Where is the money? Brazil, Indonesia and Congo join forces in push for rainforest protection cash

Deforestation in Kapuas Hulu, Indonesian Borneo. Photo by Rhett A. Butler.The world’s three forest giants — Brazil, Indonesia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) — have signed a joint statement calling for the negotiation of new payment mechanisms to preserve the tropical rainforests that help regulate the world’s climate and house millions of plants and animals. The announcement marks the beginning of a strategic […]

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Shady contracts, backdoor deals spur illegal gold mining in Bolivian Amazon

LA PAZ — Gold is Bolivia’s second-biggest export, valued at more than $1 billion annually and employing hundreds of thousands of people in the country. But much of that gold has uncertain origins, coming from somewhere deep in the Amazon rainforest, where environmental regulations often go unenforced. Setting up camp in secluded parts of the […]

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Beef is still coming from protected areas in the Amazon, study shows

Some of the world’s largest beef exporters are still buying cattle that grazed in protected areas of the Amazon rainforest, despite commitments to stop this practice, according to a new study. The report, published today in the journal Conservation Letters found that millions of cattle grazed in protected areas (PAs) in the Brazilian states of Mato […]

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Ecuador’s Indigenous Siekopai communities sue for title in protected area

A group of Indigenous communities in Ecuador is taking legal action to regain control of territory in a wildlife reserve they say the government recognized a long time ago but never properly delivered to them. Siekopai communities, which occupy territory in the Western Amazon along the Ecuador-Peru border, have filed a lawsuit against the Ministry […]

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Alternatives to farmwork empower communities and save forests, study finds

Protected areas are important for saving tropical forests and biodiversity, but for them to be effective, local communities living around the reserves need to have access to non-agricultural jobs, a new study says. The research shows that human activity, mainly agriculture, outside of forest reserves has a direct impact on forest cover within the protected […]

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Locals in the dark about oil auctions in DRC: report

One of the first on-the-ground investigations into the Democratic Republic of Congo’s proposed oil exploration blocks suggests that in some of the regions marked for auction, many residents are wary of the government’s plans. In a report released by Greenpeace Africa along with a group of international and Congolese NGOs, villagers living inside four of […]

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Maasai villages lose important court case as wildlife game reserve trudges on

Maasai people.The East African Court of Justice (EACJ) has ruled in favor of the Tanzanian government after a five-year legal battle between evicted Maasai communities and the state. According to the court, evidence to plead the communities’ case was insufficient and contradictory. The ruling comes as a blow to Indigenous, environmental and human rights organizations who […]

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Cambodian mega dam’s resurrection on the Mekong ‘the beginning of the end’

Cambodia's fisheries and food security are at stake as dams continue to blight the Mekong RiverSTUNG TRENG, Cambodia — A long-dormant plan to build a mega dam on the mainstream of the Mekong River in Cambodia’s northeastern Stung Treng province appears to have been revived this year, leaving locals immediately downstream of the potential sites worried and experts confounded. First studied in 2007, the 1,400-megawatt hydropower project, known as the […]

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