first_imgNEW ORLEANS, La. – University of New Orleans President John Nicklow announced that the University has selected Tim Duncan as its new athletic director. Duncan, a Memphis native, is currently the deputy athletic director for external affairs at Northeastern University in Boston. He has held leadership roles at both NCAA Division I and Division II institutions, including serving as director of athletics on two different occasions. He was previously an associate athletics director at Division I University of North Carolina Wilmington overseeing the Seahawk Club and the executive director of the M Club, an athletic alumni organization at the University of Memphis. “We conducted a very thorough national search, and I could not be more excited to have Tim join the University and lead Privateer athletics,” Nicklow said. “Our athletic successes and national reputation are growing, and I believe Tim brings the energy, experience and the excellence to further elevate our program. We share the same vision, enthusiasm and entrepreneurial attitude.” Prior to his time at Northeastern, Duncan worked exclusively in the South. He was director of athletics at Division II Clayton State University in Morrow, Georgia from 2014-2018. He also served as director of athletics at Paine College, a Division II HBCU located in Augusta, Georgia, from 2011-2014. Duncan is expected to begin his new position on June 3. His hiring is subject to approval from the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors. He will succeed Derek Morel, who departed the University in October for a leadership position at the Allstate Sugar Bowl. Prior to entering college athletics administration, Duncan spent 11 years as a marketing professional.Duncan holds a bachelor’s of business administration in marketing from Memphis State (now Memphis) and a master’s in sports administration from Grambling State. He played four years of college basketball at Memphis. Duncan will be introduced at a news conference in the Homer Hitt Alumni and Visitors Center ballroom at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 30. Within Northeastern University’s 18-sport NCAA Division I program, Duncan oversees the external affairs unit, comprised of communications, corporate sponsorships, fundraising, marketing and game day experience, ticket sales and operations, and video production. During his tenure, donations, corporate partnerships and ticket revenue have all increased. In October, Duncan spearheaded a marketing campaign known nationally at #HowlinHuskies, a rebranding of the Northwestern Athletics logos package. “The University of New Orleans has everything I wanted in a job: a visionary president, an institution with academic rigor, coaches and staff committed to winning with integrity and developing young leaders and, most importantly, a great city in which my wife, Lisa, and I can raise our children Tyson, Turner and Tatum,” Duncan said.last_img read more

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first_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 overSponsored Back in January, biologist Jennifer Serrano and a team of researchers published a paper officially describing a new species of poison dart frog found in the Peruvian Amazon, which was given the name Ameerega shihuemoy, to science.Finding Frogs, a short documentary by filmmaker Nick Werber, captures the sense of awe and discovery inherent in doing fieldwork like Jennifer Serrano’s.In this Q&A, Mongabay speaks with Werber about his motivation for making the documentary in the first place, the difficulties of shooting a film in a humid environment like a rainforest, and why it’s so important for scientific discoveries to be more widely shared via media like film. Biologist Jennifer Serrano was in the Amazonian rainforests of the Manú Biosphere Reserve in southeast Peru one night a few years ago when she came across a poison dart frog that wasn’t like any of the species she was familiar with. She couldn’t find the frog in the field guide kept at the Crees Foundation research station she was based at at the time, either — which is when she and her colleagues first began to suspect that what Serrano had found was actually a previously undiscovered species.Back in January, Serrano and a team of researchers published a paper officially describing the new species, which was given the name Ameerega shihuemoy, to science.Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a researcher trekking through the rainforest at night, studying the incredible diversity of flora and fauna you encounter there? If so, then the short documentary Finding Frogs by filmmaker Nick Werber, will give you an up-close-and-personal view of what it’s like.Nothing can really compare to actually being in the Amazon rainforest, of course. “My advice for any other biology student is, if you have the opportunity to go to the forest, just do,” Serrano, who was a student when she discovered the frog and now works with the Crees Foundation to teach others about the value of regenerating forests and the biodiversity they harbor, says in the film. “Because you are going to learn there, you are going to learn in the forest. There is no university or classroom where you are going to learn the same as in the forest.”That may indeed be the case, but not everyone can easily get out to a tropical forest and go exploring. For those that fall into this category, or even those just wanting to re-live the experience, Werber’s all-too-brief documentary truly captures the sense of awe and discovery inherent in doing fieldwork like Jennifer Serrano’s.Mongabay spoke with Nick Werber about his motivation for making the documentary in the first place, the difficulties of shooting a film in a humid environment like a rainforest, and why it’s so important for scientific discoveries to be more widely shared via media like film.Mongabay: How’d you first become interested in rainforest biology and how did it come to pass that you filmed Jenny Serrano as she was doing her fieldwork that led to the discovery?Nick Werber: I watched lots of BBC wildlife programs as a kid and went on to study Biology at A level. There was something about the rainforest that I found magical years before ever going there. It looked so abundantly lush and wild, unlike my suburban London roots. After studying English and Journalism, in 2010 I was lucky enough to get a job as a rainforest journalist for the Crees Foundation in Manú, Peru. It was here, over two years, that I learned more about rainforest research and conservation from biologists, including Dr Andy Whitworth who was at the time the Crees scientific coordinator and who oversaw Jenny’s frog research. I still go back every year to Peru to keep up to date on the region and the stories of people living and working there.Mongabay: What about Jenny’s work intrigued you enough to want to make a film?Nick Werber: As most biologists in the past have been men from Europe and USA I thought it would be good to make a film about a woman working in biology in her own country. Jenny was working on publishing her first paper on her new frog and there was quite a buzz around the camp, with National Geographic photographer Charlie Hamilton James coming out to report on Jenny’s frog. Jenny is so passionate about her work it was a pleasure to spend time with her out in the forest. As she says, frogs are very sensitive to changes in the environment, kind of like canaries in the mine. Amphibians’ numbers are decreasing on the whole and so to see a new discovery in a region that was cleared 35 years ago was encouraging.Mongabay: Was it difficult to shoot out in the rainforest?Nick Werber: It is hot, humid and occasionally very muddy. I would often start filming before the sun came up and still be out filming at night (when the frogs like to come out). The days were long but Jenny never seemed tired. I was just trying to keep up!Mongabay: What are you hoping to achieve with the film, in the end?Nick Werber: I’d like to communicate the passion of a young biologist and to show people who are thinking about working in tropical conservation biology to give it a go. There are still lots of discoveries to be made. I’d also like to show how even minor changes in the environment can have big changes to an ecosystem like that in Manú. Our actions in the west, personally and politically, matter a great deal to this abundant but fragile ecosystem.Mongabay: Why do you think it’s important to make films like this about scientific discoveries?Nick Werber: It seems to me that unless people know about these sorts of discoveries then they’ll go unnoticed by all but a few academics and I’d like to share just a little of the wonder I and the biologists feel on a daily basis working in this amazing place. It is important for people to know about new discoveries so they can be informed about life in the rainforest and so that, young people especially, can feel inspired to get involved, in any way they can, either as a budding scientist or even as a volunteer or tourist.Jenny Serrano examines a frog in the Amazon. Still from Nick Werber’s short documentary, Finding Frogs. Amazon Biodiversity, Amazon Rainforest, Amphibians, Animals, Biodiversity, Environment, Film, Frogs, Herps, New Species, Rainforests, Species Discovery, Tropical Forests, Wildlife center_img Article published by Mike Gaworeckilast_img read more

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first_imgFEEDBACK: 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. 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 overSponsored Adaptation To Climate Change, Climate, Climate Change, Climate Change Denial, Climate Change Politics, climate policy, Climate Politics, Corruption, Environment, Environmental Activism, Environmental Ethics, Environmental Law, Environmental Policy, Environmental Politics, Featured, Global Environmental Crisis, Global Warming, Global Warming Mitigation, Globalization, Green Article published by Glenn Scherer On June 1, 2017 Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris Agreement, joining Syria and Nicaragua as the only two nations on Earth not to be part of the climate pact.Critics around the world are blasting Trump for his rashness, saying that his decision threatens climate stability, the U.S. and global economies, ecosystems and even civilization.In this Mongabay commentary, scientists from around the globe offer their immediate responses to Trump’s Paris departure. We will continue to update this story in coming days, adding further responses from the scientific community as Mongabay receives them. What’s at stake. Planet Earth seen from space. Image courtesy of NASADonald Trump, who called climate change “a hoax” during his campaign, has withdrawn the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement, rejecting a pact that is being honored by more than 190 nations.The U.S. signed and ratified the agreement under President Obama, and it is a pact that is also heavily backed by U.S. and global corporations, including oil companies ExxonMobil, BP, and Royal Dutch Shell.The U.S., the world’s second largest producer of greenhouse gases after China, committed in Paris to cutting its carbon emissions by between 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025.Trump justified his reversal of the U.S. commitment made to the world in Paris with the wholly unsubstantiated claim that the agreement is bad for U.S. business and labor.The Paris Agreement aims at preventing dangerous climate change and keeping the world well below a 2 degree Celsius (3.6 degree Fahrenheit) average temperature rise over preindustrial levels. Studies have shown that the emission cuts volunteered by the world’s nations in Paris are still deeply inadequate for meeting that goal, and Trump’s move will only steepen the very difficult climb to climate stability and safety.How much the U.S. withdrawal will endanger people and planet is uncertain, as no one can say how the departure will impact the actions of other nations, possibly causing some to back away from the agreement. Turkey and Russia, for example, have signed the pact but still not ratified it. So far, the world has stood firm in its Paris commitments, with only the United States, Syria and Nicaragua now not parties to the agreement.Scientists over coming months will need to make a full assessment of the harm Trump’s decision will do to the earth’s climate, environment and ecosystems, and to its nations and people.But for the moment, scientists are responding with deep concern. What follows are reactions from scientists in a wide variety of disciplines in the U.S. and around the world. Over the next several days, Mongabay will continue to update this article, publishing additional comments from the scientific community to Trump’s decision.