Mountainous job for Fassi

first_imgThe new Mont Blanc cable car system, which has taken four years to construct, will become operational in June 2015.”The aim was to identify a crane configuration that would meet the specific needs of the construction site, taking full advantage of the versatility of the machine,” explained Rossano Ceresoli, head of research and development at Fassi.”As well as using it on the Mont Blanc construction site, the customer had requested that the crane could be subsequently installed on a commercial vehicle. This is how we identified the best solution to be the F425RA e-dynamic crane model coupled with the L324 jib and equipped with winch and platform.”The high-altitude construction site needed a crane capable of handling materials at the upper station and installing the metal structures, which would complement the heavy lifting duties carried out by a pair of tower cranes.The crane was crucial in the construction of the two-storey station, as well as in the laying of steel girders and crossbeams, said Fassi.  www.fassi.comlast_img read more

Veolia awarded Bayern to Austria operating contract

first_imgGERMANY: Bayern transport procurement body Bayerische Eisenbahngesellschaft has selected Veolia Transport’s German subsidiary Veolia Verkehr for a 12-year contract to operate E-Netz Rosenheim regional services from December 2013.Expected to generate total revenues of €1bn, the contract awarded in December covers services previously operated by DB on two routes between München and Rosenheim and across the border to Salzburg and Kufstein in Austria. Veolia subsidiary Bayerische Oberlandbahn has operated regional services between München and Holzkirchen for the past 10 years. ‘This project is going to give us the opportunity to introduce more innovative services that will benefit passengers’, said Veolia Transport CEO Cyrille du Peloux. ‘New direct links will be put in place and the trains will be upgraded and made more comfortable. So we are predicting a clear increase in passenger numbers’.last_img read more

2017 UEFA Champions League final branding

first_img 5,026 Recommended Posts WelshSteeler This topic is now closed to further replies. 109 posts SportsLogos.Net Grand Pooba of Walksylvania SportsLogos.Net Forums Home Sign in to follow this   The poster is available for download on:http://www.uclbrandsupport.com/bam/mediasupport Sign in to follow this   22,252 posts Posted August 27, 2016 Members Share on other sites 27 MJWalker45 5,026 Share this post All Activity Posted August 26, 2016 The design has been developed in collaboration with UEFA’s marketing partner TEAM Marketing in Lucerne and the London-based creative agency Designwerk. Share this post Sports Logo News http://www.uefa.org/about-uefa/administration/marketing/news/newsid=2398033.html Link to post Forums Home The brand design for the 2017 UEFA Champions League final in Cardiff is officially unveiled in Monaco today during the group stage draw. The design features a stylised representation of the Welsh dragon together with the UEFA Champions League trophy, the ultimate prize in European club football. The copper-accented colouring is derived from local landmarks and has been introduced to complement the usual UEFA Champions League palette. The brand identity captures the prestige of the competition as well as the unique spirit of the host venue Cardiff – a modern city rich in culture and history. Meanwhile, the dragon is synonymous with Wales, appearing on the national flag as well as a range of buildings in the capital. WelshSteeler Location:San Antonio, Texas 5 0 By Louis, August 26, 2016 in Sports Logo News 189 posts Location:Newport S.Wales – Home of 2010 Ryder Cup 0 Welsh dragons are red,the only time we’ve seen a blue was on the former Cardiff City/Bridgend Blue Dragons RL team in the ’80’s. Share this post 0 Posted August 26, 2016 It’s meant to represent the Champions League so I understand that it’s blue, but I think it’s a good look.  Followers 1 5 27 5,026 Members Link to post Followers 1 Sports Logos The design will be displayed prominently across the city, setting the scene for a huge night of European football on 3 June. It will be the first UEFA Champions League final to be staged in Wales. Share on other sites MJWalker45 Sports Logos Sports Logo News Link to post Members All Activity Share on other sites 5 27 Louis Louis Go To Topic Listing 2017 UEFA Champions League final branding 2017 UEFA Champions League final branding 2017 UEFA Champions League final brandinglast_img read more

Footie ace Danny Drinkwater’s trendy restaurant racks up debts of nearly £2million in just one year

first_img Source: Soccer – thesun.co.uk Top 5 Best Budget Hotels In Dubai under AED 400 a night. 10 INCREDIBLE Space Launch Failures! What’s This “Trick” Called? Comment Down Below!! People Slammed By Massive Waves 4 Rebekah Vardy scores an impressive penalty in six-inch heelscenter_img Travel Diary // Vietnam 2017 REAL vs FAKE GOLD FOOTBALLER Danny Drinkwater’s trendy restaurant has racked up debts of close to £2million in just a year.FoodWell aims to combine wholesome food with fitness classes.Danny Drinkwater’s trendy restaurant has racked up debts of close to £2million in just a yearCredit: ReutersFoodWell aims to combine wholesome food with fitness classesCredit: InstagramBut the ex-Leicester and Chelsea star’s brainchild has had a troubled start, according to his accounts.Books lodged with government department Companies House show it has liabilities of £1.7 million and cash reserves of just £8,435.The restaurant in ­Manchester’s city centre, which employs 45 people, had been proving a hit with diners and got good reviews online. It has assets in the shape of equipment and stock of £725,962.Last month the dad-of-one was sent home from training at Premier League strugglers Aston Villa after a bust-up with a team-mate.In August last year, while on a loan spell at Burnley, the 30-year-old was exposed by The Sun brawling in a nightclub in Manchester.Shortly after the footage was filmed, he was involved in an unrelated incident when he was attacked by a gang of six men outside the venueThe unsavoury incident came on top of a drink drive ban after he crashed his motor into a wall after a night out in Cheshire in April last year.Chelsea outcast Danny Drinkwater filmed headbutting footballer in nightclub brawl 8 MOST DANGEROUS RAINS of All Time | TOP 10 INTERESTINGlast_img read more

