Orangutan habitats being cleared in areas near palm oil mills, report finds

first_imgArticle published by mongabayauthor Agriculture, Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Deforestation, Endangered Species, Environment, Forestry, Forests, Green, Logging, Mammals, Orangutans, Palm Oil, Plantations, Rainforests, Tropical Forests, Wildlife A new study identifies the palm oil mills in Indonesia with the most clearance of orangutan habitat happening around them.The top 10 mills are all on the island of Borneo and are producing palm oil that makes its way into the supply chains of consumer goods giants such as Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, Kellogg’s, General Mills, Avon, Mars, Mondelēz and more ⁠— companies that promised long ago to stop buying palm oil linked to deforestation.Just because deforestation is happening around a palm oil mill does not mean it is being done by an entity supplying that mill with palm fruits. But it is a strong red flag that this may be the case.Several of the consumer goods giants contacted by Mongabay said they were either actively investigating the deforestation or suspending trading with the mills. Others were more vague in their responses. Rainforest clearance during the month of May destroyed orangutan habitat near 144 different palm oil mills in Indonesia, according to a report by MapHubs, an open-data platform and technology company that monitors natural resources.The top 10 mills, all located on the island of Borneo, lost an average of 104 hectares (257 acres) each. Among the companies that source their palm oil from these mills are household names such as Avon, Colgate-Palmolive, General Mills, Hershey, Kellogg’s, Mars, Mondelēz, Nestlé, Pepsico, Procter & Gamble, PZ Cussons, Reckitt Benckiser and Unilever.“The report is a risk analysis,” said Leo Bottrill, the founder and CEO of MapHubs. It’s intended to “highlight that both major traders and buyers with NDPE [no deforestation, no peat, no exploitation] policies, are buying from mills located in high risk areas for orangutan habitat clearance.”The 10 palm oil mills in Indonesia with the most orangutan habitat being destroyed around them are circled in red. Image courtesy of MapHubs.Just because the forest clearance takes place near a palm oil mill doesn’t mean it is being done in order to supply that mill, or even to plant oil palm. While some major buyers of palm oil have mapped out their supply chains to the mill level, untangling the ever-shifting networks of farms, plantations and brokers that sell to third-party mills is something no large firm has yet managed to do. But achieving this “full traceability” is critical if palm oil users are to prove their supply chains are free of deforestation and other ills.While some of the deforestation identified in the report occurred on lands licensed out to oil palm planters, others are happening in the surrounding forests, making it difficult to track who is responsible. Many mills process palm fruits sourced from smallholder plantations where ownership and land management agreements are often unclear.However, given that palm fruits begin to spoil within 24 hours of harvest, most are processed by mills within a 25-to-50-kilometer (15-to-30-mile) radius. Therefore, there is a high degree of probability that those responsible for clearing the forest, if they are doing so to plant oil palm, are banking on being able to sell their product to nearby mills. By identifying those mills now, the entities engaged in deforestation will learn that there is no nearby market for their crop, since most major consumers purchasing from those mills have established strongly worded zero-deforestation commitments that apply to their entire supply chain.In practical application, however, the level of engagement in the process — and response to allegations — varies significantly among the companies buying palm oil from these mills. While some rely on third-party certifications, other companies have signed on with monitoring systems that give them direct oversight of their entire supply chain. This additional step, they say, allows them respond more quickly and effectively to reports like this one.A palm oil mill in Indonesia. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.Colgate-Palmolive, Nestlé, PZ Cussons and Reckitt Benckiser have each signed on with Starling, a service that uses satellites and remote sensing to monitor a company’s supply chain. Each of these companies told Mongabay they were actively investigating the deforestation, using their own satellite data to directly engage suppliers and clarify what actions will be taken.Nestlé said it had suspended trading with two of the mills, and was investigating the others named in the MapHubs report. PZ Cussons said it had already stopped sourcing from two mills, and was speaking with its suppliers about the others. Both Colgate-Palmolive and Reckitt Benkiser also said they were verifying the reports, and would terminate business with any company falling short of their no-deforestation commitments.While several other companies may not have the benefit of live monitoring, they did indicate they were actively responding to the MapHubs report. Unilever said it had already suspended one of the mills as a supplier due to previous violations, and was conducting further investigations to ensure the other mills are complying with its zero-deforestation commitment. Procter & Gamble also previously ended trading with three of the mills identified by MapHubs, but said it would look more closely at the others it still deals with. PepsiCo said it would thoroughly investigate the issue.Meanwhile, Kellogg’s responded to the report by simply reaffirming its commitment to sustainable palm oil, while General Mills said that since it had no evidence that the mills it sources from owned the concessions where deforestation was occurring, it did not consider the problem to be part of its supply chain.Avon, Mars and Mondelēz did not respond to Mongabay’s inquiries, while Hershey said it needed time to look into the issue.Palm oil producers Bunge, Musim Mas and Fuji Oil confirmed they were actively investigating the areas of deforestation identified in the report, and a few had entered the concerns into their formal grievance processes.Sime Darby, Bunge and Archer Daniels Midland each told Mongabay that while they had already suspended some of the mills for previous violations, they would make sure that those in proximity to these deforestation areas were not trading with third-party suppliers who were not in their tracking systems.An adult male Sumatran orangutan in Mount Leuser National Park. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.Palm oil giant Wilmar said that any deforestation activities occurring on land directly within its supply chain were already being addressed as part of Wilmar’s grievance procedure, but that the firm could not be reasonably expected to investigate deforestation occurring near its mills without a clear understanding of land ownership and management oversight of an area.“As there continues to be a leakage market,” a spokesperson for Wilmar said, “where there is no scrutiny on those purchasing these excluded volumes, we will continue to see deforestation happening. This is not something that Wilmar alone can influence or stop.”Wilmar also said MapHubs’ reliance on mill proximity was “highly erroneous and misleading,” differing from its own monitoring program provided by Aidenvironment, a nonprofit consultancy that works with large firms.Golden Agri-Resources was also skeptical of the “guilty by proximity” link, pointing out that an area with a 25-kilometer radius was nearly three times the area of Singapore.“The result is predictable,” a spokesperson for Golden Agri said, “numerous incidents of deforestation will be detected around these mills. Investigating every single incident detected is neither practical nor a productive exercise.”While this sentiment may not be shared by every company, it gets at the heart of the issue: tracing the supply chain to just the mills is not sufficient. The web of middlemen, smallholders and interconnected companies makes it difficult but vital that palm oil consumers ensure accountability for the product from seed to shelf. And although mill proximity is a useful indicator for high risk of non-certified product leaking in, using proxies can shift focus from achieving true accountability.For example, PT Jabontara Eka Karsa (PT JEK), a mill located in Indonesian Borneo that supplies nearly all of the companies named above with palm oil, has the greatest amount of orangutan habitat in its vicinity. The MapHubs report flagged PT JEK due to the 442 hectares (1,092 acres) of forest that have been cleared this year by a nearby plantation owned by the Palma Serasih Group. PT JEK’s parent company, Kuala Lumpur Kepong, stringently denies that it sources palm oil from anyone but its own concessions, which finished their forest clearing in 2015. This leaves open the question of who Palma Serasih intends to sell its fruits to.Although there are limitations to using proximity as a proxy for responsibility, Bottrill said that since some 40 percent of oil palm fruits are supplied by smallholders, establishing direct links can be virtually impossible. However, he said he wishes that more companies with source data would be transparent about where their oil palm is being grown.“Companies and their consultants such as Aidenvironment have accurate concession data,” Bottrill said, yet “few, if any, have made this concession data publicly available, citing [intellectual property] concerns.” Palm oil producers Socfin and Neste have both publicly released concession maps, a trend Bottrill hopes catches on.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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June 2019 was the hottest on record: NOAA

