REDD-Monitor’s round-up of the week’s news on forests, the climate crisis, REDD, and natural climate solutions. For regular updates, follow @reddmonitor on Twitter.
International climate justice response to COP25 relocation
Global Campaign to Demand Climate Justice, November 2019
In response to the announcement by Sebastián Piñera to suspend COP25 summit in Chile, we as international civil society reaffirm our solidarity with the people of Chile who are rising against austerity and growing inequalities; we condemn the violent repression and human rights violations from the government and the military against peaceful protestors.
Forest-Based Climate Mitigation: Lessons from REDD+ Implementation
By Amy E. Duchelle, Frances Seymour, Maria Brockhaus, Arild Angelsen, Anne M. Larson, Moira Moeliono, Grace Y. Wong, Thu Thuy Pham, and Christopher Martius, World Resources Institute, November 2019
This issue brief is based on a 2018 working paper and summarizes the REDD+ experience over the past decade, taking stock of lessons learned from REDD+ implementation to inform future forest-based climate mitigation activities.
11 November 2019
Cryptogreen: The first cryptocurrency that aids forest preservation
By Amy Goddard, BitzArena, 11 November 2019
The last Conference of the Parties (COP), the supreme body of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), stressed that we are experiencing a climate crisis. The speech is more alarming than in previous years, as the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions – particularly carbon dioxide, which is the main cause of the greenhouse effect – has not met the necessary reduction targets. and deforestation has increased. Global greenhouse gas emissions are 53.5 billion tons per year, representing 80% of the world’s pollution.
Improved Universal Mill List expands partnerships, improves transparency in palm oil industry
By Anne Rosenbarger, Toby Gardner, and Paula den Hartog, Trase, 11 November 2019
Last year, when the Universal Mill List (UML) was launched on Global Forest Watch (GFW) and RSPO PalmTrace, the palm oil industry took a step towards improved supply chain traceability and transparency. Today, the release of a newly updated version of the UML represents another leap forward, further aligning the industry around a comprehensive, common dataset.
The Climate Crisis Just Went Nuclear
By Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, 11 November 2019
The climate crisis is the one issue that touches all the other issues. For example, the climate crisis is tied up in the dangers of nuclear weapons in ways that nobody predicted, but that the Los Angeles Times spent some time and money examining. Back in the 1950s and 1960s, the United States set off 67 nuclear bombs in and around the Marshall Islands. This had predictable results: there were now lagoons where there were none before; some islands simply aren’t there any more, and there was a lot of deadly stuff left behind. Which brings us to the climate crisis.
Fires and greenhouse gases fuel drying of the AmazonFires and greenhouse gases fuel drying of the Amazon
Mongabay, 11 November 2019
The burning of vegetation and the release of climate-warming gases into the atmosphere are conspiring to dry out the Amazon rainforest, according to a new study.
“We observed that in the last two decades, there has been a significant increase in dryness in the atmosphere as well as in the atmospheric demand for water above the rainforest,” Armineh Barkhordarian, an assistant researcher at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and the lead author of the study, said in a statement.
Is climate change to blame for Australia’s bushfires?
BBC News, 11 November 2019
Australia is enduring a bushfire crisis that has left three people dead, razed more than 150 homes, and prompted warnings of “catastrophic” danger.
Bushfires are a regular feature in the Australian calendar, but the blazes in New South Wales and Queensland have not previously occurred on such a scale and so early in the fire season, officials say.
This has led many Australians to ask how closely the fires can be linked to climate change.
[Australia] ‘Old hat’: Is there a link between climate change and bushfires?
By Peter Hannam, The Sydney Morning Herald, 11 November 2019
As Sydney braces for its first ever day of catastrophic fire danger, it’s worth recapping what scientists think about the links between bushfire risks and a warming world.
Is there a link between climate change and more severe and frequent bushfires?
[Australia] Qantas Airways targets net zero carbon by 2050
By Michael Holder, BusinessGreen, 11 November 2019
Australian airline Qantas Group has announced it is targeting net zero carbon emissions by 2050, today promising a “massive expansion” of its green aviation efforts through plans to offset all growth in emissions from next year and invest AUS $50m towards developing sustainable aviation fuels.
All growth in emissions from the company’s airlines – Qantas, Jetstar, QantasLink and Qantas Freight – will be offset from 2020 onwards, the company said, including all net emissions from its plan to operate non-stop flights from the east coast of Australia to London and New York.
