Palm oil giant Korindo silences critical report with cease-and-desist letter

first_imgArticle published by Hans Nicholas Jong Korindo, a major palm oil operator in Indonesia’s Papua region, has sent a cease-and-desist letter to delay the publication of a report highlighting its various violations there.The report was to have been published Sept. 5 by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), but the organization says it’s had to postpone publication indefinitely.Mighty Earth, the campaign group whose focus on Korindo’s operations prompted the two-year FSC investigation, says Korindo effectively robbed local communities of hundreds of millions of dollars in land, natural resources and livelihoods.Korindo says it issued the letter to seek more time to address some points, and denies that it’s threatening litigation over the report. It also says it’s working to address the findings of violations. JAKARTA — The Forest Stewardship Council, the world’s foremost body certifying the sustainable forestry industry, has delayed the publication of its findings into a palm oil company’s operations in Indonesia, following a cease-and-desist letter.The FSC found earlier this year that subsidiaries of Korindo, an Indonesian-South Korean joint venture that’s an FSC associate, had violated the terms of that association by clearing valuable tracts of rainforest in the Papua region. It also found that the companies failed to properly consult local communities about plans to convert their land into oil palm plantations.The full findings of the two-year investigation, compiled into three investigative reports, had been set for publication on Sept. 5. However, Korindo, one of the biggest palm oil companies operating in Papua, sent a letter to the FSC ordering it not to publish further information specific to the findings, in a move perceived as a legal threat.As a result, the FSC has decided to postpone the release of the reports indefinitely, according to FSC Indonesia country manager Hartono Prabowo.“As a standard legal precautionary measure derived from cease-and-desist orders, FSC has postponed publication of further information concerning the Korindo PfA [policy for association] to allow time for our legal team to analyze in full detail the specific requirements included in the document,” he told Mongabay. Hartono added that the FSC’s international secretariat was currently discussing the matter with the organization’s board of directors.Despite the legal threat, he said the FSC remained committed to transparency, without specifying whether the organization would eventually release the reports.“FSC is committed to transparency and the timely release of relevant information on all of its PfA cases and will provide updated and relevant information on the Korindo PfA as soon as this is made possible,” Hartono said.Speakers from various NGOs and campaign organizations pose together with Papuan indigenous peoples during a press conference about Korindo’s cease-and-desist letter in Jakarta, Indonesia. Daniel Sim Ayomi (second from right), the spokesperson of Korindo Papua, takes issue with Mighty Earth’s claim about the company’s operation in Papua, saying that the organization should go to the field and ask all indigenous peoples, not just one or two people. Image courtesy of Mighty Earth.‘Something to hide’The investigation was prompted by a complaint filed by Mighty Earth, a campaign group that has highlighted Korindo’s practices in Papua. In response to the latest development, Mighty Earth lambasted Korindo for sending the cease-and-desist letter to the FSC.“Korindo is using the threat of legal action to bury the FSC’s findings and suppress evidence of its wrongdoing,” Mighty Earth senior campaign director Deborah Lapidus said. “These are not the actions of an innocent party. Korindo’s willing embrace of bullying tactics is proof they have something to hide.”Anselmus Amo, a pastor with the Papuan indigenous rights organization SKP-KAMe Merauke, which has been advocating for some of the communities affected by Korindo’s operations, said he was surprised about the letter to the FSC. He said the company had previously shown a willingness to remedy its mistakes.“I was surprised because why did the company threaten [the FSC] using the cease-and-desist letter?” he told Mongabay. “Actually this harms Korindo itself. The more these problems remain, the more harmful they are.”Luwy Leunufna, Korindo’s senior manager for resources management, denied that the company was threatening litigation against the FCS if it released the reports.“That’s the perception of Mighty Earth,” he said. “I don’t know that they have made a conclusion like that.”Luwy said the company had only asked the FSC to hold off on publishing the reports so that the company could clarify some points, without specifying what those points were.“We just want to be given space for us to clarify,” he said. “If FSC ended up publishing [the reports], we’re not in a position [to forbid them]. We just told [the FSC] that we needed time to clarify.”Luwy added that Korindo had nothing to hide. “We don’t close off any information. All information [that’s] needed, we’re open to submit them.”A pile of wood that has been prepared to be burned in land controlled by Korindo in Papua. Photo courtesy of Mighty EarthAdmission of ‘guilt’Following its investigation, the FSC announced in July that Korindo would continue to be associated with the certification body, but that it must “secure remedy” for the damage it had done in Papua or else face expulsion from the organization.It said it would “closely monitor Korindo’s progress of the measures and conditions stipulated by FSC. Failure to satisfactorily meet these conditions would be the basis for FSC to end its association with the company.”After the announcement, Korindo acknowledged that some of its activities were not in full compliance with the certification body’s policies, including the “destruction of high conservation values in forestry operations” and “significant conversion of forests to plantations or non-forest use.” Korindo also said that its practice of obtaining the free, prior and informed consent of local communities might not have met FSC standards. The company said it would fix its mistakes to meet those standards.“The Korindo Group agrees to collaborate in good faith and work with FSC in a constructive way and in a safe environment to implement appropriate measures and to take necessary actions in order to mitigate any past negative impacts,” the company said on its website.Mighty Earth campaign director Phil Aikman said Korindo’s statement was a sign that it had “accepted its guilt.” However, Korindo’s letter contradicts that good will, he said, which might lead to the termination of Korindo’s association with the FSC.“So on one hand, they want to work collaboratively with all stakeholders,” Aikman said. “On the other hand, they want to sue the investigators. So Korindo remains at risk of being disassociated and dispelled from FSC. If Korindo fails to solve these problems, then FSC executive board will cut ties [with Korindo].”As such, Aikman said, Korindo must “remove the legal threats against FSC, and support FSC in publishing these reports. They need to accept their responsibilities for their wrongdoings.”Aikman also urged Korindo to return customary lands, resolve social conflicts and grievances, and pay fair compensation to local communities for lost land, natural resources and livelihoods.“I will say that having foreknowledge of these reports, the amount that they had effectively robbed from the communities run [into] hundreds of millions of dollars,” he said. “They also need to restore areas equivalent to how much they destroyed. So if Korindo wants to remain with FSC, all of its operation has to comply with FSC standards.”An access road into one of Korindo’s concessions in Papua. Photo courtesy of Mighty EarthFixing the mistakesAmo said publishing the reports would be a key step toward resolving the problems.“It’s better to publish these investigative reports by FSC so that we can know where we have to solve,” he said.Responding to the activists’ demand, the FSC’s Hartono said stakeholders didn’t have to wait for the reports to be published to start making changes.“Tangible and meaningful progress in Korindo’s future operations can be achieved with or without publication of FSC’s investigation reports,” he said. “FSC is fully committed to continue the improvement process with Korindo for the benefit of Indonesia’s forests and its local Indigenous Communities as agreed by Korindo and presented by FSC in its conclusion on the case.”Hartono said Korindo had started taking steps to fix its mistakes, but it’s too early to say whether there’s been progress on the ground yet.“Apart from the disagreement on the publication of FSC’s investigation reports, Korindo are so far following the steps expected to prepare the improvements expected of them,” he said. “However, in terms of progress in the field, it is still too early in the process to expect specific progress. A roadmap, designed through a multi-stakeholder consultation, must first be designed and implemented for any initial progress to materialize.” Banner image: Forest in West Papua. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay. Clarification 9/27/2019:  The caption of the first photo in this article previously misidentified one of the people in the photo, and it has been updated to say he’s from Korindo.  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 Conservation, Deforestation, Environment, Forests, Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Rights, Land Conflict, Land Rights, Palm Oil, Plantations, Rainforest Deforestation, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforests, Threats To Rainforests, Tropical Deforestation, Tropical Forests FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