first_imgJune 2019 was the hottest June recorded in the 140 years since the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) began collecting global temperature data, the agency announced yesterday.On land, June’s global average surface temperature was 2.41 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average of 55.9°F, the highest June land temperature on record, beating the previous record set in 2015. At sea, average surface temperatures were 1.46 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century monthly average of 61.5 degrees Fahrenheit, tying June 2016 as the highest global average ocean temperature on record for June.2019 also saw the second-smallest Arctic sea ice extent for the month of June in the 41-year record, according to an analysis of NOAA and NASA data by the National Snow and Ice Data Center. For the fourth consecutive June, Antarctic sea ice extent was also lower than average, reaching a mark 425,000 square miles, or 8.5 percent, below the 1981-2010 average. June 2019 was the hottest June recorded in the 140 years since the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) began collecting global temperature data, the agency announced yesterday.Global land and ocean surface temperatures were 1.71 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average of 59.9 degrees Fahrenheit last month, “the highest for June in the 1880-2019 record,” NOAA reported. The month was 0.04 degrees Fahrenheit hotter than the previous record, set in 2016.That makes June 2019 the 43rd consecutive June and the 414th consecutive month with temperatures above the 20th-century average. Year to date, 2019 has been the second warmest January-June ever recorded.According to NOAA data, the biggest departures from average temperatures in June 2019 occurred in central and eastern Europe, north-central Russia, northeastern Canada, and southern parts of South America, where temperatures were 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit above the 1981-2010 average or higher. Many of those same regions, as well as parts of Asia, Africa, and the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific oceans, experienced record warm temperatures. No land or ocean areas experienced record cold temperatures in June.Credit: NOAA.The most notable cooler-than-average temperatures were found in parts of western Asia and Antarctica, where temperatures were at least 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit below the 1981-2010 average.On land, June’s global average surface temperature was 2.41 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average of 55.9°F, the highest June land temperature on record, beating the previous record set in 2015. At sea, average surface temperatures were 1.46 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century monthly average of 61.5 degrees Fahrenheit, tying June 2016 as the highest global average ocean temperature on record for June. The 10 months with the biggest departures from average global ocean monthly temperatures have all occurred since September 2015.2019 also saw the second-smallest Arctic sea ice extent for the month of June in the 41-year record, according to an analysis of NOAA and NASA data by the National Snow and Ice Data Center. At 475,000 square miles, or 10.5 percent, below the 1981-2010 average, June 2019 was the 20th consecutive June with Arctic sea ice extent below average.Credit: NOAA.For the fourth consecutive June, Antarctic sea ice extent was also lower than average, reaching a mark 425,000 square miles, or 8.5 percent, below the 1981-2010 average. That’s the smallest June extent for Antarctic sea ice in the 41-year record, surpassing the previous record, set in 2002, by 62,000 square miles.Nine of the 10 warmest Junes have occurred since 2010. June 1998 is the only entry on the list of the 10 warmest Junes on record that occurred in the previous century.Credit: NOAA.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. Climate Change, Environment, Global Warming, Oceans, Oceans And Climate Change, Research, Sea Ice, Temperatures Article published by Mike Gaworeckicenter_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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July 2019 was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth

first_imgUN secretary general António Guterres announced that July 2019 was the hottest month on record in a press conference yesterday.In his remarks to the press, Guterres noted that the record-breaking July temperatures follow the hottest June ever recorded, adding: “This is even more significant because the previous hottest month, July 2016, occurred during one of the strongest El Niño’s ever. That is not the case this year. All of this means we are on track for the period from 2015 to 2019 to be the five hottest years on record.”The impacts of global climate change are being felt around the globe, perhaps nowhere more dramatically than in the Arctic, where high temperatures have caused sea ice levels to collapse. June 2019 saw near-record lows in Arctic sea ice extent. In a press conference yesterday, UN secretary general António Guterres announced that July 2019 was the hottest month on record.Data for the month is still being collected, but July 2019 temperatures already appear to have been as high as if not slightly higher than the previous record for the hottest month in history, set in July 2016. According to preliminary data from the World Meteorological Organization, average global temperatures in July 2019 were at least 2.16 degrees Fahrenheit or 1.2 degrees Celsius higher than the pre-industrial average.“We have always lived through hot summers. But this is not the summer of our youth. This is not your grandfather’s summer,” Guterres said.Jean-Noël Thépaut, head of Europe’s Copernicus Climate Change Service, which produced the temperature data cited by Guterres, sounded a similar theme: “As a citizen I am as concerned as anyone else with what is happening,” Thépaut told Rolling Stone magazine. “My children are experiencing extreme weather situations which did not exist when I was their age.” He called the climatic trends on display in July 2019 “very disturbing.”In his remarks to the press, Guterres noted that the record-breaking July temperatures follow the hottest June ever recorded, adding: “This is even more significant because the previous hottest month, July 2016, occurred during one of the strongest El Niño’s ever. That is not the case this year. All of this means we are on track for the period from 2015 to 2019 to be the five hottest years on record.”The impacts of global climate change are being felt around the globe, perhaps nowhere more dramatically than in the Arctic, where high temperatures have caused sea ice levels to collapse. June 2019 saw near-record lows in Arctic sea ice extent.Citing data from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the climate impact tracking platform Climate Signals pointed out that there were 132 all-time-high temperatures recorded around the globe in July 2019, versus just two all-time-lows. “In a stable climate, record high and low temps are about even,” Climate Signals noted. “Human-caused warming is driving this imbalance.”In adopting the Paris Climate Agreement, world leaders pledged to limit global warming to no more than 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit or 2 degrees Celsius, while an additional, aspirational goal included in the agreement would limit warming to just 1.5 degrees Celsius. Climate scientists have repeatedly warned that anything more than 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming could threaten the stability of life on Earth as we know it. But an analysis by the group Climate Action Tracker shows that, under current climate policies, the world is on track for 3.3 degrees Celsius of warming or more by 2100.“This year alone we have seen temperature records shatter from New Delhi to Anchorage — from Paris to Santiago — from Adelaide to the Arctic Circle,” Guterres said. “If we do not take action on climate change now, these extreme weather events are just the tip of the iceberg. And that iceberg is also rapidly melting.”Arctic sea ice is in retreat as the climate crisis deepens. Photo via Pixabay.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. Article published by Mike Gaworecki 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 Big Data, Climate Change, data collection, Environment, Global Warming, Impact Of Climate Change, Sea Ice, Temperatures last_img read more

