December 18, 2011 |
Phileas Fogg went around the world in 80 days. I did it in 23. And I bet I visited more amazing sites than he - India's Taj Mahal, Easter Island, Tibet, Cambodia's Angkor Wat, the African plains, to name a few - all without having to endure the tramp steamers, bone-jarring trains and elephants that Fogg used in 1872. I traveled by private jet. The price of a seat, and all that went with it, was $64,950. The trip was sold by National Geographic Expeditions, which each year offers at least one and sometimes four around-the-world tours by private jet, a leased Boeing 757-200 that is configured with only 77 super-large and dreamily comfortable seats.
February 25, 2011
1. Australia Australia has had one of its more disastrous summers. Floods, fires and cyclones have affected nearly every state, and recovery will take a long time. Worst hit was the state of Queensland, which suffered through historic floods only to face one of the largest cyclones Australia has seen. The disasters affected the capital, Brisbane, along with holiday locations such as the Sunshine Coast, Townsville and Cairns that are popular departure points for the Great Barrier Reef.
April 7, 2010 |
Over the years, retired Australian fishing captain Mike Prior has seen their numbers grow, the large trawlers and freighters cruising recklessly through federally protected waters without proper guidance. On Tuesday, authorities were investigating the shipwreck of one such apparent vessel -- a Chinese-flagged bulk coal carrier that slammed into the Great Barrier Reef, skippered by a captain who, the Queensland maritime authority says, may have ignored the fact that he was outside the shipping lanes without a trained marine pilot because he was trying to save transit time.
April 6, 2010 |
Strong currents Monday battered a stranded coal carrier that slammed into a stretch of Australia's Great Barrier Reef over the weekend, raising fears that more oil from the stricken ship would leak into the pristine ocean habitat. Officials sent a second tugboat to help keep the Chinese-registered Shen Neng 1 from grinding against the reef and potentially releasing more oil or even breaking apart. Meanwhile, workers used a floating boom to contain fuel that has leaked from the vessel.
April 5, 2010 |
Strong currents on Monday battered a stranded coal carrier that slammed into a stretch of the Great Barrier Reef over the weekend, raising fears that more oil from the stricken ship would leak into the pristine ocean habitat. Officials sent a second tugboat to help keep the Chinese-registered Shen Neng 1 from grinding against the reef and releasing more oil and even breaking apart. Meanwhile, workers used a floating boom to contain petrol that has leaked from the vessel. Maritime Safety Queensland officials warned that if the ship broke in two, some 65,000 tons of coal and 300,000 gallons of heavy fuel oil used to run the ship's engines would spill into the marine reserve.
April 5, 2010 |
Reporting from Seoul Kenneth R. Weiss and Los Angeles -- Australians on Sunday scrambled to ensure that a Chinese-owned bulk coal carrier that rammed into the Great Barrier Reef would not break apart and seriously damage the planet's largest coral reef. Peter Garrett, the nation's environment protection minister, told reporters that the government was concerned about the effect an oil spill could have on the environmentally sensitive reef, one of the wonders of the natural world that was selected as a World Heritage Site in 1981.