What happened in Bolivia? Was there a coup?
By Pablo Solón, Systemic Alternatives, 11 November 2019
Evo Morales could have finished his third electoral mandate on the 22 January 2020 as a very popular president and the possibility of running for – and even winning – the 2024 elections, if he had not forced through his re-election for a fourth term. As the President of Bolivia, he a) did not recognise the 2016 referendum which voted NO to his re-election, b) pushed in 2017 for the Constitutional Tribunal to suspend the articles of the constitution that said that a person could only be re-elected one time, c) committed fraud in the elections on 20 October to avoid a second round and to impose a party majority in parliament.
Chile forests to get USD 63 million boost from Green Climate Fund
FAO, 11 November 2019
Chile will receive USD 63 million from the Green Climate Fund for having successfully reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from forests. Emissions were reduced by 18.4 million tCO2eq between 2014 and 2016 by the implementation of REDD+ activities.
REDD+ is a mechanism of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) which assigns a financial value to results per tonne of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent of reduced emissions or enhanced removals in forests. It also offers incentives for developing countries to reduce emissions while investing in low-carbon, sustainable development.
Life lessons: Teaching conservation and celebrating culture in Guyana
By Barbara Fraser, CIFOR Forests News, 11 November 2019
Late one sunny afternoon in September, in teacher Kim Spencer’s ninth-grade class, groups of students raced each other to guess the names of animals from a description of their characteristics.
“Caiman!” called one student. “Anteater!” said another.
The game was part of the first session of a year-long environmental education course being pilot tested in four schools in Guyana’s southern Rupununi region.
[Indonesia] FSC report on palm giant Korindo lists litany of violations, even with redactions
By Hans Nicholas Jong, Mongabay, 11 November 2019
The Forest Stewardship Council has released a batch of heavily redacted reports into its probe of violations by a palm oil company operating in Indonesia, after it was earlier slapped with a cease-and-desist letter.
The FSC, considered the world’s foremost body certifying the sustainable forestry industry, found “clear and convincing evidence” that the company, Korindo had violated the rights of indigenous peoples in Papua by failing to properly consult local communities about plans to convert their land into oil palm plantations and by providing unfair compensation to the communities.
[USA] California says San Diego County could undermine state’s greenhouse gas plan
By Joshua Emerson Smith, Los Angeles Times, 11 November 2019
The stakes are rising in a legal battle over whether San Diego County will be able to approve thousands of new housing units in wildfire-prone areas far from urban job centers using carbon offsets.
The Sierra Club spearheaded the legal challenge last year with support from other environmental groups, including the Center for Biological Diversity, the San Diego-based Climate Action Campaign and Cleveland National Forest Foundation.
12 November 2019
The Quickest Way to Reduce Airplane Emissions
By Eleanor Cummins, The New Republic, 12 November 2019
Greta Thunberg is stuck in the United States. The 16-year-old climate activist sailed across the Atlantic on a carbon-free yacht this summer for the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York City. Now that December’s UN Climate Change Conference has been relocated from Chile to Spain, she needs a lift back to Europe, but refuses to hop on a plane.
Climate change makes bushfires worse. Denying the truth doesn’t change the facts
By Richard Denniss, The Guardian, 12 November 2019
It’s not just climate protesters who powerful voices are trying to silence in Australia, it’s anyone who wants to talk about the bigger-picture causes to the problems Australia is facing.
In modern Australia it has become “inappropriate” to talk about why our rivers are running out of water, why our aged care centres are running out of food and nappies, and why our fire brigades are running out of firetrucks. But it’s impossible to solve problems when you can’t talk about the underlying causes.
Greta Thunberg leaves US with simple climate crisis message: vote
By Emily Holden, The Guardian, 12 November 2019
As Greta Thunberg departs the US to sail across the Atlantic for the second time in a few months, she is leaving behind a simple message for those who care about the climate crisis: you must vote.
The 16-year-old Swedish climate activist who ignited a youth movement with her Friday school strikes has traveled across America since arriving via racing yacht in late August. She will now brave the bitter cold to get back to Madrid, after a change in venue for international climate negotiations. Her plan had been to make her way to Chile, where the talks were meant to be held before the country descended into civil unrest.
