241 – Earth’s Tree News

Today for you 34 new articles about earth’s trees! (241st edition)
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–British Columbia: 1) Non-disclosure of Caribou extinction, 2) Great Bear Rainforest
–Oregon: 3) Wallowa-Whitman NF logging, 4) BLM should thin young forests,
–California: 5) Ficus trees saved pending lawsuit, 6) 80 protest Sierra Pacific,
–Montana: 7) Healthy forest restoration fraud
–Colorado: 8) Ski resorts silt streams
–Vermont: 9) Father son are experts in climate-based forest change
–West Virginia: 10) Mountain top removal must be stopped
–New Jersey: 11) Restoring a cranberry bog back to a native forest
–North Carolina: 12) Globe harvesting scaled back
–USA: 13) Homes bleed forest service firefighting funds
–Canada: 14) Grassy Narrows, 15) 42,000 Kilometer biosphere preserve, 16) Pillar?
–UK: 17) Roddick’s funeral was 100 per cent eco-friendly
–Israel 18) Acacia invasion was intended but now is unintended
–Congo: 19) Destined for China – 90% illegally
–Guyana: 20) More on the Wai Wai
–Bolivia: 21) Leader speak out about his humble roots in a land that is being lost
–Brazil: 22) How big is the Amazon rainforest?
–India: 23) Firewood gatherers are now Eco-tour guides
–Thailand: 24) Seizing 1,000 illegal logs of rosewood
–Vietnam: 25) Furniture demand up and wood supply is way down
–Philippines: 26) Sibuyan Island defender killed by mining group
–Papua New Guinea: 27) Illegal logging based on Indonesian military
–Indonesia: 28) Global warming also a threat to Orangutan, 29) Pay us or we cut it all,
–Australia: 30) 5000 blockade road in pulp mill protest, 31) More pigs than people,
–World-wide: 32) Good wood for musical instruments is almost gone, 33) Reduced Emissions from Deforestation, 34) Deforestation is also caused by climate change,

British Columbia:

1) The public process on a recovery plan for the endangered mountain caribou isn’t public anymore. The BC government is forcing people to sign a confidentiality agreement in order to obtain a copy of the final draft implementation plan. Valhalla Wilderness Society (VWS) director Craig Pettitt received a tip about the plan and called Mark Zacharias, the head of BC’s Species at Risk Coordination Office (SARCO). Zacharias said the plan was released approximately a month ago. “I requested a copy,” says Pettitt, who sat at one of the recovery tables for two years and has made several presentations and written submissions to SARCO. “Mr. Zacharias said I would first have to meet with him and SARCO representative Pat Field next week to determine whether we could have a copy, and that VWS would have to sign a confidentiality agreement.” Pettitt was told that the document is “Cabinet secure” – it has been sent to Cabinet and is now confidential; however he was also told that the document is “still under discussion”. “Any document that is still under discussion can be amended, and that means it’s still a draft,” says Pettitt. “The story I heard was that there are negotiations going on between environmental groups, logging companies and the winter recreation sector. This has been the best-kept secret in the environmental movement. It may even turn out to be the biggest back-room deal we’ve ever encountered in over 30 years of environmental work, but our access to information has been very limited.” People who sign have to be willing to keep the information secret from the media, the public, their colleagues and even their own members, no matter how much bad news it contains for the mountain caribou.” Furthermore, the government has apparently been selective about who was offered an opportunity to sign the agreement. “VWS found out about the release of the plan and the negotiations by accident,” says Pettitt. “It was never given a chance to consider whether it would sign a confidentiality agreement,” says Sherrod. “Over 19 environmental groups and 50 scientists have said the previous draft strategy was overly focused on predator control and inadequate to protect mountain caribou. They have called for an end to logging old-growth caribou forest, as well as for numerous new parks and conservation zones,” says Pettitt. http://www.vws.org

2) Great Bear Rainforest – It is a done deal and the deal looks an awful lot like our worst environmental fears for the forests of the central coast of BC. No conservation of remaining critical environment, no restoration of agroforestry modified critical habitat, equivocating protection of vast areas of rock, ice and low value forest, no commitment to stop industrial logging in the few remaining old growth stands and particularly no commitment to stop logging the very scarce remaining alluvial zone forests. Regular liquidation and conversion logging has been stalled while highly focussed helicopter high grading is targeting all of the remaining original old growth cedar and cypress. These are two species we have been completely unsuccessful at replanting and restoring to their historic level of ecosystem importance and function. The alluvial zone of the central coast forest has been excoriated and that is the jewel, the biodiversity engine, and the critical source of resilience in the remaining original coastal forests of BC. The US foundation idiots payed the RSP enviros to create the PR appearance of a win win environmental and industrial solution but they simply have no idea how the coastal forest is structured and how easily its critical functioning components can be destroyed. The alluvial zone occupying perhaps 8% of the total coastal forest area is like the distributor in a car engine. If it is removed, the engine looks nice but ceases to function. The forest industry identified that it particularly wanted the remaining alluvial forests (the distributor) and the US funders identified that they wanted announceably huge areas of forest protected. The RSP enviros brokered a deal to provide both with what they wanted, but in doing so they have deprived the already damaged coastal forest of its critical capacity for maintaining and restoring biodiversity and resilience. The win win deal looks good on the idiotic RSP enviros and it delivered their money’s worth in announcements to the US foundation funders, and it even works very nicely for the forest industry who would just like to leave with some cash, but it does not work at all for the coastal forest. That is not environmentalism. It is simply a brokered deal so that the public forest is exploited and our forest environment suffers a catastrophic loss. landwatch@lists.onenw.org


3) Carla Monismith, who oversees the timber sales program for the Wallowa-Whitman, said Forest Supervisor Steve Ellis has set a goal of offering for sale at least 30 million board-feet of timber each fiscal year. The Wallowa-Whitman nearly got there during fiscal 2007, which ended Sept. 30. More than half the timber the Wallowa-Whitman offered came from a trio of sales. The largest is near Unity and includes 6.4 million board-feet. D.R. Johnson Lumber bought that timber this summer, Monismith said. The two other main sales, Bald Angel and Smith, stand next to each other in Union County several miles east of Medical Springs. Dodge Logging of Maupin bought Bald Angel (4.2 million board-feet) and Smith (5.4 million), Monismith said. Although the Wallowa-Whitman added both sales to its timber total for fiscal 2007, its not clear if loggers will ever fall trees in either sale. A pair of environmental groups this summer sued the Wallowa-Whitman, seeking to stop the Bald Angel and Smith sales, as well as a third adjacent project, called Cold Angel, which forest officials intend to offer for sale during fiscal 2008. The plaintiffs, Hells Canyon Preservation Council of La Grande and Oregon Wild of Portland, have asked a judge to grant an injunction that would prohibit logging until the lawsuit is concluded. http://blog.oregonlive.com/breakingnews/2007/10/good_year_for_wallowawhitman_b.html

