247 – Earth’s Tree News

Today for you 34 new articles about earth’s trees! (247th edition)
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–British Columbia: 1) FSC gets the cut out for big bucks, 2) Coastal Forest Plan,
–US Pacific Northwest: 3) Exposing the corruption that won’t protect Marbled Murrelet
–Washington: 4) Yakama Nation is joining an innovative restoration partnership
–California: 5) Nanning Creek treesitters, 6) Wildfire reflections, 7) Bioneers,
–Montana: 8) Save the Wild Swan!
–New York: 9) Logging for a place to put the dirt
–Maine: 10) Diversifying logging economy, 11) Timber thief pleads guilty,
–USA: 12) Cutting firefighting funds again and again
–UK: 13) Explorer scouts learn to log and plant
–Sweden: 14) Loggers brag about all the forests they’ve saved
–Malta: 15) Plants and Shrubs attacked
–Syria: 16) Israel felling cherry trees and I wonder if they’ll lie about it?
–Africa: 17) World’s poorest continent
–Liberia: 18) President talks to Bush about climate change
–Uganda: 19) logging caused infectious parasites, 20) Echuya forest reserve
–Kenya: 21) Rampant destruction of Embobut forest
–Brazil: 22) Deserts and slavery for luxury homes, 23) 222,000 acres given to big oil, 24) Institute for Space Research, 25) Save the forest with the power of collective healing,
–India: 26) Massive weeding operation, 27) Manas National Park,
–Bhutan: 28) Committee will fix prices for final sawn timber
–Philippines: 29) Confiscated wood is rotting amid complaining
–Japan: 30) Deforestation protesters have reportedly raised ¥73
–Malaysia: 31) Premier nature adventure destination
–Papua: 32) 252 different tribes: “Don’t cut down our Trees”
–Indonesia: 33) An incentivized program to better manage forest emissions
–World-wide: 34) 1/3 of all primates in danger of extinction!

British Columbia:

1) Harvesting and selling timber according to Forest Stewardship Council standards is benefiting a First Nations-owned logging company, says an Ecotrust Canada spokesman.
Mike Vitt, a forestry program manager for Ecotrust Canada, told the Clayoquot Sound Central Region Board last week that Iisaak Forest Products should have a record year in terms of profitability, and the company is now selling timber into Port Alberni, Parksville and Vancouver. He said one of the largest Dutch importers of FSC certified wood will also be in town. “There’s no doubt in my mind we’re getting tremendous value from FSC,” he said. “We’re getting so much demand out of it we can pick and chose our customers. Ecotrust is a non-profit organization that according to its website believes a sustainable economy should improve social and environmental conditions. FSC certification ensures forests are managed in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. Last year, Ecotrust began managing Iisaak, a logging company owned by the five Central Region First Nations: – Tla-o-qui-aht, Ahousaht, Ucluelet, Hesquiaht and Toquaht. The company controls 87,393 hectares of land in Tree Farm License 57, located in Clayoquot Sound. Vitt said Iisaak employs about 42 people in full-time jobs and the company will harvest about 85,000 cubic metres of fiber this year. Vitt said the company wasn’t exporting raw logs at this time. “I don’t want to say never,” he added, noting, however, that Iisaak is trying to leverage its FSC certification. http://www.westcoaster.ca/modules/AMS/article.php?storyid=2884

2) We’ve gotten word that the BC Liberal government will likely be releasing their Coastal Forest Industry Plan early next week. The plan will have the broad outlines on what they intend to do with our coastal old-growth forests. Sometime afterwards, they will release a Coastal Old-Growth Strategy that will have more details. It’s VITAL that you flood the BC government at this point with letters and phone calls to let them know that for Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland, where 75% of the original productive old-growth forests have already been logged (including over 90% of the valley bottoms with the largest trees), whether you want the BC government to:1) Enact concrete timelines and targets to reduce and quickly end old-growth logging on Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland where old-growth forests are now scarce. 2) Ensure that our second-growth forests are logged sustainably instead. 3) Ban raw log exports from private and public lands. – Many of you have already received government responses to your previous letters, in which the Campbell government is rationalizing the liquidation of our last old-growth forests on Vancouver Island by stating that plenty of old-growth is already protected. Please WRITE BACK! You might want to point out that only 6% of Vancouver Island’s productive forests (old-growth and second-growth) are protected in parks. Another couple percent are under tenuous protection in Wildlife Habitat Areas (WHA) and Old-Growth Management Areas (OGMA) which often are placed inside already protected areas or in marginal, low productivity forests with smaller trees. In addition, these WHA’s and OGMA’s don’t show up on any publicly available maps, and in fact, almost nobody knows where they are except timber companies and a few bureaucrats – and they can easily disappear through executive decisions by Minister of Forests Rich Coleman and the Cabinet. http://www.wcwcvictoria.org

US Pacific Northwest:

3) On October 2, we received a pile of documents that were released as a result of an Earthjustice Freedom of Information Act request that sought to ferret out what role, if any, Julie MacDonald and other political appointees had played in the writing of a “status review” of the murrelet. The review was conducted as a result of a timber industry lawsuit whose ultimate goal was to strip Endangered Species Act protection from the murrelet. The final version of the review contradicted most scientific studies in concluding that the murrelets in Washington, Oregon, and California, now protected by the Endangered Species Act, did not deserve that protection because there are more numerous murrelets in British Columbia and Alaska, and a 2004 Canadian law would help with murrelet conservation. The day before the final status review was released, FWS changed its “yes” to a “no” on the question “Does the original listing meet the DPS policy with regards to the Discreteness and Significance elements of the DPS policy?” In other words, where agency scientists had determined that the murrelets in the Northwest are a “distinct population segment,” that finding was turned on its head at the last minute. Kristen Boyles immediately wrote to demand that the FWS withdraw the status review and investigate Ms. MacDonald’s role in the murrelet matter. We’ll let you know what happens. It is hardly news that Bush administration officials have avoided, evaded, flouted, and violated environmental laws relentlessly for nearly seven years. What’s worth noting is that the practice continues even in the face of overwhelming public disapproval. And no one yet knows the full extent of this corruption of law and science. We’ll be cleaning up messes well into the next administration no matter who the next president may be. http://www.earthjustice.org/our_work/buck_in_brief/marbled-murrelet-mystery.html