– story introduction by Mongabay editor Glenn Scherer; responses compiled with the help of the Mongabay teamNASA GISS Surface Temperature Analysis. Courtesy of NASAFor the U.S. to withdraw from the Paris Accord would have catastrophic consequences for the natural world, accelerating species extinctions worldwide.— Edward O. Wilson, University Research Professor Emeritus, Harvard UniversityAbout 20 years ago the effects of changing climate became evident nearly everywhere I went in the world. Most of my travels are to temperate and tropical coasts, coral reefs, and polar systems. At home in the Northeast U.S., climate-related changes to marine-life distributions are also evident.The United States has long lagged at solutions, ceding leadership on clean energy technology to Europe and especially China. But it is one thing for our nation to fail to lead, or to come grudgingly along with mainstream science. But it is quite another thing for a man with no qualifications and no apparent grasp of information or the issue to simultaneously undermine world consensus and abandon world leadership.There are no words for how horrifying it is to watch my country embarrass itself on the world stage and so severely injure its status and standing in the eyes of the world. I’d like to see us make America great again.— Carl Safina, Ph.D., Endowed Professor for Nature and Humanity, School of Marine and Atmospheric SciencesThe Paris agreement was a remarkable achievement involving unanimous agreement among over 190 countries. The way the UN operates is to achieve unanimity, which is a major problem. It means that it is impossible to put together binding targets. The whole of the Paris agreement is based upon goodwill. There are no punitive actions or means to enforce the agreement. The goodwill also includes the Green Climate Fund, to which the U.S. pledged $3 billion and has delivered $1 billion — but it seems unlikely [that Trump will] add to that. That alone undermines a lot of the good will. And it will be a major sore point in all the small island states and developing countries, who have not caused the problem.The U.S. leadership was essential in Paris. If the U.S. does not lead by example — and we have a moral and ethical responsibility to do so as the largest accumulated emitter — then why should anyone else go along? Unless there is a universal carbon tax, fossil fuels appear to be the cheapest form of energy. It is not true, of course, because of all the downstream effects on air quality and climate change. So either some form of trade wars are realized in which heavy tariffs are used against the U.S. and other renegades, or the whole thing collapses and we all spiral into a race to the bottom, to see who can destroy the planet first.Yes, other things are moving in positive directions, but not yet fast enough: ask India what they will do if they do not get technology transfer and help.The U.S. cannot opt out without major other consequences.Without the US and Paris, we crash through the 2 degree Celsius (3.6 degree Fahrenheit) threshold before 2060, perhaps a decade earlier owing to U.S. pullout. And this means increasing trouble with ecosystems being out of whack with the climate, trouble farming current crops, and increasing shortages of food and water.But if Paris is fully implemented and feeds back on itself to a new energy economy, we can delay 2 degree C by 40 years, maybe. I believe that we will go through 2 degree C by 2100 regardless. But we can adapt better. It will be bad enough under the best scenarios, but [the withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris accord] could be bringing doomsday forward by fifty to a hundred years.— Kevin Trenberth, Distinguished senior scientist at NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research)Glacier in Alaska. Glaciers worldwide are melting due to rising temperatures. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerPresident Trump should remember that the Paris Climate Agreement remains one of our best chances to protect the millions of farmers, ranchers, foresters, and manufacturers across rural America whose jobs are threatened by global climate change.U.S. agriculture and its related industries provide about 11 percent of national employment — that’s 21 million jobs. Every year we produce nearly $330 billion in agricultural commodities, not to mention the U.S. forest product industry that is valued at $282 billion. By contrast, the U.S. coal industry employs fewer people than Arby’s (76,572 people in 2014).Signs of stress on U.S. agricultural markets due to global climate change are already apparent. Heatwaves, droughts, floods, stronger windstorms and other climate change impacts exacerbate the stresses already occurring from weeds, insects and disease.Severe drought cost California about $2.7 billion and 10,000 jobs in 2015 — a huge blow for the farming economy of a single state. Increased frequency and severity of wildfires puts our forest land at risk and strain our budgets by demanding more taxpayer dollars for firefighting.And what about feeding ourselves? At a time when the world must find a way to produce 70 percent more food in 2050 than in 2006, we cannot afford the possibility of lower agricultural yields in the American Midwest, one of the world’s most productive breadbaskets.The agriculture and forestry sectors play a complex and critical role in our country’s social and economic fabric. States, cities, businesses and citizens — both red and blue —must band together in support of those who work the land and push for ambitious climate action in the United States.— Nancy Harris, Ph.D., Research Manager, Forests Program, World Resources InstituteDonald Trump seems determined to turn a malfunctioning presidency into one that will, as confirmed by many observers, be considered disastrous.Trump seems capable of almost any self-delusion — of convincing himself he is correct no matter the weight of evidence against him.But to drag the U.S. down into his rabbit hole of bizarre beliefs regarding climate change is going way, way too far. For America to become one of only three nations on Earth that is not a party to the Paris climate accord is unthinkable, a bridge too far even for Trump.This is the price that Americans are paying right now for electing this very peculiar megalomaniac as their president.— William F. Laurance, PhD, FAA, FAAAS, FRSQ, Distinguished Research Professor, Australian Laureate & Prince Bernhard Chair in International Nature Conservation (Emeritus), Director of the Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Science (TESS)The rest of the world should pay no attention to the venal men who have temporarily taken command of our great nation.The United States is suffering from a political disease that prevents us from showing the rest of the world and ourselves what is good in us. We will rid ourselves of this malady. America will be great again.It will take time to undo the damage that the Trump Administration and his Congressional co-conspirators are doing to our nation and the world. But rest assured, that damage will be undone. The United States will work with the rest of the world to create a world where the poor become prosperous and where the environment is respected and protected.The rest of the world must continue on its path to a better future. Today, we are lagging behind and moving backward, but tomorrow we will run ahead and help lead the way.The Trump Administration and his co-conspirators in Congress are a historical aberration, the last dying gasps of a failed ideology. Future historians will see the Trump Administration and his congressional co-conspirators as tragic figures fighting a failed rear-guard action against the inevitability of historical progress.  What is good in America will eventually triumph.— Ken Caldeira, Carnegie Institution for Science, Department of Global EcologyClimate change is increasing the vulnerability of some areas to drought.U.S. President Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris Accords is disastrous for the U.S. and for the other 194 signatory countries, including Brazil.Brazil, where droughts and floods predicted to intensify in a warmer world, are already increasing in frequency, is one of the countries expected to lose most from climate change. Amazonia, where drought-provoked forest fires are rapidly increasing, holds an immense stock of carbon that represents a time bomb for the world’s climate if global emissions are not contained.— Philip M. Fearnside, Ph.D., Research Professor, National Institute for Research in Amazonia (INPA), Manaus, Brazil. Our withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord is shameful and is an abject embarrassment to not only our immediate past leadership but to all Americans who came first and exerted primacy for so many topical issues of vital health to our planet — from oceans and clean air, to biodiversity conservation and education.There is hope down the road; it’s called elections and sovereignty.— Joel Berger, Cox Chair of Conservation Biology and Senior Scientist, Wildlife Conservation SocietyA lack of U.S. government support for the Paris climate agreement will mean that the United States will further isolate itself from international collaboration and cooperation on multiple fronts. It will affect U.S. security, the provision of jobs; U.S. business operations, and U.S. diplomatic efforts.The agreement, because it has a broad basis of support, will continue with or without the United States. Many of the stipulations in the agreement further U.S. strategic interests, and cities and states will be hard pressed to fully carry out the diplomatic dimensions that the agreement brings with it. Many U.S. states and cities are centers of innovation, resilience and prosperity. Those [states and cities] will continue — as they work to meet the goals, aspiration and logical objectives under the Paris Agreement —but it will be harder for them to do so without overall U.S. government support.If President Trump agrees to support the agreement there will be additional respect and receptivity to his administration and the United States in international circles. Members of the G7 and the Pope have encouraged the President to carefully consider supporting the agreement. Should he not support the agreement, it could potentially lead to colder relations with well-established partners for the United States and could mean that others could be willing to step in to increase their support and engagement as outlined in the Paris Agreement. Eyes will be on Europe and China in particular.The Paris Agreement represented an unprecedented moment for a collective climate action plan. Because of the way that it is structured — with each country determining the best way for it to decarbonize and to revisit its progress in five year intervals — countries have the flexibility to be aspirational and inspirational. I anticipate that this momentum will continue.The U.S. withdrawal will present a unique opportunity for China to provide some global leadership and goodwill — in much the same way that it did leading up to the Paris Agreement. China seems interested in doing so. So there is a clear opportunity for leadership in this space. That leadership could be one of taking concrete specific action to meet its [own national] obligations, but also by inspiring others to engage and work towards the benefits that the agreement provides for job creation, for prosperity and for a clean environment that protects its citizens. So the leadership space is one that is infused by action and by inspiration.— Roger-Mark De Souza, Director of Population, Environmental Security and Resilience, Wilson Center, Washington, DC Climate change is already happening. A world leader retracting from the Paris Agreement is no more than a short-term economical bet.What is always surprising to me is to see someone thinking that climate change action is done only to protect the planet / nature, while such efforts should be seen as a major move for the survival of the next generations.What Donald Trump and others like him do not understand is that the planet will survive the human race, with some important losses of course. But life will go on without us… The planet does not really need us to be saved.On the other hand, we are currently building our own graves.Humans will probably not survive climate change and its rapid modifications to complex environments that took us many centuries to adapt to, and to learn how to manage.Trump’s withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement, before anything else, puts the human species at risk.