4) The Bureau of Land Management should be planning to thin trees in tree farms instead of clear cutting old growth forests, a member of the Oregon Heritage Forests campaign told the Curry County section of the Sierra Club on Wednesday. Under the BLM’s preferred alternative of the Western Oregon Plan Revisions, “old growth reserves would be reduced by half, riparian reserves would be reduced by half,” Leslie Adams, outreach coordinator for the Klamath Siskiyou Wildlands Center in Ashland, told the meeting in Gold Beach. “It puts timber in the front seat and everything else in the back seat,” Adams said. “The Forest Service has weaned off old growth,” she said. “They’re thinning in old growth. Thinning is a better way and it protects old growth forests.” But she said the BLM has mostly grassland and deserts under its jurisdiction with only some Oregon lands in forests. She said the BLM doesn’t understand forests like the Forest Service. The BLM presented three alternatives for the Western Oregon Plan Revisions, announced on Aug. 10. The alternative two is the one that the BLM is proposing that would benefit the O&C counties through a return to timber harvest on the federal lands. Two of Curry County’s commissioners attended a meeting in Roseburg where the BLM announced the plan. The second alternative was hailed as a way to help cash-strapped Oregon counties. “The good thing about it is it would replace about 94 percent of the revenues lost when the current safety net terminates,” Curry County Commissioner Georgia Nowlin said after attending the meeting. “It meets all requirements of the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act.” The BLM plan includes a draft environmental impact statement for future management of 2.5 million acres of public lands in Western Oregon. http://www.currypilot.com/news/story.cfm?story_no=16031


5) Protesters obtained a restraining order Friday to stop the destruction of a stand of ficus trees in downtown Santa Monica that the city had planned to remove starting Monday as part of an $8-million downtown development project. Local activist Jerry Rubin got the order approved by a judge on behalf of Santa Monica Treesavers. The order prevents the city from removing 54 ficus trees on 4th and 2nd streets unless they pose a danger to the public. The city planned to remove 23 trees that its arborist considered damaged or diseased and to replant 31 of them elsewhere in the city. Protesters doubt the trees are damaged and want time to get a second opinion. “If the trees were truly a danger to the public, they would have been removed already,” said the group’s attorney, Thomas Nitti. http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/california/la-me-ficus6oct06,1,5372033.story?coll=la-h

6) A crowd of demonstrators protesting clear-cutting practices by Sierra Pacific Industries included a group of children, who made it clear how they feel about the issue. The protest took place Saturday outside Redding City Hall. Car honks, friendly waves of support — and at least one extended middle finger — greeted a crowd of demonstrators Saturday as they rallied on the sidewalks outside Redding City Hall to protest clear-cutting practices by the Shasta County-based Sierra Pacific Industries (SPI). The approximately 80 demonstrators, some toting signs deploring the timber practice, made it clear that they did not oppose logging. “We aren’t against logging,” said 51-year-old Marily Woodhouse of Manton. “But we want responsible logging.” The two-hour demonstration, which also saw a group of children repeatedly chanting “Save our trees, help us, please,” was designed to draw attention to SPI’s use of clear-cut logging and its possible environmental consequences, organizers said. It’s their hope that SPI — the largest private forestland holder in North America — will halt that destructive practice, they said. An SPI spokesperson could not be reached Saturday for comment, but a company official has said that it complies with strict California forest practice laws and regulations and that its practices are also reviewed by a number of state agencies. Demonstrator Tammy Allan, a clinical social worker and three-year Montgomery Creek resident, brought along to the sidewalk protest her nearly7-year-old white boxer, Annie, who carried her own anti-clear-cut message on her flanks. Allan, who said she fears Shasta County is one of several California counties being decimated by clear-cutting, thinks SPI should act more responsibly in its logging. Woodhouse, who said she is also trying to fight an SPI plan to clear-cut more than 800 acres near the Manton area, agreed. http://www.redding.com/news/2007/oct/07/protest-ax-clear-cutting/


7) Last week I went up the East Fork of the Bitterroot River and visited a few of the Middle East Fork Healthy Forest Restoration Act logging units. Attached are a few photos from within Unit 13 of that project, which was the first Healthy Forest Restoration Act logging project in Montana. The unit pictured below was never logged before and was previously considered old-growth habitat by the FS, but they re-surveyed it in 2005 and determined it wasn’t old-growth habitat after all so they could log it. The logging unit pictured below also sits 4 air miles from the nearest home. This logging was done under the guise of “community fire protection” and “restoring fire adapted ecosystems.” Remember, this was a previously unlogged forest that was considered old-growth habitat. Look at it now. This is a good example of how “restoration” and “fuel reduction” are buzz-words, but mean very different things to people. However, it would certainly be a challenge for anyone to go out to the logging unit pictured below and convince the general public that doing this type of heavy, industrial logging in previously unlogged, old-growth forests 4 miles from the nearest home is in any way “restoration” or “fuel reduction.” This was also the reason that a number of PhD faculty from the University of Montana’s School of Forestry and Conservation and Dept of Biology expressed concerns or spoke out in opposition to the project, as well as a number of people who live up the East Fork. Below the photos are pasted below a number of comments and perspectives about the Middle East Fork HFRA project that were obtained from the official project file. For photos contact: koehler@wildrockies.org


8) Sediment runoff is an issue at Summit County ski resorts. The Forest Service and ski area operators work hard to try and control the impacts from ski trail clear cuts and service roads, but often struggle to meet the agency’s own stream standards. Similar issues are widespread across National Forest lands in Summit County, where runoff from unpaved roads impacts numerous streams. Many Forest Service roads do not meet the agency’s own construction and maintenance standards. Walking along Forest Service roads in areas like Montezuma makes it clear that the agency doesn’t come close to having a handle on controlling runoff from the far-flung network of backcountry roads. A dramatic increase in logging during the next few years will exacerbate this problem unless logging roads are monitored and maintained to the highest possible level. And the vast areas of dead forest left in the wake of the pine beetle infestation will present another huge water quality challenge. http://www.summitdaily.com/article/20071008/NEWS/110080059