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Call for scientists to engage in environmental movements strikes chord

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 Biodiversity, Carbon Emissions, Civil Disobedience, Climate Change, Climate Science, Conservation, Earth Science, Endangered Species, Environment, Extinction, Global Warming, Global Warming Mitigation, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Protests, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation Article published by John Cannoncenter_img Scientists have a “moral duty” to partake in environmental movements such as the Extinction Rebellion and the Global Climate Strike, a pair of ecologists argues.The engagement of scientists could spark a deeper interest in — and action to address — these issues, they write.The participation of scientists will also lend credibility to the urgency of such movements, the scientists say. Cataloging the growing number of declining species or tracking the relentless rise of temperatures around the world today can make for some dark days for scientists in these areas of study — scientists like ecologist Claire Wordley.“I was feeling very despairing about the situation, particularly climate change and what we were doing to the world,” Wordley, who has studied the influence of agriculture on bats in India and worked to promote evidence-based conservation policy at the University of Cambridge in the U.K., told Mongabay.One ray of hope, which sparked her own involvement in movements such as the Extinction Rebellion and the Global Climate Strike, has been the rising tide of activism taking aim at the set of ecological crises facing the world today.“To me, seeing that people were really willing to rise up against that was very uplifting,” Wordley said.Claire Wordley at a protest on Blackfriar’s Bridge in London. Image by Jane Carpenter.In fact, she said she thinks more scientists should get involved — and not just because it will make them feel better. Wordley and fellow conservation scientist Charlie Gardner, in a commentary published Sept. 2 in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, argue that scientists have a “moral duty” to join the movements focused on environmental issues like climate change and species extinction.The collaboration began on the heels of an opinion piece that Wordley wrote for Mongabay in December 2018 encouraging environmentalists to engage in the then-nascent Extinction Rebellion. Reading it prompted Gardner to get in touch, and the two researchers began working on the current commentary to get scientists more involved.Wordley and Gardner said they found the lack of representation from the scientific community surprising.“It just struck me as both a bit odd that the people who know most about the crises we face were not getting involved,” Gardner said in an interview. “I think we have a moral responsibility, given the urgency of the situations we face, to act on our knowledge.”A pink boat, named after murdered Honduran activist Berta Cáceres, in Oxford Circus, London, April 2019. Image by Louise Gardner.Scientists might worry that participating in protests or civil disobedience could cloud their objectivity. But as Wordley points out, the science in these fields isn’t “neutral.”“If you’re working as a conservation scientist, you’re already advocating. You’re already taking a position that we should be conserving these species,” she said. “I don’t think it’s going that much further to then go and support the people who agree with the positions that you’ve drawn out from your science.”“The science has been done,” Gardner added. “Now it’s about acting on that.”Similarly, researchers might worry about the erosion of the public’s trust when they’re seen carrying banners or blocking a road as a way of drawing attention to these problems. But the pair cites a study after the 2017 March for Science in Washington, D.C., demonstrating that scientists’ participation didn’t change public perceptions of their credibility.On the contrary, Gardner said he thinks that engagement by scientists could ignite deeper interest in — and action to address — these issues.“That makes people sit up and take notice and think, ‘Wow, this must really be serious,’” he said. “As far as I’m concerned, science is one tool that we have in our toolbox for addressing the environmental crisis, and I’m prepared to use whatever tools that we have.”Claire Wordley, right, joins Extinction Rebellion protesters blocking Blackfriar’s Bridge, London. Image by Jane Carpenter.By participating, the researchers write, they can help ensure that the people involved in the movements are armed with the most accurate information. Gardner said that a group of scientists are planning to attend the next round of Extinction Rebellion protests beginning Oct. 7 in the U.K., where they’ll wear white lab coats and carry signs inviting participants to ask them questions.Wordley said she’s sympathetic to concerns about what an arrest record might mean, especially for researchers working in foreign countries who might worry about losing their visas. But they can find other ways to support the movements, she said.“We can give talks, act as media spokespeople, write or speak publicly about why we have embraced civil disobedience, or support organisational tasks,” Wordley and Gardner write.There are signs that the scientific community is taking notice. On Sept. 19, more than 200 researchers in Australia signed a letter supporting the Extinction Rebellion. And a recent study in the journal Frontiers in Communication found that these events are triggering action on the part of the public.Wordley and Gardner said they’ve received emails and tweets expressing support for the ideas they laid out in the commentary. It’s also caught the eyes of readers online: Out of more than 180,000 papers published in the past three months, the commentary ranks 31st, according to Altmetric, which tracks the online activity of scientific publications.“What that says to me is that scientists were waiting for someone to say this,” Gardner said, adding that, given the stakes, just producing the science is not enough. “All of us as individuals have a choice, and if we choose inaction, we’re choosing climate breakdown.”This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 300 outlets worldwide to strengthen coverage of the climate story.This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 300 outlets worldwide to strengthen coverage of the climate story.Banner image of protesters on Blackfriar’s Bridge in London by Jane Carpenter.John Cannon is a staff writer at Mongabay. Find him on Twitter: @johnccannonClarification: Claire Wordley’s publication written for Mongabay in December 2019 was an opinion piece. The article has been updated to reflect this fact.Citations:Gardner, C. J., & Wordley, C. F. R. (2019). Scientists must act on our own warnings to humanity. Nature Ecology & Evolution, 3(9), 1271–1272. doi:10.1038/s41559-019-0979-ySwim, J. K., Geiger, N., & Lengieza, M. L. (2019). Climate Change Marches as Motivators for Bystander Collective Action . Frontiers in Communication. doi:10.3389/fcomm.2019.00004FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

