first_imgAnimals, Biodiversity, Conflict, Conservation, Corridors, Elephants, Featured, Forests, Habitat Degradation, Habitat Destruction, Habitat Loss, Human-wildlife Conflict, Mammals, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation, Wildlife Corridors The herd of about 25 elephants is “trapped” within dense human habitation in an area called Athgarh in the state of Orissa in India.The elephants take shelter in some of the small forest patches during the day, and go out to look for food in the evenings, which mostly constitutes of crops, getting harassed in the process.Conservationists say that harassing elephants has now become a form of entertainment in the area. In the state of Orissa in India, a herd of elephant faces a grim situation.A video shot by the NGO Sanctuary Nature Foundation shows hundreds of men descending upon the elephants nearly every time they move out of the forest patches in search of food. The men can be seen pelting stones, hurling abuses, and blocking the elephants’ path.Trapped within slivers of forests amid a sea of dense human habitation in an area called Athgarh, the elephants are in constant state of conflict with the people living there. “This is why we call them giant refugees,” Aditya Chandra Panda, an Orissa-based wildlife conservationist said in a telephonic interview.The Athgarh herd of about 25 elephants originally lived in the Chandaka-Dampara Wildlife Sanctuary, a protected area on the fringes of Orissa’s capital city Bhubaneshwar. Until 2001, the sanctuary was estimated to have about 90 elephants. An elephant census in 2014-15 estimated a population of eight elephants in the park. Now, there may be even fewer animals left.Following years of habitat destruction and unrestrained expansion of cities into the forest, the elephants moved out in search of food, water and better wild spaces. Some herds made it to patches of forests elsewhere, plodding through once-contiguous corridors now broken by highways, industries, villages and towns. Some elephants were killed during the course of their journey, while others are now trapped within human-dominated landscapes.The Athgarh herd, which arrived in the Athgarh area some five years ago, is one such “refugee” herd. Living in an agriculture-dominated area has meant that the animals are always at loggerhead with people. The elephants take shelter in some of the small forest patches during the day, and go out to look for food in the evenings, which mostly constitutes of crops, getting harassed in the process. Even in areas where there are no standing crops to protect, men come out in large numbers to block the elephants’ movements. Conservationists say that harassing elephants has now become a form of entertainment.“I personally witnessed the horrific harassment of the herd in December 2016, and can say that it was a vile experience,” Cara Tejpal, a wildlife conservationist with Sanctuary Nature Foundation, who recorded the clash between villagers and elephants in December 2016, said in an email. “I watched these beautiful animals, so many little elephant calves included, being tormented for three hours that evening! And this is a routine that plays out regularly, week after week.”Athgarh elephants are in constant conflict with people. Photo by Karan Tejpal.Unfortunately, little is being done to resolve the conflict, Panda said. While the forest department keeps track of the movement of the elephant herd, trying to provide them with a safe passage, the local police has been inactive in controlling the mobs and keeping them away from the animals, he added.To tackle the problem, Tejpal, Panda and their colleagues, with the Sanctuary Nature Foundation, have launched a public campaign to appeal to Orissa’s Chief Minister to come up with immediate solutions. The campaign uses the hashtag #GiantRefugees on social media.One form of immediate solution would be for the police to intervene to allow safe passage of the elephants, Panda said.“The Forest Department has very accurate information about the movement of the elephants. Once this information is given to the police, the police should come well in advance and if needed impose section 144 [law prohibiting unlawful assembly of five or more people] in that area until the animals have been moved away safely, because this is a situation where both wildlife and human lives are at stake.”Harassing elephants may have become a form of entertainment for the people, conservationists say. Photo by Karan Tejpal.The conservationists also seek long-term solutions. These include protecting Chandaka-Dampara Wildlife sanctuary and allowing its wildlife to recover, and reviving corridors and improving connectivity between Chandaka and Kapilas Wildlife Sanctuary and the Satkosia landscape in the state.The situation in Athgarh is dire, conservationists say. Elephants have died in this conflict, and people, too, have been injured and killed. And the conflict needs to be resolved soon.“What is happening in Athgarh and Chandaka is a very good example of what is happening all over India, where large forested landscapes are getting smaller, corridors are getting broken and wildlife populations are getting decimated,” Panda said. “We have been trying to get the Chief Minister of Orissa to issue a statement on this issue, about any plan of action they may have, but there’s been no response yet.”The Athgarh herd has about 25 elephants. Photo by Aditya Chandra Panda.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Article published by Shreya Dasguptacenter_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