“It’s incredibly cheap to do the right thing”: Top Asian DMC launches new eco drive
By Alastair Newport, TD, 12 November 2019
Asian destination management company (DMC) EXO Travel, recently unveiled its latest campaign — to fight climate change with carbon-neutral holidays. The DMC will fully offset their entire carbon footprint from their company’s operations including travel, office use, and staff commutes. It also offers an option to clients to travel carbon neutral with a minimal fee.
Greenwash or necessity: What role does carbon offsetting play in reaching net-zero?
Edie, 12 November 2019
Several NGOs offering carbon offsetting have reported a fourfold increase in investment over the past two years – but with concerns around greenwashing persisting, where should businesses be positioning offsetting in their net-zero strategies?
That was one of the key discussion points among speakers taking part in edie’s most recent webinar, entitled: ‘Climate activism: Redefining business engagement to help reach net-zero’.
Daily Mirror’s Climate Crisis Issue: Why we are dedicating our paper and our site to the only issue that matters
The Mirror, 12 November 2019
The climate crisis is not just one of the most important issues of our time. It is the most important issue. The challenge is immediate and urgent. The world is heating up at an alarming rate. Our ice caps are melting, glaciers are disappearing and sea levels are rising. Severe weather patterns are becoming more frequent and more extreme in their nature. This, in turn, will mean an increase in the heavy rainfall that led to the floods we have witnessed in Yorkshire and the Midlands this week.
[Australia] NSW fire victims demand climate action
By Heather McNab, AAP, 12 November 2019
After tipping the burnt remains of his family home onto the footpath outside NSW parliament, Aaron Crowe declared now as precisely the right time to talk about climate change.
The 38-year-old lost his two-bedroom home – which he shares with wife Fiona Lee and three-year-old daughter Pepper – on Friday after fire tore through the tiny community of Warrawillah on the state’s mid north coast.
Brazil to boost biodiesel blend to 15% by 2023, helping soy demand
By Marcelo Teixeira, Reuters, 12 November 2019
Brazil is poised to increase for the second time in less than a year the minimum amount of biodiesel to be blended into diesel fuel and to follow up with increases of 1 percentage point a year up to 2023, which in turn should boost demand for soybeans.
Oil palm: Wonder crop but most controversial commodity
By Vincent Lingga, The Jakarta Post, 12 November 2019
Sustainability standards for oil palm, a wonder crop that has lifted tens of millions of people in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand out of poverty but has become the most controversial vegetable oil, dominated a big conference held immediately after the ASEAN Summit in Bangkok last week.
[UK] Formula One takes axe to emissions in quest for sponsors
By Murad Ahmed and Leslie Hook, Financial Times, 12 November 2019
Formula One has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2030, as the sport attempts to burnish its green credentials to appeal to commercial sponsors and younger fans.
The world’s pre-eminent racing car competition has announced a series of measures designed to reduce its emissions by between 20 to 50 per cent over the next decade, including moving cars to biofuels, leaving no waste behind at Grands Prix and changing the race calendar so teams fly less between events.
However, it has stopped short of abandoning the internal combustion engines that have powered its race cars for its nearly 70-year history.
How To Reach U.S. Net Zero Emissions By 2050: Decarbonizing Electricity
By Megan Mahajan (Energy Innovation), Forbes, 12 November 2019
Presidential candidates, state governments, and utilities are promoting “net zero” emissions targets to rapidly reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and preserve a safe climate future by helping to limit global warming to well below 2°C. But few of them are exploring exactly how the U.S. could achieve the ambitious goal of remaking its energy economy.
13 November 2019
Global climate treaty is not working
By Tim Radford, Climate News Network, 13 November 2019
Three nations in every four that vowed in the global climate treaty, the Paris Agreement, to contain global heating to “well below” 2°C by the century’s end have failed to deliver pledges that will reduce emissions by even 40% by 2030.
In Paris in 2015, a total of 195 nations agreed that action was vital. Since then only 36 countries have taken steps to meet the targets they agreed, according to a new study by the Universal Ecological Fund. And one nation has announced that it will withdraw altogether from the agreement.
International Energy Agency denounced for promoting increase in use of fossil gas
Global Witness, 13 November 2019
At a time when the impact of climate crisis is being felt around the world, it is perverse that the International Energy Agency (IEA) continue to promote massive investment in fossil fuels, according to Global Witness.
In their 2019 World Energy Outlook, that guides decisions by Governments, businesses, industry groups and investors on fossil fuel projects, the IEA forecast for how the world can tackle climate change (the Sustainable Development Scenario) states that fossil gas production should increase by nearly 10% over the next decade.