4) The Yakama Nation is joining an innovative partnership focused on restoring the health, natural structure, and productivity of forests and shrub-steppe in south central Washington. The Tapash Sustainable Forests Collaborative was established in May 2006 by The Nature Conservancy, US Forest Service, and Washington’s Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and Department of Natural Resources. The purpose was to encourage greater cooperation and coordination among these major landowners on issues ranging from forest health to recreation. Lavina Washines, the chairwoman of the Yakama Nation Tribal Council, signed the partnership’s Memorandum of Understanding earlier this week at the nation’s headquarters in Toppenish. Representatives of the other agencies signed the memorandum today at the Society of American Foresters conference being held in Portland. The collaborative provides a way for its members to plan and work together. With the Yakama Nation’s involvement, the group will be focusing on forest management across about 2 million acres in Kittitas and Yakima counties. “This partnership is another example of our commitment to address forest health challenges in eastern Washington,” said Doug Sutherland, state commissioner of public lands. “The issue crosses all ownership boundaries and must be addressed on a landscape-wide basis. The Yakama Nation has been a leader in addressing forest health issues. We’re honored to be working with them in this effort.” One early project for the collaborative is planning for prescribed fires across ownership boundaries. Prescribed fires are an important tool for creating healthy forests, and can help to avert catastrophic forest fires by clearing out underbrush that will fuel major fires. http://www.nature.org/wherewework/northamerica/states/washington/press/press3179.html


5) When the Tree Biosafety and Genomics Research Cooperative at Oregon State University was still known as The Tree Genetic Engineering Research Cooperative, they publicized their work with “Roundup® resistant” trees. Aside from the obvious involvement of Monsanto on this project, Weyerhaeuser also helps fund the tree lab at OSU. The old TGERC Web site still has information posted about their hundreds of lines of transgenic trees that “have demonstrated high levels of tolerance and no detectable growth loss after multiple Roundup® applications…[and others]…that contain a synthetic gene from the cry3a strain of Bacillus thuringiensis…showed strong resistance to the cottonwood leaf beetle…and enhanced growth rate.” Here is where forest products companies end their tale and the anti-modification advocates pick it up. While the most inflammatory propaganda from this camp will go on about “frankenforests” of genetically modified trees that will devastate native forests and change the entire notion of what the natural world is, there are more reasoned arguments that intelligently refute the economic and humanitarian claims of corporations. The coherent core of these counter-claims takes a step back and looks not only at the trees and how they fall into the saws and pulps of our economic cycles, but how they stand as organisms within a larger cycle of plant and animal organisms in the places we call our forests. In their publication, “Genetically Modified Trees: The ultimate threat to forests,” the Friends of the Earth argue that the reason we should not genetically modify our trees, and thus our forests, is because we are not the only creatures who value trees. Insects, birds, and animals do not acknowledge property and national forest boundaries. They will eat or use whatever tree they happen to encounter and, for example, a tree with insecticide properties could pollinate across boundary lines, impact insect populations and disrupt an entire food chain. This possibility of broad pollination raises a darker part of the issue: property. If, in two or three generations, forest life contains modified genes through cross-pollination, will the companies give up their ownership of that modified gene, or will we, the people, have to give up the trees that make up our forests? We should not allow for that possibility. We should resist technological determinism when discussing whether or not we should modify organisms’ genes, because giving in to its apparent inevitability will allow the genetic composition and fate of our world, and eventually our bodies, to be established by corporations’ economic concerns. http://media.www.dailyemerald.com/media/storage/paper859/news/2007/10/24/Opinion/Modified.Forest


6) In the Nanning Creek watershed, a tributary of the beleaguered Eel River ( California ’s third largest river), a small group of passionate young tree sitters have ascended fifty of the last remaining privately owned ancient redwood trees. One of these is a grandfather tree they’ve named Spooner. These trees—including the nearly 300-foot-tall Spooner tree–are slated for harvest. PL calls Nanning Creek’s timber harvest plan “Bonanza” for the large profit the dying company will make. There are 200 acres of old growth in Nanning Creek that need protection. No, there’s less than that. Ancient trees have already been felled to the background of an icepick-in-ear serenade of chainsaws. Tree-sitting youth perched high in old-growth limbs on strung-together webs of truck rope (dream catchers) and sturdy platforms strive to protect this vanishing rainforest. Some have been arrested, but they have not yet been harmed. It is still against the law in California to kill forest trespassers, which is what PL would be doing if they cut down these occupied redwoods that have young people in or around them. Sadly, it has happened in recent years—you can Google David Chain “Gypsy” to learn about one such tragic death. High up in this leafy canopy these twenty-somethings are witnesses to the falling of trees more than a thousand years in age. These tree sitters do not need to put their ears to the ground to hear the thud of destruction. Each nearby fall shakes their treetop platforms. Their tree village has been twice raided and dismantled by spike-booted loggers who know that their own livelihoods are tied to these trees. The loggers are aware that like these ancient trees their jobs are scheduled to be cut up and shipped out of the region. Most recognize that the unsustainable practices of their employer have endangered their financial future. Still, there’s this month’s rent to be paid, youngsters to clothe, and fast food to be eaten. So off to work they go. Not surprisingly, no one has come forward from PL to argue that this primordial forest must not be cut. They want to keep their jobs as long as possible. The nearby communities of forest activists, on the other hand, have been surprisingly quiet on all matters concerning Nanning Creek. It seems their thirst for saving old growth was quenched after the purchase of the Headwaters Forest (less than thirty miles from Nanning Creek). These local nature lovers’ silence is punctuated by the thuds of those ancient trees they’ve sacrificed. Nor have the forest defense legends of the early 1990s or the campus-touring eco-celebrities publicly spoken the words “Nanning Creek.” Maybe they would all show up if there were more cameras in the shadowy mist of Nanning Creek. Or maybe they’d speak up if someone especially attractive, articulate, and well cellphoned was sitting in one of those ill-fated trees. Or maybe–okay, okay, we don’t seriously believe that these former eco-crusaders are so shallow and sold out. They’re just, um… retired? http://humboldtforestdefense.blogspot.com