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Newly described giant extinct penguin and parrot once lived in New Zealand

first_imgAnimals, Birds, Environment, Extinction, Forests, Fossils, Green, Research, 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 overSponsored Article published by Shreya Dasguptacenter_img Paleontologists have found fossils of two extinct giant birds in New Zealand: an enormous penguin that would have been nearly as tall as an average adult human, and the largest parrot ever known to have existed.The new species of extinct giant penguin, formally named Crossvallia waiparensis, was described from leg bones found at the Waipara Greensand fossil site in the North Canterbury region in 2018.The extinct parrot, Heracles inexpectatus, was likely double the size of the previously largest known parrot species, the kakapo. The fossils of the parrot were first recovered from near St. Bathans in Central Otago in 2008. Millions of years ago, giant birds roamed ancient New Zealand. There was the moa, an extinct flightless bird, thought to weigh up to 230 kilogram (510 pounds). Then there was the now-extinct Haast’s eagle, the largest eagle known to have ever lived, as well as several species of extinct giant penguins like the Kumimanu biceae.Now, paleontologists have found fossils of two more extinct giant birds in New Zealand: an enormous penguin that would have been nearly as tall as an average adult human, and a parrot that would have been the largest known parrot to have ever existed. Researchers have described both species in two separate studies published this month.Giant penguinThe new species of extinct giant penguin, formally named Crossvallia waiparensis, was described from leg bones found at the Waipara Greensand fossil site in the North Canterbury region in 2018. The penguin would have lived during the Paleocene epoch, or between 66 million and 56 million years ago, the researchers say in a new study.From the length of the leg bones, they also conclude that the bird would have been 1.6 meters (5 feet, 3 inches) tall and would have weighed around 80 kilograms (176 pounds). For comparison, an emperor penguin, the tallest and heaviest of living penguin species, can reach heights of up to 1.3 meters (4 feet, 3 inches) and weigh up to 45 kilograms (99 pounds).The extinct species of giant penguin Crossvallia waiparensis would have been nearly as tall as an average adult human. Image courtesy of Canterbury Museum.The closest relative of C. waiparensis is not another penguin from New Zealand, but a Paleocene penguin species C. unienwillia, described from a fossilized partial skeleton recovered from the Cross Valley in Antarctica in 2000, the researchers conclude.“When the Crossvallia species were alive, New Zealand and Antarctica were very different from today — Antarctica was covered in forest and both had much warmer climates,” Paul Scofield, co-author of the study and senior curator at Canterbury Museum, said in a statement.The Waipara Greensand site has been a gold mine for extinct penguin fossils. C. waiparensis is the fifth ancient penguin species to be described from fossils found there, and “there’s more to come, too,” said Gerald Mayr, co-author of the study and a paleontologist at the Senckenberg Natural History Museum in Frankfurt. “More fossils which we think represent new species are still awaiting description.”World’s largest known parrotUntil recently, the kakapo, a flightless, critically endangered parrot in New Zealand, was the largest known parrot in the world. But the newly described species of extinct parrot Heracles inexpectatus, named after the hero of Greek mythology, was likely double its size, researchers say in another study published earlier this month.H. inexpectatus would have weighed around 7 kilograms (15 pounds) and reached a height of about 1 meter (3 feet, 3 inches). It also likely had a massive beak that it may have used to “crack wide open anything it fancied … perhaps even other parrots,” Michael Archer, co-author of the study and paleontologist at the University of New South Wales in Australia, said in a statement.An artist’s rendering of the extinct species of giant parrot Heracles inexpectatus. Image by Brian Choo/Flinders University.The fossils of the giant parrot were first recovered from near St. Bathans in Central Otago, New Zealand, in 2008. For a long time, the researchers thought the bones belonged to an extinct species of eagle. But after further analysis, they concluded that the fossils were from a parrot species that had lived around 19 million years ago.“New Zealand is well known for its giant birds,” said Trevor Worthy, lead author of the study and an associate professor at Flinders University in Adelaide. “Not only moa dominated avifaunas, but giant geese and adzebills shared the forest floor, while a giant eagle ruled the skies. But until now, no-one has ever found an extinct giant parrot — anywhere.”Graphic showing the Heracles inexpectatus, right, in silhouette next to an average-height person and a common magpie. Image by Paul Scofield/Canterbury Museum.Citations:Mayr, G., De Pietri V. L., Love, L., Mannering, A., & Scofield, R. P. (2019) Leg bones of a new penguin species from the Waipara Greensand add to the diversity of very large-sized Sphenisciformes in the Paleocene of New Zealand. Alcheringa: An Australasian Journal of Palaeontology. doi: 10.1080/03115518.2019.1641619Worthy, T. H., Hand, S. J., Archer, M., Scofield, R. P., & De Pietri, V. L. (2019). Evidence for a giant parrot from the Early Miocene of New Zealand. Biology letters, 15(8), 20190467. doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2019.0467last_img read more

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What’s in a name? For Sri Lanka’s newest geckos, a political firestorm

first_imgBiodiversity, Conservation, Endangered Species, Environment, Herps, Lizards, New Species, Research, Species Discovery Article published by dilrukshi 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 recently described six new species of geckos, but the discovery has been overshadowed by controversy over their naming.Nationalist figures accuse the researchers of dishonoring historical heroes by naming the geckos after them, with one group even filing a complaint with the police.The scientific community has risen in support of the researchers, pointing out that naming a new species after an individual is universally considered a badge of honor.For their part, the researchers say the focus should be on the new species, which are so rare and their range so restricted that they should be considered critically endangered. COLOMBO — In 2017, herpetologist Sameera Suranjan Karunarathna and his team of researchers undertook a detailed study of lizards in more than 100 locations across Sri Lanka to record the distribution of different species and study their conservation status.What they didn’t bargain for was an ugly spat over the naming of six new species of geckos discovered as part of the study.The issue has become so politically contentious that an ultra-nationalist politician has challenged the naming exercise in parliament, while a group of Buddhist monks is demanding police action be taken against Karunarathna, who is now the target of an online hate campaign. In the process, little attention is being paid to the discovery of the new species or the threats they face.Cnemaspis gotaimbarai is named after another of in honor of another of Dutugamunu’s loyal warriors, Gotaimbara. The species was discovered from the forested hills of Kokagala in Ampara district, a region of immense archaeological and historical significance. Image courtesy of Majintha Madawala.The new research paper, published in the journal Vertebrate Zoology, records the discovery of six new endemic geckos of the genus Cnemaspis from little-known areas in Sri Lanka. It was expected to be welcome news as Sri Lanka petitions for the protection of its endemic lizards at a global wildlife trade summit taking place in Geneva. But instead of celebrating the latest additions to the island’s remarkable list of unique reptiles, the researchers are now dealing with massive hostility.Two of the new geckos, Cnemaspis nandimithrai and C. gotaimbarai, are named after Nandimithra and Gotaimbara, two legendary fighters from the Ten Giant Warriors who served the ancient Sinhala king Dutugamunu, the island’s ruler from 161 to 137 B.C.E.Cnemaspis nandimithrai is named in honor of Nandimithra, a warrior who served King Dutugamunu more than 2,000 years ago. Legend has it that he moved boulders to build a monastery for Buddhist monks. Image courtesy of Nimantha Abeyrathne.The four other geckos are named in honor of lesser-known heroes from the Uwa-Wellassa Rebellion of 1817-1818, when Sri Lankans rose up against the British colonial power: C. kohukumburai (after Kohukumbure Walawwe Rate Rala), C. hitihami (Meegahapitiye Walawwe Hitihami Mudiyanselage Rate Rala), C. butewai (Butewe Rate Rala), and C. kivulegedarai (Kivulegedara Mohottala).