Balancing development and conservation needs of stakeholders in a shared landscape
By Sandra Cordon, CIFOR Forests News, 13 November 2019
Integrate knowledge holders. Understand power relationships and address imbalances to ensure marginalized groups are heard. Promote transparency in decisions and actions in landscape restoration work. Address governance and ensure transparency in motives and “political visions.”
Also, try to be humble in dealings with local stakeholders, particularly communities and traditional leaders; yet review all knowledge, common practices and traditions with a healthy skepticism. And remember to consider gender and youths in stakeholder platforms.
Rising beef demand linked to Amazon deforestation
By Gustavo Faleiros, China Dialogue, 13 November 2019
Porto Velho is one of the biggest cities in the Brazilian Amazon but it still feels like a small town. Located in the heart of Rondônia state, trade is modest and the population is growing relatively slowly, increasing from 428,000 to 530,000 in a decade.
The cattle population, however, is growing much more quickly. A decade ago, the human and bovine populations in the Porto Velho municipality were similar. Today, there are twice as many cattle as humans.
[Canada] Where will we plant those two billion trees to fight the climate crisis?
By Aaron Beswick, Saltwire, 13 November 2019
A day after meeting teenage Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg, Prime Minister Trudeau promised a re-elected Liberal government would plant two billion trees over the next decade.
Then Green Party leader Elizabeth May countered that the number wasn’t high enough and said her party would plant 10 billion trees by 2050.
Everybody gets that trees are good – they store carbon, create habitat for wildlife and places for us to enjoy. But for those who work with Canada’s forests – both to harvest and to protect them – it caused some head-scratching.
Why indigenous peoples and traditional knowledge are vital to protecting future global biodiversity
By John Vidal, Ensia, 13 November 2019
To reach the U’wa villages in the cloud forests of northeastern Colombia, you must cross the plain, head into the mountains, abandon cars, take to footpaths, ford rivers and then seek permission from tribal elders. It can take weeks.
I visited in 1997 with young California biologist Terry Freitas, one of the few westerners at that point to have been allowed in to U’wa territory to study indigenous ways to protect nature. His plan was to gain their trust, learn from them and possibly write a book.
Indonesian fire expert awarded for exposing destruction by plantation firms
By Hans Nicholas Jong, Mongabay, 13 November 2019
Indonesian forensics expert Bambang Hero Saharjo has been awarded a top environmental prize for his work in delivering justice against oil palm plantations accused of allowing fires on their concessions.
Bambang was one of 206 nominees from 38 countries for the John Maddox Prize for Standing up for Science, now in its eighth year. The announcement of the award, aA joint initiative by the charity Sense about Science and the scientific journal Nature, was made at a ceremony in London on Nov. 12.
14 November 2019
Green Climate Fund Board commits an additional USD 407.8 million to combat climate crisis
Green Climate Fund, 14 November 2019
The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is now financing climate action in over 100 developing countries after the final Board meeting of 2019 approved 13 new projects.
The 24th Board meeting closed today after allocating USD 407.8 million, raising GCF’s total portfolio to USD 5.6 billion. This includes new transformative initiatives in China, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Nepal, the Philippines and the State of Palestine. Combining co-financing by GCF’s funding partners, the newly approved projects will channel over USD 1.87 billion to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance climate resilience.
Fossil Fuel Subsidies And Impact Greenwashing Are Stalling The Energy Transition
By wal van Lierop, Forbes, 14 November 2019
Since 1800, worldwide consumption of fossil fuels has increased 1,300-fold. Access to this cheap energy has lifted people out of poverty and catalyzed economic growth, wealth creation and healthier living environments. So, the fossil fuel industry must be remarkably profitable, right?
Carbon markets, corporate mitigation strategies and forest-based offsets
By Gabriel Labbate, (UNEP REDD+ Team Leader), CIFOR Landscape News, 14 November 2019
The science behind global warming is now unequivocal – and its effects are becoming increasingly clear. Last year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) painted a stark picture of the crisis that the planet faces. Likewise, a recent global assessment by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) found around 1 million species at risk of extinction.
Does Greta Thunberg’s Lifestyle Equal Climate Denial? One Climate Scientist Seems To Suggest So.