7) As Californians sift through the cinders of this week’s deadly wildfires, there is a growing consensus that the state’s war against such disasters — as it is currently being fought — cannot be won. “California has lost 1.5 million acres in the last four years,” said Richard A. Minnich, a professor of earth sciences who teaches fire ecology at the University of California, Riverside. “When do we declare the policy a failure?” Fire-management experts like Professor Minnich, who has compared fire histories in San Diego County and Baja California in Mexico, say the message is clear: Mexico has smaller fires that burn out naturally, regularly clearing out combustible underbrush and causing relatively little destruction because the cycle is still natural. California has giant ones because its longtime policies of fire suppression — in which the government has kept fires from their normal cycle — has created huge pockets of fuel that erupt into conflagrations that must be fought. “We’re on all year round,” said Brett Chapman, a firefighter with the United States Forest Service who worked 15-hour shifts this week in the Lake Arrowhead area east of Los Angeles. The main problem is that many in California are ruggedly obstinate about the choice they have made to live with the constant threat of fire. Even state officials who are interested in change concede it could take a decade — and more catastrophic wildfires — before it happens. “If you’re going to live in paradise,” said Randall Holloman, a bar and restaurant owner in Cedar Glen, which is in an area that has burned twice in four years, “you’re going to have to deal.” In San Diego County, which has borne the brunt of the recent fires, three out of four homes built since 1990 are in the dangerous zone where open spaces and housing meet. These are the most vulnerable and exposed places in fire season because wildfires by and large start in national forests, recreation areas and other publicly owned lands. About half of the land in San Diego County is publicly owned, much of it in the Cleveland National Forest. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/28/us/28threat.html

8) The annual Bioneers conference has a reputation for creative and deep thinking about sustainability and the environment, but during all my years as an environmental activist, I never managed to attend. On October 19-21, I finally made it to the conference in San Rafael, California. In 1990, I was working as a signature-gathering coordinator for a California forestry initiative that would have ended clear-cutting in California forests. I organized volunteers to hit the streets with petitions throughout the East Bay, and not just the street corners in Berkeley where signatures were as easy to gather as apples on the ground. Looking toward the election in the fall, I recruited the two housewives in working-class Freemont who would staff a table at the mall on Saturday, and the lone environmentalist in conservative Concord. But one day, at my table in Oakland, I was approached by an elderly black man with anger in his eyes. “What are you doing, worrying about trees,” he said, “when black people are still dying on the streets.” The civil rights movement wasn’t finished, he told me, and he couldn’t understand why liberal whites had given up and turned their attention to frivolous things like trees. I had no idea how to respond, but later, a middle-aged black woman came by my table and told me how important it was to save forests. She shared her memories of her Louisiana home and the forests she had known there. A few weeks later, on Earth Day, we were invited to bring our petition to a church in the refinery town of Richmond, where the Rev. Jesse Jackson would speak. Jackson’s beautiful sermon wove together concern for the Earth, civil rights and justice. Afterwards, young black children came up to my table, where I had a picture of the redwoods, and asked me where that was. “Is that in Africa? Are there monkeys? Can I go there?” These children had never seen a redwood, even though the nearest grove stood barely a dozen miles away, just over the bridge, in Marin County. I wanted to do something about that, but I never did. At the Bioneers conference, I heard from courageous people who have moved mountains to make the connection between environmentalism and civil rights. Van Jones, of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, is spearheading what he calls “social uplift” environmentalism. His Green for All campaign promotes training of inner city workers for green collar environmental jobs. http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/102907R.shtml


9) It is easy to look at the Swan Mountains and take them for granted. Or to assume they will remain pristine for our children and grandchildren. But there have long been forces at work to destroy the wilderness qualities of the Swan Range and, fortunately, people working even harder to preserve those qualities. Jewel Basin didn’t become a non-motorized hiking area by accident. Cliff Merritt, now 88 and living near Hamilton, Montana, helped secure Congressional Wilderness protection for many areas in Montana in 1964, including the Bob Marshall Wilderness, and helped form the Montana Wilderness Association to advocate for more Wilderness in Montana. He and many other Flathead Valley residents, like Loren Kreck, Jack Whitney and Elmer Sprunger, then worked on getting Jewel Basin designated Wilderness, accomplishing a first step by stopping motorcycles from trashing Jewel Basin’s high alpine meadows via its designation as the Jewel Basin Hiking Area in 1970. But the work of securing more permanent protection for Jewel Basin and the rest of the Swan Crest as Congressionally protected Wilderness continues. Many folks don’t realize that administrative protection like that afforded Jewel Basin can be withdrawn at the stroke of a Forest Service official’s fickle pen. True Wilderness designations, however, can only be changed by an act of Congress. Swan View Coalition, a local conservation group, took the Forest Service to court and won the removal of illegally cut trails and bridges in Krause and Lost Johnny Basins. They had been constructed illegally in an attempt to create a motorized trans-Swan Crest route and to extend snowmobile access well into spring, long after natural snow bridges have collapsed and mother grizzly bears with new cubs have emerged from their winter dens but cannot yet flee motorized vehicles. http://lakeshorecountryjournal.com/

New York:

9) No serious environmental damage was done when the school district’s top maintenance official cut down at least 69 trees in a heavily wooded corner of the White Plains High School grounds, then dumped 50 truckloads of fill over the stumps to smooth the way for a new playing field, a consultant told school officials this week. Lynch, who earns $112,752 annually, said earlier that he is “not at liberty to discuss any aspect of” the episode. Schools Superintendent Tim Connors said Lynch cleared the trees so he could store fill from the ongoing reconstruction of the football field at the high school, then use the fill at a later date to build the softball field. In his report to the school board, Watson said the fill was free of contaminants. The August clear-cut caused an uproar in an adjoining neighborhood and at the district’s headquarters a few miles away, where officials said buildings and grounds chief Mike Lynch acted on his own. The consultant, Glennon Watson of Cold Spring, told the White Plains Board of Education that the environmental damage can be repaired by implementing a restoration plan the board already is considering, though he recommended planting four more trees than the 51 the plan suggests. Watson also warned that some of the smaller oaks and maples called for in the restoration plan would be easily vandalized, and he suggested those trees should be at least 4 inches in diameter at breast height. Watson also said clear-cutting the one-acre lot without first studying the environmental impact “probably violated” state environmental laws. Another environmental law now will require the district to develop a plan to contain stormwater runoff from the site before it begins replanting the trees, he said. In all, consultant reports and the replanting are expected to cost the school district $70,000. Neighbors along Havilands Lane, who now have a view of the high school where last summer they saw only trees, said the plan isn’t enough but may be the best they can get. “They didn’t give the folks who are now viewing the high school the complete screening they’d like,” said Alan Teck, a Havilands Lane resident who also is a former president of Concerned Citizens for Open Space, a local environmental group. http://www.nynews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071027/NEWS02/710270399