— Jean-François Bastin, Research associate at Université libre de Bruxelles.Amphibians are already dying en-masse due to the effects of climate change and human impacts. Photo by Rhett A. Butler.In 2007 my research team and I projected that by the middle of this century we could lose two-thirds of the world’s polar bears if we continued our present greenhouse gas emissions path. By century’s end, we projected we could lose them all. This projection led Secretary of Interior Kempthorne to list polar bears as a Threatened Species. Polar bears reliably catch their seal prey only from the surface of the sea ice. Their food supply, therefore, depends on habitat that literally melts as temperatures rise — making them a great messenger about the dangers of global warming and its climate change symptoms.The agreement reached in Paris in December 2015 was great news. Earlier that year, we found that the northern Alaska polar bear population, the one I’d spent most of my adult life studying, had declined ~40% during the first decade of the 2000s. Reducing emissions to hold global temperature rise below 2°C, would mean the average temperature in Barrow Alaska would rise only about ~4°C rather than the ~10°C we’ll reach on our current path. Such a change in future warming could make the difference between polar bears surviving in parts of their current range or going the way of the dinosaur.But the benefits of adhering to the Paris Agreement goes way beyond polar bears. They, in fact, are just sitting on the tip of the climate change iceberg. Across Africa and the Middle East, for example, where warmer temperatures and drying landscapes already have challenged human welfare leading to massive humanitarian and refugee crises, annual average temperatures are projected to be 3-5°C warmer by the end of the century.Because a 1°C rise is associated with a 4-6% decline in wheat yield, a world that is 3-5°C warmer is likely to offer significant nutritional challenge for many of the world’s people!At our current rate, end-of-century summer temperatures over much of the world will be hotter than anything we ever have experienced. Water availability for people, livestock, and wildlife, will be dramatically reduced and/or less predictable.It is clear that if we fail to halt global temperature rise, numbers of refugees challenging the world’s national boundaries, including our own, will exceed anything we currently can imagine. If we meet the Paris goals, however, warming over the most populous parts of the world will be under 2°C and the future world will be a more recognizable and friendlier place.The benefits of following the goals set in Paris are perhaps even more apparent in the world’s oceans — increasingly important sources of human nutrition. Following the Paris goals would mean sea surface temperatures would rise by only 1/4th of what they will rise if we continue along our current path. Likewise, we’d see 1/3 of the change in ocean salinity, 1/4 the pH decline and less than 1/3 the decline in ocean oxygenation.The Paris goals, therefore, will minimize negative impacts on global ocean productivity — holding hope for continued human benefits from the sea. The bottom line is that the Paris Agreement charts a way to avoid the worst changes that future global warming has to offer. Striving for the goals set forth in the Paris Agreement will save polar bears and benefit the rest of life on earth, including ourselves.The world’s ultra-rich, may survive and even flourish for some time in the dystopian world toward which we are now heading. However, if President Trump cares about the rest of us as he says he does, he’ll put America full force behind the Paris Agreement rather than withdrawing from it.— Steven C. Amstrup, Ph.D., Chief Scientist Polar Bears InternationalLow-lying areas are expected to be swamped by the end of the century due to rising sea levels. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerA decision by President Trump to remove the United States from the 2015 Paris climate Agreement would be a shameful act of self-harm.The decision would hurt everyone in the world, and poor people most, by making it harder to avoid a future of bigger storms and fires, disappearing coastlines, and tougher crop-growing conditions. But the most severe and immediate harm would be to the United States, which by banishing itself from the community of nations trying to prevent dangerous climate change would irrevocably damage its global standing.The Paris Agreement will go on as planned, with or without US participation. Indeed, the agreement was ratified by countries at record pace in order to have it come into force before a possible Trump Administration — in hindsight a prudent maneuver.And although there’s no substitute for strong federal climate policies, actions toward a safer climate will go on within the U.S. too, with state-level climate policies and increasing adoption of renewable energy due to technological advances and falling costs.A decision to leave Paris would harm the U.S. in multiple ways. Americans would suffer more from climate-charged fires and floods. International rules on climate would be made without American input, meaning fewer opportunities for U.S. companies to take advantage of a growing low-carbon economy. But the biggest loser from this decision would be the United States’ standing in the rest of the world, where climate change is seen as the world’s greatest threat by most countries.For years to come, millions of parents will attempt to explain to their children why Donald Trump didn’t want them to grow up on a planet with a stable climate.The global goodwill which the U.S. has earned on climate will ebb to Europe and China, which have reaffirmed their commitment to climate action and the Paris Agreement regardless of what the United States does. It’s not just governments that would be more reluctant to deal amicably with the United States. Companies would be less likely to sign deals with American businesses than their overseas competitors. Individuals would choose to study, work, vacation, and buy their products elsewhere.Leaving Paris would be part of a pattern by the Trump Administration of disowning U.S. leadership on multilateral issues that are too big for any nation to solve on its own: Global health and disaster response. Trade. Even defense. Each of these abdications in turn diminish America’s stature in the world even as they harm old friends who have counted on us.But when future historians look back to pinpoint the exact moment when the US irrevocably ceded international leadership to others, leaving Paris will be it.— Jonah Busch, Ph.D., Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development (environmental economist). Dr. Busch’s complete statement can be found here. Google Earth image of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, which has suffered widespread bleaching due to rising ocean temperatures.The implications of the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement are more intricate than what people have been fixating on so far.1) There will undoubtedly be a countervailing increase in effort to reduce emissions on the part of Europe. When George W. Bush announced that he was not going to submit the Kyoto Protocol to the Senate for ratification in 2001, it had the effect of dramatically speeding up the ratification process in other countries. In fact, his decision plausibly helped guarantee Kyoto’s entry into force.The Paris Agreement is designed to encourage effective adjustments to this kind of development. All parties have committed to do all they can to keep climate within safe limits, and there are procedures to review what that takes and whether the accumulated commitments are adequate. With the U.S. signaling a retreat from the climate cause, the Paris mechanisms will induce many countries to dig deeper.2) Even before Trump, the trajectory of U.S. emissions was driven much more by market conditions and local/regional politics than it was by what happened in Washington. What happens in Washington matters, but the bottom-line impact of the Trump-Obama shift, with respect to U.S. emissions, is probably less than people are fearing.In that light, we can expect increased enthusiasm for subnational climate agreements, e.g. involving cities. If the federal government nails shut its climate window, other countries will pursue other venues for engaging the U.S., and agreements with individual cities, which have already proven useful, will become all the more attractive.3) Proponents of geo-engineering will have a much easier time making their case now. Geo-engineering (e.g. reflective aerosols in the stratosphere) is not very popular right now — people prefer to reduce emissions. But we have continued talking about geo-engineering, largely under the premise that it may turn out that emission reductions may end up being insufficient. Trump’s move strengthens the argument that reductions are not sufficient.4) Nuclear power is also more attractive to many countries. Many countries have already included expansion of nuclear power in their DNCs. But enthusiasm is muted, and some countries have chosen not to use them or even phase them out. All the nuclear plans that were just below the threshold of acceptability have now become acceptable.5) People worry about the impact on research and development in the U.S., but the long-term effects are likely not so severe, even if the short-term effects will be very bad. During the battles over whether to phase out CFCs to protect the ozone layer, the French government opposed all such action and French companies refrained from investing in the search for substitutes. When the phase-out happened anyway, the French companies were not disadvantaged appreciably. They simply purchased access to the technology that other companies had developed (in one case buying a whole U.S. company). It would be better if we deepened investment in climate-related R&D, but a hiatus need not be catastrophic.5) So on balance I think we have to look at this as part of a multi-player, multi-step strategic game. Trump has made a move that looks overwhelmingly bad. But how bad it becomes will depend on how everyone else reacts to it. Many of the reactions will offset the negative impacts. Most of the world wants to reduce emissions and control climate change. Trump has not changed that fact. And that fact will continue to drive innovation and progress. We will see it manifest in some new ways — e.g. more treaties with cities, more exploration of geo-engineering and nuclear, and more roundabout pathways to relevant technology — but the incentives to solve this problem have not diminished in the slightest, and that’s what will drive progress.