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Demand for charcoal threatens the forest of Madagascar’s last hunter-gatherers

first_imgThe Mikea, who number around 1,000 people, are facing what many of them say is an existential environmental problem.Their ancestral forest in southwestern Madagascar is partly protected inside a national park.However, it is rapidly being chopped down to supply a growing demand for charcoal, the country’s primary source of cooking fuel.Some Mikea, having lived their entire lives hunting and gathering, are facing a shortage of game and other food and are now considering whether they must abandon the forest, and their way of life, for good. MIKEA FOREST, Madagascar — A spear, an ax, a fire starter crafted from cow horn, a hand-carved pipe, and tobacco: these are all of Bezery’s material possessions, and he carries them at all times. A member of the Mikea tribe, the last group of hunter-gatherers in Madagascar, Bezery has lived off food he gathers from the forest for his entire life — 60 years, perhaps, although he said he doesn’t know his age. He’s gone years without drinking anything, relying instead on a water-rich yam called balo.Having grown up, married and raised his children in the forest, he knows no other way of life. Now, however, he’s facing a crushing predicament. He says he must leave the forest to find work. “The forest is all I know, I don’t want to leave,” he told Mongabay while sitting by a campfire, smoking his pipe. “If there’s enough food I want to stay, but there is just not enough food in the forest anymore.”The Mikea, which unofficial sources often put at 1,000 to 2,000 people in the apparent absence of a rigorous population estimate, are facing what many of them say is an existential environmental problem. The tribe lives in a roughly 370,000 hectare (914,000 acre) swath of dry and spiny forest in southwestern Madagascar’s Atsimo-Andrefana region that bears their name, Mikea Forest. About half the forest, which is home to numerous unique and endangered animals, including several species of lemur, has been protected since 2011 as Mikea National Park.Like many of Madagascar’s forests, Mikea Forest is rapidly being chopped down to supply a growing demand for charcoal, the country’s primary source of cooking fuel.last_img read more

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As wildfires roil Sumatra, some villages have abandoned the burning