10) Given that we live in the most heavily forested state in the country, it’s obvious why so many Mainers have made their living off those forests. From the lumberjacks, trappers, spruce gum purveyors and paper barons of the past to today’s woodlot owners, Maine Guides and mill workers, our forests have supported the livelihoods of many. Maine’s woods have yielded their bounty, and Maine’s pockets have been lined with the proceeds. Trees (their pulp and the lumber made from them) and surrounding wildlife have been the focus of generations of commercial activity. Now, though, some entrepreneurial folks are considering the commercial potential of a different kind of forest product: Birch bark, moss, lichen, herbs, wild mushrooms, vines and shrubs, as well as roots, twigs and branches. Already, the state’s wreath industry has provided a successful example of how to use non-traditional forest products to fill a growing market. Now, these other possibilities are providing focus for those eager to find other ways to make money from the woods. Decoraters, it seems, love birch bark wallpaper and pussy willow bouquets. Pharmaceutical companies are researching the health-enhancing potential of spruce gum. (Surely, anything that tastes that bad must be good for you.) Landscaping nurseries like the old rocks found in crumbling walls deep in the woods. Fancy chefs in New York City and San Francisco are discovering the potential of wild Maine foods, including the earthy mushrooms found on the forest floor. That’s all for the good, with one big exception. This state has a long history of allowing newly discovered natural resources to be punishingly exploited almost to the brink of extinction, with attendant damage to other species that depend on them. http://morningsentinel.mainetoday.com/view/columns/4409334.html

11) A man from Seboeis Plantation pleaded guilty Friday to not paying a landowner for timber he harvested from the landowner’s property in Dedham, according to law enforcement officials. John Buck, 35, had signed a contract to harvest trees from land owned by John Darty of New Smyrna, Fla., the Maine Forest Service wrote Friday in a prepared release. Buck, however, did not pay Darty for three loads of trees he took to log yards in Bucksport and Hermon, the statement indicated. Ranger John Cousins used delivery documents at the log yards to determine that the landowner never was paid for the three loads, which the yards received in March and April. The value of the three loads was more than $1,500, according to the forest service. District Ranger Jeff Currier said Friday that Buck will not get any jail time, but was ordered in Ellsworth District Court to pay a $1,000 fine. Buck already has reimbursed Darty for the trees, he said. Currier said a new law passed by the Legislature in 2006 makes it easier for the forest service to pursue and help resolve these types of cases. Loggers have a maximum time frame of 45 days in which they must pay landowners for the wood they harvest. Previously, there was no such time frame, he said. “By having this law, forest rangers can investigate cases, request prosecution at the District Court level, and collect restitution for landowners upon conviction in a relatively short period of time,” Currier stated in the release. http://bangornews.com/news/t/hancock.aspx?articleid=155826&zoneid=178


12) During Bush’s first year in office, the Forest Service’s State Fire Assistance program for wildland fire management was funded at approximately $56 million per year. But the President’s budget proposal for 2008 only requests $35 million from Congress, an 18% cut from what it spent in the current year, already well below the earlier levels. Assistance to volunteer firefighting forces increased to a level of about $12 million during 2007, but only after Congressional intervention. At first, the Forest Service had requested only $7.8 million. After the budget mushroomed to the higher level, the administration proposed a 38% cut for next year, reducing the budget to help volunteer firefighters to $8 million, less than the level it was funded at in 2001. A senior Senate staffer who works on land management issues explained why the budget cuts hindered wildfire preparedness. “When the National Fire Plan came out in 2000, a main emphasis was on local preparedness through a significant infusion of grants for more local firefighting equipment,” the aide explained to the Huffington Post. “A significant amount of that money has disappeared as a result of the administration’s budget policies. You can have lots of funding going into big federal accounts, but local fire departments get to the fire first, and they carry a lot of the load, particularly when fires are not burning on federal lands. From what I’ve heard in the news, there has been concern about the local fire departments’ preparedness in the areas the fires have burned, and that is the situation those grants are targeted at.” Forest Service staff did not respond to requests for comment on why the budgets were cut. In addition to the budget cuts, a significant change in policy across the Bush administration made it more difficult to call up federal Forest Service firefighters in crisis situations like the one that destroyed so many homes in southern California. The White House’s insistence on the outsourcing of government services has been vigorously applied to the Forest Service. A lone, obscure sentence within the Office of Management and Budget’s explanation of the Fiscal Year 2008 budget request for the Forest Service hints at the reasoning for this policy. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2007/10/26/before-fires-bush-cut-fi_n_69980.html


13) An army of 200 Explorer Scouts from west Lancashire have given an ancient Lake District wood a new lease of life in a conservation challenge held last weekend. Great Tower Wood, on the eastern shore of Windermere was donated to the Scout Association by Lord Wakefield 71 years ago for camping, recreation and educational use. The forest is managed by the Lowther Forestry Group with support from the Forestry Commission, but is also dependent on the Scouts to maintain its natural ecological diversity. As part of the Scouts 2007 centenary celebrations and annual Environment Weekend, the youngsters planted 1,000 native Hazel tree saplings over 100 hectares of land at Great Tower Wood. The group also helped to trim and fell unwanted trees and build a traditional charcoal burning stack. A team of Lowther foresters were on hand throughout the weekend to help and advise. Pete Sturgess, principal officer, for the West Lancashire Scouts, said: “We’re really grateful to the Lowther Forestry Group and the Forestry Commission for their support with looking after the wood. “The Scouts get a lot out of the site, so it’s been a nice way for them to offer something back.” Peter Fox, woodland officer for the Forestry Commission in the area, said: “The Scouts really did rise to the conservation challenge and well-deserved sense of achievement from all their hard work. Their work will ensure that Scouts will be able to enjoy the site for years to come.” The saplings were donated by the Woodland Trust, as part of their Trees For All campaign. http://www.cumberland-news.co.uk/features/viewarticle.aspx?id=557887


