Judge halts excavation plans for largest-ever Brazilian goldmine

first_imgArticle published by Glenn Scherer Amazon Dams, Amazon Destruction, Amazon Mining, Amazon People, Controversial, Environment, Forests, Gold Mining, Indigenous Cultures, Indigenous Groups, Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Rights, Infrastructure, Rainforest Deforestation, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforest Mining, Rainforests, Rivers, Saving The Amazon, Social Justice, Threats To The Amazon The Belo Sun goldmine, to be Brazil’s largest, would use cyanide and other industrial processes to produce 5 million ounces of gold over 12 years. The company´s environmental impact assessment says it will process nearly 35 million tons of rock. The open-pit mine would leave behind gigantic solid waste piles covering many hectares, plus a huge toxic waste impoundment near the Xingu River.A Brazilian judge suspended the project’s installation license this week, faulting the Canadian company that would be excavating Belo Sun with improperly acquiring federal land and potentially removing families from those lands to “reduce social costs.”The proposed Belo Sun goldmine is within a short distance of the controversial Belo Monte dam, which has dislocated residents, caused deforestation, and harmed the environment, causing major fish kills on the Xingu River, a major tributary of the Amazon River. Residents are concerned that the addition of the nation’s biggest goldmine will do more severe harm.Residents fear that a failure of the Belo Sun toxic waste impoundment dam would create a disaster on the Xingu River similar in scale to the Samarco Fundão dam collapse in 2015, which dumped roughly 50 million tons of toxic iron ore waste into the Doce River, polluting it for 500 miles, all the way to the Atlantic Ocean, and causing Brazil´s largest environmental disaster. A large open pit goldmine in Western Australia. The Belo Sun open pit goldmine, the largest in Brazil if excavated, would sprawl across a 175,000-hectare (675-square mile) site. After 12 years of digging, it would leave behind massive solid waste piles; along with a huge toxic waste impoundment near the Xingu River. Photo by Benutzer-CrDunder licensed the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2A Brazilian judge dealt a blow to the Belo Sun mining company’s plans to open the largest goldmine in Brazil this week. The proposed mine is slated for the Volta Grande bend of the Xingu River, very near the site of the controversial Belo Monte dam in Pará state.The court handed down a 180-day suspension of the Canadian company’s installation license. The ruling, issued February 21st, found that Belo Sun Mineração Ltda. had made efforts to illegally obtain federal land and to dispossess the rural populations living on those lands while also preventing them from hunting and fishing.The decision noted that while the company had not yet obtained an environmental permit for its proposed mine, it improperly purchased the land from three purported owners. Judge Álvaro José da Silva Sousa described this as “a way of removing the families from these areas and thus reducing the company’s social costs”.The proposed Belo Sun goldmine site covers 175,000 hectares (675 square miles), would be the biggest in Brazil, and produce an estimated 5 million ounces of gold over a 12-year period. The company´s environmental impact assessment says it will process nearly 35 million tons of rock. The open pit mine would leave behind massive rock spoil piles covering many hectares, plus a huge toxic waste impoundment near the Xingu River. The company had planned to spend US $5 million on exploration this year. The court decision sent shares in Belo Sun down by 2.68 percent to $1.09 in mid-afternoon trading in Toronto on Tuesday.The Brazilian judge concurred with an argument by the Public Defenders’ Office, noting that the proposed site of the mine has also been the focus of agrarian land reforms. He pointed out too that three years had passed between the issuance of the preliminary environmental license and the installation license, but that the area’s residents still remained in limbo regarding their land rights. Da Silva Sousa said that it is “unjustifiable” that the company has left the residents “still at the mercy of fate without knowing what their destiny is as [to when] the Volta Grande mining project [will] begin set up.”The judge said that the firm may not undertake any activities to develop the mine site as long as the land issues remain unresolved. In early February, Brazil´s National Council on Human Rights appealed for a denial of the dam´s license.The Volte Grande of the Xingu River, deprived of water by the Belo Monte dam and reservoir, has seen significant fish kills in the recent past. The proposed Belo Sun goldmine, if allowed to go forward, could do more environmental harm. Map by Morgan Erickson-Davis / MongabayBelo Sun responded to questions from Mongabay and said that it will appeal the decision: “Belo Sun Mineração has already signed sales contracts for properties with the occupants of the lots and/or farms relevant to the Volta Grande Project’s installation following all the necessary legal parameters and independent appraisals of the areas and their improvements.” The firm said it had prepared a plan for reallocation, negotiation and social inclusion aimed at two of the affected communities, Vila Ressaca and Vila Galo, and that it had submitted this plan to the state’s environmental agency. The company also maintained it had “a deep dialogue with these communities”, and that it would update its census and discuss relocation with residents in 2017.The Belo Sun mining project has run into snags before. In 2014, another judge suspended the Canadian firm´s environmental license because the firm hadn´t adequately evaluated the impact the mine would have on nearby indigenous communities. The Canadian company is owned by Forbes & Manhattan, a private merchant bank. According to Forbes & Manhattan´s website, the bank focuses on “the resource-based sector, technology, telecommunications, and on-line gaming.” Social responsibility is also a priority for the bank, according to its website.Residents living in the area targeted by the mine have already faced serious challenges brought by rapid development. Last year, the Belo Monte dam, the world’s third largest hydropower project, began operating nearby, with devastating impacts to the environment and to the fishery, affecting people who depend on the Xingu River for survival.Jackson de Sousa Dias, 25, is a critic of the mining project and a member of the Movement of People Affected by Dams (Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens, MAB). “First of all, [the mining company is] a transnational company, it’s Canadian. So, the majority of the shareholders are Canadian banks. So, we already know where the wealth from the Amazon is going, to the Canadians,” de Sousa Dias said.He also pointed out that IBAMA, Brazil’s environmental protection agency, is required to monitor the area around the Belo Monte dam for six years once the dam begins operating at full capacity, planned for 2019. “IBAMA has to monitor this region until 2025 because the [river’s] flow in this region has been reduced by up to 80 percent by the Belo Monte dam. So our position is that there shouldn’t be any other major projects until 2025 since we won’t know the full impact in this region [of the dam] until then.”Screenshot of a page from the BeloSun Mining website. The Canadian company promoting the project is actively seeking investors, but it ran into a major litigative stumbling block this week when the Brazilian courts put a 180-day hold on the project.The Xingu River flows through the state of Pará, whose Secretariat of the Environment and Sustainability (SEMAS) granted an installation license to Belo Sun for the mine at the beginning of February. IBAMA declined to comment to Mongabay about this week’s court suspension, stating that SEMAS is handling the licensing process.Carolina Piwowarcyzk Reis, an attorney with the Instituto Socio-Ambiental (ISA) and NGO, told Mongabay that Belo Sun´s licensing process, “has had various irregularities since the beginning, starting with the lack of prior, free and informed consultation.” This, she said, applies to the indigenous populations in the area as well as the traditional populations who rely on fishing and small-scale gold mining for a living.The specter of Brazil´s largest environmental disaster to date, also hangs over the Belo Sun project. Environmentalists criticize the Canadian company´s plan to use a waste storage dam similar to the Fundão dam employed by Vale and BHP Billiton´s joint venture, Samarco in Minas Gerais state. The dam collapsed on November 5, 2015, dumping roughly 50 million tons of toxic iron ore waste into the Doce River and was Brazil´s largest-ever environmental disaster.The controversial Belo Monte dam, which forced indigenous and traditional communities from their lands, caused deforestation and major fish kills. The Belo Sun goldmine could do serious environmental harm and would be disruptive to indigenous and traditional communities. Photo by Zoe SullivanWhen asked about its willingness to consider other, safer storage options, a Belo Sun spokesperson told Mongabay that the Volta Grande waste dam would be smaller, with just one-third the Fundão dam´s capacity, and that “after the closure of operations, [the waste storage impoundment] offers the option with the greatest financial and technical viability.”Gold mining requires the use of toxins to separate the gold from waste. Belo Sun has said that it will use cyanide to process the 5 million ounces of gold it expects to extract from the project. Residents and activists fear that a spill of these toxic materials would prove disastrous to the Xingu River, impacting communities already made vulnerable by deforestation and the Belo Monte dam.Belo Sun responded to questions from Mongabay about the use of cyanide, explaining that the poisonous chemical compound is used internationally to separate valuable minerals from ore. The firm also said that every step of the production cycle will be closely monitored and that “the cyanide will be placed in adequate installations, with closed and protected tanks.”Bel Juruna called the judge’s suspension this week “the best news I’ve had about Belo Sun yet”. Juruna lives in the village of Muratuí along with 70 members of the Juruna tribe. “We’re fighting a lot to be consulted because that is our right,” she told Mongabay. “There are going to be a lot of impacts, of cyanide and other things, and there’ll be a time when neither [Belo Sun nor Norte Energia, the Belo Monte dam’s operator] wants to take responsibility for compensation measures or for the environmental damage.”She concluded: “We don’t want what happened with Belo Monte to happen again.” Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

It’s World Pangolin Day!