first_imgAgriculture, Community Development, Community-based Conservation, Conservation, Environment, Farming, Fires, Fishing, Forest Fires, Forestry, Forests, Governance, Green, Haze, Indigenous Peoples, Mangroves, Plantations, Rainforests, Rivers, Southeast Asian Haze, Sustainable Development, Tourism, Tropical Forests 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 Devastating fires and haze in 2015, as well as the threat of arrest, have prompted some villages in Sumatra to end the tradition of burning the land for planting.The villages of Upang Ceria and Gelebak Dalam also been fire-free since then, even as large swaths of forest elsewhere in Sumatra continue to burn.Village officials have plans to develop ecotourism as another source of revenue, as well as restore mangroves and invest in agricultural equipment that makes the farmers’ work easier. UPANG CERIA/GELEBAK DALAM, Indonesia — Boat drivers sometimes decide not to work when the smoke is thick on the Musi River out of fear of a dangerous collision. For the last three months wildfires here in South Sumatra have enveloped much of the province in a dense haze. The smoke sticks to your clothes and makes it difficult to see the way forward.“The fires make life hard for us,” Abdul Hamid, the head of Upang Ceria, a village on the Musi River outside Palembang, the provincial capital, told Mongabay in early September. “The haze makes us sick and it’s difficult for us to move around.”In September the national aviation authority rerouted scores of domestic and international flights as visibility fell to only a few hundred meters at the airport in Palembang. Schools closed for several days in the city, costing children class time soon after the beginning of the new school year.Satellite data on fires from the World Resources Institute (WRI) indicate there were more than 22,000 fire alerts in September in South Sumatra, 9.3 percent of the total number of alerts throughout the Indonesian archipelago. Fires here have burned on and off ever since the dry season began more than three months ago.The fires spread easily across Indonesia’s vast peat swamp zones, which have been widely drained and dried for agriculture. Many planters also use fire to clear and fertilize the land, though the practice is illegal.However, a handful of villages in the province have managed to stay free from fires since the catastrophic El Niño weather event in 2015, when more than half a million Indonesians were sickened by haze due to a prolonged dry season.“For three years we have been free from any fires,” said Abdul Hamid. “Almost everyone has given up burning grass and straw.“Now they compost it to make fertilizer.”Upang Ceria sits mostly on peat soil and its 2,500 inhabitants occupy an area of 25 square kilometers (10 square miles). The village is located on the banks of the Musi River, which flows out to sea toward the tin-mining island of Bangka off Sumatra’s eastern coast.Many people here used to set fires to clear land to replant crops and trees, but Addul says fear of arrest by the police or military has changed that behavior.One knock-on effect of wildfires is the pressure placed on local food supply chains. But the absence of fires near the Musi River in Upang Ceria means the community can still fish in mangrove swamps on the riverbanks.Residents of Upang Ceria fish in the mangroves by the Musi River. Image by Nopri Ismi for Mongabay.The village of Gelebak Dalam lies around 50 kilometers (31 miles) downstream of Upang Ceria. Its 2,000 or so inhabitants live surrounded by rice fields and rubber plantations.Hendri Sani, the village chief of Gelebak Dalam, also sees clear changes in the way the community perceives the risks caused by fires to clear land. Since the catastrophic 2015 Southeast Asia haze crisis, Hendri told Mongabay, people here have begun to warn their neighbors against any open burning.“We must turn our backs on this tradition because it is bad for the environment,” Hendri said. “Things are different now and it’s been banned by the government.”Hendri explains how fire was an ingrained practice among farmers in Gelebak Dalam until only relatively recently.However, better access to the heavy machinery required to work the land more productively means the community is increasingly able to bury grass, straw and other agricultural surplus into a makeshift landfill.“We just pile it all into a hole using an excavator,” he says.Upriver in Upang Ceria, the elders are drawing up plans to market the village as an ecotourism destination with support from the Banyuasin district government. Abdul Hamid wants to highlight to visitors the recent environmental initiatives, as well Upang Ceria’s history as one of the oldest continually inhabited places from the Srivijaya kingdom, which flourished here a millennium ago.“We’re going to focus on tours of the Demang Lebar Daun River as well as Sekoci Island,” Abdul says.Another idea is to restore mangrove trees along the Musi River.“Most of the mangroves here are gone, so we’re going to replant them with help from the Banyuasin district government,” Abdul says.The local government in Gelebak Dalam also wants to designate itself as an ecotourism destination — while continuing to make progress on reforming local agricultural practices.“Our agriculture will actually be more advanced and free from using fire if farmers can be helped with technology and science,” Hendri says. “Because of this I’m determined to buy an excavator on credit to help the community.”This story was first reported by Mongabay’s Indonesia team and published here on our Indonesian site on Sept. 25, 2019.Banner: A resident of Upang Ceria displays a shrimp he caught in the Demang Lebar Daun River, a tributary of the Musi. Locals hope to attract tourists to their villages via river tours and other activities. Image by Nopri Ismi for Mongabay Indonesia.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Article published by mongabayauthorlast_img read more

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Combining negotiation, legal backing and orchids to create ecotourism reserve