“The paper sought to highlight Sri Lanka as a top global hotspot for herpetofauna diversity and a local center of high endemism,” Karunarathna said. “The six additions we have made seek to underpin the fact that ours is an island of reptilian diversity and high endemism.”But some in the country’s political establishment have sought to seize on the issue to burnish their nationalist credentials ahead of elections later this year, by accusing Karunarathna and his team of dishonoring the historical heroes by naming geckos after them. Wimal Weerawansa, a member of parliament, called the naming decision disgraceful, while an ultra-conservative religious group has complained to the police chief in writing.Cnemaspis kohukumburai was discovered in a forest patch in Kadugannawa, in the central district of Kandy. Image courtesy of Majintha Madawala.Show of supportSri Lanka’s scientific community has rallied behind the researchers, pointing out that naming a new species after someone is a common practice meant to honor the latter. In the case of the six new gecko species, they say, naming them after national heroes is an attempt to perpetuate the memory of the latter and educate the public, and not an effort to undermine their legacy.“It is a well-established practice and there is nothing new in naming species after national heroes,” Mendis Wickramasinghe, a herpetologist who has helped describe more than a hundred new species, told Mongabay. “I have named a snake, Aspidura ravanai, to honor King Ravana and a shrub frog, Pseudophilautus puranappu, in the memory of a national hero, Veera Puran Appu. There is no question of attempting to insult their memory.”An isolated hill forest with scattered granite caves in Maragala, in Monaragala district, is the habitat of Cnemaspis hitihami. Image courtesy of Majintha Madawala.Environment lawyer and naturalist Jagath Gunawardane called the naming of a species after an individual the ultimate honor. In 2013, a shrub frog was named in his honor, Pseudophilautus jagathgunawardanai.In an attempt to quell the controversy, Anusha Gokula Fernando, the director of the department of cultural affairs, issued a statement reiterating that the practice of naming new species in honor of prominent personalities is established tradition.Karunarathna had previously named another species of gecko, Cnemaspis godagedarai, after Godagedara Rate Adikaram, a hero of the Uwa-Wellassa Rebellion. In all, he has described eight new gecko and four lizard species, and is in the process of describing a dozen more.The lush, cool and canopied forest of Bambarabotuwa in Ratnapura district is home to Cnemaspis butewei. Image courtesy of Majintha Madawala.Considered critically endangeredThe new Cnesmaspis species — all “point endemic,” or restricted to a very small geographic range — were recorded from cool, wet, spacious granite caves found within rock outcrops in forests largely undisturbed by human activity. These habitats are scattered in geographically isolated forested hills in the historical Uwa-Wellassa region and the central districts of Kandy and Ratnapura.The geckos, small or medium in size, aren’t just restricted in range but also have limited dispersal capabilities and niche specialization, Karunarathna told Mongabay. These factors, along with the relatively low abundance of the species, should qualify them for a conservation status of critically endangered, the researchers say. They also call for further study of Sri Lanka’s isolated forests, especially in the dry and intermediate zones, for both conservation and in-depth research to inform specific management activities.Kivulegedara Rate Rala played a significant role in the Uwa-Wellassa Rebellion of 1817-1818, for which the researchers chose to honor him by naming Cnemaspis kivulegedarai after him. Image courtesy of Sameera Suranjan Karunarathna.The new discoveries bring Sri Lanka’s Cnemaspis species, known as day geckos because they’re active in the daytime, to 32. The total number of known gecko species in the tropical island is 54, 44 of which are found nowhere else on Earth. Most are restricted to the wet zone; 20 species are considered critically endangered, nine endangered, five vulnerable and four are data deficient.Proposals for protection In April, a study highlighted how rare lizards found only in Sri Lanka are winding up in Europe as part of the illegal trade in exotic wildlife. The publication of the study by the wildlife trade monitoring NGO TRAFFIC came ahead of the 18th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Sri Lanka has put forward a proposal at the summit, currently underway in Geneva, to protect several endemic lizard species from international trade, although they don’t include any day geckos.At home, day geckos face growing pressure on their habitats. Sri Lanka’s forests are shrinking fast, whittled away by human encroachment, primarily for tea and crop farms, and settlements, Karunarathna said.“Other stresses include unplanned infrastructure development and granite mining, forest fires and logging that increase habitat degradation,” he said. “It’s best to fight against these causes than the nomenclature of geckos.”Herpetologist Sameera Suranjan Karunarathna has found himself at the center of a political firestorm after naming six new gecko species after historical figures. Fellow scientists say it’s the ultimate honor to name a species to perpetuate the memory of an individual. Image courtesy of Madhava Botejue.Citation Karunarathna, S. S., Poyarkov, N. A., De Silva, A., Madawala, M., Botejue, M., Gorin, V. A., & Bauer, A. M. (2019). Integrative taxonomy reveals six new species of day geckos of the genus Cnemaspis Strauch, 1887 (Reptilia: Squamata: Gekkonidae) from geographically-isolated hill forests in Sri Lanka. Vertebrate Zoology, 69(3), 247-298. doi:10.26049/VZ69-3-2019-02Image of the isolated rocky forest area of Kudumbigala in Ampara district, where Cnemaspis nandimithrai, one of the six new species of day gecko, was recently discovered. Image courtesy of Majintha Madawala.last_img read more

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‘A green desert’: Mammals take a hit in Colombia’s oil palm plantations

first_imgEditor’s note: William Laurance is a member of Mongabay’s advisory board.Citations:Pardo, L. E., Campbell, M. J., Edwards, W., Clements, G. R., & Laurance, W. F. (2018). Terrestrial mammal responses to oil palm dominated landscapes in Colombia. PLOS ONE, 13(5). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0197539Maddox, T., Priatna, D., Gemita, E., & Salampessy, A. (2007). The conservation of tigers and other wildlife in oil palm plantations. Jambi Province, Sumatra, Indonesia. ZSL Conservation Report No. 7. The Zoological Society of London, London. Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Article published by Maria Salazar Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Environment, Interns, Mammals, Palm Oil, Plantations, Research, Tropical Forests, Wildlife Researchers studying oil palm plantations in Colombia found that mammal diversity dropped compared to nearby savanna.Some mammals used plantations for hunting and foraging, but none stayed permanently.With the Colombian government’s pledge to drastically increase its cropland, scientists fear savannas and wetlands could be at threat. As oil palm plantations expand across the world, razing swaths of tropical rainforests in their path, fears about their impact on the environment have also grown. In the plantations of Colombia, a new study has found yet another way they are altering global biodiversity: by impacting the diversity of mammals.“Some species do very well” in oil palm plantations, said Lain Pardo, one of the authors of the study published in the journal PLOS ONE. These include species such as the crab-eating fox (Cerdocyon thous), jaguarundi (Herpailurus yagouaroundi) and giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla).“Our results suggest that even within the terrestrial mammals group there is a lot of variability,” Pardo said.Relatively common species, especially small- to medium-sized predators, likely feed on the rodents and other agricultural pests that abound in oil palm plantations. For giant anteaters, their main food source is also a common denizen of plantations. But most other mammals, including larger rodents such as the agouti (Dasyprocta fuliginosa), spiny rat (Proechimys spp.) and paca (Cuniculus paca) struggle to find food and shelter in the monoculture. Scientists found that these species were rarely present in plantations, if at all. And even those that were frequently found within the plantations were only there to forage, returning to the forests to sleep.Camera trap images of a fox, left, and two giant anteaters captured during the study. Image courtesy of Lain Pardo.The researchers undertook the study in oil palm plantations converted from former pasture in Colombia’s Llanos Orientales region, meaning sensitive species such as tapir (Tapirus spp.) and giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus), both listed as vulnerable by the IUCN, had been driven out long ago.The loss of such large mammals may have made the difference in species richness between the plantations and remaining forest fragments less stark than it would have been in a previously untouched area, according to the study. Scientists only detected puma (Puma concolor), tayra (Eira barbara), coati (Nasua nasua) and collared peccary (Pecari tajacu) — all ecologically important species — in oil palm areas bordering less disturbed savanna and the Meta-Casanare and Alto Rio Meta conservation corridors.The study’s results are supported by a 2007 paper by researchers at the Zoological Society of London, which focused on mammal species abundance in oil palm plantations in Southeast Asia. Researchers found that only four mammals — a mere 10 percent of the species known to exist within the landscape — made use of oil palm plantations. As with the Colombia study, none of the species found within the plantation were a conservation priority.Both studies came to similar conclusions.“These results show that some large-scale palm oil expansion generally has severe impacts on native mammals,” said William Laurance, a co-author of the Colombian study and professor at James Cook University in Australia.But he also acknowledged that maintaining adjacent forest corridors and allowing undergrowth in plantations could substantially increase species diversity.Palm oil plantation with undergrowth, left, and without. Image courtesy of Lain Pardo.“At all costs, we want to avoid ‘sterile’ plantations that have nothing but palm oil trees,” Laurance said. “These are little more than biological deserts.”The researchers chose to survey mammals due to their sensitivity to ecosystem quality and because they serve as an excellent indicator for overall biodiversity.“Vegetation inside the plantations helps to provide more complex environments and therefore promote the presence of other species such as spiders, butterflies, crustaceans, and even other vertebrates (snakes, birds), which attracts other mammals,” Pardo said in an email.The researchers also write that free-roaming cattle negatively impacted the biodiversity within the plantations, suggesting the importance of better livestock management and proper enclosures.An anaconda (Eunectes spp.) killed after the removal of understory vegetation on an oil palm plantation. Image courtesy of Lain Pardo.Palm oil has been a staple crop in West Africa for 5,000 years. But when European traders introduced it to Southeast Asia in the early 19th century, they found the humid climate so suitable that today, Indonesia and Malaysia produce 85 percent of the world’s palm oil.South America currently accounts for just 6 percent of all globally traded palm oil, but experts say this looks poised to change.The Colombian government has pledged to expand the land given over to plantations and other cash crops to 7 million hectares (17.3 million acres) by 2020 — an area almost the size of Ireland. The figure is nearly 14 times the 516,000 hectares (1.3 million acres) of land that Colombia devoted to palm oil in 2017, which in turn was a threefold increase from the 157,000 hectares (388,000 acres) dedicated to oil palm cultivation in 2000.Pardo warns that Colombia’s savannas and wetlands may bear the brunt of this expansion. He said savanna “could be under great pressure” from agriculture, including palm oil, and petroleum companies. It might not be the deforestation commonly associated with palm oil, but it could be just as ecologically devastating.Despite palm oil’s environmental impact, the commodity itself is so widely used that, according to WWF, it’s in almost 50 percent of packaged supermarket products. Odorless and flavorless, it’s a natural preservative, cheaper than other vegetable oils, and is found in products as diverse as instant noodles and toothpaste. Palm oil can be used as a biofuel, and even raises the melting point of ice cream. As a crop, it’s incredibly efficient: an acre of oil palms yields 10 times more vegetable oil than the same area of soybean or coconut crops.Worldwide, oil palm plantations cover a combined 27 million hectares (66.7 million acres). That’s a little larger than the area of New Zealand.Aerial view of monoculture oil palm plantation in Colombia. Image courtesy of Lain Pardo.In 2018, the IUCN concluded that palm oil is “here to stay.” But there are ways, as this study indicates, to reduce its negative impacts.last_img read more

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Seeking justice against palm oil firms, victims call out banks behind them

first_imgIndividuals from Indonesia and Liberia embroiled in land disputes with oil palm plantations have visited the Netherlands to call on the Dutch banks facilitating these companies’ operations to take action.The companies in question are PT Astra Agro Lestari in Indonesia and Golden Veroleum Liberia, both of which are owned by conglomerates based in secrecy jurisdictions and which have financial links to Dutch banks ABN AMRO and Rabobank.The banks say their relationship with the companies is only indirect, and as such they say there is little they can do to influence them.Friends of the Earth, which arranged for the affected individuals to go to the Netherlands, is pushing for the European Union to adopt more stringent regulations that would disincentivize banks and other institutions from investing in environmentally and socially unsustainable businesses. AMSTERDAM — Hemsi has been in jail three times since 2006 and filed pleas with 13 government institutions in Indonesia during that period — all in an effort to fight off the oil palm company he alleges is stealing his land.A farmer from Indonesia’s Central Sulawesi province, Hemsi has also traveled to the capital, Jakarta, three times to call on the government to protect him and his family. Each time, his pleas have gone unanswered.His last arrest was in December, a day after his wife gave birth to their third child, when he was detained for allegedly stealing palm fruit from his own land — land that PT Mamuang, a subsidiary of plantation giant PT Astra Agro Lestari (AALI), claims as its own.“I’m terribly disappointed with the government because I’ve reported my case with complete evidence and yet they’ve ignored my case and I got sent to jail again,” Hemsi told Mongabay. “I’m frustrated but I’ll keep fighting for my rights because it’s my only hope to provide a livelihood for my family.”Hemsi’s remarks came during a trip to the Netherlands in early October, facilitated by the Dutch environmental NGO Milieudefensie, the Dutch chapter of Friends of the Earth. He reckons that since he can’t get justice back home, he’ll hit the company where it hurts: its funding. In AALI’s case, these would be the Dutch banks ABN AMRO and Rabobank, both of which have financial ties to the Indonesian company.ABN AMRO was the underwriter for AALI’s initial public offering in 1997. More recently, according to Milieudefensie, in 2018 the bank sold shares in PT Astra International, the parent company of AALI and the largest listed company in Indonesia. PT Astra International is in turn a subsidiary of Jardine Matheson Holdings Limited, a conglomerate based in the secrecy jurisdiction of Bermuda and listed on the Singapore exchange.Milieudefensie says Rabobank twice facilitated syndicated loans for PT Astra International in 2010 — loans provided by a group of lenders that Rabobank organized but may not necessarily have contributed to. Milieudefensie says the Dutch banks aren’t informing customers about all the companies whose operations they’re facilitating, with some of that activity labeled as “sustainable” despite benefiting companies with a track record of environmental and social violations.