first_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Critically Endangered Species, Endangered Species, Environment, Mammals, Pangolins, Poaching, Trade, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Traditional Medicine, Wildlife, Wildlife Trade, Wildlife Trafficking Pangolins are the world’s most trafficked animal.Populations of all eight species of pangolins are vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered, mainly due to the demand for their meat and scales.Hopefully, increased protection and attention will give these animals a chance to bounce back from near-extinction. It’s time to celebrate World Pangolin Day — again.Today, February 18, is dedicated to the armor-clad mammals that resemble giant pine cones. Some might know them as scaly anteaters that eat, well ants, and termites. But does the pangolin, believed to be the world’s most trafficked mammal, have a reason to cheer?Just earlier this month, Thailand authorities displayed three metric tons of pangolin scales that they had seized since December. The scales, worth more than $800,000, were estimated to have come from 6,000 pangolins originating from Africa.There were several other large seizures.In January, officials seized eleven metric tons of pangolin scales from Cameroon and Tanzania being exported to Asia. Around Christmas, Shanghai Customs seized over three metric tons of scales, while Cameroonian customs seized over half a metric tons of scales being exported from central Africa for Malaysia. Conservationists estimate that more than 20,000 pangolins were likely killed for these 14.5 metric tons of scales.Unfortunately, the illegal pangolin trade shows no sign of abatement.Tree pangolin (Manis tricuspis) in central Democratic Republic of the Congo. Photo by Valerius Tygart licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.Estimates by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) suggest that nearly two million pangolins may have been traded over the past 16 years, a figure that they say represents only the tip of the iceberg.“Trafficking in such large quantities occurring on an international scale highlights the organised nature of this illegal trade which is proving increasingly profitable to wildlife traffickers,” the EIA writes on their website.The demand for pangolin scales comes mainly from China and Vietnam. People believe that the scales have medicinal properties, capable of promoting menstruation and lactation, and treating rheumatism and arthritis. But none of these claims have been proven.China even has a legal annual quota of 25 metric tons of pangolin scales that can be used in traditional Chinese medicine in over 700 registered hospitals. These scales must be from verified stockpiles or from legal African imports. But a recent survey by TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade monitoring network, found that much of the scales were being sold illegally.Pangolin scales, just like human fingernails and hair, and rhino horns, are largely made of keratin. Unfortunately, the hard, armor-like scales that are meant to shield these animals from predators have become the main reason for their collapse.Pangolins are also hunted for their meat. In Africa, the animal is eaten in many parts as bush meat, while in China, the meat is believed to have curative properties, and is also consumed as a luxury food item. Even pangolin fetuses are popular in the country, as they are believed to improve virility. The mammal’s blood and body parts, too, are important in traditional Chinese medicine. In 2015, for instance, Indonesian officials confiscated five metric tons of frozen pangolin, 77 kilograms (169 pounds) of pangolin scales, and 96 live pangolins in Sumatra that were destined for China.Black-bellied pangolin (Phataginus tetradactyla) from Central African Republic that was opportunistically taken for its meat. Photo by John Cannon.Today, eight species of pangolins survive in the wild, four each in Asia and Africa. All four Asian pangolins — Chinese pangolin (Manis pentadactyla), Sunda pangolin (Manis javanica), Indian pangolin (Manis crassicaudata), and Philippine pangolin (Manis culionensis) — are listed as endangered or critically endangered under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.The four African pangolins — Cape or Temminck’s Ground pangolin (Smutsia temminckii), White-bellied or Tree pangolin (Phataginus tricuspis), Giant Ground pangolin (Smutsia gigantea), Black-bellied or Long-tailed pangolin (Phataginus tetradactyla) — are all listed as vulnerable under the IUCN Red List.With Asiatic pangolins having suffered steep declines in populations, African pangolins are now being increasingly trafficked to Asian markets, according to the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) Pangolin Specialist Group.When the EIA mapped all publicly available records for pangolin seizures globally, they found that the number of documented seizure incidents within Africa had gone up from 39 in February 2016 to 113 reported seizures now, with Tanzania, Nigeria, Cameroon and Uganda emerging as key export hubs. This trend is worrying, conservationists say.Map showing pangolin illegal trade seizures. Courtesy of Environmental Investigation Agency.“Little is known about the population status of the four African pangolin species in quantitative terms, but each is classified as threatened with extinction,” the IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group wrote in a statement last year. “Their nocturnal and elusive nature makes them difficult to survey and, until recently, they have been largely overlooked by the conservation movement.”Fortunately, at the most recent Conference of the Parties to CITES, in South Africa in September 2016, all eight pangolin species were uplisted from Appendix II to Appendix I. This means that all pangolin species will receive the strictest global protections from trade.In another bit of good news, some smuggled pangolins have had a happier ending than others.Last August, 20 critically endangered Sunda pangolins, confiscated in June, were released to a safe, undisclosed location in Vietnam by the Carnivore and Pangolin Conservation Programme (CPCP), a collaboration between Save Vietnam’s Wildlife (SVW) and Cúc Phương National Park. Then in November, the same teams released 46 Sunda pangolins into the wild. The pangolins had been confiscated from traffickers in September.Some countries are also beginning to destroy their stocks of pangolin scales to make a statement about their intent to end pangolin trade. Yesterday, for example, Cameroon’s Ministry of Forests and Wildlife burned about three tons of pangolin scales collected from seizures going back as far as 2013. These could represent between 5,000 to 7,500 individual pangolins, experts say.“This event demonstrates the determination of Cameroon’s government to team with the international community to fight against the illegal wildlife trade,” Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation, said in a statement.These bits of good news are extremely important, but they may not be enough to save the pangolin. Let’s hope that with increased protection, attention, and action, these animals will have a fighting chance to bounce back from near-extinction.Ground Pangolin at Madikwe Game Reserve in South Africa. Photo by David Brossard. Source: Flickr, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Article published by Shreya Dasguptalast_img read more

7 new frogs discovered in India, some smaller than a thumbnail

first_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Article published by Shreya Dasgupta Amphibians, Animals, Conservation, Deforestation, Forests, Frogs, Habitat Loss, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Illegal Mining, Mining, New Species, Research, Species Discovery, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation center_img All the newly described species belong to the genus Nyctibatrachus, commonly known as night frogs.Apart from being tiny, these frogs live a secretive life under forest leaf litter or marsh vegetation and they sound like insects, making it difficult for researchers to locate them.But these species seem to be common and abundant in the locations they were found, researchers say.Despite being commonly encountered, all seven species might be threatened by habitat loss. Indian scientists have discovered seven new species of frogs in the Western Ghats, a biodiversity-rich mountain range in India.All the newly described species belong to the genus Nyctibatrachus, commonly known as night frogs.Four of these frogs are only 12 to 16 millimeters in length, making them smaller than a thumbnail. In fact, these miniature-sized amphibians are among the smallest frogs in the world, researchers report in a new study published in PeerJ. The world’s smallest frog is believed to be the 7.7-millimeter long Paedophryne amauensis, found in Papua New Guinea.Seven new species discovered from the Western Ghats. A. Radcliffe’s Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus radcliffei), B. Athirappilly Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus athirappillyensis), C. Kadalar Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus webilla), D. Sabarimala Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus sabarimalai), E. Vijayan’s Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus pulivijayani), F. Manalar Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus manalari), G. Robin Moore’s Night Frog. [(D-G. Size of the miniature species in comparison to the Indian five-rupee coin (24 mm diameter)] Photo credit: SD BijuFinding the night frogs was not an easy task.Apart from being tiny, these frogs live a secretive life under forest leaf litter or marsh vegetation and they sound like insects, making it difficult for researchers to locate them. These frogs may have remained undiscovered for a long time, but these species seem to be common and abundant in the locations they were found, researchers say.“The miniature species are locally abundant and fairly common but they have probably been overlooked because of their extremely small size, secretive habitats and insect-like calls,” said lead-author Sonali Garg, a PhD student at the University of Delhi.Despite being commonly encountered, all seven species are likely to be threatened by habitat loss, researchers say. They are all known only from the single locations where they were discovered, some of which lie outside protected areas. Moreover, much of the southern Western Ghats, where the new species were discovered, is currently threatened by illegal mining, construction of hydro-power dams and large-scale infrastructure development.Data from the University of Maryland visualized on Global Forest Watch show the southern Western Ghats, where the new frogs were found, lost around 1.5 percent of its tree cover between 2001 and 2014. The region is home to many previously known endemic amphibian species that are found nowhere else in the world. The NGO Alliance for Zero Extinction shows the ranges of four that are endangered.Two of the frogs, Radcliffe’s night frog (Nyctibatrachus radcliffei) and the Kadalar night frog (N. webilla) for example, were found inside private or state-owned plantation areas. The Athirappilly night frog (N. athirappillyensis) was discovered near the Athirappilly waterfall in the state of Kerala, which lies inside a reserved forest that is threatened by a proposed hydroelectric project. Similarly, the Sabarimala night frog (N. sabarimalai) was found close to a popular pilgrimage center that is estimated to attract over 100 million devotees every year.“Over 32 percent, that is one-third of the Western Ghats frogs are already threatened with extinction. Out of the seven new species, five are facing considerable anthropogenic threats and require immediate conservation prioritization,” Prof SD Biju, who led the new study and has also formally described over 80 new species of amphibians from India, said in the statement.Athirappilly Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus athirappillyensis) was discovered from areas adjoining the Athirappilly waterfall, site for a proposed hydroelectric project. Photo credit: SD Biju.Between 2006 and 2015, scientists described 1,581 new species of amphibians. Of these, 159 species were discovered in the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka region, making it one of the leading biodiversity hotspots for new amphibian species discoveries, researchers say.Until now, the night frog genus Nyctibatrachus included 28 recognised species, of which more than half were described over the last five years. The discovery of the seven new species raises the number of Nyctibatrachus species to 35.Vijayan’s Night Frog (Nyctibatrachus pulivijayani), a 13.6 mm miniature-sized frog from Agasthyamala hills in the Western Ghats, sitting comfortably on a thumbnail. Photo credit: SD Biju.Citation:Garg S, Suyesh R, Sukesan S, Biju S. (2017) Seven new species of Night Frogs (Anura, Nyctibatrachidae) from the Western Ghats Biodiversity Hotspot of India, with remarkably high diversity of diminutive forms. PeerJ 5:e3007 https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.3007FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. 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Environmental costs, benefits and possibilities: Q&A with anthropologist Eben Kirksey