Madagascar mine ignites protests, community division

first_imgAn Australian mining company, Base Resources, plans to break ground soon on a mineral sands mining project in southwestern Madagascar.Base Resources says the project represents a development opportunity for the region. It has the support of most government officials and local mayors.But local opposition groups have called for an end to the project, citing the negative environmental impact it could have and insisting that it’s been made possible only through corrupt land deals.The battle over the project has played out in the Malagasy media for several years and is reaching a fever pitch as the project nears fruition. In the latest development, a Madagascar court released nine community members held for six weeks on accusations of participating in the destruction of Base Resources’ exploration campsite. FIANARANTSOA, Madagascar — Last month, a Madagascar court ended a six-week saga for people in the southwestern village of Benetse, near the city of Toliara. Nine members of the community had been detained without trial for several weeks following an act of civil disobedience against an Australian mining company, Base Resources, that plans to break ground soon on a mineral sands project in the area.Their friends and family in Benetse went to great lengths, literally, to support the nine after they were detained. In late May, more than a dozen villagers traveled for the first time to Fianarantsoa, a city hundreds of miles away on the country’s high plateau. But they weren’t able to enjoy the red gullied landscape of the highlands, so unlike the spiny forests and baobob trees back home in the dry, flat southwest. They were in Fianarantsoa to see their loved ones — small-scale farmers who had lately become known as the “Toliara 9” — stand trial.Emma Vazonandrasana and others in a bush taxi on the way home to the village of Benetse. They’d gone to Fianarantsoa, a city in the country’s central highlands, to support nine friends and family members who’d been detained for their alleged role in the destruction of Base Resources’s property. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.The nine men were apparently part of a group of around 40 community members that burned and vandalized Base Resources’ exploration campsite in April. In early May, authorities arrested the nine, charged them with arson, destruction of property, and forming a mob, and transferred them to prison in Fianarantsoa. They were scheduled to go before a judge on May 24, but at the last moment the trial was postponed for two weeks.“We are disappointed,” Emma Vazonandrasana, who was among those who made the 12-hour taxi-bus trip to Fianarantsoa, and whose brother and father were among the nine, told Mongabay the next day. “We spent so much time and money to be there. We are tired, tired of worrying, tired of the travel. We thought they would be released today.”However, Vazonandrasana’s side received welcome news on June 13, when the nine men were released. They were convicted of unarmed gathering without permission and given six-month prison sentences, but the sentences were suspended. The court gave the nine the benefit of the doubt with regard to arson and destruction of property.Civil society groups in Madagascar rejoiced at the verdict, even if they deemed the conviction and suspended sentence unfair. “It’s nice to see that this system works from time to time!” Ketakandriana Rafitoson, executive director of Transparency International Initiative Madagascar, wrote in response to an emailed communiqué from civil society groups that Mongabay received.The battle over the mineral sands project has played out in the Malagasy media for several years and is reaching a fever pitch as the project nears fruition. Base Resources plans to start construction this year and says the project represents a development opportunity for the region. It has the support of most government officials and local mayors. The company calls its deposit near Toliara “world class” and has indicated, in a televised interview, that it will have the highest profit margins of any mineral sands project in the world. But opposition groups based in Toliara, Benetse and nearby villages have called for an end to the project, citing the negative environmental impact it could have and insisting that it’s been made possible only through corrupt land deals.The prison in Fianarantsoa where the “Toliara 9” were held from early May until June 13. The prosecutor denied Mongabay access to the nine men while they were detained, saying that such visits weren’t allowed before the trial. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Demand for whitenessThe ultimate cause of the controversy is consumer demand for whiteness. Ilmenite, the main mineral in the deposit, yields titanium dioxide, which helps make paint, toothpaste and sunscreen white. The deposit also contains exploitable levels of rutile and zircon, which have similar uses as pigments. Another large mineral sands project, run by a subsidiary of London-based mining giant Rio Tinto, has been operating in Madagascar for about a decade, and has also faced opposition and scrutiny from local groups.Though mineral sands deposits exist in coastal areas the world over, they are most often exploited in the developing world, where environmental regulations are lax or difficult to enforce, Steven Emerman, a Utah-based geophysicist and consultant who has studied Rio Tinto’s Madagascar project, told Mongabay. (Australia, where mineral sands projects are better regulated, might be considered an exception.)One of the risks of mineral sands mining is exposure of both workers and the public to uranium and thorium, both radioactive metals. Uranium and thorium can get into local water supplies or be inhaled as dust. Thorium levels are especially high at the proposed mining site near Toliara, and “serious radioprotection measures” will be required to make the project safe, a 2014 study by chemists at the University of Antananarivo found. The zircon at the Toliara deposit is so high in uranium and thorium that Base Resources will not be able to sell it in the United States, Japan or the European Union, which will treat it as radioactive waste.“Who are they planning on selling this radioactive zircon to?” Emerman asked.Base Resources declined to share its environmental and social impact assessment with Mongabay. “The ESIA summary is currently very extensive and we do not currently have a shortened version for distribution,” Jean Bruno Ramahefarivo, the  company’s general manager for external affairs in Madagascar, said in a written statement to Mongabay. The statement was part of a long email exchange with company representatives, who did not respond to requests for clarification as to why the length of the impact assessment prevented it from being shared publicly.Base Resources is a small company compared to the likes of Rio Tinto. It made its name developing the Kwale mineral sands project in southern Kenya over the last decade. Looking for a second project, the company acquired Base Toliara, as its local subsidiary is now known, in January 2018. The company expects to create more than 850 permanent jobs, almost all for Malagasy nationals, and to pay the Madagascar government about $28 million in taxes and royalties each year from 2022 to 2054. There would also be knock-on employment and tax benefits as local suppliers did business with Base Toliara.The village of Tsianisiha, west of the proposed mining site. The population is divided about the project. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Base Toliara plans to use a “dry mining” technique. After removing the vegetation and stripping the topsoil, the company will excavate the sand to 20 meters (66 feet) below the surface. Bulldozers will push sand into “dozer mining units” that mix it with water, forming a slurry that will then be pumped to a plant where heavy mineral concentrate — the useful bit, making up about 6 percent of the original sand — is pulled out. This concentrate will be piped to a second plant and separated into ilmenite, rutile and zircon. The minerals will then be trucked via a private road to a small shipping terminal in Toliara.Plans for the road and terminal are particularly controversial. The road, exclusively for use by company vehicles, would cut through pastoral land and divide some farmers from the land they work, although the communities are being consulted on where crossing points can be built. The terminal would be built on Andaboy Beach, which many local people consider sacred. The site of spiritual rites, it is sometimes littered with coins, and there are taboos about eating pork before going there. Large crowds gather around Andaboy on holidays such as Easter, and local fishers use it as a base of operations.A group called Zanadriake (meaning “Children of the sea”) has opposed the terminal construction plans for many years. A middle-aged member named Gano told Mongabay that he was proud to have earned his living as a Vezo — an ethnic identification associated with living off the sea. He has been a fisher and sea-cucumber diver for 37 years, earning enough to send his children to school. Like others in the group, he said he regards any agreement to lease the land at Andaboy to a foreign company as a betrayal of Vezo tradition, and one that will only benefit white-collar workers.“If Base Toliara occupies it for its mineral sands project, where will we earn our living from?” Gano asked. “Are we not human beings? They at Base Toliara have skills, so they are human beings. But we that do not have skills, we are not [treated like] human beings.”Base Toliara told Mongabay that its terminal will take up only 2 hectares (5 acres) of a large beach area, and that the jetty will be high enough for pirogues to sail under, between the pillars. The company plans to build an artificial reef to increase the catch for local fishers.Gano (in red cap), a member of Zanadriake, an organization of fishers and divers that opposes Base Resources’s plan to build a small port at the beach near Toliara, looks on as his friend Gentsy shows a video of the beach during a crowded holiday. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Fears of displacementDemonstrations against the project have become commonplace in recent years. The leading faces of the opposition are Théo Rakotovao, a well-known Malagasy musician who comes from the region and has sung about the mining controversy, and Siteny Randrianasoloniaiko, a member of parliament from a neighboring area who has given rousing speeches about the mine. They have led protests at the beach and in the streets over the past two years. Representatives of community opposition groups have also traveled to the capital Antananarivo to register their discontent with the central government.In addition to concerns over environmental impact, the protests are about land rights, including cultural and economic displacement. The first thing many local people point out is that there are tombs on the land (91 of them, according to Base Toliara). The company says the families have agreed to have the tombs moved and will be given three zebu cattle as compensation, in line with Malagasy tradition.Twenty households live on the deposit itself, some of whose members work for the company and have agreed to move. However, the project will impact the livelihoods of many more people who farm and raise animals on that land. The company acknowledges this “resource utilization” and says it will compensate them for the loss, probably by the end of July, in accordance with Madagascar law and International Finance Corporation Performance Standard 5, which deals with involuntary resettlement.As a foreign-owned company, Base Toliara can’t own land; it must lease it from the national government. The government is currently in the process of buying or otherwise taking possession of the necessary land. This creates conflict because many local people don’t have formal deeds to the land they live on, let alone the land they farm or graze their animals on. Even without deeds, they have land rights under Madagascar law, but in practice these are not always honored.Even if a company such as Base Toliara does everything above board, the lack of transparent governance in Madagascar can open the door for unscrupulous mayors and regional officials to abuse their power. They decide who owns untitled land — land that has suddenly become very valuable — and this can create a great deal of resentment among community members.Manantsoa Ratsimaro, a Mazoto supporter and 61-year-old farmer in the village of Tsianisiha, stands outside his house next to campaign material for President Andry Rajoelina. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.A people divided The mayors of the five affected communes, each containing many villages, support Base Toliara. Jean Manantena Mahatokisa, the mayor of Tsianisiha, told Mongabay the mining project will bring jobs and progress as he fixed the ink cartridge on an old typewriter in his office. Although he was mildly critical of the company’s communication strategy, he said he’d seen no corruption, and he claimed that 95 percent of his constituents supported the project.The mayor’s math seemed well off the mark. Many residents of Tsianisiha and the other communes adamantly oppose the mining project. Most people stopped at random by Mongabay proudly declared their affiliation with the main opposition group, Mazoto (meaning “motivated” or “eager”).Manantsoa Ratsimaro, a Mazoto supporter and 61-year-old farmer in Tsianisiha, called the mayors of the five communes “traitors.” Standing near his thatch-roofed house, he pointed out the plums, cassavas and twining plants growing in his yard. “I’ll never agree to let Base Toliara exploit my land because my descendants need to live off of it,” he told Mongabay. “Without the land, they will suffer. They did not finish school. I will not accept the project even in exchange for a billion ariary [around $275,000]. I would spend that money quickly and it wouldn’t have any effect on my descendants. However, things that we eat here are abundant and will last even after I’m gone. [My descendants] can grow old with them.”Manantsoa Ratsimaro sits outside his house with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. “I’ll never agree to let Base Toliara exploit my land because my descendants need to live off it,” he said. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.However, there is debate about what people such as Ratsimaro can legitimately call their land, and there is a current of local support for the mining project. Some people, especially those with more schooling, are excited by the job opportunities it presents. “Young people will work for them [Base Toliara]. Older people will work for them,” Alexis, a resident of Ranobe, a village near the proposed mining site and the father of several children, told Mongabay. “This will put an end to crime because criminals will find jobs. Robberies result from hunger and poverty. If Base Toliara comes to life, robbery and poverty will be no more, and the area will develop.”Some villagers told Mongabay that they think of Base Toliara in the same way they think of charities that have worked in the area. The company has already spent $400,000 on social projects, such as the construction of three deep wells. If exploitation commences, Base Toliara will be required by Madagascar law to spend $500,000 annually on social projects; the company says it plans to go beyond that and spend at least $1 million to $2 million.Alexis, a resident of Ranobe, one of the villages closest to the proposed mining site, supports the project, mainly for the jobs it will create and the security this will provide. “Robberies result from hunger and poverty. If Base Toliara comes to life, robbery and poverty will be no more, and the area will develop.” Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Madagascar’s mining minister visited the Base Toliara concession area in March and said he would report on the issue to President Andry Rajoelina, who has remained silent on the project but tends to support the extractive industries. The president’s communications team declined to comment for this article. Madagascar’s mining ministry did not respond to requests for comment.Base Toliara’s exploitation permit is of questionable validity. The Madagascar government that issued the 40-year permit in 2012 may not have had the authority to do so. It was a “transition” government led by Rajoelina, who had come to power following a 2009 coup d’état. Rajoelina is now the country’s legitimate president, having won the 2018 election, but his earlier administration had, under international pressure, agreed not to make such far-reaching deals. “The Transitional Government shall be responsible for administering the day-to-day affairs of the country…It will refrain from making new long-term commitments,” reads the Roadmap for Ending the Crisis in Madagascar signed by Rajoelina in September 2011, which became Malagasy law later that year. (It was Rajoelina’s signing of this agreement that allowed him to receive some official recognition by the United Nations, which had previously shunned him.) When Mongabay questioned Base Resources about this issue in an email, Ramahefarivo replied: “The exploitation permit was acquired by the previous owners and is considered valid.”Base Toliara has exploration rights — but not exploitation permits — at three other large concessions in southwest Madagascar. Few people in the region seem to know about these. Base Resources representatives told Mongabay that it has done no research in those three areas and does not know if Malagasy people live there. However, an anthropologist who works in the region told Mongabay that the sites are “absolutely” inhabited; that there are a number of villages and hamlets in and around the concessions, including many that are visible on maps; that the concession areas are important for rice production; and that it was puzzling that Base Resources would deny knowing that.Gano (in red cap) and other members of Zanadriake look at a map of Base Resources’s concessions in the region. One man points at the blue dot that represents Toliara, the city where many of the group’s members live, and where the company is planning to build a small port that they object to. The company plans to begin construction on the concession nearest to Toliara this year. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Banditry or protest?Ramahefarivo referred to the people who burned the company’s campsite as “bandits” in an email to Mongabay, and he told a Malagasy journalist that the idea that the Toliara 9 were defending their rights was a “pure lie”. However, the event was orchestrated in the manner of civil disobedience. About 40 protesters took action together, both men and women, in the light of day. They did not injure anyone; they invited television crews, who recorded the event; and they vandalized property, including samples of ilmenite and zircon, directly in front of gendarmes, who were also filming.The people of Benetse did not feel anyone should be imprisoned for the action. “They are innocent people who protected the tanindraza [the land of the ancestors]” Emma Vazonandrasana, the young woman who tried to see the trial in Fianarantsoa, said of the nine who were arrested, using the Malagasy word for one’s family or community land.Children in a coastal village west of Base Resource’s main mining concession stand near a campaign poster for Théo Rakotovao, a musician who opposes the mining project. Rakotovao ran unsuccessfully for parliament in May. “I entered into politics in order to protect people,” he said. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Even with the Toliara 9 now free, the controversy surrounding the project is likely to continue. The company hopes to ship the first ilmenite in 2021. Opposition groups such as Mazoto have no clear-cut plan to stop the project and seem to be running out of time, but are hoping that their determination will somehow pay off.“If the people don’t agree, the mining company should go home,” said Rakotovao, the musician and opposition leader. “They can exploit mineral sands in Australia.”last_img read more