“I’m asking them to stop funding PT Astra Agro Lestari, which is operating in my village, because that company has criminalized me and sent me to prison three times,” Hemsi said. “The company has robbed me of my land, the only hope for my family. I hope my rights can be restored and there’s no more criminalization.” Activism, african palm oil, Conflict, Environment, Finance, Land Conflict, Land Grabbing, Land Rights, Oil Palm, Palm Oil, Plantations, Social Conflict Banner image of  Hemsi, a farmer from Indonesia (right), and activists from Liberia embroiled in land disputes with oil palm plantations standing in front of ABN AMRO headquarters in Amsterdam before filing their complaints with the bank. Image by Hans Nicholas Jong/Mongabay.Editor’s note: The reporter traveled to the Netherlands as a guest of Milieudefensie. Milieudefensie does not have any editorial influence on this or any other story Mongabay produces.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. Hemsi, a farmer from Central Sulawesi, accompanied by activists from the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi), in front of ABN AMRO headquarters in Amsterdam. Image by Hans Nicholas Jong/Mongabay.‘Enough is enough’Hemsi isn’t the only one who feels aggrieved by the disruptions wrought by the Dutch banks’ links with a palm oil company. Also making the trip to the Netherlands were Terry Doegmah Panyonnoh and Harriet Sayee Saylee, Liberian activists who have also lodged complaints to ABN AMRO and Rabobank over their financial ties to Golden Veroleum Liberia (GVL). They allege the palm oil company is involved in land grabbing in the Liberian counties of Sinoe and Grand Kru.Their activism earned them the same fate as Hemsi: Panyonnoh and 16 other young members of his community were jailed for a year after they protested against GVL.“GVL came with big promises for development, but today we lost our land and we ended up in poverty,” Panyonnoh said. “Farming is difficult. Almost no jobs. The forest we used to find medicine, fish and clean water is destroyed. People are intimidated and harassed with the support from GVL.”GVL is owned by Verdant Fund, based in the Cayman Islands, another secrecy jurisdiction. The sole investor in the fund is Singapore-listed Golden Agri-Resources Limited (GAR), the world’s second-biggest palm oil producer, whose subsidiaries have received loans from both ABN AMRO and Rabobank in recent years.Evert Hassink, from Milieudefensie, told Mongabay that the decision to bring these community members over to the Netherlands to confront the banks directly was in response to a statement by ABN AMRO earlier this year.“ABN AMRO called on the victims of their clients this February to come and report about the abuses,” he said. “Well, here we are. Even though it is of course crazy that they have to come all the way to make their point.”Hassink added that, “After years of challenging and bringing complaints to the companies in Liberia and Indonesia, these land rights defenders say ‘enough is enough.’ Today, Terry, Harriet and Hemsi are here to confront the banks in the Netherlands and hear what they really do to get their clients to improve.”An area cleared of trees at the GVL concession in Tajuowon district. Photo by Jennifer O’Mahony for Mongabay.A responsibility to actThe banks say there’s little they can do about companies with which they’re not directly connected.“The link is often very, very indirect,” said Johan Verburg, an official in Rabobank’s sustainability department. “Where we can, we try to indirectly influence. There is a much, much higher leverage in a direct relation. Indirectly, we can talk, but there’s not much pressure we can put otherwise.”Verburg said Rabobank steers clear of directly financing any problematic companies. He added that Rabobank’s direct clients in the palm oil industry, of which there are around 20 worldwide, must be members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), the leading certification body for the industry. (GAR is an RSPO member company; AALI is not.)“We would ensure that concern is on the radar of other stakeholders, companies, banks, roundtables, who can put direct pressure on that case,” Verburg said. “So in this particular case, and similar cases, we will monitor what the RSPO monitor panel is doing, and what the RSPO member in this case is doing. It’s typically a situation where we will be very cautious to have a direct investment relation at all.”Richard Kooloos, the head of sustainable banking at ABN AMRO, said he couldn’t immediately confirm Milieudefensie’s claim that the bank sold PT Astra International shares, but that even if true, it’s an indirect relationship. (ABN AMRO was the underwriter for PT Astra Agro Lestari’s initial public offering in 1997.)“I don’t know it by heart. The fact that they say the relationship with ABN AMRO is through stock, for me that indicates that there’s only this relationship,” Kooloos said.But if the finding is confirmed, and Hemsi’s case is deemed severe enough, then ABN AMRO will engage with the company, Kooloos said.“If we are aware of misdoing, not minor, but major misdoings over a long period of time, [and] if that happen from thousands of companies globally that our clients can invest in, then we will start engaging,” he said.“And if this is not addressed, then we can remove that company from our universe, that means that our clients cannot buy that stock anymore through us. That’s the ultimate step. But you usually see the issue is being addressed indeed and your influence has an impact.”Similar to Rabobank’s Verburg, Kooloos said ABN AMRO would have more influence in the matter if PT Astra International was a direct client of the bank, such as being a loan recipient.“It’s a different type of influence because we don’t have a relationship with this company. We don’t know the company, we haven’t analyzed the company,” Kooloos says. “But if a company is a client of us, we know everything. We also have private information. But if it’s through this stockholding, we only have public information. But nevertheless, we are linked in our value chain to that company, so we have a responsibility to act.”Protesters demand farmers from Polanto Jaya village in Donggala district, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, to be released from jail during a rally. The farmers were jailed after they were accused by PT Mamuang, a subsidiary of PT Astra Agro Lestari, of stealing palm fruit. Photo courtesy of Walhi Central Sulawesi.More stringent financing rulesBeyond the PT Astra Agro Lestari and Golden Veroleum Liberia cases, Milieudefensie wants rules in place that would prevent banks and investors from profiting off the destruction of forests, human rights violations, climate-polluting oil extraction, and child labor.The organization launched a petition three months ago calling on the Dutch finance minister to raise the issue before the new European Commission.The Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi), the country’s largest green group and an advocate for Hemsi, says the European Union should have a regulation that holds financial institutions such as banks accountable for the impact of their financing to palm oil companies.Walhi climate justice campaigner Yuyun Harmono, accompanying Hemsi to the Netherlands, said Dutch banks were far too reliant on existing sustainability certification schemes such as the RSPO, and also lack a mechanism to remedy the impact of companies whose operations have been facilitated, directly or indirectly, by the banks.He cited the case of Rabobank, which he said provided loans to PT Astra Agro Lestari at a time when the company was already embroiled in the land dispute with Hemsi.“These financial institutions seemingly wash their hands clean after these companies are no longer their clients,” Yuyun said. “There’s no accountability for their past mistakes.”He said the EU had a responsibility to better regulate its financial institutions in light of its decision to phase out palm oil-based biodiesel by 2030.“On one hand, they want to phase out palm oil because of climate change,” Yuyun said. “But on the other hand, they also keep investing in Indonesia’s palm oil industry. It’s a double standard.”Bas Eickhout, a member of the European Parliament for the Netherlands, said he was fully aware of this conundrum.“We have to make sure that that [financial] policy is consistent with what we are doing with our policies on palm oil for example,” he told reporters at the European Parliament in Brussels. “And that’s not fully consistent yet. I’m fully aware [of] that, so there’s work that needs to be done also on the financial rule. But that’s the next discussion we’re having, absolutely.”Yuyun said Walhi had approached Indonesia’s financial regulator, the OJK, to call for stronger regulations on sustainable financing. But progress has been slow, he said. Abdul Haris, the head of the Walhi chapter in Central Sulawesi, Hemsi’s home province, said he had filed a report on Hemsi’s case to the OJK in 2016.“But to date there hasn’t been any follow-up,” he said.As for Hemsi himself, the fight is far from over. While he was in the Netherlands, the Indonesian police questioned his family back home.“My parents were visited by the local police asking for information. My wife was also visited by police at night. She was asked to take them to the site where I was accused of stealing [palm fruit],” he said.He added he believed the police visits were linked to his trip to the Netherlands — an effort to “hinder the process of the filing of my complaints.”But Hemsi said he wouldn’t be intimidated into giving up.“Even if I have to go to jail again, I’ll do that, as long as my land rights are acknowledged,” Hemsi said. “I want to show other farmers who are criminalized that we can’t afford to stop fighting and that we should fight together.”center_img Article published by Hans Nicholas Jong 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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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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Ban on destructive fishing practice helps species recovery in Indonesian park