first_imgArticle published by Sue Palminteri Biodiversity, Conservation, Conservation Solutions, Deforestation, Ecotourism, Forests, Private Reserves, Protected Areas, Rainforest Conservation, Rainforests, Research, Tropical Forests In Ecuador, the Ceiba Foundation for Tropical Conservation has worked with local landowners to create conservation agreements and sustainable ecotourism ventures in areas otherwise fragmented by intensive human activity.After nearly 20 years, the impacts of two small, family-based initiatives are rippling outwards into the rest of the Andean cloud forest and coastal dry forest.Negotiation, relationship-building, and transparency helped Ceiba earn the landowners’ trust and enable the success of the initiatives. On the 650-hectare (1,600-acre) El Pahuma Orchid Reserve in Andean cloud forest, you can find over 300 species of orchids, and even a handful of endangered spectacled bears. If you had visited the area, in the northwestern corner of Pichincha, Ecuador, 20 years ago, you might not have imagined that this landscape, heavily affected by logging and agriculture, would have become part of an ecological corridor. But time and negotiation have had a positive impact. El Pahuma’s owners used to make their living cutting down timber, and they now run a successful ecotourism business.Ceiba’s founders Catherine Woodward and Joe Meisal (center) with the Lima family at El Pahuma Orchid Reserve in 2000. Image by Catherine Woodward.This unlikely transition came about as the result of a chance encounter. Joe Meisal and Catherine Woodward, (the founders of Ceiba Foundation for Tropical Conservation and biology professors at the University of Wisconsin- Madison) stopped to look at a waterfall that they had spotted during a visit to Ecuador in 1997.  When they met the landowner along one of the trails, he asked, “Would you like to see my orchids?” He showed the biologists his garden, a small collection of orchids that he had collected from fallen trees, and asked them if they thought tourists would be interested in visiting the forest.Woodward and Meisal agreed to meet with the landowner, Ephraim Lima, a week later. When they arrived at the meeting, they found that four generations of the Lima family had turned out to meet with them. In the four-hour conversation that followed, Woodward and Meisal agreed to look for legal solutions to help the Lima family conserve their land.Woodward and Meisal explored the option of forming a conservation easement. This legal figure (‘servidumbre ecológica’ in Spanish) was uncharted territory in Ecuadorian law. It was the first time that a nongovernmental organization and a private landowner entered into a legally-binding conservation agreement. Woodward told Mongabay that this was both a help and a hindrance: it meant that they had to craft the legal framework from scratch, but it also gave them the flexibility to tailor the agreement specifically to the landowner’s needs.Woodward herself wrote much of the original document, with the help of an environmental lawyer. The land was carefully divided up into usage zones. While most of the land was designated as a conservation zone, another section of the land was designated for trails and tourist cabins, and a final patch of land was left to the Lima family, zoned for residential and agricultural use. Woodward said that there was a lot of dialogue back and forth about which parts of the land would be designated for what purposes. The Lima family knew the terrain well and offered suggestions as to which places would be good for trails, lookout points, and bridges.The Stanhopea napoensis orchid from Ecuador. Image by Andreas Key via Flickr. CC 2.0.They took three years to work out the final agreement, which stipulated that the Lima family was obligated to leave the conservation area untouched –no logging, no hunting –for 25 years. (While most conservation easements in the United States are negotiated for perpetuity, Woodward said that such long and definitive time frames are rare in Latin American easements, which tend to range from 25 to 99 years.) In exchange, Ceiba agreed to invest in the infrastructure needed to build an ecotourism business, which would allow the family to make a sustainable income from the land.With the guarantee of a signed easement backing their conservation goals, Ceiba was then able to approach potential donors. The San Diego Orchid Society and Fauna and Flora International funded the next phase of the project: outfitting El Pahuma as an ecotourism destination. The foundation hired a guard and a local project manager to oversee the building of trails, signs, bridges, cabins, and an interpretation center. The Lima family learned book-keeping and management and even received training on how to take care of the orchids, to keep them from flowering too often.Within five years of the initial investment, El Pahuma Orchid Reserve was up and running, and within 10 years, it had become a self-sustaining operation with thousands of visitors.With a successful business in their hands, the family was able to apply for a bank loan to build a restaurant across the highway from the reserve’s entrance. Woodward credits the visibility of the reserve for part of its success in ecotourism: El Pahuma is located less than an hour outside of Quito, along a major highway that many travelers take to the coast or to other tourist destinations like Mindo.  They now receive local tourists escaping from the capital city, foreign tourists who visit as part of a tour package, and study abroad students sent by Ceiba to learn about tropical ecology.Catherine Woodward with students at Lalo Loor reserve. Image courtesy of Ceiba Foundation for Tropical Conservation.In the case of El Pahuma, the conservation easement helped to buy time. Now, in 2019, there are other opportunities and mechanisms in place that encourage conservation. Since 2015, the Lima family has received an economic incentive from the Ecuadorian government’s Socio Bosque program, and the dozens of other reserves and ecolodges that have popped up throughout the cloud forest are evidence of the growth of the ecotourism market. But in the late 1990s, none of these options were available to rural landowners. By working with Ceiba, the Lima family was able to take the lead, becoming ambassadors for conservation in the local community.In 2018, Ceiba was also able to support the Mancomunidad del Chocó Andino (Andean Chocó Commonwealth) and the Maquipucuna Foundation in a petition to declare the Northwestern Pichincha Corridor as a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve, protecting over 280,000 hectares (690,000 acres) of cloud forest ecosystem.Expanding to other areasCeiba has more recently applied similar efforts to a family reserve in an entirely different ecosystem, the tropical dry forest in Ecuador’s coastal province of Manabí.This 200-hectare (500-acre) tract of primary forest is one of the best-preserved semi-deciduous forests in northwestern Manabí province. It’s home to several of this ecosystem’s threatened species, including the critically endangered Ecuadorian white-fronted capuchin (Cebus aequatorialis) and the grey-backed hawk (Pseudastur occidentalis).The Ecuadorian mantled howler monkey is one of the threatened species that lives in the coastal dry forest ecosystem at the Lalo Loor Reserve. Image courtesy of Ceiba Foundation for Tropical Conservation.Eduardo (nicknamed “Lalo”) Loor, a dairy farmer, inherited hundreds of hectares of land from his father. When he found that this patch of primary forest was among them, he decided to leave it as it was. “My father is a nature-lover,” Mariela Loor, the landowner’s daughter, told Mongabay.When Ceiba approached him in 2000, he welcomed their suggestion to designate the land for conservation. There was not as much urgency here as at El Pahuma. The Loor family had another livelihood and had no desire to cut down the forest. Ceiba hired a local guard and local ranch hands to work on the trails, and signed a notarized (but not legally-binding) agreement in 2004, stipulating that the Ceiba would manage the reserve and give Loor a percentage of the revenues. In 2008, Ceiba received a grant to build the visitor’s center and dormitories.The reserve now receives a variety of tourists, volunteers, interns, and students who stay anywhere from a day to a semester. This year, the reserve is transitioning to family management, with Mariela Loor taking over day-to-day operations at the reserve. In addition, this year her father will sign a 30-year conservation easement with Ceiba.The entrance to Lalo Loor reserve. Image courtesy of Ceiba Foundation for Tropical Conservation.Woodward said that on both reserves, time and relationships have been important factors. “Building a relationship of trust with the landowner is critical. You can’t just show up and ask someone to sign the rights to their land away.”Building a conservation corridorThe Lalo Loor Reserve sits at a meeting point between two major ecosystems: the Tumbesino tropical dry forest coming up from Peru and the humid Chocó forest system coming down from the Pacific Coast of Panama. The unique mix of plant and animal species native to the area have earned it a designation as a “biodiversity hotspot.” But sustaining the delicate balance of this ecosystem is an uphill battle here on the coast, where the growth of cities and monocultures have left the forest badly fragmented.Carolina Toapanta, Ceiba’s executive director, based in Manabí, is spearheading the foundation’s next conservation project, collaborating with county and provincial governments: an ecological corridor that will knit together the remaining patches of primary forest in the area. Ceiba hired a team to map out 200,000 hectares (500,000 acres) of conservation area in the counties of Pedernales, Jama, San Vicente, and Sucre. The ACUS (Área de Conservación y Uso Sostenible — Conservation and Sustainable Use Area) agreement will be enforced by local government through zoning restrictions. Toapanta is convinced that working with local people and institutions is the best way to ensure a lasting impact.The El Pahuma and Lalo Loor reserves both started out as small projects –helping a single family find a way to make conservation sustainable. But as the influence of the local families ripples outwards, an entire region begins to come together to work for solutions. Toapanta sees conservation work as a way of empowering the community by helping them think in a different way. “We’re really passionate about seeing that change take place in Manabí.”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