first_imgActivism, Agriculture, Anthropology, Community Development, Conservation, Corporate Role In Conservation, Deforestation, Economics, Environment, environmental justice, Environmental Refugees, Forest People, Forests, Fragmentation, Gold Mining, Governance, Government, Human Rights, Hunting, Indigenous Cultures, Indigenous Groups, Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Rights, Infrastructure, Insects, Land Conflict, Land Grabbing, Land Rights, Logging, Mining, Montane Forests, Old Growth Forests, Palm Oil, Poverty, Poverty Alleviation, Primary Forests, Rainforest Agriculture, Rainforest Deforestation, Rainforest Logging, Rainforest People, Rainforests, Resource Conflict, Social Conflict, Social Justice, Tropical Forests Article published by John Cannon The environmental humanities pull together the tools of the anthropologist and the biologist.Anthropologist Eben Kirksey has studied the impact of mining, logging and infrastructure development on the Mee people of West Papua, Indonesia, revealing the inequalities that often underpins who benefits and who suffers as a result of natural resource extraction.Kirksey reports that West Papuans are nurturing a new form of nationalism that might help bring some equality to environmental change. Indonesian New Guinea holds some of the largest remnants of old-growth tropical forest on the planet. Yet the region faces increasing pressure to share its riches with the rest of the world. Mining companies have dug for gold and copper, leaving scars visible from space. Loggers have razed rainforest and built highways into previously remote areas. And with Indonesia as a whole producing half the world’s palm oil, the hunt for new plantation sites threatens to fragment what’s left of the region’s standing forest.These development projects have taken place as Indonesia has divided the territory, splitting the western half of the island of New Guinea into West Papua and Papua in the 2000s.Map of West Papua and Papua (in red) in the Indonesia-controlled part of the island of New Guinea. Map courtesy of Eben KirkseyEben Kirksey, an anthropologist at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, has spent nearly two decades investigating what the push for natural resources has meant for the people of Indonesian New Guinea. His own discipline has left him uniquely positioned to dig deeper into the crossroads of changes to the ecological environment and to our ways of life.“Anthropology is the most humanistic of the sciences, and the most scientific of the humanities,” Kirksey said, quoting cultural anthropologist Alfred Louis Kroeber.But Kirksey is also a leader in the emerging discipline known as the environmental humanities, drawing from the tools of both anthropologists and biologists.Mongabay spoke with Kirksey to discuss his recent article, published in the journal South Atlantic Quarterly, which looks how the balance of power metes out – often inequitably – the consequences and benefits of harvesting natural resources and of the ensuing changes to the environment. In his essay, he explores how the Mee people of the village of Unipo adapt to clear-cutting of the forest that had been their home for centuries, and the ways in which the construction of a road, originally intended to shuttle timber from the hinterlands, set different parts of society on a collision course.During the conversation, Kirksey also delves into current politics and how a more constructive, nascent form of nationalism arising in Papuan communities might bring some equality to the sharing of nature’s largesse.Collecting mushrooms in the forests of West Papua. Photo and caption by Eben KirkseyMongabay: Can you explain what environmental humanities is and how it’s emerging as a discipline right now?Eben Kirksey: Basically, biologists used to study the domain of nature, and anthropologists, which is my own discipline, used to study culture. Folks in the environmental humanities are interested in the intersection of the two, where nature and culture meet. People are studying the dynamics of power, how political and economic systems influence that nature-culture dynamic, and asking this question of who benefits when species meet. We are thinking about who lives and dies amidst encounters amongst humans and other kinds of life – how clear cutting a rainforest or having an industrial project impinges upon particular communities.Mongabay: In your essay, you talk about how these dynamics affect individuals’ lives but then also the global balance of power.Eben Kirksey: Yeah, it’s a really exciting moment because a lot of people are using these new tools to follow global assemblages [and] be really specific in tracing how a commodity moves, for example, through pipelines or through transnational shipping systems [and how they] change people and ecological communities all along the way. A lot of folks are also looking at chemicals on a global scale that are in the atmosphere, like carbon, that are changing the very possibilities of life on Earth.I think we’re getting increasingly specific in terms of how we link things up. What sorts of lives and deaths matter in this world that I inhabit? What sorts of chemicals impinge upon my existence? What sort of consumer choices do I make that are shaping this world that I’m creating here but also the global assemblages that let my life exist in this particular moment?Mongabay: You talk about the differences you observed between your first arrival in the late 1990s and your return in 2015. What was most striking?Eben Kirksey: I’ve been back a number of times since the late ’90s. I think one different thing was just a real sense of hope and possibility [then]. On the heels of the resignation of this dictator, President Suharto, who had been in office for 32 years, there was this real sense of political possibility. He left office in May ’98, and I got there a couple of weeks later.Within Indonesia, this archipelago of some 12,000 islands, there was a sense that a democratic reform project could be actualized. In 1999, East Timor got independence. West Papua had high hopes that they would get independence with momentum building toward the year 2000, the new millennium, as a new president took office in Indonesia.I was visiting rural places – spaces by the side of the road that had only emerged recently in the last few years as a logging company clear cut the forest and built a road connecting the lowlands with the highlands. A lot of extraction projects were going on, and there was also a sense of hope and possibility with development projects, even as people were in vulnerable and precarious situations.Over the next couple of decades, the vulnerabilities and precarities that people were experiencing intensified at the same time that this sense of political possibility started to evaporate. As those hopes were dashed, people started to still hold onto dreams of getting liberated from this military occupation, amidst the everyday violence, amidst targeted killings of leaders, but also just everyday killings like the one that I describe in the article – teenagers basically getting assaulted by the police with very little pretext.Against the backdrop of that ongoing violence, I think that hope for a change that resolves all of this politically, the possibility of that political outcome, is increasingly elusive.Oge Bage Mee children washing sweet potatoes. Photo by Eben KirkseyMongabay: In the essay, you talk about the fragility of happiness in a touching story about the young people you spent time with there. Later, you talk about the fragility of that moment. Was that a way of capturing that sense of possibility and then what’s happened since?Eben Kirksey: I spent many of my days just foraging for edible insects with children who learned that in clear-cut rainforests, you have a proliferation of these delightfully tasty treats. This was a sort of happiness amidst tragedy, right? Yeah, I did find, as with a lot of forms of happiness, it was fragile, and this space of hope was destroyed in the coming years.Mongabay: When you returned, you found that several of those kids died of malaria. That’s a poignant example of how those changes to ways of life and to the environment around us affect us.Eben Kirksey: When I came back a few years later, a lot of these young children were dead. Many people had just fled. Often, when there’s a disease outbreak, people just disperse. In fact, [the strategy that] let these people live with malaria was being constantly on the move. Depending on the mosquito species, from the time they bite someone infected with malaria to re-infecting a new person, that’s usually about 30 or 60 days. If you’re constantly on the move, if you’re living in these bivouacs in the forest and shifting your location, you’re not going to get exposed to malaria epidemics.This local tragedy is situated in a national context where Indonesia has used public health measures to protect certain people from malaria and while letting other people die. If you travel to Bali, for example, an international tourist destination, or if you travel to Jakarta, you’re going to be protected from malaria.This Edage Bage woman is wearing a “t-shirt” that she has fashioned out of tree-bark string. This image shows how the Edage Bage have taken ideas from the outside world and made them locally distinct. Photo and caption by Eben KirkseyMongabay: In the essay, you discuss the construction of the Trans-Papua Highway and about how it brings different social groups together. Can you talk about the story you used to illustrate that?Eben Kirksey: Basically, a young man was shot dead by the side of the road – Yoteni Agapa, whose dog was killed by a speeding car. This group of boys got mad when the dog was killed and the driver sped away, so they instituted an impromptu road block and started asking other cars for money. [The Trans-Papua Highway] was built by a logging company across indigenous land that didn’t formally pay any of these people for that right to cross their land.This acute incident of a dog getting killed, coupled with longstanding senses of social inequality [and] economic injustice connected to this road, made the boys start stopping cars and saying, ‘Hey, our dog was killed. We’re mad. Give us five bucks.’ The amount of money they asked for was basically the equivalent of a local meal at a nearby food stall.Those drivers got mad. They went back to local security forces and told [them] what was going on, that there was this roadblock happening, and the security forces came back and started shooting the children. A number of the children sustained wounds and managed to run away. Yoteni Agapa was shot repeatedly and then his body was mutilated after he was killed.Mongabay: When you and your colleagues reported the incident to the UN, “Power continued to function predictably,” you write. What did you mean by that?Eben Kirksey: I studied this incident in collaboration with some regional human rights defenders. We wrote up a short allegation to the United Nations [and] filed this with the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions. And it was filed away. It exists in an archive somewhere, and nothing happened.There are decisions being made that certain kinds of people don’t matter as much as others. The fact that a young black boy can get shot dead by the side of the road in West Papua, or in Ferguson, [Missouri,] or in many other sites in Africa or Europe, the fact that these killings are happening all the time – there aren’t adequate international legal institutions for dealing with this. I think it’s something that needs to be interrogated on a global level.Mongabay: Can you relate that to what you’ve seen in Indonesian New Guinea and perhaps the difference between the nationalism you talk about in your first book, Freedom in Entangled Worlds, and the nationalism we’re seeing globally now?Eben Kirksey: Yeah, I think there’s a return to a certain form of nationalism that is dangerous in the United States right now. In contrast, my first book, about West Papua, is all about rediscovering the promise of nationalism.If you look at the long history of colonization, the nations of early modern Europe were formed through the exploitation of India, Africa, Southeast Asia, [and] the Americas. We are at a moment where people in the United States could reclaim the positive aspects of nationalism. In the case of West Papua, I found people harboring these dreams, not of this return to the tribe, this return to a place where it would just be Papuans and all the outsiders would just be killed or expelled, but a post-colonial situation where they’re learning to live more responsibly with their global entanglements.Mongabay: How is that playing out in Indonesian New Guinea?Eben Kirksey: There’s this big U.S. gold mine there called Freeport McMoRan. To paint it with a very broad brush, they’re basically stealing the natural resources of West Papua. The largest gold deposit known is in West Papua, and that wealth is being taken away, channeled to the Indonesian government in the form of taxes, to this U.S. corporation, which is making profits and distributing the gold around the world so that we have wires in our cellphones and computers as well as wedding rings.A picture of the open-pit Freeport McMoRan mine, taken by an astronaut in June 2005 at an elevation of 353.7 kilometers (191 nautical miles). The hole is about 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) wide. Photo ISS011-E-9620 courtesy of NASA Earth ObservatoryThe West Papuans [are] not envisioning a world where they’re going to claim all that wealth for themselves and say that nobody else deserves to have a share. Papuans want to channel the theft of that natural resource into a gift, with all the obligations that gift giving entails. When you give someone a gift, very often, especially in a place like Melanesia, certain things are expected in return.When the U.S. has a USAID program or the Soviet aid programs in the Middle East or Afghanistan, this is shaping foreign policy. Papuans want to give away their gold as a gift. They want to make sure that the people of Indonesia are fed. They’re imagining a new ethical world order where nationalism isn’t done away with, but very clear ethical principles inform how this excess wealth, how the valuable things on their land, might be redistributed.Mongabay: Is there anything else you would like to add?Eben Kirksey: In concluding about West Papua, I would like to say it’s an incredibly vibrant, beautiful, amazingly dynamic place. As people often hear about the ongoing genocide, the political problems, that fact is lost. There are all sorts of surprising encounters you can have there. It is still, outside of the Amazon, one of the largest undisturbed tracts of rainforest in the world. This is very quickly getting destroyed by oil palm plantations.I’d just like to draw people’s attention to this remarkably beautiful, dynamic and surprising part of the world.CITATIONS:Kirksey, E. (2017). Lively Multispecies Communities, Deadly Racial Assemblages, and the Promise of Justice. South Atlantic Quarterly, 116(1), 195-206.Kirksey, E. (2012). Freedom in entangled worlds: West Papua and the architecture of global power. Duke University Press.Editor’s note: This interview has been edited for clarity and length.Correction (Mar 1, 2017): we changed references to “West Papua” to “Indonesian New Guinea” in the introduction to better distinguish between West Papua Province and Western New Guinea, which is the half of New Guinea controlled by Indonesia. Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