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first_img NICOLAS NICOLAS MESSYASZ/SIPA/AP IMAGES The timing couldn’t be more perfect. We are becoming awash in data and we simply can’t keep up. The only answer is AI. Emmanuel Macron wants France to become a leader in AI and avoid ‘dystopia’ The government’s measures are largely based on recommendations laid out in a report, presented yesterday by France’s star mathematician and Fields Medal winner Cédric Villani, a member of Parliament for Macron’s political group. Macron didn’t pick up on Villani’s suggestion to double the salaries of early career scientists to make academic research jobs more attractive, but a good part of the president’s plan aims at curbing the hemorrhage of talented researchers leaving France.“There is a global arms race going on and the price to compete keeps going up and up,” says Jonathan Schaeffer, a computing scientist at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, adding that France should review progress annually and adjust funding levels if necessary. “It is hard to envision the future, but with the potential that AI has, a major investment today might be insufficient tomorrow,” he says.The plan includes a national research program to be led by the French National Institute for Computer Science and Applied Mathematics (INRIA) in Rocquencourt and centered around four or five “dedicated institutes” anchored in existing research sites across the country. France is going big on artificial intelligence (AI). President Emmanuel Macron yesterday announced a €1.5 billion plan to turn his country into a world leader for AI research and innovation, a field dominated by the United States and China. It calls for a hefty investment, a handful of specialized institutes, a focus on ethics and open data, and a call to recruit foreign researchers and French scientists working abroad to the country, not unlike Macron’s 2017 “Make Our Planet Great Again” climate initiative.Macron presented his plans in a lengthy speech peppered with erudite references and touches of humor at the end of the“AI for Humanity” conference in Paris. Turning the country into an AI leader would allow France to use AI for the public good and ensure that a “Promethean” promise doesn’t become a “dystopia,” he said.“The timing couldn’t be more perfect,” says Alessandro Curioni, vice president of Europe and director of IBM Research in Zurich, Switzerland, who attended the event in Paris. “We are becoming awash in data and we simply can’t keep up. The only answer is AI,” he says. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country To avoid misuse of artificial intelligence, French President Emmanuel Macron proposed setting up a panel akin to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. By Tania RabesandratanaMar. 30, 2018 , 11:15 AM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Alessandro Curioni, IBM Research All in all, the government will spend €1.5 billion on Macron’s initiative, including €400 million on competitive calls for proposals, as well as €100 million “in the coming months” to help launch  startup companies in hopes of attracting another €500 million from private companies, Macron said. But few details are available at this stage. “The scale will depend on the means that will be allocated” to the program, says François Sillion, INRIA’s interim CEO, adding that things will become clearer in the coming weeks.Recruiting researchers will be the biggest challenge, says Karteek Alahari, a researcher at INRIA in Grenoble. France is a better place to live and work than some scientists think, says Alahari, who studied in India and did his Ph.D. and postdoc in the United Kingdom. He says the quality of students, freedom to pick research problems, and the quality of academic research attracted him to France. To match the flexibility of universities in other countries, Macron said he would seek to raise the time that publicly funded scientists are allowed to spend working in private companies, from 20% to 50%.France is not the only European country that has grand ambitions in AI. Germany, too, wants to be a pioneer, Anja Karliczek, Germany’s minister for education and research, said at the conference. Both countries could link up their data centers and start bilateral research programs, she said, while Macron said part of the funds would be earmarked for Franco-German research projects. European Research, Science, and Innovation Commissioner Carlos Moedas also praised Macron’s vision. The European Union is set to unveil its own AI strategy on 25 April.Macron’s strategy includes a focus on AI ethics to ensure that algorithms are controlled and work for the greater good, avoiding the “opaque privatization of AI or its potentially despotic usage” by foreign governments, the president said. He even proposed to set up an “IPCC of AI,” a group akin to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which is based in Geneva, Switzerland, and made up of thousands of volunteer scientists who review climate science literature.Several companies, including Microsoft and Fujitsu, timed announcements about new investments in France to Macron’s speech. DeepMind, a London-based leading AI company bought by Google in 2014, said it would open a Paris center this summer for research on AI, machine learning, deep learning, and reinforcement learning. “I think it’s an excellent choice,” said Rémi Munos, a DeepMind scientist currently working in London who will lead the Paris lab, in a video statement. “Not only because it allows me to go back to France, but also because Paris is in the process of becoming a major location for research in AI and machine learning.”last_img read more

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