— Marc A. Levy, Deputy Director | CIESIN, Earth Institute | Columbia UniversityMany species will be forced to migrate to new habitats due to changing conditions, but deforestation and human encroachment has cut off traditional migration corridors, increasing the risk of extinction. Photo of a tarsier in Sulawesi by Rhett A. Butler.I am writing this note at noon on Thursday May 1, 2017, anxious to hear President Trump’s decision regarding the Paris Climate Agreement. While I hear a lot of calming announcements that this is merely a symbolic act and that our economy is moving to effectively reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, I am not relieved. I hear about States and cities organizing to act deliberately and forcefully to meet the US commitment to the Paris Agreement, but I am not comforted.As a climate scientist who directly engages in studying the phenomena and mechanisms of climate variability and change I am convinced that we are headed towards a different, and to many people hostile, state of the climate system, with a worldwide impact including many parts of the United States. Sea level rise will threaten many of the country’s major cities, many towns, and major transportation hubs. More frequent heat waves — a major cause of climate-related deaths in the U.S. and worldwide — will result in more casualties and damage, and the same fate will result from more frequent wild fires and floods.All these changes are likely, and highly likely to occur because of humanity’s dependence on fossil fuels. In light of such possible dire consequences, do we take the chance that the act of U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement may do little to distract the rest of the world from its agreement in Paris? Or will the U.S withdrawal from Paris cause parties to drop out and thus risk dire environmental consequences?Do we want the U.S. to join Syria and Nicaragua as the only two other countries that did not sign on to the Paris Agreement?What damage are we causing to our national standing and our economy by turning our back to the rest of the word in its effort to move forward? What legacy are we leaving to the next generations who will have to deal with the consequences? How do we respond to a leadership that defies scientific knowledge and the opportunity for economic development embedded in the rise of new technologies?All these thoughts are extremely disconcerting and depressing. Action is needed to respond to our rapidly changing environment and the global interest. Inaction on climate change is not a solution because due to the nature of the problem we cannot wait to act in the future and we must begin the implementation of the Paris Agreement now.Avoiding reality under the pretense that “economic damage” will hurt the U.S. economy in the not so long run [is a bad idea]. If the U.S. government decides to abandon its Paris commitment, we must express our grave concerns and demonstrate to the world that we, as global citizens, are committed to joining in support of the principles of the Paris Climate Agreement.— Yochanan Kushnir, Lamont Research Professor, Division of Ocean and Climate Physics, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, NY As a climate scientist, and also as someone who is interested in non-fossil fuel energy, I view it as incredibly shortsighted from both a diplomatic and economic standpoint [to withdraw from the Paris Agreement].Pulling out and reducing supports for clean energy and energy conservation such as fuel economy standards for cars and incentives to use solar and wind power will make the U.S. economy less competitive in the global marketplace.The jobs in solar, wind and the auto industry are all relatively well paying, middle class jobs. Those jobs that can be done by robots are largely already in place.If Trump genuinely wants to keep more high paying jobs in the United States, he should not pull out of the Paris Agreement.— Dr. Dallas Abbott, Research Scientist at LDEO of Columbia UniversityClimate change is expected to further stress rainforests already damaged by fragmentation and degradation. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerMajor cracks have appeared in recent months in a glacier in Greenland and an ice shelf in Antarctica. They are advancing and will soon release enormous icebergs into the ocean, one the size of the state of Delaware. And they will allow ice from the interior of Greenland and Antarctica to flow into the ocean, contributing to sea level rise. Coastal areas in the U.S. experience increasing floods, disrupting ports and airports, and interfering with the American economy that Trump clams to support.And today a major crack appeared in the Paris Agreement. It threatens to release, not icebergs, but distrust and despair, and disruption of the mechanisms that had begun to slow down global greenhouse gas emissions. This crack — in policy agreements rather than in masses of ice — can be sealed, by efforts of other countries, and of states and cities in the United States, by actions of the corporations and organizations that sought to keep the U.S. in the Agreement.The laws of physics indicate that ice will continue to flow from Greenland and Antarctica, at least as long as global warming is not abated. But the processes within global society are not as inevitable. With concerted action, the Paris Agreement can still be a vital force to preserve our planet from one of the greatest threats it has ever faced.— Ben Orlove, School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University, New YorkEighteen months ago, the world felt hope when the global community came together in Paris to forge a path forward to halt climate change. Today, we take a step backward in disappointment.The science is clear that human-caused warming of the planet and other climate change impacts are harming people, livelihoods and wildlife, and it will get worse unless something is done to curtail it. It is not just the climate scientists and conservationists who are raising this alarm; business leaders, economists and national security experts are urging global action to address climate change.The withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement creates a leadership void in the world that will be filled by other countries. The U.S. is ceding its historic role as an innovator, convener and global problem solver.This is a missed opportunity for U.S. leadership and it’s a missed opportunity for our planet.Thankfully, the rest of the world, and states across the U.S., will continue this effort. At WCS, we work with local communities in nearly 60 countries and all the world’s oceans that depend on healthy ecosystems and they are seeing the effects of climate change now; from coral bleaching and depleted fisheries to drought, infectious disease and invasive pests. Every day, we are working with these communities to address issues of deforestation and we are helping both wildlife and people adapt to the impacts of climate change by ensuring the protection of functioning ecosystems and the services they provide that support all life on our planet.We all need to take further action to promote clean energy, wean our economies off fossil fuels, curtail deforestation, and focus even more on applied solutions to both the current and future impacts of a warming planet. And we must continue to push for a fully global response to the greatest of ecological challenges despite this setback.— Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) President and CEO Cristián SamperMarine species are projected to be especially impacted by climate change. Photo by Rhett A. Butler.The Paris Agreement represents an unprecedented collaboration among nations who choose to work together to address climate change in their own countries and globally. Dr. Jane Goodall participated in the 21st Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on Climate Change in Paris and, at that time, she called on each of us to take action ourselves to protect our natural world. Amidst all of the evidence and already occurring changes, threatening all living things in the oceans and on land (including humans), the Trump Administration is set on withdrawing from the Paris Agreement. In response to this, we must use Jane’s message of action as a beacon to call upon ourselves and others to make decisions to help in curtailing climate change — an agreement we all make with the planet and all the other creatures we share this world with to protect life.The climate is changing, and not in a subtle or “cyclical” way. According to an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate, predictions for accelerated climate change indicate that average global temperatures could increase between 1.4 and 5.8 degrees Celsius by the year 2100 (IPCC). Though that may seem “small,” the reality of this is several fold – causing alterations to global and smaller ecosystems varying between drought and flooding, increased frequency and intensity of storms, desertification, species migrations and extinctions, and reduced agricultural yield, just to name a few. Additionally, environmental refugees, scarcity, famine and conflict are sure to increase as these conditions do, and the economic losses due to climate change are massive, costing the global economy $700 billion annually by 2030 (Business Insider). The “greenhouse effect” is the main culprit, as the burning of fossil fuels like oil and coal increases the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, trapping heat (NASA). We must reduce emissions and protect natural areas which sequester (trap) carbon, in order to prevent further and catastrophic warming.The Paris AgreementThe Paris Agreement, established in 2015, enlisted all of the nations in the world, (with the exception of Syria and Nicaragua – who felt it was not “tough enough”) to pledge to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in an attempt to slow the consequences of increasing global temperature. Within the initial agreement, the United States committed to reducing carbon emissions by 26-28% within 10 years (White House Archives). A withdrawal from these commitments would not only endanger billions of lives, but will also portray the United States as detrimental to the progress and safety of international communities, environments and species.“It would also devastate our international credibility. We are one of the two largest carbon emitters, with China. We are the ones who put this deal together. It is the first step to try to do something about climate change. For President Trump to take us out, it is anti-science.” – Nick Burns, former Under Secretary under the George W. Bush administration (CNN)What Now? Following massive movements like the March for Science and the People’s Climate March to underscore the necessity and integrity of science and science backed policy, we are even more aware how crucial it is to become informed about this enormous issue and to make it a priority in our planning, decisions, and policy as an international community. The Jane Goodall Institute has committed to protect forests and thereby ensure that stored CO2 is kept out of the atmosphere and that the trees can continue to absorb more. By protecting these habitats and biodiversity we can make sure these ecosystems remain healthy and ensure the long term survival of these forests.We also work with local communities around conservation areas to create land use plans and determine how to best preserve forest, create forest reserves and build sustainable livelihoods. JGI has also been working with a REDD+ grant in Tanzania which allows heavy C02 polluters to offset their emissions by paying governments and villagers in developing countries not to cut down their forests, along with our forest monitoring project which is run by local citizens. These endeavors alongside our youth environmental compassionate leadership program Roots & Shoots in nearly 100 countries and our public outreach using Dr. Goodall’s voice (follow Dr. Goodall and the Jane Goodall Institute on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram)  and our networks to increase awareness and grow a community of people inspired by hope to act, are ways in which we are addressing climate change and interconnected issues facing people animals and the environment, every day. Through a combination of individual action, our programs, and propelling movements demonstrating to policymakers that we will not accept apathy, we can change our behavior and better protect the balance of life on earth.We Are Hope in Action As the United States steps away from its commitments under the Paris Agreement and cedes its leadership role to other countries, we renew Dr. Goodall’s call for individual action. We see the power of individual action every day as people connect with one another and begin to drive real change. We see the power of this action as corporations make climate-responsible decisions that are both demanded by their customers and by their bottom lines. We see the power of you. Please join us to make our own climate agreements, to take action to make the world a better place for people, animals and the environment. Together, we will prevail.— The Jane Goodall Institute and Dr. Jane GoodallClimate change, left unchecked, will continue to diminish the natural world — impoverishing ecosystems, diminishing habitats, extinguishing species, and depriving humanity of the wild beauty that can fill us with wonder and joy. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerBack in 1897, the Indiana State Legislature was on the verge of declaring that, contrary to mathematical proof, the circle really could be squared (and, incidentally, the value of pi really was exactly 3.2), when solid arguments by a Purdue mathematics professor caused legislators to reconsider.The physics of global warming is as scientifically irrefutable as the mathematical properties of the number pi. The world must warm as the burning of fossil fuels causes atmospheric CO2 levels to rise.Warming will only cease when people take action to reduce CO2; no legislation, no executive policy and no political theory that does not lead to CO2 reductions can be effectual, for the laws of physics cannot be gainsaid. Scientists throughout the U.S. must repeat this message in every conceivable forum:Climate change is not a hoax and those who believe it to be one need to reconsider, for inaction today endangers the next generation, both in America and around the world.