS IS WHAT’S LEFT OF A ONCE MIGHTY INDUSTRY


In July 1992, the Canadian government issued a moratorium on fishing in Newfoundland and Labrador, practically shutting down an industry that, for centuries, has yielded an annual catch of up to 200,000 tonnes of northern cod, supporting Atlantic Canada’s livelihood and way of life.
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This is a full-page graphic. To see it in detail, click here to view a PDF.

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Click here for more graphics

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The first signs of trouble came in the 1950s when huge fishing trawlers, both Canadian and foreign, began to replace traditional small boats that used hooks, lines and inshore net traps to catch cod. This was like using a bazooka in place of a small-bore pistol. The fishing industry was booming, everybody was happy. The waters off Newfoundland yielded up to 800,000 tonnes annually at its peak in the late 1950s, the bulk of the catch accounted for by foreign trawlers.

Then the ecological disaster struck in the late 1960s: cod population started to fall precipitously.

To have a harvest of 200,000 tonnes a year, and still sustain cod population for future supply, the waters should have a healthy stock of cod in their ideal spawning age — seven-years or older. Obviously in this case, cod of spawning-age cod was rapidly being depleted.

Canada responded to the crisis by extending its fishing boundary from 12 miles to 200 miles, pushing away foreign trawlers farther out in the Atlantic. But this was not enough to avert the crisis. Too little too late.

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INTERACTIVES: TURNING BACK THE ASIAN CARP / TOYOTA’S STICKY GAS PEDAL
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As of July 1992, cod stocks were less than 2 per cent of sustainable level, forcing the government to totally ban fishing in Atlantic Canada. Some 44,000 industry workers, 27,000 of them fishermen, lost their livelihood as the entire region was devastated.

Today, while some degree of recreational fishing has returned to the Maritimes, cod stocks haven’t recovered.

Graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in the Toronto Star in 1993.
Sources: Canada’s provincial fisheries departments; Statistics Canada

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The beginnings of the Amazon
Tectonic movements and the Haiti earthquake
Emerald ash borer threatens forests
Navigating the Seaway locks

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On August 14, 1999,  the final section of the  16-kilometre long Oresund Bridge connecting Denmark and Sweden – the world’s longest single bridge carrying both road and railway traffic – was put in position by a floating crane. Then in a simple ceremony six hours later, Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark met at the halfway point of the bridge to mark the historic re-linking of the two countries some 7,000 years since they were last joined as a landlocked mass before the end of the Ice Age. The project opened to traffic in the summer of 2000.

For a detailed look at this graphic, click here to view a PDF.

The design for the bridge that would link the two countries across the Oresund  was completed in 1994 after the agreement to build it was signed in 1991 and ratified by the parliaments of both countries. The design took full advantage of repetition by composing the major part of the bridge of identical spans.

The high bridge, with its record cable-stayed span of 490 metres, is designed to harmonize structurally and aesthetically with the design of the eastern and western approach bridges. It is made of composite steel and concrete, with truss girders standing on prefabricated concrete caisson on the limestone 17 metres below sea level. The bridge was completed in just two and a half years.

The 4,050-metre tunnel running 7.7 metres deep under the  Drogden Channel is the world’s  longest immersed-tube tunnel for both road and rail traffic.

Linking Copenhagen in Denmark to Malmo in Sweden was expected to create a major metropolis that would be competitive with other urban centres in Europe’s Baltic region. Today, the link handles an estimated 8 million vehicles a year, or roughly 60,000 travelers daily, and another 8 million passengers a year on the two train tracks.

Graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in the Toronto Star in 2000.

Oresund Bridge photo by Koosha Paridel; aerial view photo by Jorchr

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Also in this blog:
Not a time for dictators
The changing face of Milwaukee Street
Toronto sprawl revisited
Water lost in the leaky St. Clair River
Treating gunshot wounds


Leading Republican presidential nominee and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney tries to put another state under his belt as Wisconsin votes tomorrow in the Republican primary. Romney is expected to win the Badger State and pad his lead over former U.S. senator Rick Santorum and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, with only 22  primary and caucus states remaining. While Wisconsin was never a kingmaker, the 42 delegates to be had is still a good number to pad a lead.

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This graphic was published as a double-truck. For a detailed look, please click here to view a PDF.

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This humdrum three-horse race could have been a lot more interesting had not the ongoing recall of ultra-conservative governor Scott Walker stolen the thunder and largely dampened the mood among Wisconsinites for presidential politics. Still, the hopefuls are working hard to play catch up, connect with their supporters in the state and treat this race as crucial going into the remaining contests.

In the 2004 primaries that led to an election that pitted incumbent president George W. Bush (Republican), against Democratic senator John Kerry (Democrat), I put together a centerspread graphic showing the winners of the Wisconsin primary from both sides, Republican and Democrat, and how the winners fared in their subsequent presidential bids.

Graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on February 8, 2004,  a week before the Wisconsin primary.

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Also in this blog:
Why cities are spreading to the countryside
Remembering Katrina of 2005
Tragic end to a bombing raid
Treating gunshot wounds
Birthplace of the Star-Spangled Banner


THORACOAMNIOTIC SHUNT PROCEDURE SHRINKS TUMOR

In early 2008, doctors at the Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, encountered a challenging case in which the lives of both a pregnant woman and the baby she was carrying were at risk.