14) Some 3000 square miles of Swedish forests are to be protected from development. Sveaskog, a public forest management company, says that the move almost doubles the land it has set aside to protect environmental diversity. According to a press release, the move is a result of three years of analysis. http://www.sr.se/cgi-bin/international/nyhetssidor/artikel.asp?nyheter=1&programid=2054&Artikel=


15) Last May, in an act of vengeful vandalism, committed by people as yet unknown – fingers can, and have, been pointed but in a country where the rule of rule is practised, one ought to wait until investigations and then justice take their course – 3,000 trees and shrubs were destroyed. In the words of the outstandingly dedicated and courageous forest ranger in charge of Foresta 2000, Ray Vella, who just recently was slightly injured in the face after being shot by an unknown person carrying a shotgun, “Shrubs had been beaten down with hoes; trees sawed off. This was a malicious and methodical attack on 65 tumoli of land which, in financial terms, set the project back some Lm30,000. This was money donated by the public at large, by schools (one school had planted 120 trees), by the Corpo Forestale dello Stato, by BirdLife Malta and from tax payers’ money”. The public reaction to this outrage was immediate. Within a short period, well over Lm45,000 had been collected in public donations, with leading banks and commercial firms in Malta generously showing the way. The Foresta 2000 project, which was conceived by BirdLife as their gift to Malta to celebrate the new millennium, will live on. Although the outrageous damage of five months ago has set the project back by three years, this weekend, with many volunteers descending on the Foresta 2000 site to plant 9,000 trees and shrubs to replace, three-fold, those mindlessly destroyed or damaged, a new injection of commitment to afforestation in Malta will be achieved. Just as the vicious act of vandalism perpetrated at Mnajdra six years ago galvanised public opinion and the government into doing something to save our cultural heritage, so the wanton destruction at Foresta 2000 may be seen as a turning point in public perceptions. http://www.timesofmalta.com/core/article.php?id=5302


16) Syria filed a complaint Friday with U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon protesting Israel’s chopping down of trees in the occupied Golan Heights to harass farmers, the state-run news agency SANA said. The felling of cherry trees in Majdal Shams village was “a flagrant violation of international law and humanitarian law,” said Syrian officials quoted by the report. It did not say when the incident happened. The SANA article said the cutting of trees aimed to put pressure on Syrian villagers in order to force them to leave their land and it called the United Nations to pressure Israel to stop “these illegitimate and inhuman practices.” Israel has been occupying the strategic Golan Heights since the 1967 Mideast war and Syria been demanding a full Israeli withdrawal from the plateau. Peace talks between Israel and Syria have been stalled since 2000, and last week Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was reported to be considering renewed contacts. Israeli defense officials said the army has decided to move an upcoming military exercise off the disputed Golan Heights to avoid further heightening tensions with Syria. The situation between the two neighbors has been tense since Israeli warplanes on Sept. 6 struck a target in Syria, which Western news media have described as some sort of nuclear facility linked to North Korea. Syria strongly denied the target was a nuclear facility saying that only an unused military building was hit. http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/10/26/africa/ME-GEN-Syria-Israel-Trees.php


17) The fact that Lake Victoria, Lake Chad and some parts of River Nile are gradually drying up due to global warming is alarming. This is because millions of lives in the world`s poorest continent, which relies on the natural resources, are consequently put in jeopardy. Babagana Ahmadu, the African Union`s Director of Rural Economy and Agriculture said recently in South Africa that the water bodies are gradually drying up the due to warmer temperatures. But has the world done enough to check the menace whose dire consequences are largely felt by the poor? The answer is absolutely no. Actually, if promises and endless conferences on environment were anything to go by, then the Earth could be the cleanest and safest place to live in today. However, most of these have proved to be big loads of hot air that drain resources and waste much time while the state of environment continues to deteriorate by day. Everyday there are sensitization conferences, seminars or workshops at the end of which delegates would come up with a pile of resolutions for ‘addressing’ environmental issues. Funny enough, the next follow up meetings could be convened even before any of the resolutions are worked upon. The irony is that sometimes such activities, that most of the time are held in five star hotels out of donor funds, contribute more to environmental degradation rather than fighting it.
or instance, the Climate Change Conference in Nairobi late last year might have contributed more to global warming rather than checking it. The planes that ferried over 6,000 delegates from the world over emitted so much carbon dioxide (Co2) and other toxic gases into the sky in a very short period of time than any other single activity. http://www.ippmedia.com/ipp/guardian/2007/10/26/101193.html


18) As Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf met US President George Bush at the White House last week, an expert from Liberia’s Forestry Development Authority was across the river in a hi-tech laboratory, working on his country’s potential involvement in a global strategy to confront climate change. Augustine Johnson has been looking at ways to map and assess Liberia’s remaining tropical forest and the carbon it stores. If all goes according to plan, that carbon and the forest’s ability to store it will become a valuable economic asset capable of bringing new revenue to the African country in desperate need of help to recover from civil war. The forests are already a valuable environmental asset for the whole planet. Fifteen years have passed since Liberia and the US were among 190 countries that signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at the Rio Earth Summit. Since then, Liberia has emerged from its long civil conflict, but economic recovery and widespread unemployment remain daunting challenges. Climate change poses another major threat to Liberia and other developing countries. The anticipated impacts, such as rising sea levels and more severe droughts, will cause the most harm to the world’s poorest people living in nations that lack the resources to help them adapt. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7053332.stm