Newly described pocket shark likely glows in the dark

first_imgArticle published by Shreya Dasgupta Animals, Biodiversity, Deep Sea, Environment, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Marine, Marine Animals, Marine Biodiversity, New Species, Oceans, Research, Species Discovery, 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 Researchers have described a new species of pocket shark, a small shark measuring just 14 centimeters (5.5 inches) long, that possibly glows in the dark.The shark has been named the American pocket shark, or Mollisquama mississippiensis, in recognition of the biologically rich region in which it was discovered.Only two pocket sharks have ever been caught from the ocean. The previous specimen, M. parini, was collected from the eastern Pacific Ocean in 1979.The discovery of a new pocket shark species shows there is much more to learn about the Gulf of Mexico, researchers say. In 2010, researchers surveying the eastern Gulf of Mexico to study what sperm whales eat, collected numerous animals from the ocean’s depths. While examining the collection in 2013, Mark Grace of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) discovered a small shark among the specimens, measuring just 14 centimeters (5.5 inches) in length.Now, Grace and his colleagues have identified that shark as a new-to-science species, one that possibly glows in the dark. The newly described animal is a species of pocket shark, researchers say in a new study published in Zootaxa.The pocket shark gets its names not for its small size but because of small pocket-like openings or glands found behind each of its pectoral fins. Grace and his team have named the new species the American pocket shark, or Mollisquama mississippiensis, “in recognition of the vast North American Mississippi River Basin; a biologically and geographically rich region that nurtures Gulf of Mexico fauna and unites diverse cultures,” they write in the paper. The proposed common name recognizes the “extraordinary Americas of the Western Hemisphere.”Pocket sharks are incredibly rare. Before the discovery of the American pocket shark, the only other specimen of pocket shark, archived at the Zoological Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, was collected from the eastern Pacific Ocean in 1979. The species was named M. parini after the Russian ichthyologist Nikolai Vasilevich Parin.The American pocket shark is the second species of pocket shark to be described. While the shark resembles M. parini in general shape and placement of fins and pocket glands, there are several notable differences, the researchers say. The American pocket shark has 10 fewer vertebrae than M. parini, for example, different teeth, a likely pit organ located near its lower jaw, and numerous light-producing organs or photophores covering much of the body, which possibly help the shark luminesce in the deep sea.“In the history of fisheries science, only two pocket sharks have ever been captured or reported,” Grace said in a statement. “Both are separate species, each from separate oceans. Both are exceedingly rare.”Henry Bart, a co-author of the study and director and curator of fishes at Tulane University’s Museum of Natural History, said the discovery of a new pocket shark species showed there was much more to learn about the Gulf of Mexico.“The fact that only one pocket shark has ever been reported from the Gulf of Mexico, and that it is a new species, underscores how little we know about the Gulf — especially its deeper waters — and how many additional new species from these waters await discovery,” he said in the statement.The only known specimen of the American pocket shark was discovered in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. Image by Mark Doosey.Citation:Grace, M. A., Doosey, M. H., Denton, J. S., Naylor, G. J., Bart, H. L., & Maisey, J. G. (2019). A new Western North Atlantic Ocean kitefin shark (Squaliformes: Dalatiidae) from the Gulf of Mexico. Zootaxa, 4619(1), 109-120. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.4619.1.4last_img read more

