As Indonesia retakes land from developers, conservation is an afterthought

Rainforest in Sumatra. Photo credit: Rhett A. Butler / MongabayJAKARTA — Environmental activists have cautiously welcomed the Indonesian government’s move to revoke hundreds of permits for logging, plantations and mines, calling it an opportunity to conserve vast swaths of forest. The affected concessions include Ministry of Environment and Forestry permits for 192 logging, plantation, mining and ecotourism operations, totaling 3.13 million hectares (7.73 million […]

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In Panama, a tiny rainfrog named after Greta Thunberg endures

Up in the trees of a misty sky island, folded into the foliage, a tiny rainfrog bears the name of a climate giant. The new-to-science species, found on a mountain in Panama, has been named after climate activist Greta Thunberg. Greta Thunberg’s rainfrogs (Pristimantis gretathunbergae) are minuscule (about 3 to 4 centimeters or 1.1 to […]

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Mongabay’s 10 hardest-hitting investigations of 2021

In 2021, Mongabay’s investigative journalism set out to hold powerful figures accountable for deforestation and pollution, and the mistreatment of vulnerable communities trying to protect local ecosystems. Using data-driven analysis and video, its reporters found new and interesting ways to attract readers all over the world. They analyzed census data to better understand how Indigenous […]

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Mongabay’s top Amazon stories from 2021

Fire line moves through a degraded forest area in an undesignated public forest area in Porto Velho, Rondônia on July 29, 2021. Photo © Christian Braga / GreenpeaceThe world’s greatest tropical rainforest continued to come under pressure in 2021, due largely to the policies of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. Deforestation rates hit a 15-year-high, while fires flared up again, combining to turn Brazil’s portion of the Amazon into a net carbon source for the first time ever. But the rainforest as a […]

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Top 15 species discoveries from 2021 (Photos)

With humans sending probes to explore Mars and the sun, one might think we’ve already explored the full extent of our own planet. But scientists say we’ve only begun to find and describe the riches here on Earth. “I think most people believe that we know most species on Earth … but in the best-case […]

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Mexican firm profits from reforestation, empowers Indigenous people

Local stories in Michoacán tell how, when the Spanish invaded what would later be known as Mexico in the 1500s, they found Indigenous communities tapping pine trees and using the resin in sizzling-bright torches and lamps that lit the Aztec Empire capital of Tenochtitlan, today’s Mexico City. The Spanish appropriated the resin to use as […]

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Death threats and friction with military force Guatemalan rangers to flee

Northern Guatemala is covered in more than 3,000 square miles of rainforest. Some parts of it have been burned down by cattle ranchers and drug traffickers. Other parts remain pristine, with unexcavated Mayan pyramids hidden deep under the foliage. For the park rangers who work there, patrolling such a huge area can be dangerous and […]

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