19) This is the first study to look at how forest fragmentation increases the burden of infectious parasites on animals already stressed by disturbances to their habitat. The study, of black-and-white colobus monkeys and red colobus monkeys in tropical forests in western Uganda, appears in the American Journal of Primatology. Once dominated by vast forests, Uganda now has less than one-twentieth of its original forest cover. According to the World Resources Institute, its tropical forests are being logged and converted to agricultural land at a rate that outpaces sub-Saharan Africa as a whole. Small tracts remain, however, hemmed in by pastures and croplands. Many of the species that thrived in the original forests are struggling to survive in these parcels, which can be as small as one hectare in size. “In Uganda, just looking at the primates, it’s one of the most biodiverse places on the earth,” said professor of pathobiology Thomas Gillespie, principal investigator on the study. “You’ve got 12 to 13 species of primates in a core undisturbed forest. But if you go into these forest fragments, you’ll find only three or four species of primates. Populations of black-and-white colobus monkeys appear to be stable in the Ugandan forest remnants, while their cousins, the red colobus monkeys, are in decline. Gillespie and his colleague, Colin Chapman, of McGill University in Montreal, surveyed 20 forest fragments near the western boundary of Kibale National Park, in western Uganda. They compared the abundance, variety and density of potentially harmful parasites in these fragments to the undisturbed “core forest” of the park. The researchers followed the monkeys for four years, collecting data on how far the animals ranged, what they ate and which parasites were infecting them. In those four years, red colobus populations in forest fragments declined 20 percent, whereas populations of black-and-white colobus monkeys remained relatively stable. Both species maintained stable populations in the undisturbed forest. Scientists have struggled to explain why closely related animals, like these two species of monkeys, can fare so differently in forest fragments. The answer, Gillespie said, lies in a complex interplay of factors, with parasites and nutrition playing key roles. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071024141749.htm

20) The Bufundi Sub-county local council speaker, accused the Rwandese for the increased deforestation of bamboo trees in Echuya forest reserve. The forest is located on the Kabale-Kisoro road. Mr Enock Byarugaba, was speaking at a function organised by Nature Uganda at Kacerere Church of Uganda on Tuesday. Mr Byarugaba told the authorities that more than three quarters of the bamboo trees in Echuya forest have been cut down by Rwandans who illegally cross into Uganda through Kashasha parish in Bufundi Sub-county at night. “A comprehensive strategy should be put in place to protect bamboo trees not only for the sake of saving the environment but also for the future generation to see,” he said. National Forest Authority officials signed a CFM agreement with the local people in the sub-counties of Bufundi and Muko in order to protect the bamboo trees in Echuya forest from extinction. The NFA officer in charge of Echuya forest, Ms Scovia Chekprui, assured the locals the CFM committees shall help in conserving the bamboo trees and Echuya forest in general. http://allafrica.com/stories/200710241142.html


21) Rampant destruction of Embobut forest in Marakwet District is quite alarming. A lasting solution must be found by the Government before the situation gets out of hand. For the last five years, a lot has been said and written on the forest’s plunder, but government officials have been tight-lipped on the issue. Outcry by the residents of the dry Kerio Valley has borne no fruits either. The situation is further worsened by the local chiefs and their assistants, who have taken advantage of the people’s ignorance to allocate themselves parts of the forest land and engage in illegal logging of endangered tree species. Culturally, Embobut forest is a sacred place, a source of medicinal herbs, totemic symbols and animals, rivers and other resources. For many clans, the destruction of this forest is a catastrophe with serious consequences . LOKAPEL WERO NG’INIOT, Tot, Marakwet District. http://www.nationmedia.com/dailynation/nmgcontententry.asp?category_id=23&newsid=109206


22) Do you have Brazilian teakwood floors in your luxury home? How about Brazilian cherry cabinets? Any Brazilian mahogany items? Well, I certainly hope you are enjoying them. They might have come to you at a huge cost… well beyond what you paid for them. There is a good chance that that those exotic hardwoods were harvested by slave labor. Perhaps they were even harvested by child slave labor. But the cost for these materials goes even beyond its toll on slaves or your pocketbook. On average, your Brazilian teakwood floor eliminated 7.5 acres of irreplaceable Amazonian rain forest. But Brazilian hardwood floors look great. http://nodirecton.blogspot.com/2007/10/brazilian-hardwood-floors-can-you-say.html

23) In a controversial measure Sept. 21, President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva put 90,000 hectares (222,000 acres) of the 200,000-hectare (494,000 acres) Jamari National Forest in the northeastern state of Rondônia, for sale. The Environment Ministry said the decision aims to stop illegal logging by legalizing and monitoring the activity. Environmental authorities explained that this area could be used for logging, as well as fruit farming and oil seed production. Ecological tourism is another industry possibility. The Environment Ministry and Brazilian Forestry Service say that social benefit, efficiency and environmental impact will also be taken into consideration with these projects. The area consists of three lots of 45,000, 30,000 and 15,000 hectares (111,000, 74,000 and 37,000 acres) apiece. Only Brazilian companies can bid. The three winners will sign concession contracts for three to 40 years. Critics of the project say it amounts to a “privatization” of the Amazon and will do nothing to stop deforestation. http://www.latinamericapress.org/article.asp?lanCode=1&artCode=5362

24) The Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE) has placed a contract for a third year with DMC International Imaging Ltd., (DMCii) to acquire high-resolution satellite images of the entire 5 million square kilometres of the Amazon rainforest. Since 2004 INPE’s programme to monitor deforestation has dramatically reduced the rate of logging from 27,000 sq.km. per year to about 10,000 sq.km. in 2007. In order to rapidly identify areas of cover change, DMCii is contracted to provide three repeat coverages in 2007 (June-July, July-August, September-October). In 2005, and again in 2006, DMC imaged the whole Amazon Basin in 6 weeks to provide Brazil with vital information to help monitor deforestation and combat illegal logging. DMC imagery is provided by the five-satellite international Disaster Monitoring Constellation (DMC). The DMC small satellites, built by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL), use wide area cameras to capture the high-resolution images. The latest satellite, built for China, was launched into the DMC on 27 October 2005. Two new DMC satellites will be launched in 2008 and a third in 2009. Speaking at the Royal Society in London, 25th October, Dr. Gilberto Camâra, Director General of INPE said, “The DMC data is an important affordable contribution to our assessment of deforestation of the Amazon rainforest. The constellation is able to rapidly acquire and deliver high quality imagery so that we have up-to-date information to focus our efforts. It is our intention to develop a long term relationship with DMC” Paul Stephens, Marketing Director, DMCii said, “The increasing amount of DMC imagery required by INPE since 2005 demonstrates the value of rapid revisit imaging. When the new DMC satellites launch in 2008, these will add considerably to INPE’s ability to monitor and combat changes in the rainforest and their consequences for both the local people and the global climate.” http://www.ballard.co.uk/press_releases/company_releases.aspx?lang=English(uk)&story=978