By Nives Dolsak and Aseem Prakash, Forbes, 14 November 2019
The climate debate has taken a nasty turn. It is no longer a shouting match between climate affirmers and climate deniers. Now the finger-wagging is taking place among climate affirmers on the subject of personal responsibility for combating climate change.
There are two key actors in this unfolding saga. One embraces the importance of individual responsibility while the other derides it.
CIFOR and ICRAF Create ‘Resilient Landscapes’ Initiative
By Catherine Benson Wahlén, IISD, 14 November 2019
The Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) and World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), both of the CGIAR Consortium, merged at the beginning of 2019. In September 2019, they announced the creation of a new organization “born from the merger”: Resilient Landscapes. The organization will promote sustainable, innovative solutions to ensure integrated, multi-functional landscapes that are performing, productive and resilient and will help countries, communities and companies improve land management and livelihoods in sustainable and resilient ways.
Deforestation preceded fires in ‘massive’ area of Amazon in 2019
By John C. Cannon, Mongabay, 14 November 2019
The prevailing narrative about the Brazilian Amazon this past summer was that the world’s largest rainforest was burning. A more accurate assessment would be that vast areas that used to be forest were burning, according to work by the Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project (MAAP), a program of the organization Amazon Conservation.
In a study published Nov. 13, the deforestation monitoring group found that 4,500 square kilometers (1,740 square miles) of the Brazilian Amazon — about 1.8 times the size of Luxembourg — was deforested between 2017 and 2019 and then burned.
Australia bushfires: Death toll rises as communities remain on alert
BBC News, 14 November 2019
Australian authorities say a fourth person has died in a week of massive bushfires on the nation’s east coast.
The 58-year-old man’s body was found in northern New South Wales (NSW) on Thursday, days after a fire ripped through the region.
Crews are still battling over 120 fires in NSW and Queensland, but locals in Western Australia have now been warned of extremely dangerous conditions.
Brazil’s Amazon—and Its Defenders—Are Under Attack From Illegal Loggers
By César Muñoz Acebes, Foreign Policy, 14 November 2019
Three-quarters of the original rainforest in the northeastern Brazilian state of Maranhão is gone, replaced mostly by cattle ranches. One of the few remaining pristine patches lies within the Araribóia indigenous territory, an area larger than the U.S. state of Rhode Island that is the home to more than 10,000 Tenetehara and about 80 isolated Awá indigenous people.
[Brazil] Jair Bolsonaro is 2019’s Racist of the Year — here’s why
Survival International, 14 November 2019
It’s been quite a year for the “Trump of the Tropics,” aka Jair Bolsonaro, President of Brazil. As well as being the thoroughly deserving recipient of Survival International’s Racist of the Year Award, in 2019 he has also positioned himself in the popular imagination as the greatest threat to the Amazon rainforest in recent history.
Fiji REDD+ revamps website
By Maggie Boyle, FBC News, 14 November 2019
The revamped Fiji REDD+ website- www.fijireddplus.org will be Fiji’s information hub for the National REDD+ Project.
While launching the site, Minister for Forestry Osea Naiqamu highlighted that the portal will also provide Fijians the opportunity to seek and obtain information on the ‘4 Million Trees in 4 Years’ initiative.
15 November 2019
What are NDCs and why are they important?
UN Development Programme, 15 November 2019
The Paris Agreement in 2016 was a landmark moment in the fight against climate change.
After years of negotiating, every one of the 196 countries plus the European Union, all Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), came together in Paris to agree upon a set of principles on how we can curb greenhouse gas emissions and tackle climate change impacts head on. This was called the Paris Agreement.
Brands urged to think bigger on saving forests as 2020 goal looms
By Michael Taylor, Thomson Reuters Foundation, 15 November 2019
Green certification is not a silver bullet to end deforestation, leaving many global household brands struggling to meet pledges to halt forest-clearing linked to the production of palm oil and other ingredients by 2020, said a body grouping those firms.
After environmentalists staged a series of high-profile campaigns against large corporate users of agricultural commodities, urging them to protect forests, the 400 members of the Paris-based Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) agreed in 2010 to use only supplies that do not contribute to deforestation by 2020.
Methane emissions from coalmines could stoke climate crisis – study
By Jillian Ambrose, The Guardian, 15 November 2019
The methane emissions leaking from the world’s coalmines could be stoking the global climate crisis at the same rate as the shipping and aviation industries combined.
