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REDD in the news: 8-14 July 2019

REDD-Monitor’s round-up of the week’s news on forests, climate change, and REDD. For regular updates, follow @reddmonitor on Twitter.

8 July 2019

5 ways to help nature help us
By Karin Erika Kemper, World Bank, 8 July 2019
I was recently at the G7 meeting in France’s northern city of Metz, discussing biodiversity with Environment Ministers from the Group of Seven countries (Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States), along with delegations from countries such as Egypt, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Niger and Norway. Thanks to France’s leadership, the G7 meetings culminated in what is known as the Metz Charter on Biodiversity, elevating biodiversity on the global agenda.

It’s high time to create a World Carbon Bank
By Kenneth Rogoff, The Guardian, 8 July 2019
Although much derided by climate-change deniers, not least Donald Trump, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal hits the nail on the head with its urgent call for the US to lead by example on global warming. But the sad truth is that, for all the needless waste produced by Americans’ gluttonous culture, emerging Asia is by far the main driver of the world’s growing carbon dioxide emissions. No amount of handwringing will solve the problem. The way to do that is to establish the right incentives for countries such as China, India, Vietnam, Indonesia and Bangladesh.

As Amazon deforestation rises, sensational headlines play into Bolsonaro’s agenda
By Rhett A. Butler, Mongabay, 8 July 2019
In recent weeks, some media outlets have run eye-popping headlines on rising deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon: “Deforestation of Brazilian Amazon surges to record high” read a June 4th headline in The Guardian; “Monthly deforestation up 88.4% compared with a year ago” stated a summary bullet-point The Guardian added to the top of a story syndicated from Reuters on July 3rd; and “Brazilian deforestation spiked 88 percent under Bolsonaro“, said a July 4th piece in The Hill. These sensational headlines, which aren’t an accurate interpretation of the numbers, are playing into the Bolsonaro administration’s campaign to undermine science-based monitoring of the Amazon.

[Canada] Ontario’s Pikangikum First Nation Fully Evacuated After Forest Fire
Huffington Post, 8 July 2019
A full evacuation of a First Nation in northwestern Ontario was underway Monday as a forest fire burned less than ten kilometres from the community.
Heavy smoke had already led authorities to begin moving about 2,000 vulnerable residents out Pikangikum First Nation over the weekend, but an increased threat from the fire prompted the decision to clear out the community entirely, said a spokesman with Ontario’s Ministry of the Solicitor General.

[Myanmar] Miracle mangrove funding green shields in the Bay of Bengal
Singapore Management University, 8 July 2019
‘Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results’ – this infamous quote by Einstein was running through the mind of Dr. Arne Fjørtoft, Founder and Secretary General of Worldview International Foundation (Worldview), over and again during his efforts to secure funding to sustain Worldview’s efforts of planting mangroves in Myanmar.
Fjørtoft had founded Worldview in 1979 to accelerate a digital revolution and its potential to empower disadvantaged communities and promote democracy in the developing world. Three decades later, Fjørtoft turned his attention to the environmental and social challenges of poor communities in the Bay of Bengal region. He learned that all across the region, mangrove forests were being destroyed due to a relentless onslaught of overexploitation, oil spills, plastics pollution, and the relentless march of coastal development; and deforestation played a key role in coastal villagers’ vulnerability to the sea.

[New Zealand] One billion tree plan flawed, says climate scientist
RNZ, 8 July 2019
The Forestry Minister Shane Jones’ one billion trees won’t reduce carbon emissions, as too few natives are being planted, climate scientist Jim Salinger says.
The government has allocated $120 million in grants to landowners to plant trees on their properties, and wants two-thirds of those planted to be natives.
Forestry New Zealand figures show in the first year, of the 91m trees planted, only 12 percent were native.

[New Zealand] How overseas firms could leave us with dying, carbon-re-emitting forests
By Jane Clifton, Noted, 8 July 2019
In the escalating rhetoric of the forestry-versus-farming debate, it’s been said that planting a forest on a piece of land is little different to concreting it. It’s unlikely to be good for anything else ever again without a lot of perishingly expensive remediation.
If that sounds melodramatic, one seasoned ag-researcher can go one better. “It’s been said that it doesn’t matter who owns the land, because it can’t be taken away. But, in a sense, this is the net effect these policies could have,” says Keith Woodford, formerly of Lincoln University, but now primary consultant at Agrifood Systems.