9) Father and son Hubert and Thomas Vogelmann, the former and current chairmen of plant biology at the University of Vermont, each knows how it feels to work on headline-grabbing forest studies. Professionally stimulating — and personally depressing. Hubert “Hub” Vogelmann, a professor emeritus after heading UVM’s botany department for two decades, recalls back to 1964, when he and his students, to the bafflement of some peers, began studying how vegetation varied at different altitudes on Vermont’s most celebrated mountain, Camel’s Hump. “This was a pure ecological study,” the 78-year-old says today. “It had nothing to do with producing an offshoot that would generate money or prestige for the university.” Then in 1982, the professor made news by citing the research in a Natural History magazine article titled “Catastrophe on Camel’s Hump.” The story — one of the first mainstream explanations of the effects of acid rain — sparked the interest of mass-market publications like Time, which quoted the elder Vogelmann on how the peak’s red spruce were shedding and dying. “There are some pretty big holes in the forest,” Vogelmann told Time in 1984. Hub retired in 1991. A decade later, his son Tom took over the botany department. The younger Vogelmann, 55, and students still study the mountain whose silhouette is minted on 883 million Vermont quarters. But acid rain no longer is their biggest concern. Global warming is. When the New York Times launched a series this year on “how climate change is affecting American life,” it interviewed Tom Vogelmann about his worries that rising temperatures will supplant traditional trees with Southern species, as well as his fear that the state’s $20 million annual flow of maple sap will all but evaporate. “It’s within, well, probably my lifetime that you’ll see this happen,” Vogelmann told the Times in March. “How can you have the state of Vermont and not have maple syrup?” Forests cover almost 80 percent of the Green Mountain State. The two Vogelmanns have chronicled them for a combined half-century. The span and specificity of the research they’ve overseen is unsurpassed. But the changes it documents are unsettling for leaf-peepers, loggers and other locals tied to the state’s nearly $1.5 billion forest-related manufacturing, tourism and recreation economy. http://www.rutlandherald.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071007/NEWS/71005002/1024/NEWS04

West Virginia:

10) “First they take our land, then the water, now the air,” fumed Gunnoe who lives in Boone County, W.Va.’s top coal-yielding county, and the epicenter of Appalachian coal extraction, where the dirty business of mining, processing and hauling coal is the main meal-ticket in town. On a calm, clear morning in the forested mountains of southern West Virginia, 12-year-old Chrystal Gunnoe played outdoors in the green mountain valley where her family has lived for hundreds of years. It was Veteran’s Day and a school holiday. Chrystal’s mother, Maria Gunnoe, 38, was inside when she heard her daughter yell for help. Gunnoe rushed outside to find Chrystal coming towards her. Chrystal was coughing and struggling to breath, running from a strange-looking cloud that was moving down the valley and headed towards their house. Gunnoe would later learn the strange cloud came from something known as a “slow burning blast” — an explosion set at the coal mine above her home that failed to ignite and instead burned slowly, releasing a wet toxic cloud of nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide. In the weeks following, Chrystal suffered from a bronchial infection, a consistent cough, nose bleeds and bouts of painful breathing. Her mother, who was also exposed, “had sores on the inside of [her] nose,” she said. Gunnoe lives in Bob White, W.Va., where coal companies have become increasingly unfriendly neighbors. Coal mining dominates the lives of the people in the remote, coal-rich mountain communities of West Virginia, where coal operators like Massey Energy are waging a remorseless campaign to extract all the coal they can, as fast as they can, before coal is legislated into the past and President Bush is out of office. Out-of-state coal operators reap billions in profits every year, while residents of southern West Virginia remain among the poorest in the nation. In the coal fields, the imbalance is amplified: while Boone county produces the most coal in the state, 20 percent of its residents languish below the poverty line without sufficient income to achieve an adequate standard of living. Massey Energy Co., the largest coal producer in Appalachia, grossed $1.78 billion in revenue on coal sales of 42.3 million tons in 2005, while residents have toy drives for the kids around the holidays and often rely on free medical care administered by a global traveling clinic unit that comes around once a year. http://www.alternet.org/story/64547/

New Jersey:

11) WOODLAND TOWNSHIP – This land, in the heart of the Pine Barrens, once was full of water and cranberry vines. Now, the flat terrain of the former DeMarco Farm’s cranberry bogs is being transformed into a virtual moonscape. For the past month, excavators churned the earth at Franklin Parker Preserve, knocking down the man-made irrigation canals and building artificial hills and valleys. The goal is to let nature take its course and have the land revert back to the wild, according to Tim Morris, director of stewardship for the New Jersey Conservation Foundation. Changing the surface of the former bogs is important to encourage new growth. While some cranberries will remain, Morris hopes to see red maple and pine trees return to the property over the next few years. “We’re trying to make a mess, so that rather than have one type of plant community we’ll have diversity,” Morris said about the pilot restoration project, which covers 100 acres. The preserve is home to 52 different rare and endangered plants and animals, such as the Pine Barrens gentian, the bald eagle and northern pine snake. Over time, the former cranberry bogs could become a breeding ground for other species, said Betsy Clarke, a biologist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. The pilot project is part of a proposal to restore 2,200 acres of former cranberry bogs, blueberry farms and buffer zones. The project is funded by $1.25 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. The entire restoration should be complete by August or September 2009. The Franklin Parker Preserve covers 14 square miles on several sections of land in Burlington County. The property is about the size of Jersey City and it filters water into the Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer, the main drinking water source for thousands of southern New Jersey residents. The preserve was created in 2004 when the New Jersey Conservation Foundation purchased the property from A.R. DeMarco Enterprises for $12 million. The foundation co-owns the land with the state Department of Environmental Protection. The following year, the Natural Resources Conservation Service paid $4.4 million for an easement to keep the land undeveloped and agreed to fund the restoration. Historically, the bogs were used for cultivating cranberries, a native plant, as far back at the Civil War, according to J. Garfield DeMarco, the former landowner and cranberry farmer. His father, Anthony R. DeMarco, expanded the farms when he began acquiring land in the 1940s. http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/news/local/ocean/story/7507737p-7405522c.html

North Carolina:

12) The U.S. Forest Service announced yesterday its decision to allow timber harvesting in the Globe area, outlining a plan that it says scales back the project and protects views. The project has infuriated people who say that the logging will ruin million-dollar views. Opponents have been fighting the project for more than a year, and had wanted the forest service to abandon plans to log the area. Instead, partial harvests will be done in small sections averaging about 11 acres. A third of the trees in each of those sections will be left standing. There will be 17 of those small sections, which add up to 212 acres to be harvested out of the 11,225-acre area. A spokesman for the forest service, Terry Seyden, said that people may remember the last timber harvest in the area, which involved clear-cutting of 300-acre tracts. This harvest will be very different, he said.The appearance would be more like a heavy thinning of a small section of forest, Seyden said. In response to concerns, he said, the forest service will have a forest-landscape architect with the crews on site during tree marking and harvesting to make sure that the design plan is properly followed. “We take very seriously our responsibility to manage the scenic values of the forest,” Seyden said. People who are opposed to the logging, though, say that the forest service hasn’t listened to their concerns. “They say they’re feathering these cuts, but the hard fact is we’re talking about million-dollar views, which bring in billions of dollars (in tourism),” Marshall said. “It’s unacceptable, in my opinion.” The forest service announced the plan in January 2005, and during a feedback period got more than 1,800 written comments, mostly from people who were opposed to the logging. Several hundred opponents of the logging turned out in Blowing Rock for a public hearing on the issue in August 2006. The Blowing Rock Town Council unanimously passed a resolution opposing the project. The Globe area can be seen to the south and west of Blowing Rock from several places along U.S. 321. “The visual quality of that area is what drives the economy,” said Chris Joyell, a spokesman for the Southern Appalachian Biodiversity Project, based in Asheville. http://www.journalnow.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=WSJC%2FPage%2FWSJC_ContentPage&c=Page&cid=


13) All of those dream homes that are sprouting up at the edge of national forests in Utah and elsewhere in the West are creating a nightmare for the U.S. Forest Service. Increasingly, the federal agency is raiding its bank account to douse wildfires at the expense of some of the public’s favorite outdoor programs. A new analysis of the Forest Service budget shows the agency, already staggering under stagnant funding, might soon spend virtually all of its average annual $4.5 billion federal appropriation fighting fires that threaten homes on the rim of national forests. Headwaters Economics, the nonprofit consulting firm in Bozeman, Mont., which issued the report, found that the nation’s taxpayers are bound to spend even more as increasingly affluent Westerners continue to seek solace in wild country subdivisions. That means the Forest Service amenities the public most cares about – clean campgrounds, sturdy trails, fish-cleaning stations and ranger talks – could go begging, said Ray Rasker, Headwaters executive director and co-author of the report. “Fire is becoming the big gorilla that is eating all the bananas,” Rasker said. And it could get worse. About 14 percent of the land at the edges of the national forests now have homes on them. If 50 percent of the lands on the urban-forest line go to housing, annual firefighting costs could range from $2.3 billion to $4.3 billion, Rasker’s report says. “It’s like the perfect storm,” Rasker said. “We’ve got fuel buildup from the Smoky Bear years. We’ve got a warming climate and more drought. We’ve got a lot of insect infestations, so a lot of these forests are dead. And we’ve got a more prosperous West where people want to live out of town in the woods.” The Forest Service has reported that the cost of firefighting has exceeded $1 billion four times since 2000. Last year, the bill was $1.5 billion. Already this year, with months of fire season still to go, nearly 65,000 fires have burned almost 7 million acres and cost $1 billion. http://www.sltrib.com/news/ci_7104774


14) In early September, the Ontario government appointed former Supreme Court Justice Frank Iacobucci to facilitate a negotiated process and make recommendations to solve the impasse. Talks are expected to begin in November. “Companies are drilling without following the rule of law,” Cutfeet said. “There has been virtually no consultation or accommodation of our people. Treaty land was a fulfillment of the land claims process. The government and the companies have an illegal presence in our territories.” The Grassy Narrows community has suffered many traumas over the years, including forced attendance in Canada’s notorious and now-defunct boarding schools, forced relocation away from their traditional living areas, flooding of sacred grounds and burial sites by hydroelectric dam projects, and clear-cut logging of their forests. Mercury waste from a paper mill constructed in the 1970s contaminated local rivers and created devastating long-term health problems. Compared to other racial and cultural groups in Canada, indigenous people have the lowest life expectancies, highest infant mortality rates, most substandard and overcrowded housing, lower education and employment levels, and the highest incarceration rates. Native people lead in the statistics of suicide, alcoholism, and family abuse. Brant Olson of the Rainforest Action Project told IPS, “Amnesty International and many groups have verified the problems at Grassy Narrows. The historical and political context is dire due to the logging industry. Since the mid-1960s, large portions of the community have been uninhabitable and there have been enduring health problems and 25 percent unemployment. That led to the Grassy Narrows group to call for a moratorium on development [in January]. We want to ensure that buyers of the wood honour the moratorium. The community doesn’t trust the intentions of companies like Abitibi Consolidated and Weyerhauser,” said Olson. Loney added that provincial and federal governments should honour their commitments and responsibilities with First Nations people and consult on matters related to the use of native land. As mining and forestry companies are moving ahead with development, there are concerns about creating a high-profile and credible process to mediate the land rights dispute. http://www.ipsnews.net/print.asp?idnews=39576

15) It has been described as the northern lungs of our planet. It is the largest source of fresh water in the world. One of the biggest, untouched swaths of it sits right in our own backyard. “It” is the boreal forest, 15 million square kilometres of trees, lakes, rivers and bogs that circle the top part of the Northern Hemisphere like an emerald halo. A 42,000-square-kilometre section of the forest on the east side of Lake Winnipeg is being pitched to the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a World Heritage Site. It is a prestigious designation, bestowed upon 851 of the world’s most famous and important historical and ecological sites such as the Acropolis in Athens, Greece, rainforests in Madagascar, Indonesia and Brazil, and the ancient Inca city of Machu Picchu in Peru. The Pimachiowin-Aki would be the first UNESCO world heritage site in Manitoba and the 15th in Canada. The Pimachiowin-Aki site encompasses the traditional lands of five first nations, three provincial parks and six protected areas in Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario. While much of the boreal forest globally has been harmed by logging and industrial development, this particular swath is largely untouched. It is home to some of the most traditional first nations in Canada, but they are also among the poorest. The uniqueness of the aboriginal culture coupled with the beauty of the landscape would be a draw for tourists from all over the world, says Thiessen. European tourists in particular, notes Thiessen, would be a prime market for aboriginal powwows and sweat lodges, canoe adventures down rivers abundant in rapids and waterfalls, hikes through forests thick with stands of jack pine and black spruce where woodland caribou roam freely in one of their last remaining habitats in North America. What kind of infrastructure is needed to support the growth of a tourism industry on the site is not certain yet but must keep a balance between protecting the environment and economic opportunity, says Manitoba Conservation Minister Stan Struthers. http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special_report/story/4053745p-4659049c.html