Tradition and taboo keep Guinea-Bissau’s forests standing

first_imgGuinea-Bissau is home to countless sacred forests, where cutting down a tree is strictly prohibited by the community.Efforts are also underway to develop community forests in communities that don’t recognize the concept of sacred forests, and imbue them with a similar understanding and reverence for the environment.Despite these efforts, the country experienced a spate of illegal logging following a coup in 2012, prompting a logging ban to be imposed in 2015.With the ban expiring in March 2020 and elections taking place this November, it’s unclear whether or how the government’s stance on the issue will change. COBIANA, Guinea Bissau – He remembers the first time he heard the voice of Mama Djombo.Albino Moreira Mendes was sleeping in his bed in Cobiana, a small town in rural northern Guinea-Bissau, when the messages, which he can only describe as coded noises, came to him. They told him how to perform a ceremony in Cobiana’s sacred forest, and that it was his turn take charge of the forest, to become what is known as the baloberu.“Without the forest, a man like me … I am nothing,” says Mendes, who since that night 10 years ago has been the interlocutor between Mama Djombo, the spirit or iran of the sacred forest in Cobiana, and anyone who wishes to speak to it.Most societies value something so strongly that the icon or resource becomes intertwined with the very definition of their community. For the residents of Cobiana, the trees — and more specifically their sacred forest — are their roots. Even a hypothetical offer of a million dollars to buy the trees in their sacred forest is met with simultaneous gasps of terror and incredulous laughter. To destroy the forest is to destroy them. “It is our identity,” Mendes says.There is bright green vegetation on both sides of the winding, single lane of dirt road that leads to the town of Cobiana (the forest and village share the same name). The countryside’s natural colors mirror the colors of its national flag: red earth, neon-green vegetation, and a bright yellow, unforgiving sun. The only respite from the heat is either when the clouds break for rain, or under the canopy of the trees.Along one side of the road are occasional areas of brush that have been cleared for future planting, but the other side of the road is overgrown and untouched.On that side of the road lies the sacred forest whose rules are both clear-cut and shrouded in secrecy. What happens in this forest? Coming-of-age rituals for men, prayers for a new marriage, or asking Mama Djombo for various blessings (a baby, a new job). How are these rituals conducted? This information is secret. The more it is shared, the less sacred it becomes. Who can go into the forest? Men who have been initiated. No women, certainly no outsiders.Mendes insists if you cut down a tree in the sacred forest, you will die.Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but eventually, Mendes says.Killing a tree is a crime punishable by death. It’s not a crime punished through the courts, but the iran will decide how and when.For the residents of Cobiana, the forest does not have a monetary value. “We prefer to die in poverty than to take money from someone to sell a portion of this sacred land,” Mendes says. “We cannot do it. This is something we learned from our ancestors, and even the children who come, they know they cannot sell this land.”Cobiana also holds historical significance in Guinea-Bissau. During the country’s 11-year independence war against the Portuguese, soldiers fighting for independence would come to Cobiana and ask Mendes’s father, who was the baloberu at the time, to take them into the sacred forest to ask for Mama Djombo’s protection. Mama Djombo was regarded as the protector of the independence fighters. Mendes remembers these days, and he says sometimes swarms of bees would attack Portuguese outposts, thanks to Mama Djombo. “Even the colonialists knew that and didn’t come this way,” he says.Sacred forests like Cobiana are scattered throughout Guinea-Bissau, particularly in the northwest region and across the 88 islands of the Bijagos archipelago.Sacred forests like Cobiana were among the few areas untouched during a surge in illegal logging that followed a 2012 coup. Image by Ricci Shryock for Mongabay.No one has surveyed the country to determine exactly how many there are, or the total area they cover, but Miguel de Barros, an activist and sociologist in Guinea-Bissau, says there are hundreds of sacred forests. Some are designated for women only, some are for men. Each one has specific characteristics that depend on the group protecting it, but they all share one hard and fast rule: absolutely no one may cut down a tree in a sacred forest.De Barros says sacred forests are a powerful force for conservation because they are “a crucial identity element of socialization, knowledge production, and economics … an element that reinforces the identity of the place and also the governing power of spaces and resources.”Following a coup in 2012, central government authority was weakened and illegal loggers, including some military officials, seized the opportunity to pillage the country’s forests. According to the Environmental Investigation Agency, an NGO, “timber exports from Guinea-Bissau to China, the world’s largest importer of illegal rosewood, surged from 61 tons in 2007 to 98,000 tons in 2014 — an equivalent of 255,000 trees exported in just one year.”During that time, sacred forests remained untouched.In 2015, as a reaction to the pillaging, a moratorium on logging was put in place. But the crisis showed how Guinea-Bissau’s government has often failed to protect the country’s forests.Since gaining independence in 1974, after 11 years of war against the Portuguese colonizers, Guinea Bissau’s central government has struggled for stability.There have been at least a dozen successful or attempted coup d’états, and amid this, effective environmental protection for the forests of this small but biodiverse country has suffered. Conservationists and park officials say the cultural and spiritual power of sacred forests in some regions of the country has been a unique key to preserving certain areas, and conservation efforts have often been built around them.It is no accident that Cobiana sits inside the 88,615-hectare (218,972-acre) Cacheu River Mangroves National Park. The Guinea-Bissau authorities have often included sacred spaces when drawing boundaries of national protected areas, because they know the population within these areas already conserve the forests in their own way, as they have for generations.“That helps us,” says Luis Mendes, a park agent at Cacheu. “Everyone in the community respects that, and this helps us do our work. Each village has its forest reserve, and its tradition. It’s these traditions that allow us to preserve the forest.”He added that most of the villages within the park have not only a sacred forest, but also a community forest reserve where they harvest wild fruit and practice responsible, regulated slash-and-burn agriculture.Mendes and other officials at the country’s park services and in the Department of Forests and Water are working against a ticking clock to protect Guinea-Bissau’s forests: the 2015 moratorium that banned logging in the country is set to expire in March 2020, and with national elections on the horizon this November, they are unsure what logging laws will look like in the months to come.“Even with the moratorium there are still threats to the forest,” says Danilson Coreira, an official at the Department of Forests and Water. “It’s certain those will increase if the moratorium expires.”After the current government under President José Mário Vaz took power in 2014, it put in place the moratorium on all logging until March 2020. Nelvina Barreto, who served as minister of agriculture and forests until an abrupt government overhaul in late October, said she would have liked to extend the ban beyond the 2020 deadline, for at least another three years so that enhanced community defense mechanisms could be put in place, such as a working hotline that residents can call to alert authorities to logging, as well as better-trained forest rangers.“There are a lot of concerns about this moratorium, that’s why we have to analyze it very well,” Barreto said. “The decision was taken in 2015 during a crisis and emergency to fight the environmental crimes that were taking place. So now we are not under this pressure, and we need to consider all the economic and social aspects. There are national economic needs, and wood is not only used for exportation. There are a lot of internal uses, and with this moratorium, at the internal level, we have many problems furnishing wood for the internal market.“It’s this precarious equilibrium we have to find, and we are looking for,” she added. “We need to know what areas we need to continue prohibiting, because there are forests in certain areas that are more affected than others.”With the central government once again in flux in the country, it’s unclear who will be making and enforcing the logging laws in the near future.One of Vaz’s leading opponents in the November presidential elections is Domingoes Simões Pereira, known as DSP. Pereira was prime minister when the moratorium was imposed, and says he supports extending the ban if elected.Barreto was part of the government formed under a coalition including Pereira’s party, and could very well return to helm of the agriculture and forestry ministry if DSP wins the November polls.last_img read more