[Pakistan] ‘KP’s forest cover increased by 5 percent after completion of BTTP’
Business Recorder, 8 July 2019
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s (KP) forest cover has increased by around 5 percent, bringing the total to 25 percent, following the completion of Billion Tree Tsunami Project (BTTP), contributing to the fight against climate change.
This was claimed by KP Forest Department during an exposure visit of mainstream media persons to billion tree afforestation project which, according to the officials, achieved the highest survival ratio of over 80 percent compared to the global rate of around 50 percent.

[USA] California’s pollution enforcers would like to save tropical forests. But at what cost?
By Rachel Becker, CALMatters, 8 July 2019
California’s climate change enforcers are grappling with the thorniest of controversies: how to prevent the planet’s tropical forests from disappearing. The question they aren’t ready to answer—at least not yet—is what focusing on far-away forests could mean for pollution at home.
Lawmakers made clear in a June letter reported by ProPublica that they’d like the California Air Resources Board to endorse something called the Tropical Forest Standard. It’s a playbook, still in draft form, for how to evaluate international states or provinces on their efforts to curb tropical deforestation. The guide is intended to direct investments to governments that monitor results, obtain public input, and protect the rights of indigenous peoples.

9 July 2019

Planting trees can help save the planet – but only if governments put people first
By Stephen Woroniecki, The Guardian, 9 July 2019
A new study extols the “mindblowing” potential of widespread tree planting as a solution to climate breakdown. The scientists claim that 1bn hectares of treeless land could be forested – an area equivalent to the size of the US – and the study’s authors say restoration of such areas could remove two-thirds (205 gigatonnes) of all the carbon dioxide emissions pumped into the atmosphere by human activities since the 1800s.

Critiques of carbon credits aren’t asking the right question (commentary)
By Agus Sari, Mongabay, 9 July 2019
For those of us who have worked in the world of carbon credits for many years, the criticisms raised in articles like “An (Even More) Inconvenient Truth,” published by ProPublica last month, are nothing new. The idea of allowing polluters to offset their emissions, including by paying to protect or restore forests, has been around for decades, and we’ve heard it all before.

Congo Basin Deforestation Threatens Food and Water Supplies Throughout Africa
By Molly Bergen, World Resources Institute, 9 July 2019
Since famine ravaged Ethiopia in the 1980s, the country has consistently received humanitarian aid from foreign governments and NGOs. Now, it’s the world’s fastest-growing economy, attracting international investors and developers keen on boosting the country’s GDP. But those interested in Ethiopia’s future prosperity should also be looking further afield: to the Congo Basin rainforest.

Ghana Signs Landmark Deal with World Bank to Cut Carbon Emissions and Reduce Deforestation
World Bank press release, 9 July 2019
Ghana ­­– with one of the highest deforestation rates in Africa – has become the third country to sign a landmark agreement with the World Bank that rewards community efforts to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.
Ghana’s five-year Emission Reductions Payment Agreement (ERPA) with the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) Carbon Fund, which is administered by the World Bank, unlocks performance-based payments of up to US$50 million for carbon emission reductions from the forest and land use sectors. Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of Congo have also signed ERPAs over the past ten months, with other Carbon Fund countries expected to sign similar agreements in the the next year.

28 Percent of Indonesia’s Palm Oil Landbank Is Stranded
Chain Reaction Research, 9 July 2019
In 2017, CRR reported 6.1 million hectares (ha) of forest and peatland remained on oil palm concessions, land that can be considered “stranded assets.” This update discusses figures and trends in the palm oil industry since 2017 and argues that oil palm development on forest and peatland will remain economically unviable for the foreseeable future.

Supply chain transparency could be vital to easing tensions around Indonesian palm oil
By Romain Pirard and Caspar Timmer, Trase, 9 July 2019
For some people, and in some parts of the world, the Indonesian palm oil sector has an almost toxic reputation. Since the 1990s, Indonesian palm oil has become one of the world’s most demonised agricultural commodities. But how far is this reputation justified? Are positive changes being ignored? And what do current plans mean for the future sustainability of the sector? Forthcoming Trase data could bring some much needed clarity.