16) Canada’s forest products industry is a fundamental pillar of Canada’s economy. It generates three per cent of Canada’s GDP, directly employs more than 300,000 Canadians and is the economic cornerstone of more than 300 communities. It is also the largest industrial employer of aboriginal Canadians. The industry is facing the most significant set of challenges it has seen at one time in more than 30 years. The mountain pine beetle, the U.S. housing crisis, a Canadian dollar near parity with its U.S. counterpart, high energy costs, export taxes and emerging low-cost global competitors are leaving the industry very vulnerable — more so than it has been in decades. With so many jobs and so much of the economy resting on the industry’s long-term health, one can only wonder why there is not more of a sense of urgency among governments in addressing the challenges. Complacency or defeatism will take us in only one direction. However, working together, the industry, governments and communities can take the necessary steps to right the ship. We have most of the necessary ingredients: Fibre, energy, water and a skilled, innovative workforce. With renewed investment and a supportive government policy environment, the industry would be the best positioned in the world to take advantage of the growth in global demand. http://www.vivelecanada.ca/article.php/20071008110410506


17) It was fitting that Queen of Green Dame Anita Roddick’s funeral was 100 per cent eco-friendly. The Body Shop founder, who died last month, was cremated in an ‘eco-pod’ coffin made from biodegradable shrubs, while special filters designed to reduce mercury emissions were used during the cremation. While green living may be one thing, green dying is quite another – and not usually something that’s at the forefront of an eco-consumer’s conscience. But new research from the Post Office reveals that nearly 35 per cent of people plan on an ‘eco-friendly’ burial, rather than traditional coffin burials and cremation ceremonies. Eco-friendly funerals include being buried in cardboard coffins or being freeze-dried and buried as bio-degradable dust (the latter being an option which 13 per cent would choose). Natural burials are increasingly taking place in secluded woodlands, and some people are choosing to plant trees in place of headstone. The cost of a traditional funeral varies depending on location and choice of coffin and memorials, but Mike Jarvis, director of independent funeral advice organisation the Natural Death Centre, says eco-funerals are relatively inexpensive in comparison. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/cash/story/0,,2185212,00.html


18) The green cloaking the Jerusalem hills and southern coastal plain recalls a typical Middle Eastern landscape. However, a closer look reveals that these trees are not local breeds, but rather dense groves of blue acacia, a tree imported from southwestern Australia and the most invasive species on Israeli soil. The Israel Nature and National Parks Protection Authority recently conducted trials on the use of a herbicide that could halt the spread of some of the tree populations. Dr. Jean-Marc Dufour-Dror, a specialist in pervasive plant species, was invited by the science division at INNPPA to research the effectiveness of a glyphosate-based herbicide on controlling the blue acacia. Dufour-Dror examined 98 mature acacias and 98 younger samples that were injected with the herbicide, which stunts the trees’ growth. The trees were given regular injections for two years, and 90 percent of them did not produce seeds. The herbicide treatments significantly reduced the trees’ ability to proliferate. The blue acacia was first brought to Israel in 1920 to help dry up swamps, create forests and stabilize sand dunes. At that time its pervasive nature was unknown, and by the time it was discovered, it was already too late. Official bodies such as INNPPA found themselves helpless against the spread of the acacia, which produced large quantities of seeds and could flourish under almost all Israeli soil and climate conditions. The areas that have been damaged the most are the coastal beaches, which were covered by a thick growth of acacia trees at the expense of local species of plants, and the animals native to open sand dunes. In recent years the acacia has also spread in the Jerusalem hills, mainly in the Nahal Sorek and Sha’ar Hagai regions, which were badly damaged by forest fires in the mid-1990s. “This invader could be destroyed, but that would cause tremendous environmental pollution,” explains Hanoch Tzoref, of the Jewish National Fund. “In order to destroy one dunam (1/4 acre), we would have to spread several liters of highly toxic herbicide.” http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/909982.html


19) From the vantage point of a creaking Soviet-era propeller plane we appear to be hovering above a sea of broccoli, every child’s worst nightmare. That could explain the screaming children sitting behind me, though more likely it is the intense heat inside the plane and the dripping condensation. The rainforest below stretches over six countries, but in this region it is being cut down at an alarming rate. A recent Greenpeace report speaks of vast concessions being handed over for a few bags of sugar. In Congo most of the wood is destined for China – 90% illegally, I am told. The pilot scans the horizon for the red-earth runway at Pokola, the town at the centre of a logging concession two-thirds the size of Wales. Despite its remote location 500 miles (800km) from the capital, Brazzaville, this forest is home to Congo’s largest private employer, a Danish logging subsidiary called CIB. It is not long before I realise Pokola is no ordinary logging town. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/7028445.stm


20) An indigenous group in Guyana, backed by government decree and a U.S.-based conservation organization, has banned miners and loggers from its section of the Amazon jungle and pledged to pursue an economic strategy based on ecotourism, research and traditional crafts. The leader of the Wai Wai said the group — which has about 200 members — has developed a management plan for its homeland in remote southern Guyana, near the border with Brazil, that is intended to preserve forest, create jobs and keep young people from leaving for cities. “We want to protect our land for our way of life and also for our future generations,” the group’s chief, Cemci Sose, said by telephone from Bariloche, Argentina, where he announced the protected status this week at the second Latin American Parks Congress. The Wai Wai received control of the 2,400 square miles of tropical forest and savanna — nearly half the size of Connecticut — from Guyana’s government in 2004. It is habitat to rare animals including the jaguar, blue poison frog, and scarlet macaw. Under the plan outlined at the conference, some of the Wai Wai would train to become forest rangers or to help researchers studying plants and animals of the rainforest. The group developed the strategy with Guyana’s government and Washington-based Conservation International, which set up a $1 million trust to help manage the area. Sose said he feared his land would be destroyed by miners who entered the Wai Wai’s territory illegally from Brazil. The effort to preserve the land comes as development pressure is expected to increase as Guyana prepares to pave a dirt road linking it with Brazil. Any miners or other threats spotted by the rangers will be reported to national authorities, said Lisa Famolare, vice president of the Guyana program for Conservation International. The protected area includes the watershed for Guyana’s largest river, the Essequibo, and makes up part of the Guiana Shield, an area of Amazon forest stretching across international borders that contains more than 25 percent of the world’s remaining humid tropical forests. “The really exciting part is the indigenous community owns it, and they did it themselves,” said Lisa Famolare, vice president of the Guyana program for Conservation International. http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gJqgsuM6JqDFxst94n2-ad0luVZwD8S35COO0