first_imgEnvironment, Environmental Policy, Fisheries, Fishing, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Illegal Fishing, Law Enforcement, Marine, Marine Conservation, Oceans, Overfishing, Regulations, Saltwater Fish, Sustainability Article published by Basten Gokkon In 2011, a destructive fishing practice known as muroami was banned in Karimunjawa National Park off Indonesia’s Java Island.In 2012-2013, the overall biomass of herbivorous fish species in the park had more than doubled from the 2006-2009 period, researchers have found.They attribute this recovery to the muroami ban and have called for it to be implemented in other marine parks across Indonesia. JAKARTA — Fish stocks in a marine national park in Indonesia increased significantly in the years after a ban on the use of coral-destroying nets was imposed, a recent study has found.The overall biomass of herbivorous fish species in Karimunjawa National Park more than doubled in 2012-2013 from the 2006-2009 period, signaling a recovery in fish stock, the researchers write in their study published in July in the journal Ecological Applications.They attribute the increase in biomass, which is key in conserving reef fish biodiversity, to a complete ban in 2011 on muroami fishing. This particular practice, common across Southeast Asia, uses large, non-discriminatory nets in combination with pounding devices to smash into coral reefs to flush out fish. Local fishermen also use compressor-and-hose diving equipment, putting their own lives at risk.Muroami fishermen haul in their catch. Image courtesy of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).A muroami fisherman inspects a net as it’s pulled up. Image courtesy of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).The paper notes that the imposition of the muroami ban met with minimal resistance from local fishermen as they already understood that the practice was unprofitable and endangered their lives.In addition to biomass doubling rapidly following the ban, the variety of fish species recorded, or taxonomic richness, also increased by 30 percent, the authors write. Co-author Shinta Pardede, a researcher with the Wildlife Conservation Society’s (WCS) Indonesia marine program, called Karimunjawa “the last frontier of coral reefs ecosystem in the Java Sea.”“The reefs in the Karimunjawa chain provide high marine biodiversity and reef fish fisheries that mainly support both local and national fisheries resources,” she added.Declared in a marine reserve in 2001, the park today spans 1,100 square kilometers (425 square miles) and encompasses 22 islands that are part of the Karimunjawa Archipelago. A patchwork of zoning policies allows artisanal fishing in certain areas, as well as tourism and research activities.The island chain is one of seven marine national parks in Indonesia, and is renowned for its coral reefs. Nearly 500 species of reef fish thrive in the waters around Karimunjawa, and the park is a popular tourist attraction for divers and snorkelers.A muroami fisherman in Karimunjawa marine national park. Image courtesy of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).Muroami fishing is destructive to coral reefs. Image courtesy of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).A muroami fishing net covers a coral reef. Image courtesy of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).The impact of the muroami ban in Karimunjawa bolsters the case for having similar policies in other marine parks across Indonesia, particularly in areas where there’s poor compliance with existing regulations, the researchers say.“It underlines the importance of these regulations for breaking cycles of resources depletion, habitat destruction, and low compliance to zoning, thus alleviating threats to food security and ecosystem integrity,” the researchers write.Shinta said the lessons learned from Karimunjawa’s fisheries management had been successfully replicated at other sites nationwide, including in the provinces of West Nusa Tenggara, North Maluku, North Sulawesi, and Aceh.“Karimunjawa fish catch data have been used in many scientific papers that enhance comprehension on practical fisheries management yet support marine conservation program in Indonesia and worldwide,” she said.Muroami fishing boats. Image courtesy of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).Citation:Bejarano, S., Pardede, S., Campbell, S. J., Hoey, A. S., & Ferse, S. C. (2019). Herbivorous fish rise as a destructive fishing practice falls in an Indonesian marine national park. Ecological Applications, 0(0). doi:10.1002/eap.1981FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

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Amazon trees may absorb far less carbon than previously thought: study

first_imgArticle published by Glenn Scherer The capacity of the Amazon rainforest to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is predicted to increase with climate change, but now computer modelling suggests that these increases may be far smaller than expected.So far, global photosynthesis rates have risen in line with increases in atmospheric CO2 concentrations, but whether this pattern will hold true for the Amazon, one of the oldest ecosystems on Earth, is still unclear.Depending on how key nutrient cycles are represented, researchers found that models predict the Amazon carbon sink could be 46 to 52 percent smaller than predicted based on current trends, a finding that has serious implications for carbon sequestration forecasts and future climate change.The researchers plan to test the model predictions against the results from proposed field experiments that will artificially elevate CO2 levels in real sections of the Amazon forest — a study for which the team is currently raising funds. The Amazon’s 30-million-year-old soils were never subjected to ice age glaciers, making most highly weathered and low in nutrients like phosphorus. Photo credit: CIFOR on Visual Hunt / CC BY-NC-NDThe capacity of the Amazon rainforest to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is predicted to increase with climate change, but a computer modelling study published in Nature Geoscience suggests that these increases may be far more modest than expected.Depending on how key nutrient cycles are represented in climate models, the Amazon carbon sink may be half the size predicted based on current trends, the study reports — a finding that has serious implications for the escalating climate crisis.One of the few apparent silver-linings of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) levels has been a predicted simultaneous boost to plant growth — carbon dioxide is one of the key ingredients that fuels photosynthesis, so adding more if it to the air allows plants to photosynthesize more, and produce increased energy for growth — a process known as “CO2 fertilization.”Higher atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are also forecasted to help plants use water more efficiently by allowing them to keep the pores in their leaves, known as stomata, closed for longer — a potential help against climate change intensified drought.These effects have caused some scientists to anticipate dramatic increases in crop yield, as well as an expansion in the capacity of trees to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and to mitigate human emissions. But these predictions rely on the assumption that forest growth rates, while enhanced by increased carbon, are not limited by other factors, for example, lack of soil nutrient availability.The phosphorus limitIn fact, scientists have discovered a battle going on in Amazon soils. Phosphorus — an essential plant nutrient leached from rock — is in short supply there. But at the same time, this element is in high demand from plants and microbes, while soil minerals naturally bind with it and lock it away.Amazon soils are rich in clays, which contain iron and aluminium oxides that chemically bind and store phosphorus in the soil , putting it out of reach of living organisms that desperately need the element.