25) A THERAPIST is calling on local firms to save the Amazon Rainforest through the power of collective healing. Bob Murphy, a complementary therapist in Weymouth, believes healing hands can do the world of good by paying for a chunk of rainforest that will be preserved forever. Mr Murphy, 55, has built a website and is inviting therapy companies to subscribe to it and be listed on a database. He said: “The Amazon Rainforest is a long way away but we need to stop it from being destroyed. “We need the Amazon for the air we breathe and it is being cut down at an alarming rate. “We’re asking people to help us stop deforestation and keep the rainforest in its original state. It’s not about owning the rainforest, it’s about buying it to keep it preserved.” The Leamington Road resident is also appealing for businesses and individuals to make donations through the site. He wants to secure several hundred acres of land, which will be bought through the national Cool Earth campaign. Mr Murphy hopes the fundraising will gather pace in the build-up to a charity day next year, which will offer people the chance to try complementary therapy techniques. World Healing Day, to be held in Weymouth, will let people try out a range of therapies including reiki, hypnotherapy and re-connection healing. Mr Murphy said: “People can have a go at lots of different things including hand massage and metamorphic therapy, which builds up the energy in your body.” http://www.thisisdorset.net/display.var.1787896.0.help_me_save_rainforest.php


26) The park management has carried out a massive weeding operation here with active support from the local villagers. Over 6 sq km area of the 29 sq km park — a World Heritage site and Ramsar Convention wetland — is now free from Prosopis juliflora, a tree species which had spread not only in the 11 sq km wooded area but also to the grasslands, taking advantage of the changes in the eco system in the wake of recurrent droughts. The inhabitants of as many as 15 villages in the park neighbourhood are happy. “This kind of removal of Prosopis juliflora has been unparalleled anywhere in the country. The activity has brought incredible goodwill to the park from the local villagers besides helping the native vegetation to come up,” said seasoned conservationist and Keoladeo-watcher Harsh Vardhan after a recent visit to the sanctuary. There was nothing the park management could have done about missing water which was to come either from good rains during the monsoon or from the Panchana dam situated in the neighbouring Karauli district. As the State Government, afraid of the reaction from the farmers in the downstream area of the Panchana, refused to listen to the desperate appeals for release of water from the environmentalists and the park officials, there was nothing much to do — or so it seemed. “In the 1980s, the water supply to the park started getting reduced. Taking advantage of the dry conditions, Prosopis juliflora started spreading. Within a span of a few years it not only took over the entire woodland but also infiltrated the unique grassland. Even the wetland, spread over 11 sq km, got engulfed with this weed,” says P. S. Somashekhar, Conservator, Forests. http://www.hindu.com/2007/10/27/stories/2007102752470500.htm

27) Manas National Park (26º48’N, 91º04’E) is a World Heritage Site located on the borders of the Indo-Gangetic and Indo-Malayan biogeographical realms which give it great natural diversity. It lies on a gentle alluvial slope in the foothills of the Himalayas, where wooded hills give way to grasslands and tropical forest and is home to a great variety of wildlife, including many endangered species such as the tiger, the pygmy hog, and the Indian rhinoceros and elephant. The Committee included this site on the List of World Heritage in Danger in 1992, after it had been invaded by militants of the Bodo tribe seeking political redress. Its infrastructure suffered great damage from 1988 to 1993, and political instability between 1990 and 1996 led to the destruction of hundreds of trees and animals, including some 50% of the Park’s rhinoceros and 30% of its tigers. The damage to the sanctuary, estimated at more than two million US dollars, was confirmed by a joint monitoring mission of the Government of India with the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in January 1997. Listing by the Committee influenced the governments of India and the state of Assam to draw up, with the Park authorities, a $US2.35 million rehabilitation plan. Implementation began in 1997 and is progressing satisfactorily. Security in and around Manas has improved, but the threat of insurgency still prevails in the state and militants often cross the Park. Nevertheless, relations with local villagers appear to be improving. A Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC)/World Conservation Union (IUCN) mission visited the site in early 2002 with the additional aim of promoting the nomination of the adjacent Royal Manas National Park in Bhutan as a World Heritage site in order to improve the protection of the Manas ecosystem on both sides of the international border. http://www.eoearth.org/article/Manas_National_Park,_India


28) To regulate the price of sawn timber, starting January 1, 2008, the NRDC will for all grades and species of logs and fix the reserve price for log auctions for different divisions and classes of timber across the country. The natural resource pricing committee will fix prices for final sawn timber for all sawmills and wood-based industries under different NRDC divisions across the country from January 1, 2008. This price will be variable across divisions but prices are expected to come down. For example, the price of sawn timber of the widely used conifer species is likely fall to about half the present price of Nu 450 per cft. The Department of Forests and the Department of Trade will monitor sawn timber prices and, in the event of a breach of government rates, defaulters will not be permitted to participate in further log auctions. The Ministry of Agriculture will develop a more effective system to meet the demand, while ensuring the present large-scale misappropriation of timber is stopped. The ministry will also review the prevailing system of direct allotment of timber to certain agencies and find efficient means of ensuring an adequate supply of timber in the market while safeguarding the Constitutional requirements of minimum forest cover. http://www.kuenselonline.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=9300


29) An estimated 4,811 cubic meters (about 2 million board feet) of illegally cut forest products were confiscated by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in northern and central parts of Quezon province from year 2000 to August 2007, according to an inventory conducted by a national environmentalist group. However, at least 1,646 cubic meters (697,535 board feet) of the seized logs and lumber were left rotting and rendered useless in government impounding areas. “The sight of million of pesos worth of forest products just left rotting is abominable. It’s government resources gone wasted. The government should change the process of forfeiture and disposition of seized items to stop this absurdity,” Jay Lim, program officer of Tanggol Kalikasan (TK)-Southern Tagalog, an environment legal defense center based in this city, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer Wednesday. Lim also disclosed that during the more than six years of anti-illegal logging operations, only nine persons had been hauled in jails but were later released after posting bail. “This only shows the rampant illegal logging in Quezon and the government inadequate response to combat the situation even in the apprehension of suspects,” he said. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/regions/view_article.php?article_id=96522