Coalmines are belching millions of tonnes of methane into the atmosphere unchecked, because policymakers have overlooked the rising climate threat, according to new research.
Procter & Gamble’s Deforestation Exposure May Affect Reputation
Chain Reaction Research, 15 November 2019
Procter & Gamble (P&G) is a NYSE-listed multinational consumer goods company headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio. P&G provides branded products and services in the home and personal care sectors in more than 180 countries. The company has a No Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation (NDPE) policy that covers all third-party suppliers, and it has committed to developing a traceable supply chain. P&G applies its responsible sourcing policy at the supplier group level, but relies on intermediary traders to engage with non-compliant growers and ensure a clean supply chain. In July 2019, P&G changed its organization design to six Sector Business Units (SBUs). It has decentralized responsibility for supply chains across its new business units.
Activists hold climate conference deep in the Amazon rainforest
By Jonathan Watts, The Guardian, 15 November 2019
The search for solutions to the climate crisis does not get any more radical, far-reaching or deeper into nature than the alternative climate conference currently taking place in the heart of the Amazon rainforest.
In the past few days, European climate strikers and Extinction Rebellion youth activists have travelled by motor canoe deep into a region known as Terra do Meio to share ideas with indigenous leaders, forest dwellers, environmental activists and Brazil’s leading climate scientists, anthropologists and archaeologists. The Russian punk anarchist Nadya Tolokonnikova, of Pussy Riot, was also set to join the gathering along with local artists and Catholic bishops.
Sustainable wildlife management key as Guyana faces rapid economic change
By Barbara Fraser, CIFOR Forests News, 15 November 2019
If you drive along a rural road in Guyana’s southern Rupununi region at night, your headlights are likely to pick out a caiman waddling across the road or a couple of foxes bounding ahead of your vehicle.
Most roads in the area are unpaved, and traffic is light, so relatively few animals are killed by vehicles. But that rate could rise in the near future. Guyana is poised for a cascade of changes that could have dramatic impacts on the Rupununi landscape, its wildlife and the people who depend on fish and wild game for food.
Indian government scraps “dangerous” forest law after outcry
Survival Internationl,15 November 2019
The Indian government has scrapped a plan to militarize its forests and open them up for commercial exploitation, after a national and international outcry.
The government’s proposals were initially secret, and were drawn up with the involvement of the CEO of WWF-India, Ravi Singh. But they were leaked in March, and led to protests in India and an international campaign led by Survival International.
[Indonesia] ‘Timebomb’: Fires devastate tiger and elephant habitat in Sumatra
By Michael Standaert, Mongabay, 15 November 2019
Recent dry-season fires that raged across Indonesia in September and October have taken a toll on forests, even in protected areas. Fires were particularly destructive in southern Sumatra, burning around 8 percent of Sembilang National Park, according to satellite data and local observers.
The fires, along with illegal logging in the area and the conversion of secondary forest and shrub land to oil palm plantations, continue to threaten critically endangered wildlife such as the Sumatran elephant, a subspecies of the Asian elephant, and the Sumatran tiger. Endangered Malay tapir, as well as several common primate species, are also known to inhabit the park area.
Conservation in northern Kenya: conflicts over community land in the pastoral margins
By Mohamed Noor, PASTRES, 15 November 2019
With growing economic, environmental, and conservation pressures, it is imperative that the question of community land ownership in the pastoral areas of northern Kenya be addressed; otherwise, chaos and conflict will likely ensue. Land ownership is a core concern of politics in Kenya, and conservation organisations are soliciting political favours to propagate their conceptualisation of conservancies within pastoral lands.
NZ First-linked forestry company wanted $95m in govt funding
By Guyon Espiner and Kate Newton, RNZ, 15 November 2019
A forestry company with close links to New Zealand First planned to apply for nearly $100 million under the One Billion Trees programme, which is overseen by the Forestry Minister Shane Jones.
Under the proposal, NZ Future Forest Products Limited wanted the government to be a joint shareholder in a company that would buy livestock farms in the Bay of Plenty, East Cape and Northland to convert into pine forest.