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A scramble for solutions as fall armyworm infestation sweeps Africa

first_imgAgriculture, Environment, Health, Insects, Pesticides Fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda). Image courtesy G. Goergen/IITA via Flickr (CC-NC-SA-2.0) An infestation of fall armyworm has spread rapidly across Africa since it first appeared on the continent in 2016; it’s now been reported in 44 countries, with 80 different types of crops affected.For farmers and policymakers, the go-to solution has been to spray crops with pesticides, but researchers have warned of harm to farmers from unsafe use of the pesticides, as well as impacts on other insects that would otherwise keep the pests in check.Researchers have suggested a biocontrol solution — releasing large numbers of a wasp species known to infest fall armyworm eggs — but doubts remain about how effective it will be in a region with small farms and high crop diversity.There are also calls for better agronomic practices, such as more regular weeding of farms and crop rotation, to deny the pest a year-round supply of its preferred food. Early one morning in April 2017, Anne Anyole found strange caterpillars feeding on her maize crop. At first she thought it was stalk borer, a pest familiar to farmers in western Kenya’s Kakamega county, especially when the weather is dry.Maize is usually planted in March during the onset of the long rains that usually continue into August. But in 2017, it was still dry until early April, and the maize was still low to the ground, barely knee height.Anyole went to the local agrovet, as rural shops supplying agriculture and veterinary products are known in Kenya. They sold her a pesticide commonly used in spraying vegetable pests. Anyole doesn’t usually use pesticides on her farm. She plants maize in March and then weeds it diligently until it’s ready to harvest four or five months later.The caterpillars disappeared after she sprayed her field, but reappeared two or three days later. It was fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda).“I realized that the damage to the crops was increasing and more devastating than ever,” Anyole said. That year, farmers across Kakamega county turned desperately to every alternative, including spraying their crops with laundry detergent and painstakingly picking worms off their crops by hand and crushing them, but nothing proved effective.“Since 2017, I have been harvesting low yields,” Anyole says. “I cannot get surplus to sell and pay school fees for my kids as it is my main source of income.” Where she says she would have harvested 800 kilograms (1,760 pounds) of maize after each of Kenya’s two growing seasons, her fields have yielded barely 250 kilos (550 pounds) per season since the armyworm appeared. Article published by terna gyuse FAW made its first appearance in Africa in Nigeria in 2016. Scientists have not yet established how it reached the continent from Latin America, but once it arrived, it spread rapidly. S. frugiperda moths can migrate more than 500 kilometers (300 miles) before mating and laying their eggs — and can fly much longer distances with favorable winds.In an alarmingly short span of time, the pest spread from West Africa to Southern Africa and then into East Africa. It has now been reported in 44 countries with infestations affecting 80 different crops.“There was a lot of panic by farmers and governments,” says MaryLucy Oronje, a specialist in insects and crop production at the Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International (CABI).An agricultural extension worker in Zambia demonstrating spraying pesticides against fall armyworm. Image by Tigana Chileshe via Wikimedia Commons (CC-SA-4.0)Across the continent, governments urged farmers to protect their crops by spraying them with insecticides. In Rwanda and Zambia, soldiers were deployed to spray maize fields in the fight against FAW.“Most of the insecticides that have been used against FAW are not specific to armyworm, but are broad spectrum chemicals,” Oronje told Mongabay. “They will also kill off bees and other beneficial insects, such as predators and parasitoids that reduce insect pest populations and benefit indirectly as they help reduce other insect pest populations.”Marc Kenis, head of risk analysis and invasion ecology at CABI, says that the problem of using insecticides is exacerbated by the fact that many smallholders do not protect themselves adequately when using insecticides, or else use banned insecticides.Kenis told Mongabay that insecticides could also affect natural enemies of the FAW and other pests on farm, which may favor the emergence of secondary pests and oblige farmers to use more and more insecticides.Oronje adds, “It’s possible that other animals are also affected and will continue to be affected by these insecticides. The extensive use of pesticides in Africa will later have impacts on biodiversity.”She told Mongabay that no studies have been carried out to evaluate the impact on farmers themselves of the heavy use of insecticides since FAW’s appearance, but she worries that few smallholders know how to use these toxic chemicals safely or have the right protective equipment.Kenis is among the researchers looking for ways to control fall armyworm that will be both cheaper and less risky to human health and the environment than hugely increased insecticide use. One such solution is what is known as biological control, in this case attacking fall armyworm with another species. This can be done either by introducing a new predatory species or by stimulating local populations of natural enemies.T. remus parasitizes fall armyworm eggs. Image courtesy CIMMYT via Flickr (CC-NC-SA-2.0)Earlier this year, Kenis was the lead author of a study published in the April 2019 issue of the journal Insects, which announced that at least one natural predator of fall armyworm is already present in Africa. Telenomus remus is a tiny black wasp with a shiny body less than a millimeter long. It injects its eggs into fall armyworm eggs, where they develop into tiny white larvae barely visible to the naked eye. These larvae may be small, but they have a big appetite: they eat their hosts, and an adult wasp emerges instead of an armyworm caterpillar.Kenis says deploying T. remus or another local parasitoid against fall armyworm poses hardly any risk.“There is no health risk since a parasitoid cannot harm humans. The environmental risk is also limited since T. remus already occurs in Africa and has already found its place in the ecosystem,” he says.There’s a catch, though: some predatory insects of this type naturally reach high levels of parasitism (sometimes above 50 percent), but studies of T. remus in the Americas have found the parasitoid is not an effective biocontrol agent by itself, says Kenis, because its natural parasitism rates are very low.Deploying the tiny wasps as an effective biological control would involve breeding batches of hundreds of thousands of them on cardboard trays of FAW eggs, and releasing them into afflicted fields as they hatch. In the Americas, this method has achieved parasitism rates of greater than 90 percent.“We can hope that in Africa, they may be able to do the same, thus inflicting high mortality in each FAW generation, which T. remus cannot do,” Kenis says.The main challenge for using T. remus will be to find cost-effective methods to deploy it in the field. It has been used successfully in large-scale commercial operations in Mexico and the Bahamas to protect high-value vegetable crops grown in relatively small areas. Effectively controlling fall armyworm across much larger areas will be difficult, says Kenis: “But we hope to find very cheap ways to produce T. remus which could make it affordable as well for smallholders.”Frederic Baudron, a senior scientist and systems agronomist from International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre-CIMMYT Zimbabwe, is skeptical. “When an exotic pest is introduced to a new continent, it generally comes without its suite of natural enemies (think of the massive rabbit problem in Australia for example). It takes time for local natural enemies to control the pest (and doesn’t always happen). In addition, compared to the Americas, African agriculture is characterized by its very low input use, small farms, high diversity and high heterogeneity. Most solutions are thus not transferable,” Baudron says.He tells Mongabay that biocontrol is not the focus of most interventions in Africa. There are calls for better agronomic practices such as more regular weeding of farms and crop rotation, to deny the pest a year-round supply of its preferred food, but as fall armyworm spreads rapidly, most interventions in the continent have turned to pesticides — for farmers and policymakers alike, it feels like a familiar and decisive intervention, despite the cost.Fall armyworm infestations leave crops looking devastated. Image by Peter Steward via Flickr (CC-NC-2.0)“This year, cases of FAW in Kenya, for example, are expected to be higher because of the delay in onset of rainfall, different planting times by farmers and high temperatures recorded this year,” Oronje says. The warmer the weather, the faster fall armyworm passes through its life cycle. Infestations have been recorded across the western part of the country where maize is a popular crop; the extent of the damage will only be assessed after September’s harvest has been tallied.“There is a need to make scientific decisions on the risks of biocontrols and ensure that it only kills FAW,” Oronje says. “African governments need to hasten trials because the increasing temperatures will escalate the reproduction of FAW.“We hope that this is something that can be upscaled after approvals from governments,” she adds.As research into biological controls and other environmentally friendly solutions continues, Oronje says there will need to be increased education for farmers and agricultural extension officers about which insecticides work best, and how to use them safely.“The consensus in the continent is that a combination of these three approaches — pesticides, biocontrol and agronomic practices — will be required to effectively control FAW,” Baudron says.Banner image: Field inspection for fall armyworm in Kakamega County, Kenya. Image by Gilbert Nakweya for Mongabay.CitationKenis, M., Du Plessis, H., Van den Berg, J., Ba, M. N., Goergen, G., Kwadjo, K. E., … Polaszek, A. (2019). Telenomus remus, a candidate parasitoid for the biological control of Spodoptera frugiperda in Africa, is already present on the continent. Insects, 10(4), 92. doi:10.3390/insects10040092 Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