Female gorillas recognize and respond to contagious disease

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 Animal Behavior, Animals, Gorillas, Great Apes, Mammals, Primates, UCSC, Wildlife Article published by Rhett Butlercenter_img An infectious skin disease causing bright red facial lesions affects how female gorillas decide to change social groups, researchers have shown.Decade-long observations of nearly 600 gorillas in the Republic of the Congo revealed females are more likely to leave groups with severely diseased females or an infected silverback male.By reducing contact with sick individuals, females can decrease the risk of being contaminated and prevent further spread of the infection in the population. Salt clearings deep in the Congo basin host numerous breeding groups of Western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla). These intelligent social mammals usually reside in groups of two to eight females defended by a single silverback male. Now, long-term studies of these populations show that female gorillas can identify a disfiguring disease in one another, and they consciously avoid it through informed social dispersal to other groups.A team led by Nelly Ménard of the ECOBIO laboratory at CNRS/University of Rennes 1 used a decade of observations to conclude that gorillas recognize a contagious skin infection called yaws in other individuals. Female members of a breeding group take the disease into account when deciding whether to migrate to another group.The findings, published recently in Ecology, suggest that females are more likely to change groups when the red facial lesions caused by yaws are visible either in the silverback or among multiple females in their breeding group. They also avoid joining groups with a high prevalence of the disease.Odzala-Kokua National Park in the Republic of Congo. Photo by A. Lavandier/CNRS-University of Rennes 1When Ménard first visited the Odzala-Kokoua National Park in the Republic of the Congo nearly 20 years ago, she recognized that the frequent visits by gorilla social groups provided access to exceptional data on the demographic structure of their populations – as well as their dispersal patterns. During their years in the field, her team identified 593 individuals, divided into 59 breeding groups and 50 unmated units, clustered within two distinct populations of gorillas.Females move between breeding groups several times during their lifespan. The researchers recorded dozens of instances when females left their own groups or joined new ones. Both of the studied populations live in the same dense tropical forest with overlapping home ranges, so habitat was not a factor in the females’ decisions to change groups. In all cases where both the old and new groups were known, females moved to new groups with fewer numbers of severely infected gorillas.A female was more likely to leave her breeding group when there were more severely diseased individuals, when her breeding group was older, or when the male silverback was infected, the team’s observations showed.“We suspected that females were able to take the disease risk into account in their decision to leave or to join a group,” said Ménard. These perceptive apes most likely associate the visual cues of red facial lesions with the worsening effects of the disease, like deformities and handicaps, she said.This infant was likely contaminated through contact with its mother. Photo by Peggy Motsch and Guillaume Le Flohic/CNRS-University of Rennes 1Close contact with its mother may have led to the infection of this infant at a young age. Photo by Peggy Motsch and Guillaume Le Flohic/CNRS-University of Rennes 1Other studies have shown that spiny lobster, ants, mosquitofish, and house mice avoid others of their species who are visibly sick, said Dieter Lukas, a senior researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön, Germany, who was not involved in the study. Among primates, mandrills (Mandrillus sphinx) will avoid grooming others who are infected with endoparasites. However, the finding by Ménard’s team appears to be the first case of social mammals “choosing which group to join according to the disease status of the other group members,” Lukas said.There is still a social toll when females leave familiar breeding groups, such as lower status in new groups or delayed mating opportunities. Females also hesitate to migrate if they have an unweaned infant, fearing infanticide. The animals weigh these risks, Lukas noted: “The interesting observation is that female gorillas might be willing to pay a short-term cost… in order to potentially avoid a long-term cost associated with contracting a disease.”Ménard is curious whether other primates, such as chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), show similar behaviors. “The few [chimpanzees] who visited the study clearings did not show any signs of this disease,” she said. However, a chimpanzee population being studied in Uganda displays facial deformities due to ingesting pesticides, offering a research opportunity: “It would be very interesting to test whether these [deformities] impact social relationships.”A yaws-infected adult gorilla with red lesions mainly located on its face. Photo by Céline Genton/Université de Rennes 1Citation: Baudouin, A., Gatti, S., Levréro, F., Genton, C., Cristescu, R. H., Billy, V., … Ménard, N. (2019). Disease avoidance, and breeding group age and size condition the dispersal patterns of western lowland gorilla females. Ecology, 100(9). https://doi.org/10.1002/ecy.2786Lara Streiff (@LaraGStreiff) is a graduate student in the Science Communication Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Other Mongabay stories produced by UCSC students can be found at news.mongabay.com/list/ucsc.last_img read more

Madagascar: Is NGO-led conservation too conservative to conserve much?