[Ireland] Farmers urged to ‘stop planting forestry’ until a new scheme is introduced
By Sylvester Phelan, AgriLand, 9 July 2019
Farmers should cease planting forestry until the Department of Agriculture introduces a scheme “which is in favour of the farmer – and not companies”, a former farm forestry representative has urged.
Making the call, well-known Co. Roscommon drystock and forestry farmer Pat Collins outlined the issues currently affecting Irish farmers involved in forestry and stressed exactly why a new scheme is needed.

[USA] Grasslands More Reliable Carbon Sink Than Trees
By Kat Kerlin, Science & Climate, 9 July 2019
Forests have long served as a critical carbon sink, consuming about a quarter of the carbon dioxide pollution produced by humans worldwide. But decades of fire suppression, warming temperatures and drought have increased wildfire risks — turning California’s forests from carbon sinks to carbon sources.

[USA] Alaska’s Hess Creek Fire is now the nation’s largest wildfire in 2019
By Ryan Prior, CNN, 9 July 2019
145,321 acres: That’s the size of the largest wildfire burning this year, according to a map from Alaska Wildland Fire Information, the state’s interagency effort to track fires.
The Hess Creek Fire has been burning since June 21 in the middle of the state near Livengood, about 80 miles north of the city of Fairbanks.
Livengood covers hundreds of square miles but has a population of only 13, according to census data.
“We’re all socked in with smoke,” said Sarah Wheeler, a spokeswoman for the firefighting effort on the ground. “It’s a smoky mess.”

[USA] The President’s Latest Rant About Wildfires Is Mind-Numbingly Stupid
By Jack Holmes, Esquire, 9 July 2019
t’s important to remember that, as the climate crisis deepens and we begin to feel some of its most disastrous effects—more powerful storms, raging wildfires, massive floods, searing drought—we’ve seen fit to elect as president a guy who knows nothing about anything and cares less. Donald Trump, American president, has a primal sense of what motivates people, of how to identify their weaknesses, and of how the media functions. But he knows absolutely nothing about any actual field of study, and he is not by any account a “reader.” His operating principle is to start with a conclusion about the world, then find a way to justify it. If that means repeating some nonsense over and over again until enough people believe it, then so be it.

10 July 2019

European airline chiefs push back against flight shaming, carbon taxes
By Tim Hepher and Conor Humphries, Reuters, 10 July 2019
The heads of some of Europe’s largest airlines hit back on Wednesday against efforts to discourage Europeans from flying, arguing the industry was making huge strides in cutting its carbon footprint and that there was no shame in air travel.

Why there’s more to ecological restoration than ecology
By Natasha Vizcarra, CIFOR Forests News, 10 July 2019
In August 2017 Paula Meli, a restoration ecologist and researcher at the University of São Paulo in Brazil, flew to Buenos Aires to join 30 other scientists in a meeting with Argentinian officials. “Argentina was developing their national restoration plan,” Meli said. “They needed us to define forest degradation, levels of degradation and indicators to measure these levels.”
“It was interesting,” she said. “I’ve never been in a situation where the government was so open to receive information.”

Will the Start of Forest Fires Season Hamper Indonesia’s Progress in Reducing Deforestation?
By Sarah Ruiz and Andika Putraditama, Global Forest Watch, 10 July 2019
Indonesia brought its deforestation rate down for the second year in a row in 2018 after experiencing record highs. This downward trend was a bright spot for the world’s forests: Tropical forests around the world lost 12 million hectares of trees in 2018 alone, an area of land the size of Belgium.
However, with Indonesia’s annual fire season beginning and El Niño promising fire-prone conditions, the country’s forest protection policies will be put to the test. The dry season in Indonesia runs between April and October, but July typically marks the beginning of the most intense fires. Here are a few things to know as Indonesia enters its fires season this year.

Massive blaze extinguished in Turkey’s Muğla, building engulfed in fire in Ankara
Daily Sabah, 10 July 2019
Massive fires engulfed forests in Göcek and Dalaman in Turkey’s western Muğla province Wednesday, as initial estimates show 250 hectares of land have perished in the fire.
Some 520 firefighters, 105 water tankers, and 18 bulldozers battled the flames, which spread to the nearby city of Fethiye as a result of strong winds.