[USA] Cap and Trade Is Supposed to Solve Climate Change, but Oil and Gas Company Emissions Are Up
By Lisa Song , ProPublica, 15 November 2019
Gov. Jerry Brown took the podium at a July 2017 press conference to lingering applause after a steady stream of politicians praised him for helping to extend California’s signature climate policy for another decade. Brown, flanked by the U.S. and California flags, with a backdrop of the gleaming San Francisco Bay, credited the hard work of the VIPs seated in the crowd. “It’s people in industry, and they’re here!” he said. “Shall we mention them? People representing oil, agriculture, business, Chamber of Commerce, food processing. … Plus, we have environmentalists. …”
16 November 2019
9 ways the climate crisis is killing you (right now)
By Matt Simon, Wired, 16 November 2019
Maybe you live in Ohio, far away from rising seas. Maybe you live in Canada, nowhere near a blazing desert. You might think climate change isn’t your problem, at least not yet. But maybe today we can change your mind.
The medical journal The Lancet just released its annual report on climate change and human health. A work of over 100 experts – doctors, climatologists, economists, and more – the massive study looks at 41 indicators, including extreme weather like droughts, energy trends like fuel use, and agricultural impacts like changing growing conditions.
[India] Dehradun based ICFRE set to improve status of forests through research interventions
WION, 16 November 2019
Dehradun based Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE), along with its nine research institutes and five centres spread across India, are set to work on forestry research issues of national importance for sustaining ecology and enhancing the productivity of Indian forests and plantation.
Reforesting the UK: ‘Trees are the ultimate long-term project’
By Damian Carrington, The Guardian, 16 November 2019
“This whole area wants to be a wood,” says Edward Milbank, sweeping his arm across the former hill farm in Northumberland. Small saplings of birch have invaded the cleared ground, but many more trees are being pushed into the soil by hand.
The bracken and rhododendron that had overrun the hillside took heavy machinery three months to rip out. “When you disturb the soil, it becomes a wood very quickly,” says Milbank.
[UK] General election 2019: Tories and Lib Dems in rival tree-planting pledges
BBC News, 16 November 2019
The Conservative Party has said it will plant 30 million trees a year by 2025 if it wins the general election – as the Liberal Democrats pledged to plant twice as many trees in the same period.
The Tories’ £640m fund would be used to plant trees and restore peatland.
Labour dismissed the scheme and said the prime minister had an “atrocious environmental record”.
17 November 2019
5 things to know about fighting climate change by planting trees
By Susan Milius, Science News, 17 November 2019
The idea seemed so catchy, simple and can-do. There’s room to plant enough trees, albeit many, many, many trees, to counter a big chunk of the planet-warming carbon spewed by human activities.
A more realistic look at that feel-good estimate, however, might shrink it down to a useful idea, but no panacea. The proposed fabulous benefits of planting trees triggered a skeptical backlash within the climate science community.
While Most Industries Suffer Due to the Climate Crisis, Hydropower Sees Opportunities
By Eric Roston, Fortune, 17 November 2019
Many look at the world’s melting ice and see glacier basins as half-empty. Swiss researchers see them as half-full of opportunities for hydropower and freshwater storage.
The largely theoretical study, published Wednesday in the journal Nature, examined 185,000 glaciers around the world and determined where environmental, technical and economic factors would allow for the building of dams to harness both the power of glacier melt and the value of water itself. If all such sites were tapped, the amount of electricity generated would equal 7% of the world’s total electricity consumption in 2015, or 35% of the world’s output from dams.
The Amazon: on the frontline of a global battle to tackle the climate crisis
By Jonathan Watts, The Guardian, 17 November 2019
On the six-hour boat ride down the Iriri river to Manolito, there is almost no other traffic and only a handful of small homes. At its widest and calmest, the vast expanse of water is a flawless mirror of blue sky and green canopy. At its narrowest and roughest, the water churns around boulders eroded into the shapes of battlements and breaching whales. Parrots fly above the treetops. Fish feast on fallen blossoms. Kingfishers perch on riverside branches while herons await their prey on midstream rocks with their wings outstretched. White and yellow butterflies stumble across the river at remarkable speeds.
[Kenya] Ministry rolls out plan to reclaim two forests
By Julius Chepkwony, Standard Digital, 17 November 2019
Two weeks after the government launched an initiative for planting 10 million trees in the Mau, plans are underway to reclaim two other forests.
The reclamation efforts are now set to move to Marmanet and Embobut forests in Laikipia County and Elgeyo Marakwet counties respectively.
A total of 19,700 tree seedlings were planted through aerial means while 300,000 by locals on more 35,000 hectares of the Mau forest. The Ministry revealed that Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko toured Marmanet forest and decried the extensive encroachment.