— Bill Menke, Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and the Earth Institute at Columbia UniversityThis decision affects every living being and therefore requires an action from each of us. The long list of concerns, from animal extinction to sea level reaching cities has been widely exposed here and by countless credible sources.Nonetheless, a stubborn man decided to overlook all of them — despite efforts from respected leaders to change his mind. To go beyond arguments, I believe the following actions should be taken by each of us:Complain: Be part of social movements, post in social networks and talk about it. Companies and Governments will take actions to capitalize social discomfort.Reduce emissions: Emissions come from all of us. By avoiding consuming from companies with high carbon footprints and directly adopting eco-friendly habits, such as walking and biking, we can make a direct impact.Contribute to Environmentally Responsible Institutions: By donating money and being part of [the solution] we help create a channel to oppose at a higher level.An unfortunate situation like this, caused by an unconscious man — who happens to be the president of a country that emits 15% of the world’s CO2 — can only be reverted with the actions of all of us. This is not only an effort to change a reckless decision, but also an opportunity to show that no man is above facts, and the desire of people and a community of countries looking for a better world.­– Juan Pablo Campos, Staff Research Associate, Columbia Water CenterDonald Trump decided to pull he U.S. out of the Paris Climate Agreement.This is the wrong decision for America and the planet on many levels. First, it is scientifically ill-motivated, as the facts are clear; there is no alternate truth. The decision is also economically reckless, as the impacts of the changing climate have hit the U.S. hard already, and the current administration decided not to prepare the nation for it, at all costs.The decision is politically a disaster, as it isolates the U.S. like no other move the current administration has done so far, putting the United States on a level with Nicaragua and Syria, the only two other countries not being part of the Paris Climate Agreement.It is unclear what impact this step is going to have on the U.S. and the U.S. sciences and academia, but it is clear that it weakens and reduces America. However, as climate scientists, we will continue to do everything possible and in our power to improve our understanding of how the changing climate impacts the U.S. in order to better prepare the nation, as it is our scientific mission and our patriotic duty.— Joerg M Schaefer, Lamont Research Professor, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Adj. Professor, Dept. Earth and Env. Sciences, Columbia University, NYDeliberately oblivious to science and reality, the US administration has shown the very worst leadership behavior short of igniting a nuclear holocaust.More than 25 years ago I told the head of UNEP “If you don’t take care of climate change you can forget about biodiversity”.The biological toll of this decision will be devastating, but can be countered with good measures around the world and in the United States at the level of states and cities.— Thomas E. Lovejoy, George Mason UniversityWildfires are becoming worse due to climate change in the United States, in Russia and around the world. Photo by John McColgan, Edited by Fir0002 courtesy of the USDAIn a country beset by unprecedented droughts, wildfires and floods, rising sea levels and increasingly severe storms, ignoring climate change will in no way “Make America Great Again,” but instead threatens the food, water and security of us all.— Richard Seager, Palisades Geophysical Institute / Lamont Research Professor, Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia UniversityThis decision and the “bravos” from a certain —- minority — part of the US establishment is a return to darker ignorant ages and bring us back somewhere at the beginning of the industrial revolution, without the excuse of not knowing the many social and environmental havocs it will create besides generating wealth and progress.[Withdrawing from the Paris Agreement] is ultimately a futile move that will really enter into force the day following the results of the next US presidential election in 2020. It is likely however to have serious consequences, and delay us in achieving our goals towards a tolerable (yes tolerable…) level of disruptions linked to climate change. I don’t need to elaborate further… anyone reading the news or the comments by eminent colleagues will understand.The most frustrating thing, maybe, is that [the US rejection of Paris] will likely affect most the poorest in the poorest countries, and ironically, a large chunk of the US people who voted for Mr. Trump: the coal industry is dying and not because of the Paris Agreement but because of natural gas. There is more employment and growth in renewable energy than in coalmining. Also, US farmers will not be able to trade their carbon offset, potentially losing $1.8 billion of additional income. Coastal cities in the South of the US will be battered by storms or starved of water and the urban poor won’t cope.Finally, I hope history will remember the US decision as not one by the American people, but as one of a bunch of losers living in a fantasy dream world. Wake up will be hard.— Robert Nasi, Deputy Director General for Research, Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)last_img read more

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first_imgArticle published by Mike Gaworecki 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 overSponsored Activism, Agriculture, Dams, Endangered Environmentalists, Environment, Illegal Logging, Indigenous Communities, Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Rights, Industrial Agriculture, Law Enforcement, Logging, Mining, Poaching, Rainforest Logging center_img According to a new report released today by Global Witness, at least 200 people were killed in 24 countries last year in retaliation for standing up to environmentally destructive industrial projects. That’s up from 185 murders in 16 countries in 2015.With at least 33 murders linked to the sector, mining appears to be the most deadly industry to oppose. But killings connected to logging companies are on the rise, with 23 in 2016, compared to 15 the year before. Another 23 deaths were associated with agribusiness projects, 18 with poachers, and seven with hydroelectric dam projects.More than half of all killings of environmental activist last year occurred in Latin America. Brazil was once again the deadliest country in the world to be an activist, with 49 murders, many of them committed by loggers and landowners in the Amazon. Last year, London-based NGO Global Witness published a report that showed 2015 was the deadliest year for defenders of the environment since the group started tracking killings of activists in 2002. But that record didn’t last long, as the number of environmental and indigenous activists murdered in 2016 was not only higher, but even more widespread across the globe.According to a new report released today by Global Witness, at least 200 people were killed in 24 countries last year in retaliation for standing up to environmentally destructive industrial projects. That’s up from 185 murders in 16 countries in 2015.That means that four defenders of the land, wildlife, or the environment were murdered every week in 2016, and the authors of the Global Witness report note that these numbers may actually be far from complete: “With many killings unreported, and even less investigated, it is likely that the true number is actually far higher.”Some 33 murders were linked to the mining sector, making it the most deadly industry to oppose. But killings connected to logging companies are on the rise, with 23 in 2016, compared to 15 the year before. Another 23 deaths were associated with agribusiness projects, 18 with poachers, and seven with hydroelectric dam projects.Private security forces and hitmen hired by industrial actors were responsible for 52 of the killings, Global Witness found.Some 40 percent of the victims of lethal anti-environmental violence were indigenous people. When an industrial project is forced on an indigenous community — often without their free, prior, and informed consent — protest is typically the only recourse available to the people that have, in many cases, occupied their land for generations. Far from protecting indigenous peoples’ right to protest, however, government forces frequently act in complicity with industry: Police and soldiers are believed to have been the perpetrators in at least 43 of the murders recorded last year, the report states.Park rangers are facing increasing threats, as well, with 20 killed in the line of duty in 2016 — nine of those in the Democratic Republic of Congo alone.“Brave activists are being murdered, attacked and criminalised by the very people who are supposed to protect them,” Ben Leather, a campaigner with Global Witness, said in a statement. “Governments, companies and investors have a duty to guarantee that communities are consulted about the projects that affect them, that activists are protected from violence, and that perpetrators are brought to justice.”More than half of all killings of environmental activist last year occurred in Latin America. Brazil was once again the deadliest country in the world to be an activist, with 49 murders, many of them committed by loggers and landowners in the Amazon. Meanwhile, Colombia saw a spike in the number of killings, which reached 37 last year, an all-time high for the country and the second most recorded by Global Witness for a single country — mostly due to conflicts sparked as Colombians return to areas previously held under guerrilla control only to find extractive companies and paramilitaries aggressively disputing their claims to the land.Nicaragua, where 11 activists were killed, had the highest per-capita death rate for activists last year, but Honduras still has the most murders per capita over the past decade, with 127 activists having been killed since 2007 — including indigenous rights activist Berta Cáceres, who was assassinated in her home in Honduras in March of last year, sparking an international outcry.On the other side of the globe, killings in India tripled to 16, most of them linked to mining projects, heavy-handed policing, and the repression of peaceful protests. The mining industry is also seen as having driven the 28 murders of activists in the Philippines last year.As activists face an increasingly deadly threat from the very industries they oppose, however, they are all-too frequently criminalized for their activities. This trend is evident even in the United States, which didn’t record a murder of an environmental activist last year but did see a number of other violent tactics used to suppress and criminalize protests against an oil pipeline being built near the near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota.“It is increasingly clear that, globally, governments and companies are failing in their duty to protect activists at risk,” the report authors write. “They are permitting a level of impunity that allows the vast majority of perpetrators to walk free, emboldening would-be assassins. Incredibly, it is the activists themselves who are painted as criminals, facing trumped-up criminal charges and aggressive civil cases brought by governments and companies seeking to silence them.”A collaborative project between Global Witness and the Guardian that aims to track every environmental activist killed in 2017 found that 98 had already been murdered as of May 31, putting this year on path to set yet another record.While federal governments have a duty to protect activists under international law, private businesses must also help tackle the root causes of the problem, the authors of the report add, by “guaranteeing communities can make free and informed choices about whether and how their land and resources are used.” Investors and development banks must also take a look at their portfolios and stop funding projects that are harmful to the environment and human rights, the authors write.“The battle to protect the planet is rapidly intensifying and the cost can be counted in human lives,” Global Witness’s Ben Leather said. “More people in more countries are being left with no option but to take a stand against the theft of their land or the trashing of their environment. Too often they are brutally silenced by political and business elites, while the investors that bankroll them do nothing.”Private security guarding the Agua Zarca dam project. The ex-head of private security for the dam is one of seven people arrested for the killing of Berta Cáceres, who had been campaigning for years against the construction of the Agua Zarca hydroelectric dam on her community’s land and the sacred Gualcarque River. As head of an indigenous rights organisation, she was subject to frequent threats and harassment for her opposition to the project. She was assassinated in her home in March 2016. Photo by Giles Clarke.last_img read more