Field Notes: Finding Jacobo; an Andean cat captivates conservationists

first_imgFor more on the topic:Lucherini M, Palacios R, Villalba L, Iverson E. (2012) A new Strategic Plan for the conservation of the Andean cat. Oryx. Vol. 46, pp. 16-17.Novaro AJ, Walker S, Palacios R, et al. (2010) Endangered Andean cat distribution beyond the Andes in Patagonia. Cat News. Vol. 53, pp. 8-10.Villalba L, Lucherini M, Walker S, Lagos N, Cossios D, Bennett M, Huaranca J. 2016. Leopardus jacobita. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T15452A50657407.Walker S, Funes M, Heidel L, Palacios R. (2014) The Endangered Andean cat and fracking in Patagonia. Oryx. Vol. 48, pp. 14-15.Jacobo explores his release site in a remote park. A few moments later this “ghost cat”, first seen wandering a Bolivian soccer field, vanished back into the wild. Photo by Juan Reppucci / courtesy of Andean Cat Alliance Animals, Biodiversity, Biodiversity Crisis, Carnivores, Cats, Conservation, Ecology, Ecosystems, Endangered Species, Environment, Extinction, Forgotten Species, GPS, GPS tracking, Habitat, Habitat Degradation, Habitat Destruction, Habitat Loss, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Hunting, Mammals, Mass Extinction, Mining, Over-hunting, Restoration, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation The Andean cat ranges from remote areas of central Peru to the Patagonian steppe. Perfectly adapted to extreme environments, this small feline is threatened by habitat degradation and hunting, but most of all it suffers from anonymity: it’s hard to save an animal that no one ever sees.So few of these endangered cats are scattered across such vast landscapes that even most of their advocates have never seen the species they’re trying to protect. But the conservation efforts that could save this cat could also preserve the wild places where Andean cats live.When a male Andean cat was found wandering around a soccer field, Andean Cat Alliance members agreed to forego the extraordinary opportunity to study the animal in captivity, and try instead to return “Jacobo” to the wild.Andean Cat Alliance coordinators Rocío Palacios and Lilian Villalba orchestrated the multinational volunteer release effort. Conservationists equipped Jacobo with a GPS collar and hope that tracking his travels will reveal new data about this secretive cat, considered a symbol of the Andes. Andean cats suffer from an identity crisis: with so few of them prowling around such a large mountainous Latin American landscape, most people don’t know what they look like. Photo courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceWhen an Andean cat (Leopardus jacobita) suddenly showed up in the middle of a synthetic soccer field in Bolivia, the wild feline was far from anywhere that should have been home. Not knowing what else to do, local people put the Endangered cat in a birdcage to hand it over to authorities.How the housecat-sized feline ended up such a distance from its usual haunts — high in the mountains of Chile, Argentina, Bolivia and Peru — is still a mystery. However, the extraordinary circumstance gave conservationists a chance to learn about an animal they were dedicated to saving, but had rarely seen.It isn’t easy to find an Andean cat. Only 1,378 adults exist, with the small cats scattered over more than 150,000 square kilometers (roughly 600,000 square miles) of highlands from northeastern Peru to Patagonia, according to the first population numbers published last year on the IUCN red list website. This single population estimate is one of the biggest successes of the Andean Cat Alliance because estimating the population numbers for such a low density species is a huge challenge, says Rocío Palacios, biologist and co-coordinator of the organization, which has teams of volunteers dedicated to protecting this wild feline across its whole range.Only 1,378 adult Andean cats exist, with the small cats scattered across more than 150,000 square kilometers (roughly 600,000 square miles) of highlands from northeastern Peru to Patagonia. Photo courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceThe paw prints of an Andean Cat. Sightings of these Endangered felines are so rare that information is usually gleaned from scat and camera trap images. Photo courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceAlthough the cats live in remote areas, at elevations up to 12,000 feet, their habitat is rich with deposits of coal, oil and minerals such as tin, silver, and gold, so the reclusive feline increasingly competes with the mining industry for territory. They’re also threatened by local hunters who, in an effort to protect livestock from larger predators, often kill the small cats, too.The thick-coated wild cats also suffer from an identity crisis. With so few prowling such a large landscape, most people don’t even know what they look like. If spotted, Andean cats may be mistaken for the pampas cat that lives in overlapping habitat. With such a low profile, it can be tough to generate support for conservation.“This is more than saving a cat,” says Palacios. “This animal is a symbol of the Andes. When we talk about saving this cat, we’re talking about saving an entire landscape.”For many conservationists, time spent with Jacobo counts as their first sighting of an Andean cat. Rocío Palacios looks on here, as Jacobo undergoes anesthesia in preparation for a veterinary examination. “Now, even when I’m not directly involved in tracking Jacobo, I’m always trying to find out where he is; he’s like a kid that goes to study abroad, everybody is checking to see how he is doing,” says Palacios. Photo courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceMongabay: What motivates you to save an animal you never see?Palacios: I get that question a lot. At first, that was really hard to answer because I couldn’t understand this feeling that you need to see the animal that you are studying to be able to work with that animal.I’ve always loved to study carnivores but where I live, in Argentina, there are no big lions. We have smaller cats and they are always on the move, so it’s really hard to find them. So, it’s detective work: I look for signs and tracks to deduce what the cats have been doing, how they interact with each other. From gathering evidence, we construct the life history. But it’s not just about the cat. The cat is a symbol of what I’m working for.One of the most powerful experiences in my life happened the first time I went to the Andes, looking for the cat and collecting scat. I was sitting on a rock and couldn’t see any sign of humans — no people, no roads, not another human thing — in any direction. Even though I had been going to the mountains since I was a kid, I had never before experienced that feeling of completely blending with nature.Conservation can be a really challenging profession; a lot of times it looks like the battle is already lost. The Andean cat is like my secret weapon, a symbol of that memory of totally blending into nature.Photo traps provide much of the current information about Andean cats. Tracking collars that work well on this small cat are hard to find. VHF signals, for example, are not the most effective tool in the rugged mountain terrain, where, if a cat is sleeping in a cave, you could be standing right above it and not receive a signal. Photo courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceMongabay: What have conservationists learned from Jacobo?Palacios: Finding Jacobo was a powerful thing. The researchers and professionals who volunteer for the AGA (Alianza Gato Andino is the Spanish name for the Andean Cat Alliance) have worked together for a long time and we are always facing questions about the cat’s life history: How many kittens do they have? What is the breeding season? What is their phsiology? These are basic questions that we cannot answer because we’ve never had one in captivity to study. Before Jacobo, we didn’t even know the composition of the cat’s blood.Immediately after Jacobo was found, it was determined the best place to keep him was at the Vesty Pakos State Zoo in La Paz [Bolivia]. They made special enclosures for him, so he wouldn’t get used to humans, and took very good care of him — he even gained a couple of pounds while he was there.An inter-institutional committee was formed, organized by AGA, to follow up on everything related to Jacobo’s wellbeing. We planned to release him after the winter, when the weather wouldn’t be so harsh. Then he started to show signs of stress in captivity — a giant alert sign that we needed to release him very quickly. It began to feel like an emergency.Even though we all wanted the same thing, it was hard to work together because people were in different countries and everyone has a “day job” to pay the bills. Also, the release process itself was complex. For example, we needed a blood test to make sure Jacobo was healthy before his release, but there was no lab in Bolivia that could do this, so the sample had to be sent to a specialist in Chile. This required special permits in a short timeframe. After the results came back okay, we needed trucks, release experts and a collar to track him. All of this costs money and — except for the trucks — the AGA financed most of these needed services.Jacobo leaves his cat carrier. Photo by Juan Reppucci/courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceThe tracking technology is not well developed for small cats and you can’t just custom-order it for one individual. Only 5 Andean cats have ever been collared and we haven’t collected nearly enough information from them. The first cat, named Sombrita, was collared in Bolivia and about six months later she was killed by a local person who had issues with the protected area recently established in the region. Later, more cats were collared in Argentina, but each one had some kind of problem; the collars fell off too quickly or just stopped recording. There is just not proper technology developed for this kind of species, so most of our data has been from scat and camera traps.Finally, everything came together and we released Jacobo in Sajama National Park, in Bolivia. After the first few days of tracking his radio signal, he began venturing farther away from the site.Mongabay: What are the next steps for Andean cat conservation?Palacios: Our immediate goal is to stop the hunting. When I was finishing my research in northern Patagonia, more than half of the records for that dissertation work came from dead cats. That’s more than 20 dead cats, a huge number for a low-density species.Part of our mitigation program in Chile and Argentina includes training guard dogs to keep predators away from goat herds in the [mountain] communities. That way the small cats won’t get killed along with the mountain lions, which are the real livestock predators. We want to expand that program as quickly as possible.Another part of that program brings artists to schools where they help children paint murals that show the Andean cat and his important place in the landscape. In these isolated areas, the schools are a gathering place for the community, so everyone sees these conservation messages.We also need pure research at the population genetics level. It may sound boring, but I have a strong suspicion there may be two subspecies of Andean cats, and we need to know [whether that is true or not] to adjust our conservation actions.Jacobo in close up, just moments after his release. Photo by Juan Reppucci / courtesy of Andean Cat AllianceNext year, we also want to start a monitoring network in protected areas. This was my main project in previous fieldwork. If this is well applied, the Andean cat becomes part of the action plan for protected areas. That works as a conservation tool because it helps detect sudden changes in population trends.And of course, there is Jacobo. We need to keep following him. He was released in a very remote site, in a park that straddles Bolivia and Chile. When we went to the field to look for [radio collar] signals in October, November, and December, there was a far away signal once, and then never again. We are trying to arrange an overflight to look for him one more time before the radio battery dies.Even though it’s disappointing not to know exactly where he is, it’s a good thing that Jacobo moved away from his release site, looking for a proper place to make his own territory. He is out there somewhere and, because every individual matters, we know we did the best thing possible by releasing him.Jacobo is a lot more than just another cat for us; he’s a symbol of the Andes. Like a living being needs a soul, the soul of the Andes is represented by Jacobo. Article published by Glenn Scherer Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Forests provide a nutritional boon to some communities, research shows