“While higher CO2 stimulates forest growth by making it easier for [trees] to take in CO2 … that growth will be constrained, over both short and long time periods, by the availability of the nutrients needed for tree growth, mainly nitrogen and phosphorus,” explained Christopher Neill, an ecosystem ecologist at Woods Hole Research Center in Massachusetts, USA. This phosphorus-imposed growth constraint could have serious repercussions for current estimates of Amazon forest carbon sequestration.A Free Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) experiment in Wisconsin performed by the US Department of Agriculture, which has demonstrated that elevated carbon dioxide levels increase plant growth in a temperate aspen forest. However, scientists question whether a similar growth enhancement would occur in the tropics where soil nutrients are more limited. Image by Bruce Kimball / USDA.Field testing Amazon forest carbon storage modelsThe United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that natural processes, such as photosynthesis, currently absorb just under a third of all human GHG emissions. The Amazon rainforest is a major contributor to this ecosystem service and — although there have been hints that its capacity for absorbing carbon has been reduced by climate change and deforestation — a growing Amazon carbon sink is still a key component of models used to forecast warming and evaluate mitigation strategies.To date, global photosynthesis rates have risen in line with increases in atmospheric CO2 concentrations — meaning more growth and more carbon storage — but whether this global pattern will continue to hold true for the tropics and particularly the Amazon, one of the oldest ecosystems on Earth, is unclear.“A lot of our climate and ecosystem models that are applied to [predict] what [will be] happening in the future have these assumptions built into them … but since [these carbon storage expectations have] never been tested, it’s really urgent that we have a large-scale experiment in the tropics and the Amazon” to ground truth our sequestration hypotheses, said Katrin Fleischer a post-doctoral researcher at the Technical University of Munich in Germany, who led the current modelling study.Fleischer is part of an international research team preparing to do this field work. They’re setting up a large-scale experiment to measure the actual response of Amazon forest patches to elevated atmospheric CO2 levels. The so-called AmazonFACE project will use free-air carbon dioxide enrichment (FACE) to artificially increase CO2 levels around groups of Amazon trees over a period of 15 years, and monitor above- and below-ground processes to get a full picture of how individual trees and whole ecological communities might respond to rising carbon dioxide levels.Prior to starting the experiment, the researchers collected baseline data on tree growth, plant nutrition, leaf development and root growth, as well as soil nutrient cycling of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus at the AmazonFACE site near Manaus, in the Brazilian Amazon. They plugged this data into 14 different climate models that included different elements involved in the soil nutrient cycle, including nitrogen and phosphorus, and looked for varying levels of adaptability in plant responses to increased carbon dioxide for photosynthesis.All the models supported the hypothesis that atmospheric concentration increases of up to 200 parts per million above current levels would have a positive effect on plant growth, however the increases were, on average, smallest in the six models that took account of phosphorus limitations in the calculations. These models predicted that the Amazon would absorb between 46 and 52 percent less carbon compared to models that did not consider phosphorus limitation.“The [computer] study is slightly unusual [and innovative] in that it involved running a range of different ecosystem models in advance of a [field] experiment, to better inform which processes will be most important to measure [during] the [15-year AmazonFACE] experiment,” explained Lucas Cernusak, a plant physiologist at Australia’s James Cook University, who wasn’t part of the modeling study.Researchers measure forest canopy processes from a measurement tower at the AmazonFACE site near Manaus in the Brazilian Amazon. Researchers can collect data on tree growth, leaf development and root growth, as well as soil nutrient cycling of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus. Image by Joao M. Rosa, AmazonFACE.The nutrient-limited AmazonThe Amazon rainforest is more than 30 million years old and was never subjected to ice age glaciers, so most of its soils are deep and highly weathered. As a result, phosphorus is severely depleted in most areas. However, phosphorus is required by plants for protein synthesis, cell division, and energy metabolism, making it essential for growth. In addition, many plants produce phosphorus-rich seeds, fruit or pollen, making reproduction another phosphorus-demanding activity.Even though Amazon soils are known to be nutrient poor, you wouldn’t know it to look at the thriving forest. That’s because plants there have evolved myriad compensatory strategies to win the phosphorus battle: growing larger more extensive root networks, releasing sugars that alter soil pH and free phosphorus from grasping clay, and producing enzymes that activate nutrient-cycling microbes or liberate the nutrient directly from the soil or leaf litter.“It’s a very productive forest, but it’s been adapted to really [efficiently] recycle those few nutrients that it has,” said Fleischer.However, these survival strategies have a cost: “Carbon is the currency that plants can use,” to succeed in multiple ways, Fleischer explains. In the Amazon’s case, plants must invest carbon to get sufficient phosphorus in return, but this trade off means that the plants “have less carbon to invest in [producing] wood,” she said.So, higher levels of atmospheric CO2 — a product of human-induced climate change — should theoretically offer plants sufficient carbon to extract phosphorus from the soil while also investing in more woody plant matter. But that’s only assuming there is enough phosphorus available in the soil to extract.In the computer study, models that allowed some flexibility in how plants balance this trade-off, demonstrated a moderate boost to plant growth under elevated atmospheric CO2 levels: The models generated a range of predictions for how much extra carbon would be stored in plant material under high-CO2 conditions, from an increase of just 5 grams per square meter per year all the way up to 140 grams.However, when compared to field records from the 2000s at the Manaus field site, the authors found that plant carbon sequestration increased by just 23 grams per square meter per year, suggesting that the more conservative models may be closest to the truth — at least for this particular patch of forest.Climbing carbon, fixed phosphorus: into the unknown“The key insight from this paper stems from the fact that the model results vary very widely,” said Neill, because each [computer] model approximates the cycling of phosphorous in different ways. This generates hypotheses that can be tested [on the ground] by the AmazonFACE experiment. “It’s a great use of models… to guide [field] experiments that lead to new insights.”“The crucial next step will be to conduct the FACE experiment, which will be the first stand level CO2 manipulation experiment in a hyper-diverse tropical forest, to see if the models are actually on track with reality,” agrees Cernusak. However, FACE experiments are expensive to set up, and AmazonFACE is currently seeking the remaining funding needed to begin the work.“We know so little about this place, how it works, how it evolved over millions of years, which species are where… how do they [interact] as a community? It’s so complex,” said Fleischer. Meanwhile, the historic Amazon forest is being rapidly altered by escalating climate change, along with other human disturbances. “We’re losing it in front of us without really having understood it,” she concluded.Citation:Fleischer, K., Rammig, A., De Kauwe, M. G., Walker, A. P., Domingues, T. F., Fuchslueger, L., … & Haverd, V. (2019). Amazon forest response to CO2 fertilization dependent on plant phosphorus acquisition. Nature Geoscience, 12(9), 736-741.Banner image caption: Scientists don’t know whether growth enhancements seen in temperate climates will also occur in the Amazon rainforest, where plant growth may be severely limited by low phosphorus availability in soils. Image by Ben Sutherland found on Flickr CC by 2.0d.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. Amazon Conservation, Conservation, Controversial, Environment, Forests, Green, Rainforests 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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