Sharks secured in a Belgium-sized area

The Guardian reports today that

“Ecuador creates Galápagos marine sanctuary to protect sharks. Belgium-sized area around northern islands of Darwin and Wolf will be off-limits for fishing in bid to conserve sharks and unique habitat. 

Some 15,000 square miles (38,000 sq km) of the waters around Darwin and Wolf – the most northern islands – will be made off limits to all fishing to conserve the sharks that congregate there and the ecosystem on which they rely.”

38,000 sq km is in fact the size of Bhutan, not Belgium (30,000 sq km) but it is easy to confuse the low-lying EU country with the mountainous Himalayan kingdom.

MH370 search zone is “four times the size of Belgium”

The Daily Mail published a Q & A article about the status of the search for missing flight MH370. According to the article, which was sourced from AFP “So far, they have covered about 70 percent of a designated search zone four times the size of Belgium and are expected to be finished within months. “

An area of 4 x Belgium is roughly the same as

  • 6 x Israel
  • 3 x The Netherlands
  • 3 x Switzerland
  • 1 x North Korea
  • 1/2 x The United Kingdom

So why did the journalist choose Belgium?  I doubt we will ever find out.


Preparing to defend Belgium against Russian annexation?

In a BBC Newsbeat report today …

Royal Marines train US forces in Arctic over fears of Russian aggression

British Royal Marines are training their American counterparts in Arctic warfare for the first time.

The new Arctic training for US marines is happening in an area the size of Belgium.

The article does not explain why the training zone is the size of Belgium, but consider what happened to the Crimea, which is often reported as “a territory about the size of Belgium“.