first_imgAgriculture, Amazon Agriculture, Amazon Conservation, Amazon Destruction, Amazon Logging, Amazon Palm Oil, Amazon People, Animals, Apes, Biodiversity, Bushmeat, Community Development, Conservation, Deforestation, Ecology, Environment, Environmental Policy, Fish, Fishing, Food, Food Vs Forests Debate, Forest Loss, Forestry, Forests, Governance, Health, Hunting, Indigenous Groups, Indigenous Peoples, Logging, Mammals, Monkeys, Nature And Health, Palm Oil, Plantations, Primates, Rainforest Conservation, Rainforest Deforestation, Rainforest Logging, Rainforest People, Rainforests Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Article published by John Cannoncenter_img The new study, across 24 countries, shows a wide range in the variability of how communities use forests for food.The nutrients provided by wild fruits, vegetables, game and fish are critical to the nutritional health of some communities and should play a role in decisions about land usage.Land-use decisions should factor in the importance of forest foods to some communities, say the authors. Until recently, scientists hadn’t systematically compared the levels to which different groups of people across the tropics depend on nearby forests for food.New research shows that, though forest usage varies widely between and even within countries, the nutrients provided by wild fruits, vegetables, game and fish are critical to the nutritional health of some communities and should play a role in decisions about land usage.“As far as we’re aware, this is the first of its kind,” said ecologist Dominic Rowland of the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) and the University of London in a CIFOR blog post. “We tested the hypothesis that the consumption of forest foods can make important contributions to dietary quality in a wide range of sites across the tropics.”The landscape approach, advocated by study author Dominic Rowland, calls for land use that incorporates several uses for communities, such as the fish farms and multi-crop agriculture pictured here in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Photo by John C. CannonRowland and his colleagues published their research in the journal Environmental Conservation in October 2016.They knew that certain communities – often the poorest, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization – depend on the natural bounty found in forests.“There are all kinds of foods that come from the forest, including anything from land snails to wild fruits and primates,” Rowland says. “We focused on nutritionally important food groups that are often lacking in the average diets in these countries.“For these food groups, primarily it is bushmeat, fish and fruit for which the forest is relied upon, as well as vegetables,” he added.This type of varied diet packs a bevy of important ‘micronutrients’– that is, vitamins, minerals and trace elements such as zinc. Even if people get enough calories from staples such as corn, wheat and rice, they’ll be more susceptible to disease without small amounts of these chemicals found in many forest foods, the authors report. That’s especially the case for children.“Undernutrition in children under 5 years of age is the cause of 3.1 million deaths a year,” they write in the paper.However, not all communities rely on forests to the same degree, they found.A woman in the Democratic Republic of Congo heads to the forest to gather fruits and vegetables. Photo by John C. CannonTake, for example, the researchers’ findings at three different locations in Brazil. They found that people at one of the sites got more than 60 percent of their meat from the wild game and fish from the forest, but very few fruits and vegetables. By contrast, another community got nearly all of its produce from the forest, but almost no meat. A third group of people at a different site didn’t use the forest much at all: Less than 20 percent of their fruit, vegetables, meat and fish came from there.The researchers uncovered the same variability in the investigations of 23 other countries, backing up the conclusions of an earlier CIFOR study in Indonesia on nutrition and forests. That suggests that local context molds humans’ reliance on forests, Rowland said.“You can’t say that forest foods are universally important,” he said in the blog post. “But you also can’t say that forest foods don’t make much difference to diets.”Rowland pointed out that removing those forests could have dire consequences on areas that draw heavily on the bounty of their local environment – especially those that the researchers categorized as “forest food dependent.”“The scale and importance of wild food use must be taken into account when making landscape-scale land-use decisions,” he said. “Our findings suggest that deforestation and land-use change may have unforeseen consequences on the quality of local people’s diets.”When loggers clear an area of trees or companies convert forests to plantations for a single crop such as oil palm, that can leave communities with fewer options to supplement their diet.Revelations about the importance of standing forests to the health of some communities’ diets highlight an important concern for policy makers, he said. He advocates decisions that promote the many uses of forest on which many people depend – what scientists call the “landscape approach.”“[Y]ou need to take into account the impact on local people’s diets because monoculture might not provide people with sources of nourishing food,” he said.CITATIONS:Ickowitz, A., Rowland, D., Powell, B., Salim, M. A., & Sunderland, T. (2016). Forests, trees, and micronutrient-rich food consumption in Indonesia. PLoS ONE, 11(5), 1–15. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0154139Rowland, D., Ickowitz, A., Powell, B., Nasi, R., & Sunderland, T. (2016). Forest foods and healthy diets: quantifying the contributions. Environmental Conservation, (October), 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0376892916000151Banner image of piranha in Peru by Rhett A. ButlerFEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