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first_imgArticle published by Shreya Dasgupta Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Critically Endangered Species, Endangered Species, Environment, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Herps, Poaching, Reptiles, Wildlife, Wildlife Trafficking 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 overSponsoredcenter_img In June this year, conservationists discovered a nest containing 19 eggs of the extremely rare Siamese crocodile in the Sre Ambel District of Koh Kong Province in Cambodia.Eggs of nine Siamese crocodiles have now hatched at the Koh Kong Reptile Conservation Center (KKRCC), WCS said.The nine hatchlings will remain at the KKRCC for the next few years, until they are large enough to be released into the wild. On June 28, 2017, conservationists chanced upon a nest containing 19 eggs of the extremely rare Siamese crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis) in the Sre Ambel District of Koh Kong Province in Cambodia. This was the first Siamese crocodile nest researchers had recorded in the Sre Ambel River System in six years of their work.Worried that the nest might be destroyed by poachers or predators, the team collected the eggs and moved them to the Koh Kong Reptile Conservation Center (KKRCC), a recently-built reptile breeding and conservation center located in Mondul Seima District of Koh Kong Province. KKRCC — a joint endeavour between WCS and Cambodia’s Fisheries Administration (FiA) — hopes to help conserve rare and endangered reptiles like the Siamese crocodile and the critically endangered Royal turtles (Batagur affinis).Nine of those Siamese crocodile eggs have now hatched at the center, the Wildlife Conservation Society announced yesterday.“I am so excited to see these hatchlings,” Tun Sarorn, caretaker of Royal turtles and Siamese crocodiles at the KKRCC, said in a statement. “Before seeing them, I was surprised to hear their voices from inside the eggs. It was amazing, and I felt so happy because I realized they are coming out. I will feed them all in the next few days with small fish and frogs.”Siamese crocodile hatchlings. Photo courtesy of WCS Cambodia.The freshwater Siamese crocodile is among the rarest and least known crocodiles in the world. Once widespread across Southeast Asia, the crocodile disappeared from much of its range by the early 1990s, largely due to commercial hunting for the skin trade and collection of live individuals to stock crocodile farms.Only around 400 of these critically endangered crocodiles survive in the wild today. Of these, about 100 to 300 individuals are estimated to live in Cambodia while the remaining are known from Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Indonesia. These small and scattered wild populations are threatened by the illegal collection of eggs, hunting of hatchlings and adults, habitat loss and accidental capture with fishing gear.The nine Siamese crocodile hatchlings will remain at the KKRCC for the next few years, WCS said, until they are large enough to be released into the wild.“We will take care of these hatchlings until they are able to survive in nature on their own,” said Som Sitha, WCS’s Technical Advisor for the Sre Ambel Conservation Project. “We will then release some to the wild, and others will be kept for breeding.”Ouk Vibol, Director of Fisheries Conservation Department of Fisheries Administration added: “I am so excited about these hatchlings because Siamese crocodiles are Critically Endangered, and we can increase their wild numbers. They need more protection to conserve them from extinction.”The Siamese crocodile hatchlings will be raised at the KKRCC for the next few years. Photo of Siamese crocodiles by dremmettbrown (Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0).last_img read more

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first_imgAnimals, Biodiversity, Birds, Camera Trapping, Conservation, Endangered Species, Environment, Extinction, Forests, Habitat Loss, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Poaching, Rainforests, Tropical Forests, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation Article published by Basten Gokkon A camera trap captured the Sumatran ground cuckoo in a national park.The discovery of the avian species indicated that the park might be one of its last refuges.The park agency said it would investigate the finding to make a conservation strategy for the cuckoo. Park rangers in Indonesia said this week that they had photographed the nearly extinct Sumatran ground cuckoo (Carpococcyx viridis) for the first time in a protected area in North Sumatra, the first time in 10 years that anyone has caught a glimpse of it.A camera trap in Batang Gadis National Park first captured the cuckoo last November at roughly 8.30 a.m., followed by another picture of the bird snapped about an hour later.Based on the recorded images, park officials and experts from Conservation International (CI), an NGO, identified the sighted bird as the Sumatran ground cuckoo, which is listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN.A camera trap captured the first appearance of the Sumatran ground cuckoo (Carpococcyx viridis) in a Sumatran national park. Photo courtesy of Batang Gadis National Park Agency & Conservation International.“This is the first time the Sumatran ground cuckoo was recorded in the national park,” Paul van Nimwegen, biodiversity conservation specialist at CI, wrote in an email.Van Nimwegen pointed out that the images showed the bird “foraging and sunning on the forest floor.”Endemic to Sumatra, the cuckoo — whose feathers are green and brown — was considered extinct until one was spotted in 1997 in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park, which is located some 1,200 kilometers (745.65 miles) to south from the Batang Gadis National Park.A few unconfirmed sightings of the bird, whose declining population is estimated between 50 to 249 mature individuals, have since then been recorded until 2007, according to the IUCN.“Its discovery in Batang Gadis National Park indicates that there is a previously unknown population of this bird occurring in the area,” van Nimwegen said.“This is incredibly significant. The national park might be one of its last refuges,” he added. 123 read more

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first_imgAs the Sumatran rhino’s population dwindled, conservationists were locked in a debate about whether resources should be directed toward captive breeding or protecting wild populations.With captive breeding efforts showing success, and wild populations becoming non-viable, the pendulum has swung in favor of captive breeding.Experts agree that action is needed now more than ever, but any steps rely on support from the Indonesian government. This is the third article in our our four-part series “Is Anyone Going to Save the Sumatran Rhino?” Part One, looked at how many rhinos remain in the wild and Part Two focused on Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park and the Rhino Protection Units.WAY KAMBAS NATIONAL PARK, Indonesia — Five-year-old Andatu pushes his head between the iron bars and whistles at me, a sound like a dolphin greeting. He pulls back and snorts, expelling a puff of rhino breath. He’s telling me he’s impatient; he’s hungry. Behind me, keepers are preparing a meal of fruit and plants for him. The head veterinarian at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary (SRS), Zulfi Arsan, tells me that Andatu is smelling me — here I am, a new human, a new bipedal smelly-being, in his territory.Andatu is the hope for the future of this species. He was born in 2012, the first baby rhino at this sanctuary — and the first Sumatran rhino (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) ever born in captivity in Indonesia. But the hope that Andatu and his younger sister, Delilah, represent is currently outweighed by the dire state of their species as a whole.Andatu has a breakfast of watermelon after being checked by keepers. Officials are discussing how to best utilize him to aid the dwindling population. Photo by Jeremy Hance for Mongabay.Official numbers put the number of Sumatran rhinos left in the wild at around 100, clumped in four locations across Sumatra and Indonesian Borneo. But nearly every expert I talked to said that was no longer the case. No one knows for sure how many are left, but the best-case scenario for the wild population would be around 90 and the worst-case 30.  And the population continues to decline.If the Sumatran rhino goes extinct — an increasingly likely proposition despite decades of desperate conservation efforts — it would not just be the loss of a species, but an entire genus. The Sumatran rhino is the only surviving species in the Dicerorhinini group that evolved 15 million to 20 million years ago. It is a living relic, an echo of a past family of rhinos that once roamed the entirety of Eurasia, and the only living relative of the woolly rhino, which humans hunted to extinction 10,000 years ago.And Sumatran rhinos, at least in my view, are the most easily lovable of the world’s rhinos: they are small (for a rhino), weirdly hairy, and the most vocal of all rhino species, making numerous cetacean-like sounds that have been little studied. It’s impossible to meet a Sumatran rhino and not feel a tug toward this shy forest wanderer.last_img read more

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first_imgArticle published by dilrukshi With fewer species of sea cucumbers being recorded in catches, Sri Lanka stands to benefit from a proposal that is calling for increased protection of threatened species under CITES Appendix II.Experts say there’s good precedent for believing that the listing will raise awareness and spur action to protect the sea cucumbers, citing the example of various shark species that received greater attention after being listed. In the early 1980s, a common sight along the still unpolluted beaches of southern Sri Lanka was that of fisherfolk sun-drying small, blackish, cylindrical objects. They called them sea slugs, sea leeches, or sea cucumbers. These marine invertebrates were so abundant in the shallow coastal regions that they could be picked by hand during low tide.But growing demand for sea cucumbers, considered a delicacy across Asia, has since driven the largely export-oriented Sri Lankan fishery to unsustainable levels.After the sea cucumbers in shallow coastal waters were harvested, the populations in deeper areas were targeted by snorkeling fishermen and skin divers. The fishing pressure was so enormous that the sea cucumber fishery in southern Sri Lanka collapsed within a few years.The eastern coast of the island suffered the same fate, and today the sea cucumber fishery is confined to the northern arc of Sri Lanka. Experts say they fear the remaining sea cucumber populations there, too, will be depleted if not managed properly.A drive to promote the farming of live sea cucumbers is being attempted in Sri Lanka as an alternative to collecting them from the wild. Image courtesy of Kumudini Ekaratne.