The woman’s six and a half month-old fetus had a benign tumor the size of a small orange in the chest cavity. The tumor was taking up 4/5 of the baby’s still undeveloped chest cavity, hampering the growth of the lungs and putting tremendous pressure on the heart.

A team of four specialists used a thoracoamniotic shunt in a tumor decompression procedure that lasted less than two hours and put both mother and child out of harm’s way. This interactive graphic shows how the procedure was done.

Click here to view interactive graphic.


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MORE INTERACTIVES:

TREATING GUNSHOT WOUNDS    /   FIXING TOYOTA’S STICKY GAS PEDAL

TURNING BACK THE ASIAN CARP

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Interactive graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in jsonline.com, news Web site of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, on April 13, 2008.

Source: Sean Tutton, interventional radiologist, Froedtert Hospital

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Also in this blog:

B-Baker’s last bombing mission
The cost of ever-expanding cities
A new-look Gardiner Expressway
Navigating the St. Lawrence Seaway locks
How the Amazon was formed


The continuing trial of Michael Rafferty for the 2009 rape and murder of eight-year old Tori Stafford of Woodstock, Ontario, is generating public interest the same way a similar, much publicized murder trial did 17 years ago – the  1995 trial of serial killer Paul Bernardo in connection with the kidnapping, torture, rape and murder of Ontario teenagers Leslie Mahaffy in 199 and Kristen French in 1992.

Tried separately was Bernardo’s wife and partner-in-crime Karla Homolka, whose sister Tammy was also sexually assaulted and murdered by the couple in 1990.

Working for the Toronto Star, I was tasked to produce a courtroom layout that would give Star readers a glimpse of the actual courtroom –  and where and how the drama would play out. Although access to information was tightly restricted, I managed to get inside Courtroom 6-1 at the University Ave. courthouse in Toronto a day before the trial and obtain facts about the seating arrangement for what would be arguably the biggest criminal trial in Canadian history.

For a detailed look at this graphic, click here to view a PDF.

Bernardo was eventually sentenced to life in prison with no chance for parole for 25 years. Now 46, he continues to serve his sentence at the 160-year old Kingston Penitentiary, Ontario’s home for its most notorious offenders.

Homolka managed to plea bargain for a lighter sentence. She was imprisoned 12 years for manslaughter and was released in 2005.

On the Stafford murder, Rafferty’s girlfriend Terry-Lynne McClintic, 21, had two years ago pleaded guilty to killing Stafford and has since been serving her life sentence. She is now a key witness in Rafferty’s trial.

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INFOGRAPHIC: SHOOTING AT IPPERWASH

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Graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in the Toronto Star on April 25, 1995.

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Also in this blog:
Tragic end to a bombing raid
Treating gunshot wounds
Recalling the Nimrod air crash in Lake Ontario
What animals mean when they ‘talk’
Newfoundland’s cod fishery killed by overfishing


This graphic takes a snapshot of a city street’s retail scene in 2003 and compares it with an image of the same street captured 30 years earlier — in 1973. Note how women’s clothing stores, shoe stores and jewelry shops — which dominated the street’s retail business in 1973 — have given way to restaurants, trendy bars and night clubs.

For a detailed look at this graphic, click here to view a PDF.

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INTERACTIVE: TURNING BACK THE ASIAN CARP

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Graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Sept. 21, 2003.

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Also in this blog:
The cost of ever-expanding cities
Water lost in leaky St. Clair River
Home of the Star-Spangled Banner
The beginnings of the Amazon
Navigating the seaway locks


Most brand-name prescription drugs are cheaper in Canada than in the United States, and this can be explained by a very fundamental difference in the way each country looks at health care in general and prescription drugs in particular.

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For a detailed look at this graphic, click here to view a PDF.

In Canada, access to affordable health care is enshrined as a fundamental right; in the U.S., health care is treated as a commodity, its cost to consumers determined by market forces.

In Canada, government – specifically the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board – controls the price of patented drugs; in the U.S., this is not done because such a practice is considered ‘socialism.’

The result: Canadians benefit from lower prices, while Americans bask in the glory of not being ‘socialist’.

This is not to say that one system is better than the other. The two are just different from each other.

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Full disclosure: I am a Canadian who has lived and worked for several years in the U.S. I have first-hand experience of both the U.S. and Canadian health care systems. I know what I’m talking about.
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According to a paper by Joe Lexchin, a professor at the University of Toronto, the province of Ontario spends more than Cdn$ 1 billion a year on prescription drugs, and if drugs don’t get listed on the provincial formulary, they tend to be generally ignored by doctors. “This dominance in the marketplace gives the province considerable room to bargain with companies over prices,” writes Lexchin.

In the U.S. where the concept of free enterprise reigns supreme, any form of interference with market forces is frowned upon, not necessarily by the man on the street who needs the medicine, but by the powerful lobby groups in Washington and the politicians that they control.

Starting 2005, though, WalMart started offering low-cost drugs, a welcome initiative by a big private sector player which has been a boon to many Americans, specially the low-income and seniors living on social security. Also, the price of many generic drugs have been usually cheaper in the U.S.

Graphic by Alfred Elicierto. Published in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on June 27, 2003.

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Also in this blog:
Why cities are spreading to the countryside
Remembering Katrina of 2005
Tragic end to a bombing raid
Treating gunshot wounds
Crime news infographics as old as crime



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