first_imgArticle published by Rebecca Kessler Biodiversity, Biodiversity Hotspots, Conservation, Conservation And Poverty, Conservation Finance, Deforestation, Developing Countries, Endangered Environmentalists, Endangered Species, Environment, Environmental Activism, Environmental Economics, Environmental Policy, Environmental Politics, Forests, Governance, Green, NGOs, Poverty, Protected Areas International environmental NGOs working in Madagascar assume a relatively narrow role of supporting local conservation and development in line with government strategy.The nature of the NGOs’ legal relationship with the Malagasy government, which has close ties to the extractive industries, and the restrictions that come with international funding make it difficult for them to take a broader role or push for systemic environmental reforms.The result, some critics say, is that international NGOs fail to address the country’s most serious conservation challenges.Homegrown civil society groups have more room to operate in Madagascar and do some of the most important conservation work. ANTANANARIVO, Madagascar — Madagascar’s natural resources are under threat. Local people use some for food, fuel and shelter, but foreign capital drives the most intense exploitation. Gem dealers oversee the destruction of wide swaths of brush in the south and forests in the east. Multinational mining companies target nickel, ilmenite and oil. Industrial trawlers vacuum up much of the fish and shrimp that villagers along the west coast rely on for food and income. And the local activists who challenge all this are frequently imprisoned.Yet international conservation NGOs remain largely silent about commercial resource extraction, focusing their work at the community level. For example, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) works in and around the rainforests of northeastern Madagascar where precious rosewood has been heavily and illegally logged for the past decade, but aside from issuing the occasional press release and signing a few petitions, the group has barely commented on the logging in public.“We played it safe,” Alison Clausen, WCS’s former country director in Madagascar, told Mongabay. WCS has focused on scientific research, local conservation work, and patrolling protected areas rather than lobbying the government to stop the logging, Clausen said. “We didn’t lead a strong criticism of the government.”A stockpile of illegally harvested rosewood at the port of Rantabe, Madagascar, circa 2010. The port lies near Makira Natural Park, which the Wildlife Conservation Society manages. Image by Erik Patel via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0).Engaging in such criticism would have put the New York-based conservation group at risk of being kicked out of the country. International NGOs can work in Madagascar only with the government’s permission, and the government is closely linked with the extractive industries, including the illegal trade in precious timber. This makes natural resources a touchy subject. Journalists witness the sensitivity firsthand, in Madagascar as elsewhere. Most staff members at big international NGOs, the so-called BINGOs, won’t speak on the record about extraction issues in Madagascar. Though this might be prudent in individual cases, the cumulative effect is an eerie silence.“In a way, such BINGOs and other related structures work here without really being here (in terms of involvement) and I think things won’t really change as long as they maintain this kind of detachment (or voluntary disconnection) from local realities,” Ketakandriana Rafitoson, executive director of Transparency International–Initiative Madagascar, wrote in an email to Mongabay. “[I]f they deny themselves the right to act accordingly and really ‘fight’ for what matters to them, they are just complicit — albeit indirectly — in the perpetration of well-known environmental malpractices.”NGO leaders respond to such criticism by pointing out that their organizations’ role is to support local conservation and development, in line with government strategy, and to provide policy expertise at the invitation of the government. They are consigned to this relatively narrow role largely because of the nature of their legal relationship with the Malagasy government and the restrictions that come with international funding. The result, some critics say, is that despite the soaring language of their public communications and the ambitious targets set out in their grant proposals, the most serious conservation challenges remain outside of their remit.Common brown lemur (Eulemur fulvus), a species that resides in Makira Natual Park. Image by Rhett A. Butler / Mongabay.Agreeing to a straitjacketMadagascar’s dazzling biodiversity — it has “more genetic information per surface unit” than anywhere else, as one paper put it — draws in conservation groups from across the world. Yet there’s little they can do when well-funded businesses or trafficking networks threaten the country’s environment.The most straightforward reason that leaders of international NGOs do not speak out is that they want to keep their “seat” in the country. They are required to apply for and operate under an accord de siège, an agreement with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that declares that the government has “a permanent right to control the progress of the various works and actions as well as the technical and financial management of all the personnel resources made available to [NGO] projects,” according to a template accord de siège obtained by Mongabay.The language of the agreement makes the power dynamics clear. “[T]he whole spirit of the accord de siège is in general that [Madagascar’s government] controls NGOs,” Nanie Ratsifandrihamanana, country director for the international NGO WWF, told Mongabay in an email.The accord de siège does not explicitly prevent lobbying or political activity, but it establishes NGOs as partners of the government, requiring that they “collaborate” with ministries to ensure their programs fit with government priorities. NGOs must renew their accord de siège every two years and submit regular reports on projects and expenditures.In practice, collaborating with the government can mean partnering with resource extractors. Some bureaucrats and elected representatives benefit from business activities through official channels, such as taxes and permit fees that go to government ministries. But others benefit through bribes, kickbacks, and even sometimes direct involvement in the trade. “Madagascar has entered a phase of ‘criminalization of the state’ in which … the border between the illegal and the legal has become blurred,” wrote a researcher from the Institut Français des Relations Internationales, a Paris-based think tank, with regard to the extractive industries in Madagascar, in a 2017 report submitted to France’s ministry of defense.The close ties between government and industry make it difficult for NGOs to critique ill-advised projects or address illicit resource extraction, said Ndranto Razakamanarina, president of Alliance Voahary Gasy (AVG), a consortium of environmental civil society groups in Madagascar. “If [NGOs] do advocacy, they are afraid of [losing] their accord de siège,” he told Mongabay. “They will be thrown out of Madagascar. We, the Malagasy, we will only be thrown in prison, but they can’t exclude us from the country.”So far, the government has not removed any conservation groups from the country and rarely if ever makes explicit threats to do so. It usually opts to take less drastic action against NGOs, such as simply voicing displeasure or not offering them management of a desirable protected area, said WWF’s Ratsifandrihamanana. When WWF started a petition to stop rosewood logging in 2009, members of the government called the WWF office in a “very angry” mood, she told Mongabay.The lopsided relationship is not unique to Madagascar. Many countries in the Global South require foreign organizations to sign such agreements, and Russia and China have stringent requirements for foreign NGOs. Countries in the Global North, on the other hand, often take a different approach. Within the U.S. and the European Union, foreign NGOs operate as freely as domestic NGOs, without special reporting requirements, and are allowed to engage in advocacy and lobbying. The U.S. State Department holds that this is crucial to developing a “robust civil society.”A common fody (Foudia madagascariensis), a species native to Madgascar. Image by Rhett A. Butler / Mongabay.The other global gag ruleDespite their purported interest in protecting civil society, governments in the Global North do try to influence the activities of international NGOs. For example, President Donald Trump’s much-discussed “global gag rule” prevents U.S. government funds from being disbursed to any organization that provides abortions or abortion counseling, or that advocates to decriminalize abortions, regardless of whether the money would have been used for that purpose. Last year, The Washington Post ran a long feature showing how the rule has affected health programs in Madagascar.But a much broader global gag rule — or, more precisely, a set of rules — that predates Trump’s tenure receives far less scrutiny, despite its influence on conservation and development work in Madagascar and beyond. U.S. laws restrict lobbying by charities (including NGOs), private foundations, and government agencies. Some other countries and major international donors also have rules on lobbying and advocacy, but U.S. funds tend to be particularly restrictive — and a large portion of Madagascar’s conservation funding comes from the U.S.NGOs registered as charities in the U.S. are subject to strict lobbying rules. They can’t make lobbying a “substantial” part of their activities — not more than 3 to 5 percent, experts say. Some NGOs file their taxes in such a way that they have hard limits of $1 million or less per year on lobbying for all of their programs in all countries combined.The rules, which apply anywhere in the world, become even stricter when NGOs accept grant funding from private foundations, as international NGOs in Madagascar do. NGOs that accept foundation funding can’t use it to suggest, draft or take a public position on proposed or enacted legislation. They also can’t attempt to influence the Malagasy public on such legislation, and they can’t support political candidates.The rules can prevent international NGOs from having a level playing field with the extractive industries, which face no such restrictions. For example, they made it difficult for NGOs to advocate for changes to Madagascar’s mining code, which were openly debated in recent years. Several Malagasy civil society groups regard the code, which was passed by parliament in 2005, as overly friendly to investors and lacking in social and environmental protections. But the mining industry, which faces no limits on the amount of money it can use to lobby the government, pushed back against proposed reforms. International NGOs remained silent on the matter, and in 2017 then-President Hery Rajaonarimampianina announced that there would be no change to the code.Some experts, mindful of such cases, believe the lobbying rules, while sensible on a surface level, end up limiting NGOs’ freedom to participate in public debate. “[T]his particular set of restrictions is strikingly discriminatory. No other sector of the interest group universe is as constrained in its advocacy as are 501(c)(3)s,” Jeffrey Berry, a political scientist at Tufts University, wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Post in 2003. “This creates a huge imbalance.” (Private foundations and public charities are often called 501(c)(3)s after the U.S. tax code that applies to them.)A meeting of a village chapter of Mazoto, a group opposed to Base Resources’s mineral sands mining project in southwestern Madagascar, earlier this year. The Madagascar government has since suspended the mine project. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Pushing for change within the rules Nevertheless, some international NGOs do their best to put pressure on Madagascar’s government. WWF is the most politically engaged BINGO in the country, at least in public. Advocacy makes up roughly one-quarter or one-third of WWF’s work in Madagascar, Ratsifandrihamanana estimated during an interview with Mongabay. She said she would like to see the figure increase, but it’s tricky “especially with funding from U.S. foundations.” Even when donors do allow advocacy, it usually isn’t a priority. “Advocacy is difficult to fund,” she said. “It’s easier to raise money for conservation on the ground with local communities.”The rules do allow NGOs to engage in some types of advocacy, even when they receive foundation funding. For example, they can make general calls for, say, better anti-pollution laws so long as they don’t advocate for a specific law. They can address specific policy as technical advisers if their advice is sought in writing by Madagascar’s government. And they can try to influence the way laws are implemented by, for example, assisting Madagascar’s environment ministry in converting laws into regulations.Such allowances are not always exploited. Berry, the Tufts political scientist, argues that the leaders of charities should try harder to take advantage of the types of lobbying and advocacy they can do. But the legal environment is complicated and difficult for NGOs to navigate. In practice, NGOs that receive foundation grants rarely take advantage of the fact that they can still lobby by using special safe-harbor laws or simply by using other types of funding, said Chelsey Ziegler, a lawyer for the Chicago-based MacArthur Foundation, which until recently was a major global conservation donor, funding several NGO projects in Madagascar. It can be an administrative burden on an NGO to ring-fence the funds and report on the activities separately, so most NGOs keep it simple and opt not to delve into advocacy and lobbying. Ziegler said that a conversation between funders and grantees is essential to supporting advocacy within the rules. “It makes people nervous to say, ‘yeah, we lobby,’” she told Mongabay.A culture of cautionThese constraints mean that