“As mostly scuba divers hand pick sea cucumbers now, the pressure particularly on high value species are high. Some of these high value sea cucumber species are already rare to not available on many sites,” Chamari Dissanayake, from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, told Mongabay.Dissanayake was a former research officer at the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA) who studied the sea cucumber fishery. She identified 24 sea cucumber species in Sri Lankan waters, of which 20 have some sort of commercial value.But the number being caught and sold is fast shrinking. A study published in May this year in the journal Aquatic Living Resources records nine sea cucumber species in commercial catches from November 2015 to January 2017 in Sri Lanka. That’s down from 11 species recorded in a study carried out in 2012, prompting researchers to conclude that some species are already overfished. These include the high-value Holothuria fuscogilva, known as the white teatfish and listed as vulnerable in the IUCN Red List.Teatfish are generally in high demand, and overfishing has caused the populations to decline in many countries. H. nobilis, the black teatfish, is another rare species found in the Sri Lankan waters and listed as endangered.Weak species management systems, overexploitation by fishers, and vulnerable biological traits are the key reasons why teatfish sea cucumbers are under threat across their wide geographic range, said Steven Purcell, an expert on sea cucumbers at Australia’s Southern Cross University.“The teatfish species of sea cucumbers are impacted by a compounding problem called ‘opportunistic exploitation,’” he told Mongabay. “This occurs when fishers over-harvest high-value species and then shift to harvesting lower-value species but can still collect the last of the high-value ones opportunistically, while they are out in the sea. This means that the high-value species, such as the teatfish types, can be harvested to the level of local extinction.”As these teatfish require higher levels of protection against the international trade, a proposal has been submitted to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) to list H. fuscogilva, H. nobilis and the endangered H. whitmaei (not recorded in Sri Lankan waters) in CITES Appendix II.The proposal, supported by the European Union, Kenya, Senegal, the Seychelles and the U.S., will be considered at the 18th Conference of Parties (CoP18) to CITES in Geneva from Aug. 17 to 28.There are three appendices under CITES offering varying degrees of protection for species. Inclusion in Appendix II will require countries to justify, through data collection and research, that exploitation and trade of the teatfish species in question won’t jeopardize their populations in the wild.A mix of sea cucumbers freshly collected from the ocean bed. Image courtesy of Terney Pradeep Kumara.For Sri Lanka, that could mean investing in field surveys to determine current population densities of black and white teatfish at multiple sites around the country, and socioeconomic surveys to determine which species, and how many, are collected by fishers, as well as identifying prevailing trading practices, Purcell said. This research would be required for assessing non-detriment findings and to inform decisions about whether trade should be allowed to continue at present levels.Dissanayake’s research indicates that about 10,000 people depend on the sea cucumber fishery, a key earner of foreign currency.“A solution has to be found by offering alternative livelihoods,” Dissanayake said.Sea cucumbers are processed to make bêche-de-mer, a popular delicacy in East Asia. Image courtesy of Terney Pradeep Kumara.Daniel Fernando, a co-founder of Blue Resources Trust, a marine research and conservation nonprofit, said there was good precedent to believe that achieving CITES listing for the overexploited sea cucumbers would be a key step toward protecting the species.“Many people still consider marine fish just as a commodity and there is little focus on their protection,” he told Mongabay. “But CITES listing of marine species made lot of people around the globe to change this outlook.”He pointed in particular to the listing of several shark species in various CITES appendices as helping to spur action for their protection.“As a result of previous listing of sharks, many countries including Sri Lanka began investing in the protection of the species,” Fernando said. “All these marine species become threatened due to unsustainable fishing practices and lack of management.”Citations:Kumara, P. B., Cumaranathunga, P. R., & Linden, O. (2005). Present status of the sea cucumber fishery in southern Sri Lanka: A resource depleted industry. SPC Beche-de-mer Information Bulletin, 22, 24-29.Nishanthan, G., Kumara, A., Prasada, P., & Dissanayake, C. (2019). Sea cucumber fishing pattern and the socio-economic characteristics of fisher communities in Sri Lanka. Aquatic Living Resources,32(12). doi:10.1051/alr/2019009Banner image of a fisherman drying boiled sea cucumbers in the sun on Sri Lanka’s southern coast, courtesy of Terney Pradeep Kumara. Cites, Conservation, Endangered Species, Environment, Marine Biodiversity, Marine Conservation center_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 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 overSponsored Biodiversity, Deep Sea, Deep Sea Mining, Featured, Interviews, Oceans, Research Article published by Erik Hoffnercenter_img Dr. Diva Amon was raised on the shores of the Caribbean Sea and has become an expert on what lies deep below its surface, where light refuses to go.“We can’t effectively manage what we don’t understand or protect what we don’t know,” she tells Mongabay in a new interview.The promise and peril of deep sea mining is just one of the reasons she and her colleagues are working hard to understand the biodiversity of the oceans’ greatest depths.Dr. Amon is speaking at the upcoming Jackson Wild Summit in Wyoming later this month. Deep sea biologist Diva Amon is a Trinidadian who was raised by the shore of the Caribbean Sea, but has become well known not for the sea’s edge, but rather for what lies deep beneath it. She co-founded SpeSeas, a non-profit NGO focused on increasing marine science, education and advocacy in Trinidad and Tobago, and is currently a Research Fellow at the National History Museum, London.She will be part of the deep sea session of the upcoming Jackson Wild Summit in Jackson, WY, September 21-27, which will have a focus on ‘Living Oceans’ (more information and registration for the event is here).Prior to heading for Wyoming, Dr. Amon took a break to answer a few questions.Diva Amon in a research submersible. Photo courtesy of Novus Select.Mongabay: Hydrothermal vents and the communities that thrive on them have been a regular source of  discovery in recent years, can you describe your new study‘s assessment of their biodiversity?Dr. Diva Amon: Cruise reports, initial observations and assessments from research cruises are an overlooked source of biological information. This recently published study has used all available cruise reports from cruises that went to hydrothermal vents to show that global research effort has been skewed geographically. We know much more about vents in the Northern Hemisphere, in places like the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, while regions such as the Southern and Indian Oceans are practically unexplored. Under business as usual scenarios, this would propel us scientists to increase our work in understudied areas, but with mining of hydrothermal vents looming, it is an alarm bell.We must make it a priority to gather more data so that accurate environmental assessments of the impact of mining can be made, especially vent sites [that] are unique, and many more vent sites are threatened by deep-sea mining in the Southern Hemisphere. As it currently stands, as Andrew, the lead author says, “we’re drawing on data from very different ecosystems. It’s like trying to understand the impacts of logging in a tropical rainforest, but only using forestry data from the Pacific Northwest.” We desperately need to correct this if mining at deep-sea hydrothermal vents is to move forward responsibly.What gaps are there in our knowledge of these communities? Our assessment also reminded us that despite hydrothermal vents being some of the most well-explored deep-sea habitats, when compared with terrestrial ones, we know next to nothing about them. Globally, many sites are only inferred from chemical signals and have never been visited [and] others we don’t even know exist. For those where scientists have been working, a big gap is the natural variability of these habitats and the communities there.Hydrothermal vents were only discovered in 1977, with new sites being discovered nearly every year. Many of these sites have only been visited once, or a handful of times, so that temporal aspect is missing. We also are only now grasping how communities are connected with – and travel between – vent sites, not just on local scales, but also regionally and globally. And what about the big roles that vents are playing for the rest of the deep sea, our oceans and our planet?One of Dr. Amon’s favorite animals to see on a dive, the dumbo octopus. Image via Smithsonian Institution.Collaboration is a key way to gather those missing pieces! Firstly, between scientists from around the world, especially from countries that have not previously had the financial or technological capability to conduct studies, even within their own waters themselves. Secondly, with industry. Industry may have access to resources and data that science may not, and vice versa. Thirdly, with the regulators, so that  regulations can be adopted, as well as enforced, effectively. We must continue to explore the deep ocean in order to understand it better.What inspired you to study these nearly impossible to reach depths?I’m Trinidadian and grew up in the Caribbean, which meant spending a lot of time by the sea. I knew I loved the ocean but I never gave the deep ocean any thought. It wasn’t until my first deep-sea biology course, I was struck hearing that less than 1% of our deep ocean had ever been explored. That is a staggering figure! Everyone has some inner desire to explore, to see things no one has ever seen, to answer questions that have never been answered, to have experiences that few have ever had. Deep-sea science was my gateway to that excitement of never knowing what you’re going to see in an unexplored and ever-changing ocean.You are a leader of the Deep-Ocean Stewardship Initiative (DOSI)’s minerals working group: what is that group doing to safeguard the deep ocean and inform sustainable use of things like deep-sea minerals? DOSI is an expert group that seeks to integrate science, technology, policy, law and economics to advise on ecosystem-based management of resources in the deep ocean and strategies to maintain the integrity of deep-ocean ecosystems. We work across a range of issues, from deep-sea fishing to oil and gas extraction, deep-sea mining, and even the Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ) negotiations at the UN. Many of us assist in collecting mandatory and crucial deep-sea data and then we take that science, as well as from other colleagues, and translate it so that it can be used to guide policy through conversations with stakeholders.A submersible inspects a newly discovered hydrothermal vent. Image courtesy of the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, 2016 Deepwater Exploration of the Marianas.What are the chief challenges to meaningful deep sea stewardship? Lack of data and understanding! Less than 1% of the deep sea has ever been imaged or seen, so it’s currently very difficult to make stewardship decisions. Not only do the deep ocean, its inhabitants, and their functions amaze and inspire us, but they also have the potential to provide solutions to some of the world’s greatest challenges, but we just don’t know yet. We can’t effectively manage what we don’t understand or protect what we don’t know.What creature has given you the greatest joy of seeing in the deep so far during one of your expeditions?Dumbo octopus get me every time! They are just so cute! Also headless chicken monsters (Enypniastes eximia), which are a type of sea cucumber capable of swimming. Their movement is just hypnotic, like a lava lamp. We see these often but there is great video from a cruise to the Gulf of Mexico in 2017.What do you yearn to see?Has to be giant tubeworms from the Pacific vents (Riftia pachyptila). They are one of the most iconic deep-sea species, and would be like seeing a big cat during a safari. It’s on my bucket list!Photo of one of the largest concentrations of Riftia pachyptila ever observed, with anemones and mussels colonizing in close proximity. Image courtesy of the 2011 NOAA Galapagos Rift Expedition.Dr. Amon will be part of the deep sea session of the Jackson Wild Summit in Jackson, WY, September 21-27, which will have a focus on ocean health. More information and registration for the event is here.last_img read more