Hayao Miyazaki and a group of deforestation protesters have reportedly raised ¥73 million (about US $630,000) for the city of Higashimurayama in an attempt to preserve part of a local forest, dubbed “Totoro’s Forest.” The renowned Hayao Miyazaki joined protesters in a successful attempt to stop the removal of a .37 acre patch of trees near the Fuchi no Mori forest. Tokyo development companies said today they would halt plans to commercially develop that land. The surrounding forest is known as the scenery that inspired Miyazaki’s My Neighbor Totoro film. Miyazaki is the chairman for the Preservation of Fuchi no Mori council. http://www.animecorporation.com/news/hayao-miyazaki-fights-deforestation


31) SABAH is Malaysia’s premier nature adventure destination situated in the northern tip of Borneo Island, the third largest island in the world. Sabah is popular for its wildlife conservation attractions, rain forest, surrounding nature and islands, beach resorts, tropical white sandy beaches, crystal clear water, and its warm and friendly people. If you are thinking of visiting Borneo, these places of interest and activities will whet your appetite! Mount Kinabalu: — Let me begin with my favorite place and definitely not to be missed if you are visiting Borneo, Mt. Kinabalu (4,093m). It is the summit of Borneo and the tallest mountain in South East Asia. This mountain is sacred to the locals. Thousands from around the world have trekked to its peak. At the feet of this mountain is Kinabalu National Park, a botanical paradise where rare plants are found: rare orchids, nepenthes pitcher plants and the rafflesia, the largest flower in the world. –Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre: If you haven’t heard yet, the most popular native of Borneo is the Orang Utan. The world-famous Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre enables visitors to come in close contact with these amazing animals. This sanctuary allows visitors to witness an exciting conservation programme in action. Set in 43 square km of beautiful rainforest, the sanctuary helps once captive Orang Utans learn to fend for themselves in the wild. — Danum Valley Rain Forest: If nature is close to your heart, then this next destination I am going to introduce you is a must visit, Danum Valley. Danum Valley is nestled deep in the rain forest of Borneo where nature is at its most pristine. As you travel deeper and deeper into the jungle, you will suddenly come across a magical paradise of the Borneo Rainforest Lodge (BRL), erected overlooking the magnificent setting of the Segama River and flanked by tall hill ranges. BRL is an impressive resort, designed by naturalists and built on stilts using traditional timber materials, and has the comfort of a 3-Star Hotel. I totally recommend Danum Valley to those who yearn to see wildlife in a primeval Borneo rainforest – the rare Sumatran rhino, proboscis monkeys, Orang Utan, elephants and over 275 species of birds. http://robopoetry.blogspot.com/2007/10/borneo-exotic-island-travel-opus.html


32) The central government, investors in palm oil plantations and timber companies need to know that deforestation is and will be rejected by indigenous Papuans from 252 different tribes living in the western half of the island of New Guinea. If the Papuans were consulted, they would say: “Don’t cut down our trees.” Under Soeharto’s regime, Papuans protesting against the destruction of their ancestral forests by government-authorized companies were simply accused of being separatists or against national development. Protesters were always silenced violently by the military and police, who seemed to love protecting timber companies. However, the 2001 law on special autonomy for Papua province gives more freedom for Papuans to raise their voices. Papuans, then, have begun to protest against deforestation within their ancestral forests. The latest example of the rejection of deforestation was demonstrated in September 2007 by indigenous Papuans of the Wate tribe in Nabire regency (Cenderawasih Pos, Sept. 20, 2007). It was reported members of the Wate tribe strongly opposed a plan by PT Harvest Raya, in collaboration with PT Jati Dharma Indah, to clear thousands of hectares of their ancestral forest to make way for palm oil plantations. The protesters have demanded the local government of Nabire regency revoke the permission already given to the companies. The Papuans’ rejection of deforestation raises some questions. Why do indigenous Papuans courageously reject deforestation? Is the rejection a reflection of what the central government calls “Papuan separatism”? Is it a manifestation of being anti-government or anti-development, the accusations made by the central government in Jakarta for more than four decades? Is it sign of not wanting to better their future? The reasons behind the rejection are related to their culture. Their rejection is rooted in and guided by the life-giving values of local culture. Papuans never see their virgin forests simply as a sea of trees that can be cut down in order to make millions of dollars. http://www.thejakartapost.com/misc/PrinterFriendly.asp


33) In front of 40 international parties in Bogor on Thursday, Indonesia tabled a new pilot project that would see developing countries adopt REDD – an incentivized program to better manage forest emissions. REDD (Reducing emissions from deforestation in developing nations) is an alternative to Kyoto Protocol’s clean development mechanism (CDM) and would see forested countries reap more financial benefits by remanaging their forestry sector. Many forested countries have not been able to adopt Kyoto’s CDM into their forestry sector, which was one the main incentives behind the development of REDD. The government said it would select four forests from across the country to pilot the project, which involves financial incentives for better managing forestry activities. Senior advisor on partnership affairs at the forestry ministry Sunaryo said, “We will select (the) forests for the project and hopefully we can show them to the world in Bali,” Sunaryo said. “We hope the Bali meeting can adopt the concept,” he said. The four forest projects would be located in South Kalimantan, South Sulawesi, North Sumatra and Southeast Sulawesi. Included in the proposal is the Heart of Borneo, a total of 220,000 square kilometers of equatorial rainforest encompassing Brunei, Malaysia and Indonesia on Kalimantan island. Bali is set to host the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference from Dec. 3 to 14. http://cempaka-green.blogspot.com/2007/10/redd-not-green-scheme-for-reducing.html


34) Almost a third of the world’s primates are in danger of extinction because of destruction of their habitats, a report by conservation groups has warned. The report says many apes, monkeys and other primates are being driven from the forests where they live or killed to make food and medicines. The research is being presented at the International Primatological Society (IPS) on the Chinese island of Hainan. It was compiled by a team of 60 experts led by the World Conservation Union. The report focuses on the fate of the world’s 25 most endangered primate species, which are threatened by a depressing list of problems. The authors say all the surviving members of these species combined would fit in a single football stadium. Of particular concern are the Hainan gibbon from China and Miss Waldron’s red colobus monkey from Ivory Coast, both of which have only a few surviving creatures left in the wild. The report says the threat to primates is worst in Asia where tropical forests are being destroyed and many monkeys are being hunted or traded as pets. It also argues that climate change is making some species more vulnerable. Scientists have been warning for decades about the growing human threat to animal species around the world, but this study says we should be especially concerned about primates because they are the closest living relatives of humans. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7063139.stm

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