21) Different investigations have demonstrated that out of the 40,170 living species that have been studied, 16,119 are in danger of extinction. One out of eight birds could disappear forever. One out of four mammals is under threat. One out of every three reptiles could cease to exist. Eight out of ten crustaceans and three out of four insects are at risk of extinction. We are living through the sixth crisis of the extinction of living species in the history of the planet and, on this occasion, the rate of extinction is 100 times more accelerated than in geological times. Faced with this bleak future, transnational interests are proposing to continue as before, and paint the machine green, which is to say, continue with growth and irrational consumerism and inequality, generating more and more profits, without realising that we are currently consuming in one year what the planet produces in one year and three months. Faced with this reality, the solution can not be an environmental make over. I read in the World Bank report that in order to mitigate the impacts of climate change we need to end subsidies on hydrocarbons, put a price on water and promote private investment in the clean energy sector. Once again they want to apply market recipes and privatisation in order to carry out business as usual, and with it, the same illnesses that these policies produce. The same occurs in the case of biofuels, given that to produce one litre of ethanol you require 12 litres of water. In the same way, to process one ton of agrifuels you need, on average, one hectare of land. Faced with this situation, we – the indigenous peoples and humble and honest inhabitants of this planet – believe that the time has come to put a stop to this, in order to rediscover our roots, with respect for Mother Earth; with the Pachamama as we call it in the Andes. The countries of the north need to reduce their carbon emissions by between 60% and 80% if we want to avoid a temperature rise of more than 2º in what is left of this century, which would provoke global warming of catastrophic proportions for life and nature. We need to create a World Environment Organisation which is binding, and which can discipline the World Trade Organisation, which is propelling as towards barbarism. We need to adopt an indicator that allows us to consider, in a combined way, the Human Development Index and the Ecological Footprint in order to measure our environmental situation. http://www.countercurrents.org/morales260907.htm


22) Amazonia receives about 9 feet of rain every year. Fifty percent of this returns to the atmosphere through the foliage of trees. Most of the Amazon River’s water comes from the annual snowmelt high in the Peruvian Andes. Between June and October, the water level rises by 30 to 45 feet. Tens of millions of acres of rainforest are covered by water as the flood advances, reaching as far inland from the main channel as 12 miles. Some 15 million years ago, the Amazon River flowed westward into the Pacific Ocean. When the South American plate moved into another tectonic plate, the Andes Mountains slowly rose up and blocked the flow of the river. As the river system backed up, freshwater lakes were formed, and the environment of the Amazon basin changed drastically. Then about 10 million years ago the river found its way eastward towards the Atlantic. The Amazon rainforest is the drainage basin for the Amazon River and its many tributaries. The northern half of the South American continent is shaped like a shallow dish. About 1,100 tributaries, seventeen of which are over 1,000 miles long, drain into this depression. Whenever rain falls in the river basin, it all drains into Amazon rainforest and into the Amazon River. The Amazon is the largest river system in the world. At some points, the Amazon River is one mile wide, while at other points it can be thirty-five miles wide. At Belem, where the river flows into the Atlantic Ocean, it can be 200 to 300 miles across, depending on the season. Some of the animals that make their home here are river otters, freshwater river dolphins, turtles, piranha, manatees, electric eels, and a remarkable, giant air-breathing fish called the piraracu. http://amazing-nature.blogspot.com/2007/10/amazon-rainforest.html


23) Tribals, who once wandered in interior forests to collect firewood for their livelihood, have become eco-tourism guides and environmental protectors of Kumbakarai Falls, a popular tourist attraction of the district. To begin with, 100 tribal residents of Indira Nagar, all members of Village Forest Council (VFC), have been deputed as eco-tourism guides to maintain the Kumbakari Falls site, regulate and monitor tourists and keep the surroundings clean. They will also sell seeds for income generation. The tribals will take up eco-conservation measures to protect forests under Periyakulam Range and monitor the movement of wild animals, forest fire and natural calamities. The programme brings two major benefits: protection of tourists and sustainable income generation activities to tribal people. Above all, it mitigates poverty. “We have set up a check post at the entry point of the falls and a ticket counter manned by VFC members. They collect Rs.2 per person, Rs.5 for cars and light motor vehicles and Rs.10 for buses as entry charges to meet maintenance costs and honorarium for their services. The proceeds will also be used for village development. With the presence of eco-guides, drowning deaths will be eliminated. Moreover, forest conservation will become an easy task,” he added. Tribals will operate in shifts at entry point, ticket counter, vehicle parking area, canteen, food shelter and the Falls site. Eco-guides will also act as eco-guards, preventing tourists from entering danger zones. Uniforms and identity cards will be given to them. A first-aid box will be kept at the counter and they will be trained in giving first-aid, the DFO said. http://www.hindu.com/2007/10/08/stories/2007100850540100.htm


24) Police raided a warehouse in Pathum Thani’s Lam Luk Ka district yesterday, seizing more than 1,000 illegal logs of rosewood which were allegedly set to be smuggled out of the country. A Taiwanese man was arrested and charged with attempting to export illegal logs worth more than 100 million baht and dodging timber export taxes. Police also confiscated a container truck, a forklift, and arrested the Thai drivers of the two vehicles. All the suspects were detained at the Lam Luk Ka police station and charged with violating the Forestry Act. Pol Lt-Gen Rachot Yensuang, commander of the First Region Police, said he was told by subordinates that a foreigner had smuggled illegal wood into Thailand from neighbouring countries and was storing the logs in a warehouse before exporting them abroad. The wood was about to be transported to Klong Toey port for export to third countries, he said. There were no export tax documents on the wood. If the export taxes were added up and collected, the original price of the logs would go up by as much as 40%, he said. http://www.bangkokpost.com/News/07Oct2007_news11.php


25) The Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association (Vietfores) said exports had made their way to 80 foreign markets and there was great potential for wood processors to further step up shipments. It added that the US imported wooden furniture worth over $3 billion annually, providing an opportunity for Vietnamese processors to increase exports to that market. Furniture ranks among Vietnam’s top ten export commodities, ranking fifth behind crude oil, textiles, footwear, and seafood. The Ministry of Trade hopes export of furniture will reach $5.5 billion by 2010 and that Vietnam could over-take China in exports to the U.S. The country has 464 chair exporters, 400 Vietnamese-owned and the rest foreign-invested. However, all this trade depends on finding timber, of which there is a serious shortage. Following a ban on logging and timber exports in neigh-boring countries, wood prices have soared 30-40 percent in the last three years. Domestic sources meet a mere 20 percent of Vietnam’s timber demand, with the rest imported from Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines at high cost. In the last two years, Southeast Asia’s two largest exporters, Indonesia and Malaysia, have stopped exporting sawn lumber. As a result, several Vietnamese companies have been having trouble sourcing timber. Last year the furniture industry had to import more than $1 billion worth timber, machinery and accessories. Many furniture firms have begun to look for timber from elsewhere in the world. Leading outdoor furniture maker Scansia Pacific Co. Ltd. has signed a $200,000 deal to ship nine containers of outdoor furniture to the US and the EU. The Ho Chi Minh City-based company uses wood imported mainly from the U.S., Brazil, New Zealand, and Canada. To capitalize on the timber short-age, import-export firm Sadaco has signed a deal with Canada’s leading timber supplier Canfor. The government also plans to grow 2.5 million hectares of forest, which will supply about ten million cubic meters of raw wood by 2020. http://www.thanhniennews.com/business/?catid=2&newsid=32289