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first_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 overSponsored Article published by Rhett Butler BBC NewsThe Economisthttps://news.mongabay.com/Scheffers, B.R., Oliveira, B.F., Lamb, I. and Edwards, D.P., 2019. Global wildlife trade across the tree of life. Science, 366, 71-76.Swaisgood, R., Wang, D. & Wei, F. 2016. Ailuropoda melanoleuca (errata version published in 2017). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T712A121745669. Downloaded on 05 November 2019.Collar, N.J. 2004. Species limits in some Indonesian thrushes.Forktail20, 71-87.BirdLife International 2017. Kittacincla malabarica (amended version of 2016 assessment). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T103894856A111179027. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-1.RLTS.T103894856A111179027.en. Downloaded on 05 November 2019.Eskew, E.A., White, A.M., Ross, N., Smith, K.M., Smith, K.F., Rodríguez, J.P., Zambrana-Torrelio, C., Karesh, W.B. and Daszak, P., 2019. United States wildlife and wildlife product imports from 2000-2014. BioRxiv, p.780197.Forshaw, J. and Knight, F., 2017. Vanished and vanishing parrots: Profiling extinct and endangered species. CSIRO PUBLISHING.CITES CoP17. 2015. Status of conservation, use, management of and trade in the species of the genus Abronia. Report AC28 Doc. 22.4. https://cites.org/sites/default/files/eng/com/ac/28/E-AC28-22-04.pdfIUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2018. Atelopus peruensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018: e.T54539A89196220. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2018-2.RLTS.T54539A89196220.en. Downloaded on 22 October 2019.BirdLife International 2018. Rhinoplax vigil. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018: e.T22682464A134206677. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2018-2.RLTS.T22682464A134206677.en. Downloaded on 22 October 2019.Symes, William S., David P. Edwards, Jukka Miettinen, Frank E. Rheindt, and L. Roman Carrasco. 2018. Combined impacts of deforestation and wildlife trade on tropical biodiversity are severely underestimated.” Nature communications 9, 4052.Clements, G.R., Lynam, A.J., Gaveau, D., Yap, W.L., Lhota, S., Goosem, M., Laurance, S. and Laurance, W.F., 2014. Where and how are roads endangering mammals in Southeast Asia’s forests?. PLoS One, 9, p.e115376.Suarez, E., Morales, M., Cueva, R., Bucheli, V.U., Zapata‐Ríos, G., Toral, E., Torres, J., Prado, W. and Olalla, J.V., 2009. Oil industry, wild meat trade and roads: indirect effects of oil extraction activities in a protected area in north‐eastern Ecuador. Animal Conservation, 12, 364-373.Robinson, J.E., Griffiths, R.A., Fraser, I.M., Raharimalala, J., Roberts, D.L. and St John, F.A., 2018. Supplying the wildlife trade as a livelihood strategy in a biodiversity hotspot. Ecology and Society, 23, 13.Beastall, C., Shepherd, C.R., Hadiprakarsa, Y. and Martyr, D., 2016. Trade in the Helmeted Hornbill Rhinoplax vigil: the ‘ivory hornbill’.Bird conservation international,26,137-146.Collar, N. J. (2015). Helmeted Hornbills Rhinoplax vigil and the ivory trade: the crisis that came out of nowhere.BirdingASIA,24, 12-17.Nijman, V., & Nekaris, K. A. I. (2017). The Harry Potter effect: The rise in trade of owls as pets in Java and Bali, Indonesia.Global ecology and conservation,11, 84-94. The authors of a Science paper on global wildlife trade respond to an editorial published on Mongabay that criticized their methodology.Brett R. Scheffers of the University of Florida/IFAS; Brunno F. Oliveira of the University of Florida/IFAS and Auburn University at Montgomery; and Leuan Lamb and David P. Edwards of the University of Sheffield say their paper ‘uses a rigorously assembled database to make the first global assessment of traded species—both legal and illegal, and from national to international scales—and to identify the global hotspots of trade diversity.’This post is a commentary. The views expressed are those of the authors, not necessarily Mongabay. In May of 2015, ten people were arrested and three charged in Yunnan, China.  They had killed a Giant Panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) and were selling its meat. The panda’s paws sold for US$750. Elsewhere, pandas are rented by China to zoos outside its borders for up to US$1 million per year, commercializing the conservation of the species, but at worse representing a pawn in international economic planning.Yet, in a recent opinion piece written by Jonathan Kolby in Mongabay, the author’s opinion claims that we misused our data in characterizing Giant Panda, one of the 32,000 species we assessed, as traded in our study because CITES states their use is strictly for zoological or conservation purposes. Following a minimal level of investigative journalism, we found recent evidence showing Giant Panda as traded on the illegal market. Furthermore, Giant Panda is scored in the IUCN Redlist database as being traded under the categories of hunting, pets, and food, which is one of the sources of data used in our study of the global wildlife trade.Our study Global wildlife trade across the tree of life uses a rigorously assembled database to make the first global assessment of traded species—both legal and illegal, and from national to international scales—and to identify the global hotspots of trade diversity. We show that approximately one in five species are traded, and hotspots of trade diversity are concentrated in the biologically rich tropics.Whether an animal is part of the wildlife trade depends on its set of desirable traits, which served as the second focus of our study. Physical traits are determined by evolution, and tend to show up in clusters of related species. With this in mind, we used a novel analysis to show that people are targeting specific groups of species that are similar in traits. Based on these traits and evolutionary relationships, we then determined which non-traded species are at risk of being traded in the future. Our approach is justified—researchers commonly see this trend in the trade of specific groups of animals (e.g., pangolins)—when one traded species is exhausted, trade switches to the next most similar species. Importantly, our study shows this pattern applies more broadly across the tree of life and our method has the potential to reshape the way we prioritize and think about conservation of species by proactively considering trade-risk for all species, regardless of current trade volume.White-rumped shama (Kittacincla malabarica) for sale in a bird market in Yogyakarta, Java, Indonesia. Although only of Least Concern according to IUCN Redlist, this species is so heavily exploited for the cage-bird trade that it has declined to near-extinction in some countries within its range. Photo credit: Gabby SalazarIn his opinion piece, Kolby raised three areas of concern about our study:First, Kolby argued that we included IUCN-identified species used for subsistence and CITES-listed ‘look-alikes’ of traded species. Each IUCN species account was read to confirm trade, not subsistence use. Of the 5,579 species identified as traded, only 413 (7%) were included as CITES look-alikes. Their inclusion is justified because: (1) 197 (48%) of these species were identified as traded by a newly usable trade database (N=45) and the IUCN’s Red List ‘check-box’ of use and trade (N=181)—information not available via our method of API download (correction pending in Science); (2) the trade in some species has been overlooked by IUCN/CITES (e.g., the parrot Amazonas kwaralli and several Abronia lizard species); and (3) projecting trade for species already under CITES conservation action is pointless.Kolby ignores a fundamental goal of our study, which is to identify whether humans are non-randomly choosing species in the trade. Instead Kolby focuses on trade legalities (legal vs illegal) and the time frame of trade, neither of which are relevant in this context. Precautionary reanalysis after removing the 413 look-alikes from the 5,579 traded species presented in our original article (correction pending) confirms that trade remains phylogenetically clustered, indicating that humans are targeting specific groups of species (Table 1).Table 1. Phylogenetic signal in wildlife trade after removing CITES ‘look-alikes”. The D-statistic is the sum of state changes along the edges of a phylogeny. Observed D values were contrasted against simulated values obtained from two null models: Random and Brownian motion. All groups showed a phylogenetic signal stronger than expected by random, whereas mammals and birds show a signal as strong as expected under a Brownian motion model of evolution indicating high levels of phylogenetic clustering.Second, Kolby argues that trade does not necessarily equate to enhanced extinction risk, and that sustainable trade can improve the conservation of traded species and mitigate other threats. This does not contradict our findings of the vast diversity of traded species, nor that many species have recently been (e.g. Peru stubfoot toad Atelopus peruensis) or are presently being (e.g., helmeted hornbill Rhinoplax vigil) driven towards extinction by trade. For example, the IUCN Redlist has assessed 86% (N=4680) of the approximately 5,420 mammals species on Earth. Of traded mammal species, 51% (N=595) are threatened according to the Redlist whereas 20% (N=641) are least concern; while trade is a bigger driver of population loss than deforestation for 58 of 77 forest bird species in South-east Asia. Thus, trade is demonstrably and unequivocally a major driver of extinction risk for many species.Importantly, Kolby provides no scientific reference in support of his opinion that trade can improve species conservation status. We are unaware of rigorous assessments showing widespread population benefits of trade across the hyper-diversity of species we assessed, nor that trade can mitigate other conservation threats to biodiversity. Indeed, trade in combination with habitat loss, road building, and other disturbances such as disease synergistically accelerates extinction risk. Moreover, some research suggests that wildlife trade provides little incentive for enhanced stewardship of traded species and their habitats. The wider conservation benefits of trade remain unclear and we encourage researchers to test this hypothesis with rigorous data-based assessments.Finally, Kolby suggests trade volume of a species should be used as a qualifier for the inclusion of species as traded. We disagree, because this would set a dangerous precedent. Often species are flagged for conservation action only after a severe decline is documented.As mentioned in our study, if cultural preferences change, wildlife trade can rapidly drive a species toward extinction. For instance, the emergence of widespread demand in East Asia for the ivory-like casque of the helmeted hornbill resulted in tens of thousands of birds traded annually since around 2012. This species is now Critically Endangered. Moreover, we also mentioned in our study that trade tracks cultural [e.g., the Harry Potter–inspired trade of owls in Asia] and economic vogue, which again suggests that abundant species may not be safe.  We did not identify hotspots of trade volume across the diversity of traded species, which remains a critical knowledge gap at global scale.Our study provides an account of the sheer diversity of species in trade and serves as a barometer of the scope of trade. Rather than relying upon unsubstantiated hypotheses and personal opinions, future progress will be made through using advanced analytical methods combining phylogenetic and large-scale data interrogation to inform deeper understanding of the impacts and sustainable management of trade. Our article represents a key step in this direction.Hill Myna, Gracula religiosa, for sale in a bird market, Java, Indonesia. photo credit: Gabby SalazarCover image: Hill Myna, Gracula religiosa, for sale in a bird market, Java, Indonesia. photo credit: Gabby SalazarReferences Animals, Biodiversity, Birds, Commentary, Conservation, Editorials, Endangered Species, Environment, Pandas, Pet Trade, Researcher Perspectives Series, Wildlife, Wildlife Crime, Wildlife Trade, Wildlife Trafficking last_img read more

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