Ethiopia looks to carbon trading as it gears up to be net carbon neutral by 2025

first_imgArticle published by Genevieve Belmaker Carbon Trading, Forests, Redd, Redd And Communities, Sustainable Forest Management The massive Oromia region constitutes over 34 percent of Ethiopia’s landmass and is home to more than 33 million people.The Oromia program will receive $68 million in various benefits through two World Bank program for the next decade.Ethiopia will use the program to build on existing landscape protection and project approaches to REDD+ as they scale up and finance improved land use across Oromia. ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia’s work to keep its environmental programs sustainable while local communities benefit from forest preservation is set to get a boost. The country’s most prominent program to mobilize resources toward its net carbon neutral by 2025 goal, the Oromia Forested Landscape Program (OFLP), is scheduled to start this year.Ethiopia’s massive Oromia region constitutes 34.3 percent of the country’s landmass, largely in the southwest, and holds more than a third of the country’s 100 million residents. It also harbors Ethiopia’s largest concentration of biodiversity.The $68 million OFLP project was established through two World Bank funds. One fund is for $18 million and is aimed at the restoration of forests on degraded land. The other is a $50 million fund for a program targeting carbon sequestration assessment and performance enhancement. Under the umbrella of the OFLP, environmentally-friendly businesses and industries in local communities, along with forest tourism, are also slated for development.The OFLP will receive payments of up to $50 million for verified carbon credits against an agreed forest reference emission level from the World Bank for a decade. The forest reference emission level is part of a critical policy framework that gives countries a point to measure the results they have gained from REDD+ (reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries) implementation.An additional $18 million is under a five-year grant agreement focused on developing approaches that enable sustainable land use and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through the BioCarbon Fund for Sustainable Forest Landscapes. The BioCarbon Fund works to combat greenhouse gas emissions that come from the land sector, including deforestation and forest degradation, and in the promotion of relevant land-use policies. The project will monitor and account for forest cover reductions and deforestation, and associated GHG emissions across Oromia by addressing causes of deforestation and degradation.The Oromia region (in red) in Ethiopia covers over 34 percent of Ethiopia’s landmass. Map via Wikimedia Commons/TUBSThe OFLP program is designed to build on existing landscape protection and project approaches to REDD+ in an effort to scale up and finance improved land use across Oromia. REDD+ is a multi-platform program established by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. It provides a way for stakeholders and involved organizations to share experiences, lessons learned, and outcomes in their work, according to the REDD+ platform website. Some key areas the program addresses and monitors include drivers of deforestation, national strategy, safeguards, and capacity building.Ethiopia wants to use projects like the OFLP to implement change while gaining financial benefit. The country’s current forest cover stands at about 11.5 million hectares, according to national estimates and the U.N.’s 2015 Global Forest Resource Assessment under the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). According to the FAO, a comprehensive national inventory of Ethiopia’s forests has only been done once, between 1988-2004. That study assessed all of Ethiopia and classified land use and land cover classes, growing stock, and trends. It remains the primary source of national scale forest statistics, though the African Forest Forum has planned a national-level survey of planted forests. Other available data shows that forest degradation has not slowed. Global Forest Watch numbers show that between 2001-2014, tree cover loss peaked and remained high compared to the first part of the sampling period.According to Yitbetu Moges, Ethiopia’s national representative for REDD+ at Ethiopia’s Ministry of Forestry, Environment and Climate Change (MoFEC), real progress will require intensive collaboration.Mountain Nyala in Bale, Ethiopia. Photo by Rod Waddington via Flickr“Reducing deforestation and improving [the] livelihood of local communities that depend on forest resources will ensure that carbon credit can be sold to the likes of World Bank, Norway and United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC),” Moges said. He added that most of the money will be invested in rural development as part of anti-poverty, pro-forest, rural economy-oriented programs.The OFLP will also look at studies commissioned by the Ethiopian government and World Bank that analyze key items including drivers of deforestation and forest degradation, design of a measurement reporting and verification system, preparation of REDD+ safeguard measures, and analysis of legal and institutional frameworks for Oromia REDD+ Program.Oromia has experience with REDD+ through the Bale Mountains Eco-Region Project (BMERP). Building on a previous program in the area, and known broadly as the Bale Eco-Region project, it covers 500,000 hectares and surrounds the 200,000-hectare Bale National Park, a global biodiversity hotspot. It was the first large-scale REDD+ project in Ethiopia.Ethiopia’s Resilient Green Economy Strategy (CRGE) underpins the country’s goal to become net carbon neutral by 2025. The East African nation aims to accomplish key economic goals while reducing GHG emissions through efforts that include carbon trading. Such an accomplishment would involve the country doubling its forest cover to around 30 percent of its landmass, according to MoFEC.The transition to REDD+ While Ethiopia hopes to see future benefits from the REDD+ program, the country is no stranger to carbon trading. It established the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the Kyoto protocol, which requires countries to create carbon sinks by planting trees on degraded land. The 2,700-hectare Humbo CDM carbon project in Ethiopia’s south was envisaged as a carbon sink program through which carbon was quantified and brought to the international market for purchase, with the World Bank as the primary client.According to Zerihun Dejene, environmental program coordinator at local Ethiopian non-profit consortium group PHE (Population, Health, Environment), Ethiopia has failed to make the most of CDM benefits, which allows emission reduction projects in developing countries to sell certified emission reduction (CER) credits. The CERs can be either traded or sold to progress toward emission reduction goals.Bale National Park, Ethiopia. Photo by Indrik Myneur via Wikimedia Commons“CDM projects require approved finance, meaning the need to invest on a certain amount of afforestation project, develop and quantify the amount of carbon on sale but most developing countries can’t invest on that,” Dejene said. He added that it also requires tedious procedure and substantial investment and resources to make marketable carbon credits. Even then, a prospective buyer might reject them.REDD+ representative Moges added that with the price of one ton of carbon having decreased from a high of $30 to less than $1 over the last decade, the lifespan of CDM naturally came to an end. Yet even though CDM was phased out when the historic Paris Agreement on climate change entered into force in November 2016, the Humbo carbon project remains. Registered in 2009 with a 30-year lifespan, it is the only significant carbon finance project currently active in Ethiopia.In contrast to the Kyoto protocol – which puts binding commitments on individual countries – the Paris Agreement sets out voluntary carbon reduction emissions goals by individual nations. The Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (now called NDCs) were sent to U.N. Framework on Climate Change by individual countries instead of being used as legally binding emission targets. NDCs are expected to last from 2020-2030 and 163 countries – including Ethiopia – have set out their strategies. Countries that have formally joined the Paris Agreement have NDCs under the interim registry, which does not yet include Ethiopia.Under the Paris Agreement, countries have cooperative agreements to sell and purchase carbon. NDCs take this one step further.“Based on NDCs we can…determine the result of climate change as a result of this,” PHE’s Dejene said. “For example Ethiopia is planning to reduce its carbon emission by around 60 percent by 2020.”Myriad projectsEthiopia isn’t pinning its green economy hopes solely on a carbon trade strategy, though. It are also using other schemes such as constructing electric trains and other green energy projects. The country has already built Africa’s first electric trans-boundary railway project, the 467-mile Addis Ababa-Djibouti railway, as well as the 20-mile Addis Ababa light rail project.But proponents say the carbon trading projects can’t come soon enough.“At the moment we’re losing five times more forest than we’re planting,” Moges said. “It’s a crisis situation in terms of natural resource management despite all the efforts…by the government and mass mobilization of the community to [implement] reforestation and afforestation projects.”He added that when REDD+ goes operational, revenue earned by carbon trading goes directly to the local community while helping prevent floods and droughts that regularly cause misery in Ethiopia.“If Ethiopia is strategic in protecting its environment, natural resources like abundant water can be sold just as oil,” Moges said. “The difference being the former is renewable, and through this revenue it can power its industrialization, boost tourism, boost electricity generation thereby creating a wealthy green economy.”Banner image: Soda volcano in Oromia region, Ethiopia. Photo by Katy Anis/UNESCOElias Gebrelsellasie is an Ethiopian journalist based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. You can find him on Twitter at @EliasGebreResourceshttp://theredddesk.org/countries/ethiopiahttp://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2012/10/09/ethiopia-climate-project-receives-africa-s-first-forestry-carbon-creditshttp://www.phe-ethiopia.org/https://www.theice.com/ccxFEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Nearly half of Mount Oku frogs are in danger of croaking, study finds