26) A mining consortium, under fire for the killing of an environmentalist, could still cut down trees and mine ore on Sibuyan Island unless stopped by the Romblon governor, environment officials said on Monday. The fatal shooting of Councilor Armin Marin by a guard of the Sibuyan Nickel Properties Development Corp. (SNPDC) last Wednesday set off calls for the pullout of the firm and cancellation of its permit. Marin, 42, was leading a picket against mining in San Fernando town last Wednesday when he was shot and killed during a heated confrontation with a guard named Mario Kingo.“The decision has been made,” Environment Undersecretary Manuel Gerochi said in an interview, when he explained that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources could not cancel the small-scale mining permit previously issued to the firm by Romblon Governor Perpetuo Ylagan. Only the provincial government could withdraw the permit, and if it did, it would have to pay expenses incurred by the firm, Gerochi said. “The local government should initiate a dialogue with the protesters. It should look into the core of the complaint of the protesters and whether they represent the communities,” he said. Gerochi added that if the provincial government recalled the permit, DENR would also recall the permit issued to SNPDC to cut down trees in San Fernando town. “We will also recall the permit because the small-scale permit is the basis for the tree-cutting permit,” he said. For now, nothing is stopping the SNPDC from cutting down trees and mining ore in forest lands in the village of España and Taclobo in San Fernando town which the DENR said were outside of the Mt. Guiting-Guiting Natural Park. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/regions/view_article.php?article_id=93279

Papua New Guinea:

27) Papua is the size of California and is almost entirely covered by vast stretches of virgin rain forest spread over 41.5 million hectares — or 23 percent of Indonesia’s total forested area of 180 million hectares. But some 22 million hectares of these forests are classified as production forests, rather than conservation areas. Indonesian control over the territory of Papua has seen the region’s forests suffer deforestation at the hands of foreign and domestic private companies. First, during the Soeharto regime, Papua’s forests were targeted by logging industries authorized by the Jakarta-based central government. Up until 2001, as many as 40 logging companies — none of which were owned by the indigenous Papuans — were active in Papua, with permission from the central government.The timber companies, without any interference, were able to cut down trees in Papua and sell them to foreign countries. According to Greenpeace, more than 25 percent of Papua’s natural forests has been sold by timber firms exporting to Japan, the U.S., European countries and China. Second, as the timber business is worth billions of dollars annually, Papua’s forests have also been targeted by illegal logging companies. Pressure on Papua’s forests has progressively increased due to overseas demand, notably from China. In 2003, some 7.2 million cubic meters of timber was reportedly smuggled out of Papua. An investigation carried out by the London-based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) revealed “illegal logging in Papua typically involves the collusion of the Indonesian military, the involvement of Malaysian logging gangs and the exploitation of indigenous communities”. Due to deforestation in Papua, both legal and illegal, Indonesia has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the country with the fastest pace of deforestation in the world. http://www.thejakartapost.com/detaileditorial.asp?fileid=20071006.F04&irec=3


28) A study predicts that global warming will further decimate the orangutan population in Sebangau National Park in Central Kalimantan, home to Indonesia’s largest orangutan habitat. About 6,900 orangutans out of the estimated 14,000 on Kalimantan Island currently occupy the 567,700-hectare park. “The rising temperature and rainfall will have adverse consequences on plant species in the park,” Chairul Saleh, the biodiversity conservation coordinator at WWF Indonesia, told The Jakarta Post on Saturday. “The plants are sensitive to climate changes. This will threaten food supplies for the orangutans.” Orangutans are reliant on the trees and fruit for their existence. Chairul said that coupled with the long-standing problem of forest fires, global warming would affect the reproductive cycle of the orangutans. “It will also trigger the migration of orangutan to other forests and affect genetics, the reproduction rate and health of orangutans,” he said. The rising temperatures is expected to cause a big increase in the number of malaria cases. The study on the impact of global warming on orangutan habitat in the Sebangau National Park was conducted jointly by the Jakarta-based, privately-run National University and WWF Indonesia in September. The study says that temperatures in the Sebangau Park would rise by one degree Celsius by 2050 and three degrees by 2100 due to global warming. Between 2000 and 2003, temperatures in the park were between 21 to 23 degrees Celsius. The WWF will present the findings of the study at the international climate-change conference in Bali in December, which will be attended by representatives of the 191 signatories to the Kyoto Protocol on climate change. Sri Suci Utami, an orangutan researcher from the National University, said that extensive land clearance and illegal logging had significantly reduced the orangutan population. “Without global warming, orangutans are already very vulnerable to extinction thanks to rampant forest fires and illegal logging,” she said. “Thus, global warming could further expedite the loss of orangutan habitat unless the government takes immediate protective measures,” she said. The Sebangau Park is a combination of mixed swampy forest, transitional forest, lowland canopy forest and granite forest, where 106 species of birds, 35 mammals and several groups of primates can be found. The government designated the Sebangau National Park as a conservation forest in 2004. http://www.thejakartapost.com/misc/PrinterFriendly.asp

29) Indonesia wants to be paid $5-$20 per hectare not to destroy its remaining forests, the environment minister said on Monday, for the first time giving an actual figure that he wants the world’s rich countries to pay. Participants from 189 countries are expected to gather in Bali for global climate talks at a U.N.-led summit in December. They will hear a report on Reduced Emissions from Deforestation (RED) — a new scheme that aims to make emission cuts from forest areas eligible for global carbon trading. But apart from carbon trading, Indonesia also wants big emitters such as the United States and the European Union to pay the country to preserve its pristine rainforests. “We will ask for a compensation of $5-20 per hectare. It’s not fixed; it is open to negotiation,” Environment Minister Rachmat Witoelar told reporters after a cabinet meeting at the presidential palace on Monday.With a total forest area of 91 million ha (225 million acres), Indonesia could receive as much as $1.8 billion for preserving its forests under the proposal. Indonesia will also negotiate a fixed price for other forms of biodiversity, including coral reefs, Witoelar added. http://uk.reuters.com/article/environmentNews/idUKJAK10785920071008