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Amazon deforestation rises to 11 year high in Brazil

first_imgOfficial data published today by Brazil’s National Space Research Institute INPE shows deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon between August 1, 2018 and July 31, 2019 amounted to 9,762 square kilometers, an increase of 30 percent over last year.The increase in deforestation was expected given global attention to large-scale fires that blackened the skies above Brazil’s largest city this past August. Deforestation tracking systems had been showing increased forest clearing throughout 2019.Deforestation in 2019 was the highest since 2008 and represents a doubling in forest loss over 2012.Environmentalists fear that deforestation could continue to accelerate given Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s push to open the Amazon to more logging, large-scale mining, and industrial agriculture. Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon surged more than 30 percent over the past year according to official data published today by Brazil’s National Space Research Institute, INPE. The data, which confirms the trend detected by multiple deforestation alert systems in recent months, shows that forest clearing in Earth’s largest rainforest stands at the highest level since 2008.INPE’s data, which is preliminary, estimates some 9,762 square kilometers (3,769 square miles) — an area larger than Yellowstone National Park — were cut down between August 1, 2018 and July 31, 2019. That’s over 2,200 square kilometers (849 square miles) more than was cleared the prior year. A final assessment for this year will be released in 2020.Official PRODES data showing annual deforestation (Aug 1-Jul 31 year) in the Brazilian Amazon since 1988.Short-term and long-term deforestation data in the Brazilian Amazon, according to INPE. The short-term data comes from INPE’s DETER deforestation detection system, while the long-term data comes from INPE’s PRODES system.As has been the case every year since 2005, Pará led all states in the Brazilian Amazon at 3,862 square kilometers deforested in 2019. It was followed by Mato Grosso (1,685 square kilometers), Amazonas (1,421 square kilometers), and Rondônia (1,245 square kilometers). Roraima experienced the biggest one-year increase in deforestation, with forest clearance rising 217 percent to 617 square kilometers.Pará has now lost more than 62,000 square kilometers of Amazon forest since 2004, an area the size the nation of Georgia or the U.S. state of West Virginia. The majority of forest clearing in the Amazon is for cattle pasture.The new figures generally exclude areas of forest recently lost to fire, which is potentially significant given the extent and severity of fires in August and September 2019. These fires made global headlines when smoke blackened the skies of Sao Paulo, spurring widespread outcry and calls to boycott Brazilian agricultural products.When fires were at their peak, scientists, conservationists, indigenous rights groups, and environmental activists blamed roll-backs of environmental protections and anti-environmental rhetoric by the Jair Bolsonaro administration for worsening the situation.After initially denying this year’s fires were a problem, and then shifting blame for the blazes to NGOs, Bolsonaro sent in the military to fight fires. But critics say the administration still hasn’t reversed course on its push to cut environmental regulations and encourage conversion of vast swathes of the Amazon for industrial agriculture, mining, and logging. Those complaints suggest that the underlying issues driving the increase in deforestation haven’t been addressed.Aerial view of a large burned area in the city of Candeiras do Jamari in the state of Rondônia. Image by Victor Moriyama / Greenpeace.Scientists have warned that should deforestation continue on its current trajectory, Brazil is unlikely to meet its climate commitments. While deforestation in 2019 only amounted to about 0.3 percent of the forest remaining in the Brazilian Amazon, Brazil’s climate targets are predicated on reducing deforestation. But deforestation has now more than doubled since its low of 4,571 square kilometers (1,765 square miles) in 2012.Researchers are also alarmed that ongoing deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon could have long-term implications for the health of the biome and the wider functioning of critical ecosystem function in the region. Some models suggest the Amazon may be near a tipping point where the combination of deforestation and rising temperatures could trigger a rapid shift in rainfall patterns across vast parts of the Amazon Basin. Such a shift could lead to a die-off scenario where large areas of rainforest could be replaced by a drier woodland savanna akin to the Cerrado ecosystem south and east of the Amazon. Reduced rainfall would affect water availability in southern South America, including the continent’s agricultural heartland and largest cities from Sao Paulo to Buenos Aires.Natural forest covering in the Brazilian Amazon according to data aggregated by MapBiomas. The Brazilian Amazon accounts for nearly two-thirds of the Amazon rainforest. The entirety of this vast biome is shared between eight countries.Header image: Aerial view of a large burned area within the rural portion of Candeiras do Jamari municipality in Rondônia state. Image by Victor Moriyama / Greenpeace. Article published by Rhett Butler Amazon Rainforest, Conservation, Deforestation, Environment, Forests, Green, Monitoring, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforests, Remote Sensing, satellite data, Threats To Rainforests, Threats To The Amazon, Tropical Forests 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