first_imgArticle published by Maria Salazar Amphibians, Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Extinction, Frogs, Herps, Interns, Wildlife Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredcenter_img Survey work discovers at least 50 amphibian species living on Mount Oku, a dormant volcano in Cameroon.Mount Oku’s puddle frogs are vanishing – and no one knows why. Some species may already be extinct.Researchers say survey work is often overlooked for ‘sexier’ science, but this could hamper saving species. Amphibians around the world are in a state of crisis. Over 40 percent are threatened with extinction. Chytrid fungus, a disease fatal to most amphibians, is decimating populations already threatened by human impacts like climate change, pesticides, and deforestation. Before conservationists can develop action plans to protect amphibians, however, they need to know which species are where. That’s where species surveys come in.Last month, a pair of researchers, Thomas Doherty-Bone and Václav Gvoždík, published an updated list of amphibian species found on Mount Oku in Cameroon. The new list is a result of over a decade of work, and provides vital information about one of the most unique mountains in Cameroon: Mount Oku, a dormant volcano boasting high numbers of rare and endemic species.Doherty-Bone and Gvoždík doubled the size of Mount Oku’s old amphibian inventory, adding 25 new species. In addition, they discovered one species of puddle frog potentially new to science. If confirmed, it would mean 51 amphibians inhabit the mountain.Troublingly, the scientists also found that nearly half of the species on the mountain are likely threatened with extinction. The researchers consider forest degradation to be the main culprit, but puddle frogs (the genus Phrynobatrachus), are currently declining at especially alarming rates.David Blackburn, a University of Florida herpetologist with a long research history in Cameroon, has seen this first-hand.“These were species that were literally… everywhere,” he said of puddle frogs. “You could stand at the edge of Lake Oku during the day and see [puddle frogs] just jumping off the leaves… now we could have six to eight of us looking at the same time, and even despite that, we still can’t find them.”Unfortunately, the survey work needed to track these declines is often overlooked. There is “a lack of incentive for researchers to publish their lists as this is not ‘sexy’ science,” said coauthor Thomas Doherty-Bone with the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland. “The bread and butter of a scientist is to publish a high quality paper testing a hypothesis, and species inventories (the baseline of ecology) are unfortunately not going to get anyone a promotion.”Sexy or not, up-to-date species inventories can mean life or death for amphibian populations. When asked what the biggest challenge of surveying amphibians is, Doherty-Bone replied, “seeing them before they disappear.”The story of Mount Oku illustrates why the often thankless work of surveying amphibian populations is critically important – now more than ever.Mount Oku: a volcano turned biodiversity hotspotAt over 3,000 meters, Mount Oku is the second-tallest mountain in what is known as the Cameroon line, a chain of volcanoes that begins as a string of islands in the Gulf of Guinea and continues inland along the border of Cameroon and Nigeria.Oku itself is situated in the Western High Plateau, an inland region of the chain that is of particular interest to researchers. This is because many of the dormant volcanoes host unique species, which are kept separated from their relatives in pockets of high-elevation rainforest. Within the past 15 years, however, Mount Oku has begun to receive special attention even within this volcanic group.“Early on, this was driven by Birdlife International trying to conserve forest birds that are found only on Mount Oku,” said Blackburn. “But as we’ve had more work by amphibian biologists on Mount Oku, there’s been new species discovered and described… including quite a number of frogs that are found only on Mount Oku or very near to only on Mount Oku.”In fact, of the 50 amphibian species currently thought to inhabit Mount Oku, five – six if the newly described Phrynobatrachus is indeed a new species – amphibians are endemic, and seven are endemic to the Western Highland Plateau.Mount Oku is unique, in part, because it has something that many other mountains do not: a crater lake. One frog species, the Lake Oku clawed frog (Xenopus longipes) is found only in that crater lake, and another, the Lake Oku puddle frog (Phrynobatrachus njiomock) is found only in the forest around the lake. Add to this the rainforest, the high summit, and grasslands at the peak, and Mount Oku emerges as a “really unique site even within Cameroon” with a large host of endemic species, explained Blackburn.The Lake Oku clawed frog (X. longipes) is endemic to Mount Oku. Photo credit: Václav GvoždíkFiguring out just how many species are truly endemic can be trickier than one might expect, however. Researchers believe that in colder times, mountains in the region were more closely ecologically linked than they are today. This raises a number of questions about species relatedness and diversity in Mount Oku and surrounding mountains. The answer to these questions is necessary in order to build conservation plans that protect not just species, but the environmental processes that enable them to thrive.However, the time to build these plans is running out.Lake Oku, Mount Oku’s crater lake, hosts the Lake Oku puddle frog, found nowhere else in the world. It hasn’t been seen since 2010. Photo: Public Domain via Wikimedia CommonsExpensive, thankless work: the challenges of conducting surveysWithout scientists like Doherty-Burn and Gvoždík publishing up-to-date inventories, phenomena like Mount Oku’s rapidly disappearing puddle frogs could go unnoticed until it is too late. For endemic species like the Mount Oku puddle frog, that means extinction.“As conservationists work to identify key biodiversity areas, good surveys are essential in helping us understand where best to allocate limited conservation resources,” said Anne Baker, executive director of the amphibian conservation organization Amphibian Ark.The lack of incentive to publish such surveys is damaging, as survey work comes with many challenges. Scientists need funding to buy equipment and support to spend time working in the field. The updated inventory of Mount Oku is the result of ten years of visual samples, acoustic surveys, pitfall traps, dip-netting, and funnel traps. It also depends on a great deal of local help, both from the communities and from individuals who have been trained to conduct field work.Mount Oku’s high altitude and diverse habitats, including rainforest, grassland, and agriculture, make it a challenge to survey exhaustively. However, it is actually one of the easier mountains in the region to survey due to highly developed roads and a local economy dependent on ecotourism and white honey. In addition, the local leader, known here as the Fon, has helped facilitate biodiversity research on the mountain, and is so committed to ecotourism that the tourist office is located in his palace.From knowledge to action: racing the clockThrough cumulative efforts, Doherty-Bone and Gvoždík have added 25 names to the list on Mount Oku. Some of these, such as hairy frogs (Trichobatrachus robustus), were unsurprising. Doherty-Bone described others as more unexpected, like the rocket frog (Ptychadena taeniocelis) and the egg frog (Leptodactylon axillaris), both of whose ranges were thought to stop farther south.Egg frogs (Leptodactylodon axillaris) are currently classified as Critically Endangered, and were thought to only exist on a single mountain, Mount Bamboutos. Their presence on Mount Oku could mean they are not as close to extinction as feared. Photo credit: Thomas Doherty-Bone.Another, the Schiotz’s puddle frog (Phrynobatrachus schioetzi), had never before been recorded in Cameroon. Given the dire situation for puddle frogs on Mount Oku, its addition to the list is bittersweet. A species disappearing even as it is added onto an inventory is disheartening, but not an uncommon story for amphibians worldwide.“What [concerns me] is how many species we will lose without ever knowing that they even existed,” Baker said.Now that the researchers have named names, it is up to conservationists to try to find solutions to the threats facing nearly half of Mount Oku’s amphibians.“It might already be too late for some species, such as the puddle frogs, but conservation of the natural habitats on Mount Oku needs to continue and to improve,” says Doherty-Bone.The amphibians on the mountain are threatened by a cocktail of dangers, including deforestation, climate change, pesticide use, and over-exploitation. There has also been an increase in chytrid fungus on the mountain in recent years, but “that pathogen has been in Cameroon since 1934,” said Doherty-Bone.The next step is to try to gain a better genetic understanding of frogs in the area, and to expand the inventory by adding museum specimens collected on the mountain to the list. Researchers also need to uncover why puddle frogs are declining while other amphibian populations remain stable.For those most at-risk, says Doherty-Bone, captivity should be considered as an option. A step that has already created an insurance policy for the Lake Oku clawed frog.Conducting surveys might not be “sexy science,” but with amphibians disappearing faster than they can be discovered and documented, it is essential, often unsung, work. Let’s hope the Mount Oku survey has been published in time to save its critically endangered species.Citation:Doherty-Bone, T. M., & Gvoždík, V. (2017). The Amphibians of Mount Oku, Cameroon: an updated species inventory and conservation review. ZooKeys. 643: 19-139NOTE (10 March 2017): A previous version of this article miscaptioned the third picture as a hairy frog. The frog in the image is an egg frog. We regret the error, which has now been corrected.last_img read more