30) Over 5000 people jammed the roads leading to Low Head today in a show of strength against the proposed Tamar Valley pulp mill. The crowd exceeded initial estimates of 3000 as more and more people arrived after walking up to three kilometres as parking places close to the rally were totally clogged. After hearing from speakers condemning Environment Minister Turnbull’s pulp-mill decision, the passionate crowd moved on to East Beach to spell out STOP THE PULP MILL in letters seven metres deep. The 80-metre-long message was filmed from a helicopter just as a flurry of showers was brought by strong south-westerly winds. The demonstration was the public’s first major opportunity to protest against the pulp-mill decision announced last Thursday by Malcolm Turnbull and endorsed by Labor Shadow Minister Peter Garrett. “Today was a fantastic show of strength,” said Wilderness Society campaigner Geoff Law. “This is a message to politicians who have failed to gauge the public mood against the pulp mill.” Mr Law described how the pulp mill’s massive appetite would destroy over 2000 square kilometres of Tasmanian native forests; the impacts of the mill on the marine environment of northern Tasmania were outlined by Jon Bryan of the Tasmanian Conservation Trust; Trudy Maluga of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre explained how the pulp mill would damage her people’s culture and heritage; Bob McMahon from Tasmanians Against the Pulpmill; and Danielle Ecuyer from the Wentworth-based Women for Change Alliance spoke of the concern in Sydney about the pulp mill and its contribution to climate change. The biggest and warmest reception was for Senator Bob Brown, who pledged to fight the pulp mill all the way to the ballot box and into the banks. The crowd was particularly scathing of Peter Garrett, who was booed every time his name was mentioned. http://www.wilderness.org.au/campaigns/forests/tasmania/gunns_proposed_pulp_mill/5000/

31) It was recently estimated by a federal government agency that there are now 23 million pigs living in Australia – outnumbering the continent’s human population of 21 million. They are the descendants of domestic pigs which European explorers, including Captain James Cook, released as part of a “living larder” for future expeditions. The pigs found Australia to be hog heaven, with plentiful food, a balmy climate and no natural predators aside from the occasional crocodile. They have grown bigger and brawnier than their British ancestors, with some bristle-backed males weighing more than 150kg and capable of goring a human with their formidable tusks. In the tropical state of Queensland they are causing millions of pounds worth of damage to sugar cane and banana plantations, and threatening endangered rainforest animals. “There’s no question that they are on the increase,”said Norman Kippin, from the farming lobby group AgForce. “They are the biggest single problem up here in the wet tropics region and the government won’t do a bloody thing about it.” Feral pigs inhabit about 40%of Australia, colonising habitats ranging from forests and mountains to semi-arid savannah plains. Populations have risen during decades of inaction and blame-shifting between farmers, national parks and government. http://www.sundayherald.com/international/shinternational/display.var.1741606.0.0.php


32) Do you know what the relationship between forest devastation and classical musical instruments? Probably you will have to think for a couple of minutes before you reach the correct answer. It has to do with special kinds of woods needed to make musical instruments. According to an article in The Philadelphia Inquirer, dubbed Sour, “only certain fine woods can suffuse musical instruments with rich tonal quality. But now the best woods are becoming scarce.” In order for a musical instrument to make a certain sound, the strings as well as the wood, has to vibrate. Violins and guitars bring forth those beautiful sounds because they are made of fine woods that vibrate along with plucked or bowed strings. In the past, everything was well and good in the music industry, because fine woods were plentiful and musical instruments could be manufactured at affordable prices. As the forests of the world are being rapidly devastated, these fine woods are no longer available. Or almost no longer available, to be more exact. “The best tone woods are becoming unavailable or prohibitively expensive as the world’s forests succumb to over harvesting, illegal logging and pollution.” For example in 1970, a retail price for a Martin D-28 acoustic guitar with Brazilian rosewood would range between $600 to $800. Now the price has escalated to a range between $10,000 and $12,000. http://epiac1216.livejournal.com/187249.html

33) The proposal “Reduced Emissions from Deforestation” (RED) was not included in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change. But now is being evaluated by scientists, companies and agencies in poor countries that have extensive forested areas. The CDM allows governments and corporations of industrialised countries (required under the Protocol to cut greenhouse gas emissions) to meet part of their obligations by investing in “clean” projects in developing countries, by which they obtain certificates of emissions reductions — at much lower cost than curbing emissions at home. “Slowing emissions from deforestation would not stop climate change, but it could be an important part of a many-part strategy,” Christopher Field, head of the global ecology department at the Carnegie Institution in Washington, said in an interview for this report. RED emerged in 2005 at the 11th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Convention on Climate Change, led by Papua New Guinea and Costa Rica, with support from the Coalition for Rainforest Nations. Its aim is to include “avoided deforestation” in the global market of carbon credits — carbon dioxide being the principal greenhouse gas. Implementation is expected to be finalized at the 13 Conference of Parties, to take place in December on the Indonesian island of Bali. Brazil, for its part, proposes a fund with voluntary contributions of public money to compensate the effort made by developing countries to reduce deforestation, and that they would be remunerated based on prevented emissions. http://www.climateark.org/shared/reader/welcome.aspx?linkid=85525

34) Worldwide, people understand “deforestation” as something done by the ax and saw. That’s still true, but now it’s just half the story. Ax and saw have a new partner. Deforestation is also done by increasing global temperatures. For example, in comparing the consequences of droughts dating back to the 1800s, Breshears et al report that a recent drought in the Southwest US was NOT as severe as some earlier droughts, but caused more extensive forest death. Why did the milder drought kill more trees? Because this recent drought was paired with extreme heat, prompting the researchers to conclude that heat was the “trigger” for extensive death. These recent and future droughts ain’t yer grandpa’s kind of drought. Now, I know that I’m sacrificing details galore by boiling this story down to simple brevity. But science has always preferred elegance, parsimony, simplicity. And common sense demands “cutting to the chase.” So, there are two kinds of deforestation. One is by ax and saw. The other is by hiking the temperatures of the planet. Each kind of deforestation has climatic impact of its own, and the combination of two deforestations will be an increasingly potent force on regional and global scale. Drying and heating will “thin” the forests, and plausibly on a radical scale. lancolsn@gmail.com

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