[USA] SEC says no settlement discussions held with Renwick Haddow’s co-conspirator
By Maria Nikolova, FinanceFeeds, 10 July 2019
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed a Letter with the New York Southern District Court about the status of the civil proceedings targeting Savraj Gata-Aura, a/k/a “Sam Aura,” one of the co-conspirator of Ponzi scammer Renwick Haddow.
The document, filed on July 9, 2019, and seen by FinanceFeeds, says there have been no settlement discussions between the SEC and the defendants.
The SEC explains that, in light of the pending criminal case against Gata-Aura, the parties have not held settlement discussions of this civil matter. The parties do not believe that a settlement conference with the Court would be appropriate at this point in time.

11 July 2019

Dutch airline KLM calls for people to fly less
By Antonia Wilson, The Guardian, 11 July 2019
Dutch airline KLM has launched a campaign asking people to fly less. The video and open letter from CEO Pieter Elbers asks: “Do you always have to meet face-to-face?” and “Could you take the train instead?”
The campaign aims to encourage travellers and the aviation industry to consider the environmental impact of flying. It describes the “shared responsibility” of travellers and airlines to “fly more responsibly”, and says those in the industry need to “create a sustainable future for aviation”.

The value of vegetation
Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich press release, 11 July 2019
The day Brazil’s voters chose Jair Bolsonaro as their new President wasn’t a good day for efforts to mitigate climate change. During the election campaign, the declared populist and would-be strongman vowed to end the “environmental activism” of his predecessors. Previous Brazilian governments were not exactly zealous supporters of measures to combat climate change. But what Bolsonaro has promised to implement since his inauguration in January 2019 amounts to a full-scale attack on the international community’s attempts to limit the effects of greenhouse gases on future temperatures.

Why Sustainable Forestry Is a Good Investment
By Sabin Ray, Caroline Gagné, Adam Dolin, and Lissa Glasgo, World Resources Institute, 11 July 2019
A decade ago, 100,000 volunteers from the Senegalese villages of Casamance and Siné Saloum joined together to replant 80 million mangrove trees, the world’s largest mangrove restoration program. Ten years later, the mangroves have sequestered more than 160,000 tons of carbon, the equivalent of taking more than 100,000 cars off the road every year. The restored coastal ecosystem better supports wildlife and local livelihoods, bringing villagers an additional 4,200 tons of fish, shrimp and oysters yearly. About 95% of villagers believe that the project has had a positive impact on their lives.

Ghana is adopting a rewards-based approach to cut carbon emissions
By Ajifowoke Michael Gbenga, Ventures Africa, 11 July 2019
By rewarding community efforts in collaboration with the World Bank, Ghana is looking to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. It becomes the third country in Africa to sign the landmark Emission Reductions Payment Agreement (ERPA) with the international financial institution.
As disclosed by the bank, the five-year programme with the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) Carbon Fund, unlocks performance-based payments of up to $50 million for carbon emission reductions from the forest and land-use sectors.

Wildfires sweep through 128,000 hectares in Russian regions
TASS, 11 July 2019
Wildfires have been extinguished in Russian regions on the territory of around 3,700 hectares in the past 24 hours, the press service of the Aerial Forest Protection Service said on Thursday.
“In the past 24 hours, 47 wildfires were extinguished on the territory of 3,747 hectares. As of 12am on 11 July 2019, 175 forest fires are reported on the territory of 127,886 hectares, with active firefighting efforts underway,” the press service said.

[UK] Fake wine investment company scams Perthshire resident out of £100,000
By Kirsty McIntosh, The Courier, 11 July 2019
A Perthshire resident has lost almost £100,000 in a fine wine scam.
The victim, who has not been named, was first contacted by a company claiming to be based in London’s wealthy Hatton Gardens area in 2017.
The fake firm, which appeared to be a legitimate investment company, sent a glossy brochure with an invitation to become an investor in fine wines and visit its London offices anytime,
Trading Standards officers in Perth said the company spent a long time building a relationship with the victim, encouraging them to buy wines by implying that other investors were keen to snap up the vintage.
However when the victim began asking questions it became clear they had been scammed.

[USA] Will Indigo Ag’s New Private Carbon Market Pay Off for Farmers?
By Jeanne Merrill, Civil Eats, 11 July 2019
Farm country is abuzz about the latest in carbon market opportunities. Boston-based agtech company Indigo Ag announced in June that its Terraton initiative will pay farmers $15 per metric ton for the carbon that they store in their soils and in trees on their farms.
The company, which has raised over $600 million in investors since it was founded in 2016, says it intends to remove one trillion tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in part by using a patented microbial seed coating and digital technology that allow the company to monitor and track soil carbon and on-farm emission levels.