many NGO staff members never learn to flex their advocacy muscles. Acquiescence to resource extraction becomes routine. “It becomes a habit,” Charlie Gardner, a conservation scientist at the University of Kent who worked in Madagascar for 10 years, told Mongabay. “They become self-censoring. Even if there isn’t specific legislation preventing them from advocacy work, they become used to watching what they do.”Some NGOs not only self-censor but actively partner with extractive industries. In 2015, Conservation International (CI), which aims to “protect Africa’s ‘natural capital,’” made a deal with Ambatovy, a nickel and cobalt mining company owned by three multinational corporations that represents the largest financial investment ever in Madagascar. CI accepted $1.5 million from Ambatovy to help set up a protected area near the company’s plant in eastern Madagascar. Neither side released much information about the deal aside from a short press release. CI has never publicly criticized the company, despite some evidence of poor social and environmental practices, including its possible role in introducing an invasive toad that threatens to disrupt local ecosystems. In a recent email, Jenny Parker McCloskey, a CI spokesperson, told Mongabay that CI was a science-based organization that would not engage in advocacy whether or not the Ambatovy deal was in place.An Asian common toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus), a poisonous invasive species spreading in northeastern Madagascar that may have been introduced by the Ambatovy mine. Image by Lokionly via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0).Another reason NGOs are not more outspoken is cultural. “The Malagasy, we are not very confrontational,” Ratsifandrihamanana said. “We do it in more indirect ways. Sometimes we would be better off if we could be more straightforward with one another.”It can be difficult for Malagasy professionals to take risks. Madagascar is a low-income country where white-collar jobs are precious, and the BINGOs offer some of the best white-collar jobs, with high salaries and good benefits.For Malagasy or foreign staff wanting to keep working in the country, the importance of keeping a job or career advancement can lead to tunnel vision and silence on controversial topics. “There’s an incentive to keep your head down and just get on with your work,” Gardner said.Malagasy conservationists tend to rotate between work for NGOs, industry and government. An NGO staff member may be reluctant to challenge a mining company when she might one day apply for a job with that company or a government ministry that regulates it. Some people in Madagascar are conscious of the impact this “revolving door” can have. For example, AVG’s Razakamanarina tries to protect the integrity of his civil society organization by not allowing people who leave AVG for government posts to return.Still, the small, tightly knit professional world makes dissent difficult.“If you [as an NGO staff member] see the minister on Monday, you’re not going to mount a campaign against him on Tuesday,” Marcus Schneider, former Madagascar country director for Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, a foundation affiliated with Germany’s Social Democratic Party, told Mongabay. Schneider said that he did not believe it was the role of NGOs to mount such campaigns, but he wondered if they would be better off changing their approach.“There is a lot of money going into conservation and environmental work in Madagascar,” he said. “The question some people in the German development community ask is: would it be maybe more intelligent to fund education or political consciousness building? In the long run, the effect might be better on the environment. The degradation of the environment is caused by the difficult socio-economic and political situation.”NGO practitioners are quick to acknowledge that economic, health and environmental outcomes are connected, and that holistic approaches are needed to improve them. But NGOs have to design their programs to match the priorities of funders and the Malagasy government. They usually opt for “capacity building” or “behavior change” at the community level rather than advocating for structural change. And so key drivers of resource degradation and biodiversity loss, including wildlife trafficking and industrial-scale exploitation, are left to others to challenge.Backroom dealing Because of these constraints, NGOs end up doing most of their advocacy work — if they do any at all — behind closed doors. This can be seen in the approach taken by Mihari, a network of small-scale fishers that is facilitated by NGOs. Mihari’s most ambitious goal, declared in 2017, is to establish an exclusive access zone for small-scale fishers along Madagascar’s coast. This is a sensitive political topic because it would seriously impact, if not end, industrial shrimp trawling in the country: 85 percent of the trawling takes place within 3 kilometers (2 miles) of the shore, the same area many of the fishers want designated a no-trawl zone.Mihari was established in 2012 by several international NGOs, including the U.K.-based marine conservation group Blue Ventures, and is considered a breath of fresh air in Madagascar’s conservation circles. Many NGO leaders proudly tout their support for the group’s community organizing and advocacy work, which has received international attention. Mihari’s coordinator recently won a Whitley Award, a prestigious prize for grassroots conservation leaders in the Global South.Shrimp from Madagascar on sale for £45 per kilogram (about $27 per pound) at Borough Market in London last month. Industrial trawlers that serve European markets compete with small-scale fishers for Madagascar’s marine resources. Image by Edward Carver.Mihari does have grassroots members — thousands of small-scale fishers across the country — who speak forcefully about the impact of industrial fishing on their livelihoods when given the opportunity. However, its NGO members are bound by the requirements of international funders and the Malagasy government, so Mihari, as a network, can’t speak with the same force. Mihari’s 2017 declaration [pdf] did not specify how much marine area should be reserved for local fishers — possibly to avoid advocating for specific legislation due to funding rules.And since then, Mihari has not engaged in much public-facing advocacy. For example, Mihari and Blue Ventures chose not to speak publicly when this reporter inquired about issues that directly affect small-scale fishers. Last year, Madagascar’s government announced the sale of offshore oil blocks comprising 63,296 square kilometers (24,440 square miles) along the country’s west coast, where most small-scale fishers are based. More recently, Madagascar has negotiated for a new fisheries deal with the European Union, which has been accused of unfair exploitation of marine resources in past deals. In these cases and others, staff members at Mihari and Blue Ventures avoided on-the-record comments and expressed a preference for behind-the-scenes negotiations with members of government or industry, citing a need to maintain good relationships.A woman displays her family’s catch in the village of Andavadoaka in southwestern Madagascar. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Critics caution that there are potential downsides to this approach, even if it’s effective in the short term. Such advocacy can ultimately disempower its purported beneficiaries by taking the debate out of the public sphere. Quiet, backroom advocacy is often aimed at industry or government elites who, though Madagascar is ostensibly a democracy, do not necessarily represent the interests of small-scale fishers or the broader Malagasy public. It can muffle the powerful voices of Malagasy fishers in favor of the cautious, if well-meaning, voices of NGO representatives. And without a strong popular movement to keep pressure on government and industry, any gains achieved in backroom deals could easily be rolled back in the future, observers caution.Some gains in Madagascar have already proved fragile. International NGOs pushed the conservation agenda in Madagascar in the 2000s, working with the government to more than triple the land coverage of protected areas — the fulfillment of the so-called Durban Vision. Amid a scramble for funding, NGOs competed to manage sites across the country. Although the effort was successful in quantitative terms, the impact was not always positive or enduring. Researchers say that decision-makers were overly accommodating to foreign mining interests and, though some progress was made in establishing community management, NGOs failed to fully consult or engage local people, many of whom ended up feeling disenfranchised and still log illegally, hunt bushmeat, and engage in artisanal mining in the parks. Some protected areas have no active management and are considered “paper parks,” while others were “orphaned,” never receiving NGO support or having it withdrawn due to lack of funding.“The lobbying work in the 2000s was too dependent on influential individuals from certain NGOs and their relationships with certain government officials,” Nadia Rabesahala Horning, a political scientist at Middlebury College in Vermont who comes from Madagascar and researched the country’s environmental aid sector during that period, told Mongabay. “The efforts were never institutionalized. When those people left their positions, they left a vacuum.”Blue Ventures and Mihari are working to address some of these issues, starting with strengthening the dialogue between small-scale fishers and government officials. Alasdair Harris, Blue Ventures’ executive director, told Mongabay that Mihari started as a peer-to-peer network and, per the wishes of its grassroots members, has increasingly focused on policy. “We are now working with MIHARI’s members and partners to help the network gain its own independent legal status and the necessary leadership, operational systems, and governance needed to thrive as a credible national civil society organization,” he wrote in an email.Fire burning through Kirindy Forest in western Madagascar in July, 2019. People set fires in the region to convert forest into corn and peanut cropland, including inside protected areas like Kirindy Forest. Image by Rhett A. Butler / Mongabay.Ingredients for changeIf international NGOs in Madagascar find it difficult to push for specific policy changes or government reform, homegrown groups have more scope to operate. With no need for an accord de siège, these groups do some of the most challenging and important conservation work in the country.AVG campaigns against rosewood and other wildlife trafficking, and helps bust criminals illegally trading endangered tortoises. Just last month, groups within the network publicly called for legislation on investments that better protects the environment and strengthens the voice of local people. Razakamanarina, its president, keeps the consortium local. He has, for example, declined to integrate Mihari or WWF into the AVG network because of their foreign status, he said. Transparency International–Initiative Madagascar speaks out forcefully against corruption and environmental injustice, regularly publishing articles on these subjects in Madagascar’s newspapers. It’s locally registered as its existence predates the TI name: Transparency International allows civil society groups in countries such as Madagascar to take on its name but remain independent. CRAAD-OI, a civil society group based in Antananarivo, teaches people in rural Madagascar about land rights and acts as a watchdog against illicit activity by the extractive industries. CRAAD-OI is locally registered and deliberately avoids accepting money from the U.S. government, U.S. foundations, the World Bank, or the European Union, its coordinator told Mongabay.Such groups are advocating for more robust environmental policies and a fairer distribution of Madagascar’s natural resource wealth. Will this be enough to protect Madagascar from large-scale resource extraction for the benefit of a select few? If there’s one thing that’s sure, it’s that the BINGOs, at least as they are currently set up, won’t have much to say about it.A child inspects her father’s catch after he arrives home to the village of Andavadoaka in southwestern Madagascar. Image by Edward Carver for Mongabay.Banner image: Baobab trees in western Madagascar. Image by Rhett A. Butler / Mongabay.Disclosure: This reporter worked for Blue Ventures from 2014 to 2015.Clarification 12/19/19: The story was amended to clarify the lobbying rules for U.S. charities and foundations.Clarification 12/24/19: WCS sent the following response to this story: WCS has worked in partnership with the Malagasy government and local communities to protect Madagascar’s biodiversity for over 25 years. This includes landscapes such as Makira Natural Park, an area renowned for its intact forests and high biodiversity, but which has also been the target of illegal logging, including for rosewood. WCS worked to create the park and secure resource use rights for over 75 community-managed forest zones within the buffer zone of the park. By supporting local community patrols, bringing in law enforcement authorities when offenders are identified, and supporting sustainable development activities for communities, deforestation levels have been significantly reduced. Rates of deforestation today are three times lower than those that were originally predicted at the start of the project, saving an estimated 70,000 hectares of forest over the course of 15 years. At the national level, the Malagasy government also recently took the ground-breaking decision to withdraw its request to CITES to sell its rosewood stocks. These successes suggest that a constructive, pro-active approach is often the most effective way to ensure long-term conservation of some of the world’s most threatened biodiversity.Citation:Aymoz, B. G., Randrianjafy, V. R., Randrianjafy, Z. J., & Khasa, D. P. (2013). Community management of natural resources: A case study from Ankarafantsika National Park, Madagascar. Ambio, 42(6), 767-775.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the editor 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