Reducing Asia’s hunger for rhino horn

first_imgArticle published by Isabel Esterman Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Activism, Animals, Black Rhino, Conservation, Endangered Species, Environment, Mammals, Megafauna, One-horned Rhinos, Poaching, Rhinos, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Traditional Medicine, White Rhino, Wildlife, Wildlife Trade, Wildlife Trafficking center_img In 2015, the most recent full year for which data is available, more than 1,350 rhinos were killed for their horns in Africa and Asia.The vast majority of rhino horn is bound for destinations outside of the source country, meaning that conservationists in places like South Africa or India can do little to fight demand.Demand reduction efforts currently center on China and Vietnam, the primary destinations for poached rhino horn.Effective demand reduction campaigns require research into consumer behavior and careful targeting of messages. More than 1,350 rhinoceroses were killed for their horns in 2015 alone. The majority of these killings took place in Africa, where 1,342 were killed. Asia, too, saw 24 of its greater one-horned rhinos succumb to poaching that year, all in India.While countries like South Africa, Namibia, and to a lesser extent India are the source countries for the trade, few poached rhino horns are believed to stay within their borders. Instead, demand is driven primarily by consumers in China and Vietnam, where rhino horn is sold as a luxury good or an ingredient in traditional medicine. Between 2006 and May 2016, a minimum of 528 kilograms (1,164 pounds) of rhino horn was seized in China and at least 442 kilograms (974 pounds) in Vietnam, according to data from the NGO Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA).This means that in recent years, a third of all rhino horn seizures across the globe took place in these countries – 18 percent in China and 15 percent in Vietnam.Vietnamese and Chinese nationals were also involved in poaching cases all over the world. Data collected by EIA since 2006 indicate that 17 percent of seizures involve suspects who are identified as Vietnamese, and over a quarter of offenses involve suspects identified as Chinese nationals.“In Africa, Chinese and Vietnamese syndicates work with locals to source rhino horn, and then rhino horn is smuggled to Asia — sometimes in containers on cargo ships with other illegal commodities such as elephant ivory,” Charlotte Davies, Crime Analyst at EIA told Mongabay in an email.“More often, rhino horns have been detected at airports – throughout Africa, Vietnamese nationals acting as couriers have been caught with rhino horns in their luggage, sometimes in large quantities. Overall, I would say that rhino horn procurement and trafficking by criminal groups, from Africa to Asia, is systematic, well-organized and on-going.”Smuggling through the often-porous borders in India’s Assam State, Myanmar, southern China and Vietnam is comparatively simple. According to a report by the IUCN Species Survival Commission African and Asian Rhino Specialist Groups and TRAFFIC, in recent years most rhino horns from Assam moved first to Myanmar and then on to China.This means that while rhino range states like South Africa or India can make huge efforts to stop poachers, they do not have the power to cut off demand because it comes from outside their borders. To counter this, conservationists from around the world are developing tailor-made strategies to stem East Asia’s hunger for rhino horn.Black rhino mom and calf at a waterhole in Etosha National Park, Namibia. Photo credit: Yathin S Krishnappa, Creative CommonsRhino horn uses and markets“You’ll never succeed in reducing the poaching if you can’t reduce the demand for the [wildlife] products because there’s never enough resources to protect the animals on the ground, and if you don’t reduce the demand the prices go up and up,” said Peter Knights, executive director of WildAid. “Just like the drugs trade, we believe that if there is a very strong demand you’ll never enforce your way out of this problem.”Rhino horn is primarily made of keratin, a protein also found in human nails and hairs. It has little if any medicinal properties, but has been used for centuries in Chinese traditional medicine to treat conditions such as fever, rheumatism and even food poisoning. In Vietnam, it has recently found used as a supposed hangover cure.“[Y]ou also have to look at the different consumers: whether they are consuming for investment, whether they are consuming to give it as a gift, if they are consuming to actually drink the rhino horn themselves — and therefore it might be different what rhino horn they prefer,” said Susie Offord, deputy director of Save the Rhino.Noting that this is a complex issue, Natural Resources Defense Council’s Alex Kennaugh conducted a survey of wildlife consumption in five Chinese cities: Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Kunming, and Harbin. She measured consumer behavior including preferences, willingness to pay and stigma. She found that today in China there are two distinct markets for rhino horn: medicine and luxury goods.The use of rhino horn as a medicine in China dates back to the second century BC. Kennaugh found that although rhino horn-based medicines are not officially included in the modern Chinese pharmacopeia, nearly half of the participants in the study said they knew horn was still used in traditional medicines, mostly for fever. The study also found that the overwhelming majority of those who are aware of low-cost alternatives to rhino horn — such as Chinese herbal remedies — believe that these are more or equally effective.As a result, the study recommends emphasizing the availability of alternative remedies for treating fever and other acute conditions. Such a campaign, the author suggests, should start with women because they represent the majority of buyers of traditional medicine.This study also highlights that people who buy rhino horn as a luxury good do so because they want something “rare” or “unique.” In this market, Asian rhino horn is a particular object of desire. “When asked to differentiate between African and Asian rhino horn at a higher price, the most popular reasons for buying Asian rhino was that it was even rarer than African (31.6 percent) and was of better quality (26.3 percent),” says the study.However, Kennaugh found that awareness of conservation issues and the illegal status of rhino horn dampen its demand in both the medical and luxury market. The report emphasizes that promoting wildlife conservation and substitute luxury goods could diminish “the qualities of desirableness and rarity,” and eventually counter the psychology of buying rhino horn as a luxury good.A poster from the Chi campaign, aimed at reducing demand for rhino horn among Vietnamese businessmen, a key consumer demographic. Image courtesy of Save the Rhino International.The Chi campaign.Save the Rhino’s Susie Offord believes informing people and raising their awareness is crucial, but only a very initial step in a behavior-change or education campaign. Demand reduction, she explained, also includes law enforcement. “What we actually need in conservation is toolkits of all these different activities,” she said.Offord said consumption of rhino horn is being driven by a very small but very influential group of people, so raising awareness and support for wildlife conservation among the general public is important, but it isn’t enough. To really change a behavior, she said, a campaign must target a precise group, and include a positive message because positive messaging has been proven to be more effective in changing behaviors.An example of this approach is the Chi campaign. Launched in September 2014 in Vietnam by TRAFFIC, Save the Rhino and other partners, it focuses on the Vietnamese concept that a person’s inner strength or “Chi” comes from within, and cannot be gained from an external source such as rhino horn.The campaign is focused on the business community because market research of horn consumers identified the key user group as wealthy middle-aged businessmen, keen to show off their new-found wealth. This market research, explained TRAFFIC’s Richard Thomas, taught conservationists critical lessons: don’t use images of rhinos, don’t brand with a conservation organization’s logo, and don’t have spokespeople your target audience won’t listen to.Outreach has been through “champions” – successful Vietnamese businessmen – and it’s been rolled out in collaboration with businesses and the government.Outdoor billboards have been used in Vietnam’s biggest cities. One of them shows businesspeople together with the message “A successful businessman relies on his will and strength of mind. Success comes from opportunities you create, not from a piece of horn.” Another states that “masculinity comes from within.”The campaign’s message has also been put in airport business lounge envelopes, in popular magazines, at golf and tennis clubs, and was included in a Corporate Social Responsibility guide for businesses dealing with wildlife consumption. This campaign also includes an online forum for discussing and learning about Chi, and networking and lifestyle events such as a Chi-themed bike ride that was joined by over 100 business leaders.Results from the Chi Campaign have not been measured yet, but quantitative and qualitative results will be shared in the coming months and years. Still, Offord believes this campaign will be successful in promoting the idea that having rhino horn is something people should be ashamed rather than proud of.A WildAid billboard in the Shenzhen Airport, featuring Chinese celebrities Chen Kun, Jing Boran and Li Bingbing. The “Nail Biter” campaign emphasized that consuming rhino horn is no more effective than chewing one’s own fingernails. Photo courtesy of WildAid.“When the buying stops, the killing can too”WildAid also focuses on demand reduction and public awareness in consuming countries for wildlife products. This is because it regards the consumption of wildlife products as an economic phenomenon associated with new affluence: in the case of rhino horn, poaching crises tend to coincide with rapid increases in income. For example, during the Saudi oil boom in the 1970s and ’80s, the market for rhino-horn dagger handles in Yemen went up considerably as new money flooded into that country. Similarly, rhino horn consumption in Taiwan increased in the 1970s and ’80s as its economy skyrocketed.Rather than trying to change the mind of the consumer, WildAid focuses on changing the society in which wildlife products are consumed.“I don’t believe you can necessarily directly influence through advertising an average-in-education 60-year-old man in Vietnam that thinks rhino horn cures cancer,” explained executive director Peter Knights. “However, you can potentially educate his children, his grandchildren, his neighbors and the people around him who could pressure him on not to consume any longer.”Over the past years, WildAid put a lot of effort into reducing rhino horn demand in China and Vietnam. Its Nail Biter campaign, developed in partnership with the African Wildlife Foundation, focuses on the fact that rhino horn is no more effective than biting one’s own fingernails. Its ambassadors include celebrities such as Sir Richard Branson, actress Li Bingbing, actor Chen Kun, actor and singer Jing Boran and others in China, and 26 other celebrities in Vietnam.To spread its message, WildAid uses public service announcements, billboards placed in subways, shopping centers, pedestrian walkways and outdoor screens. It also launched a social media campaign that had over 12 million views on Weibo, a Chinese hybrid between Twitter and Facebook, and over 1.5 million views on other social media platforms.Anti-ivory billboards line the walkway of the Wangfujing subway station in Beijing. Photo courtesy of WildAid.Knights credits the campaign’s high production values —their material looks like professional corporate campaigns — with garnering $286 million dollars’ worth of free media space in 2016 alone.“It’s kind of a model that works: everybody gets something and nobody pays money, if that makes sense,” said Knights. “The stars get positive exposure as they look good in our pieces (…) and they are supporting a good cause. The television networks get quality productions of beautiful imagery featuring celebrities for free. And we get our message out.”WildAid is also engaging Vietnam’s Buddhist community and younger generations through online comedic videos, and is producing two documentaries, one for the Chinese and one for the Vietnamese market.“In both Vietnam and China we’ve been amazed by the list of people who have signed up to join and also the amount of coverage that the media is giving us, so there is a deep empathy here for this cause, it just needed people having a way of expressing it,” said Knights.Communication campaigns have for decades been seen as crucial to selling products and winning elections. But Knights stresses the fact that demand reduction campaigns become mainstream among conservationists only around 2011. Behavioral change is hard to achieve, and generally involves both personal factors and broader economic and social trends, so it’s difficult to pinpoint the effect of any particular campaign. Still, conservationists are hopeful that well-designed campaigns will prove to be a valuable complement to on-the-ground efforts to save rhinos in Africa and Asia.“Rhino horn used to be used in Japan, used to be used in Taiwan, South Korea … and through a lot of demand reduction work, it has been managed to reduce the demand,” said Susie Offord. “Now we have to make sure the same happens in Vietnam, potentially China and other countries.”FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

Big data timber exchange partners with FSC in Brazil

first_imgBVRio pulls together data on the pricing, supply chain and certification of timber and wood products through its Responsible Timber Exchange.Since opening in November 2016, the exchange has fielded more than 400 offers for 5 million cubic meters of timber.The partnership with the Forest Stewardship Council is aimed at bolstering the market for certified forest products. An exchange for legally harvested timber in Brazil now has a new backer in the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), perhaps the best-known international certification group for forest products.The BVRio Institute, a Brazil-based nonprofit organization that takes a market-based approach to issues involving environmental compliance and sustainability, launched the Responsible Timber Exchange in November 2016. BVRio and FSC announced the agreement on March 7.“We are delighted to be able to develop this agenda with FSC Brasil,” said Mauricio Costa Moura, director of the Responsible Timber Exchange, in a statement. “This partnership provides us the recognition that we are aligned with the same goals.”Brazil’s Atlantic Forest. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerThe Responsible Timber Exchange provides pricing, supply chain and certification information to companies that buy forest products from several countries, including Brazil. A representative of BVRio told Mongabay in November that their aim was to provide access to sustainably and legally harvested timber in a sector in which supply chains and sources are often shrouded in secrecy.The BVRio Institute investigated Brazilian timber production in 2016 and found that only about 30 percent of operators in the states of Pará and Mato Grosso, which account for 70 percent of Brazil’s timber production, showed “no indication of infringements, irregularities or non-compliance” between 2007 and 2015.Since launching three and a half months ago, BVRio said the Responsible Timber Exchange has fielded more than 400 offers for some 5 million cubic meters (177 million cubic feet) of timber, 30 percent of which was FSC-certified.Aline Tristão, the executive director of FSC Brazil, said that the agreement would also provide a boost to his organization’s goals.“[T]his agreement is very important and adds to other initiatives that we have been pursuing in order to fight against deforestation and illegality in the timber industry, fostering the widespread use of certified wood,” Tristão said in the statement.She added that teaming up with the Responsible Timber Exchange would lead to “the adoption of best practices and [creation of] more business opportunities, expanding people’s awareness about the importance of consuming forest products that originate from a good management plan.”In Brazil, FSC said that more than 6 million hectares (23,166 square miles) are certified.Previously, BVRio developed software that pulled together the massive amounts of information available on the sources and handling of timber and wood products. Since the launch of these tools in 2015, BVRio said that the system had been used for more than 1 billion data checks.Collaborating with FSC will help bolster the “supply and demand for certified products,” according to the statement.Under the exchange, buyers can check on a lot’s certification by FSC and the Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification. Companies interested in buying wood from Indonesia that’s listed on the website can also verify that it meets the requirements of the country’s recently implemented voluntary partnership agreement with the EU’s Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade, or FLEGT, licensing system.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.Banner image of FSC-certified wood in Peru by Rhett A. Butler. Amazon Logging, Certification, Conservation, Deforestation, Environment, Forest Stewardship Council, Forestry, Forests, Illegal Logging, Logging, Rainforest Logging, Rainforests, Tropical Forests, Video Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredcenter_img Article published by John Cannonlast_img read more