12 July 2019

Yanomami Amazon reserve invaded by 20,000 miners; Bolsonaro fails to act
By Sue Brandford, Mongabay, 12 July 2019
Thousands of goldminers (garimpeiros) have illegally invaded Yanomami Park, one of Brazil’s largest indigenous territories, officially demarcated by the Brazilian government in 1992, and covering 96,650 square kilometres (37,320 square miles) of rainforest in the states of Roraima and Amazonas, near the border with Venezuela.
An incursion of this scale has not occurred for many years, bringing back memories among indigenous elders of the terrible period in the late 1980s, when some 40,000 goldminers moved onto their land and about a fifth of the indigenous population died in just seven years due to violence, malaria, malnutrition, mercury poisoning and other causes.

Franco-Israeli sentenced to 9 years in prison, fined for vast tax fraud scam
AFP, 12 July 2019
French-Israeli dual national Stéphane Alzraa was sentenced Friday in France to nine years in prison for his involvement in a vast tax fraud known as the “scam of the century.”
He was sentenced on charges of organized fraud and aggravated money laundering and fined 100,000 euros (approximately $112,000).
The Lyon court granted to the state 50 million euros (approximately $56 million) in damages, plus a symbolic single Euro for damage to the country’s image.

[India] Forests: The Currency of the Future
By P Ananth Kumar, Madras Courier, 12 July 2019
Forests are the currency of the future. They are more valuable than extractive metals and stones such as gold and diamonds, superior to pliable currencies–such as the­ dollar, pound, rupee, euro, yen–and, more reliable, functional, and useful than any of the digitally manipulated cryptocurrencies.

‘Dangerous’ new regulation puts Indonesia’s carbon-rich peatlands at risk
By Hans Nicholas Jong, Mongabay, 12 July 2019
A new Indonesian government regulation that restricts the types of carbon-rich peat landscapes that must be protected has raised concerns among environmentalists about a backslide in forest protection policies.
Existing regulations, issued in the wake of devastating fires in 2015, require that plantation companies and other concession holders whose land includes areas with peat layers 3 meters (10 feet) or deeper must restore and conserve those areas.

‘We’re losing our identity’: Why this small Irish county is fighting Sitka spruce trees
CBC Radio, 12 July 2019
In northwestern Ireland, the small county of Leitrim says it is overrun with Sitka spruce trees.
The trees, which aren’t native to Ireland, are part of a government initiative to fight climate change. Sitkas are fast-growing evergreen trees which absorb carbon — something Ireland must do if it plans to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

[Liberia] Cape Mountainians Lauds CDI’s Operations
By Hannah N. Geterminah, Daily Observer, 12 July 2019
Residents of Commonwealth District in Grand Cape Mount County have lauded operations of Community Development Initiative (CDI), a non-government organization (NGO) that is rolling out the reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) program in the county.
According to some of the residents, many of whom are farmers, the program has contributed positively by employing some of the villagers to earn money and also take care of their families.

[Liberia] 18 Media Practitioners Attend Forest Monitoring Workshop Today
Daily Observer, 12 July 2019
At least 18 media practitioners will today, July 12, begin a two-day workshop on forest governance and monitoring intended to sharpen their skills and enable them join other advocacy groups to strengthen forest governance through their reportorial duties, a release has said.
It can be recalled that in 2016, the European Union Non-State Actors (EU-NSA) launched the project in Western Africa, and it is being implemented in Ghana, Liberia and Ivory Coast.

[PNG] REDD+ a prospect in ‘green economy’ growth
By Peter S. Kinjap, PNG Today, 12 July 2019
When talking climate change, carbon trade and mitigation approaches to address it, many readers on this column have personally emailed me and even asked me in person what really is “REDD+”? To be frank, I myself do not know the scientific explanation behind it and to swiftly provide a snap short of the scheme for those who seeking for a quick answer.

[PNG] Scope of REDD+ and its benefits
By Peter S. Kinjap, The National, 12 July 2019
As promised last week, we will now look more closely at REDD+ (Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation, and plus (+) conservation of forest carbon stocks, sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stocks.
First of all, let us look at how REDD+ is relevant to Papua New Guinea.
The country has a globally significant area of forest that provides vital environmental benefits at the local, national and international levels.