In other news: Environmental stories from around the web, December 20, 2019

first_imgThere are many important conservation and environmental stories Mongabay isn’t able to cover.Here’s a digest of some of the significant developments from the week.If you think we’ve missed something, feel free to add it in the comments.Mongabay does not vet the news sources below, nor does the inclusion of a story on this list imply an endorsement of its content. Tropical forestsCocoa production continues to cause deforestation in Ivory Coast (France 24).Scientists trying to save a critically endangered tree in India faced unique challenges (The Revelator).Nigeria has plans to restore shrinking Lake Chad, but it will cost $50 billion (EnviroNews Nigeria).Liberia’s Forest Development Authority has partnered with an NGO for the first time to protect a forest community (FrontPageAfrica).A species of spider that’s new to science can cause human flesh to rot with its venom (Science Times).Disaster management of wildfires could help stave off the global heating they cause (U.N. Environment Programme).Even as the tiger population in Nepal grows, tigers there are dying more frequently (The Revelator).A recent camera trap survey in Laos turned up no evidence of tigers, leading scientists to conclude that the big cats are extinct in the Southeast Asian country (The Revelator).Other newsActivists have come together to stop a pipeline that would traverse mountains and Native American land in the eastern U.S. (Biographic).His coal company was tanking, but he continued to fund groups dedicated to climate change denial (The New York Times).Meanwhile, rail freight companies also funded climate denialism (The Atlantic).The ocean off of California is swiftly growing more acidic, and more quickly than other marine environments (Los Angeles Times, The New York Times).More climate scientists are becoming advocates of action to slow the rise in global temperatures (Los Angeles Times).Alaska is on the frontlines of climate change but remains dependent on Big Oil (The Washington Post).The largest mining operation in world history is set to start in Namibia (The Atlantic).The evolution of rats is bending to the effects of humans’ attempts to control them (Undark).Indigenous groups in South Africa are getting the remains of their ancestors back (Undark).Investment bankers are playing a role in combatting the global addiction to coal (The Atlantic).NASA will soon be able to track rising sea levels from space (Los Angeles Times).The results of the latest U.N. climate talks in Madrid disappointed many participants and observers (The Economist, The New York Times, The Washington Post).Lionfish, invasive species in parts of the ocean, become more efficient predators as seas warm, worrying researchers (Hakai Magazine).“Active management” of redwoods through burning and logging could be beneficial for the threatened trees — or not; scientists debate the best course of action (Undark).The “shifting baseline” problem has surfaced among young people, as they have trouble pegging the sizes of wildlife populations in the past (New Scientist).Banner image of cacao trees in Peru by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.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. Conservation, Environment, Weekly environmental news update 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