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Child Labor on the Rise

first_imgThe Coordinator of the Division of Child Labor at the Ministry of Labor, Patience S. Heah, has said the unavailability of budgetary allocation to implement programs to tackle child labor, is a major contributor to increased child Labor in Liberia.Madam Heah named the low capacity of social partners due to a lack of technical support and logistic, limited commitment of stakeholders and the lack of coordination among them as some of the other factors.She defined child labor as “work undertaken by children under the minimum working age as stipulated in national legislation in accordance with the ILO Convention 138 .”She made the statement Thursday, February 27, at the opening of a two-day interactive workshop for media professionals.The workshop, under the theme: “Reporting Children’s issue and Consequences of Child Labor and Abuse,” was held at the Monrovia Christian Fellowship Hall in Monrovia.Madam Heah stated that child labor instances are rampant across the country and that they primarily exist in the mining, agricultural, and informal sectors.  She said that children are also used for illicit activities such as promotion of criminal activities and smuggling of narcotic substances.Discussing how the ministry would enforce the fight against child labor, Ms. Heah explained that the Labor Ministry is prepared to fight against child labor in the country:  “We are going to work hard in fighting against child labor and make sure the children are taken off the streets. This task is difficult because there would be no proper care given to these children due to insufficient support from parents and guardians. In spite of this, we will continue to work towards solving the problem.”She defined a child as any person below the age of 18 years in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the child (UNCRC) and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of a child. It is also in line with ECOWAS child policy.Making reference to the ILO convention 182 she said, “Liberia ratified the ILO Convention 182 in June 2003, but is yet to ratify Convention 138. The knowledge base on child labor in Liberia is relatively weak and grass roots commitment to reduce child labor is poor.”Child Labor is viewed by many as something only taking place outside a child’s home, while the description and analysis of the incidence and nature of child labor in Liberia draws on data collected under the 2010 Labor Force Survey (LFS) as its main source.“The absence of a general prohibition of work is likely to harm the health, safety, and morals of children less than 18 years, as is the absence of a clear enforceable list which defines these types of work,” Ms. Heah concluded.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Mixed day for the area’s clubs

first_imgThere was no Christmas cheer at Loftus Road, where QPR were beaten 2-1 by West Brom and returned to the bottom of the Premier League.After Chris Brunt’s long-range strike and keeper Robert Green’s own goal, Djibril Cisse netted for Rangers but they were unable to find an equaliser.There was also disappointment for Fulham at Craven Cottage, where they led Southampton through Dimitar Berbatov’s early goal until Rickie Lambert’s 85th-minute penalty rescued a 1-1 draw for the visitors.But there were wins for Chelsea, who won 1-0 at Norwich, and in-form Brentford, who enjoyed a 3-1 victory at Colchester.Juan Mata scored a first-half winner for the Blues, while Brentford were 2-0 up by the 12th minute courtesy of goals from Marcello Trotta and Adam Forshaw.Colchester had Josh Thompson sent off before pulling a goal back through Drey Wright, and Brentford were themselves reduced to 10 men when Tom Adeyemi was dismissed.But defender Harlee Dean’s late goal sealed another triumph for Uwe Rosler’s side – their fifth consecutive league win.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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

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Alcohol, drugs ‘key to violent crime’

first_img20 September 2013The police will step up their fight against alcohol and drug abuse, as these are key factors underlying violent crime in South Africa, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa said after the release of the country’s national crime statistics in Pretoria on Thursday.He said that while the police were doing their utmost to arrest drug lords and destroy drug factories, more needed to be done to tackle substance abuse, as this – combined with poverty and unemployment – was frustrating efforts to reduce levels of serious crime in South Africa.He said the police would step up their efforts to clamp down on liquor outlets that operated without licences and sold alcohol to under-age youngsters.Speaking to SAnews, Mthethwa said that unemployment and lack of recreational and sports facilities contributed to substance abuse, adding that he was concerned at the fact that the users of drugs were becoming younger.He said strong partnerships were needed to beat drug abuse, with government departments and the community having a role to play in steering people away from drugs and rehabilitating drug addicts.He said the Asset Forfeiture Unit was conducting lifestyle audits on alleged drug lords that had been fingered by members of various communitiesDespite crimes like murder going up in the past year, Mthethwa said a reduction in other categories – including sexual assault – was encouraging.Gareth Newham, the head of the governance, crime and justice division at the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), said he was disappointed at the increase in crimes like murder, residential burglary and car hijackings.“The positives are that the overall crime categories are going down and that there has been reduction in thefts and shop lifting and assault. I think we are a bit concerned with the increase in murder and attempted murder and assault [with intent to do grievous bodily harm].”Newham also called on the police to release crime statistics on a monthly basis in order to the public, businesses and other organisations to identify crime trends and so to enhance awareness and safety.Source: SAnews.gov.zalast_img read more

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