[PNG] Carbon trading is controversial yet effective tool to combat climate change
By Peter S. Kinjap, PNG Today, 12 July 2019
Global warming as indicated by sea levels on the rise; the weather is increasingly becoming more extreme and unpredictable. Species after species face extinct and severe water shortage threatens dry regions.
All of these are consequences of our greenhouse gas emissions that must be stopped or reduced now. Meany weapons have emerged over the past decades to combat the global warming, perhaps none is more controversial rather more effective than the idea of carbon trading, where polluting nations can buy carbon credits from poor countries – basically continue to polluting. The idea was to stick a price on carbon units so that individuals, companies and governments can trade like stocks and bonds.

13 July 2019

[UK] Airport parking firm crash leaves investors stranded… Regulator ruled ParkFirst group had been marketing an unlawful investment scheme
By Tony Hetherington, Daily Mail, 13 July 2019
ParkFirst has finally collapsed into administration, leaving more than 6,000 investors facing an uncertain future.
The group has been on a knife edge since 2017, when the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) ruled that it had been marketing an unauthorised – and therefore unlawful – investment scheme, selling spaces in car parks close to Glasgow and Gatwick airports.

14 July 2019

Unprecedented fires burn the Arctic
By Mark Kaufman, Mashable, 14 July 2019
Smoke is rising over the forests of Alaska and Siberia.
The World Meteorological Organization called the wildfires now burning around the Arctic “unprecedented.” The United Nations agency noted that over 100 intense fires burned in the Arctic Circle alone over the past six weeks, releasing more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than Sweden does in an entire year.

[Indonesia] Pekanbaru shrouded in haze from forest fire
Anatara News, 14 July 2019
Tampan and Senapelan Sub-districts in Pekanbaru, Riau Province, Sumatra Island, on Sunday were shrouded in haze coming from forest fire.
“Haze shrouds Panam (in Tampan sub-district),” Tanjung, a local inhabitant, said here on Sunday.
The Terra and Aqua satellites detected 38 hotspots on Sunday morning, an increase from 35 hotspots on the previous day, the Pekanbaru meteorology, climatology and geophysics (BMKG) station, said.

Jamaican women tackle the climate crisis on all sides
By Emma Lewis, Global Voices, 14 July 2019
Globally, startling changes in the environment disproportionately affect women in developing countries, largely because of their lower economic and social status. In Jamaica, women head about 46 percent of households and bear the brunt of responsibility for shelter, water, and food security.
International agencies have caught on to the need for women’s involvement in the climate crisis quite late with gender-sensitive policies and action plans.
In September 2018, Una May Gordan, principal director of the Jamaican government’s Climate Change Division, brought together a group of regional gender specialists and climate experts for a workshop with the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) in Kingston.

Sri Lankans spark most destructive forest fires
By Pravin Jayasundere, The Sunday Times, 14 July 2019
Sri Lankans are the spark for forest fires wherever they are reported, and cause immeasurable economic losses and environmental damage to the country and themselves.
This past week, more than 500 acres of forest cover was burnt down.
Major damage is done to water resources.

PKK claims responsibility for forest fires in Turkey’s Mugla province
TRT World, 14 July 2019
The PKK terror organisation has claimed responsibility for forest fires in Turkey’s Aegean tourist coastal towns of Dalaman and Mugla, and for another fire on the outskirts of Turkey’s largest city Istanbul, local media reported.
The terror group claimed responsibility in a written statement published by a social media account linked to the group on Friday.
At Mugla’s Dalaman district of Karacaagac, 400 hectares of woodland were set alight. Approximately 20 helicopters, 77 pumpers and 426 firefighters struggled to stop the two-day-long fire.

[USA] After Green Group Buys Forest, Logging Remains
Voice of America, 14 July 2019
One of the largest environmental groups in the United States recently purchased a part of the Appalachian forest.
The Nature Conservancy bought more than 40,000 hectares – an area covering parts of three states: Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia.
In their efforts to combat climate change, environmentalists see forests as one of Earth’s best defenses. Forests capture carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas.
Yet the Nature Conservancy does not plan to close the land to logging.


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