Deforestation in Colombia up nearly 20 percent last year

“A total of 140,356 hectares (346,827 acres) of forest cover was lost in Colombia in 2014 versus 120,934 hectares (298,834 acres) in 2013, per IDEAM, a division of Colombia’s Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development.

“Illegal logging, mining, and coca cultivation, as well as conversion for other agricultural purposes and ranching, were reported to be the largest drivers of deforestation in Colombia last year.”  From:

GR:  I don’t think we can find a single forested area in the world that is not threatened by human impacts.  If it’s not outright clearcutting, it’s livestock grazing, invasive species, energy mining and transmission, roads and recreation, and climate-change associated drought.

Education the path to more support for shark conservation

“The data also revealed that many recreational anglers are supportive of marine protected areas for threatened shark species, however that climate change is a larger perceived threat to sharks than recreational fishing.

“The findings are encouraging in that many anglers care about shark conservation, but they don’t always know what they can do, including simply changing some fishing techniques to improve shark survival.”  From:

GR:  It is certainly true that individual sport fisherman have almost no impact on marine ecosystems.  It’s the commercial fishing industry that is driving species toward extinction.

Psychological Reality Equals Orphaned Bear cubs


Featured Image -- 10557Killing bears to reduce a risk for humans is a horrible plan in this time of nature’s crisis; a crisis we have produced. Use well-known common sense to avoid the risk while working to maintain a healthy ecosystem that must include bears.

Originally posted on Exposing the Big Game:> Born Free USA Canadian Blog by Barry Kent MacKay


<> Psychological Reality Equals Orphaned Bear Cubs

Posted: 27 Nov 2015 07:22 AM PST

Bear Cub <> © John Buie

In animal protection work, rule number one to successful resolution of any animal abuse issue is this: be right! Be correct and accurate in what you say and back it up as well as you can with objective, science-based documentation. Pay due attention to, and address, the rationales given for the abuse, whatever they are, and separate fact from fiction from speculation from what one might wish. But, always remember that facts are not enough; being right is a necessary foundation (but not enough to win the day).

As I alluded to <> last week, that is just not enough. And, no issue better illustrates this frustration than the Ontario spring bear…

View original 920 more words

Canadians back bold climate-change action, poll finds

“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau heads to global climate talks in Paris with a new pledge of billions for the cause and a call for a strong international agreement, promising to follow up with a domestic plan with the provinces – and a new poll suggests that is probably in line with what Canadians want.

“At the Commonwealth summit in Malta on Thursday, Mr. Trudeau grabbed a little attention by announcing that Canada will put $2.65-billion over five years into climate-change funds for developing countries – a doubling of previous funding. He announced it behind closed doors to fellow leaders with some flourish, according to aides: “I’m here today not just to say Canada’s back but to show it,” they quoted him as saying.”  From:

GR:  It’s such a relief to see the changed administration in Canada.  Analogical to wisdom appearing in time to turn away from the cliff. Now we most hope that Trudeau can implement James Hansen’s fee-based plan or some other genuine system to cut emissions.

In Brazil, Deforestation Is Up, And So Is The Risk Of Tree Extinction

“The rate of deforestation in Brazil has increased by 16 percent over the past year, the country’s Environment Ministry announced.

“Brazil has often declared progress in reducing the rate of deforestation in the Amazon, but the government’s own figures, released Thursday, show the challenges still facing the country.

“Satellite imagery showed that 2,251 square miles were destroyed in Brazil’s Amazon from August 2014 to July 2015, compared with 1,935 square miles destroyed in the same period a year earlier.”  From:

GR:  Here are some more comments on deforestation in Brazil.

Global warming will be faster than expected.

“Global warming will progress faster than what was previously believed. The reason is that greenhouse gas emissions that arise naturally are also affected by increased temperatures. This has been confirmed in a new study that measures natural methane emissions.

“Everything indicates that global warming caused by humans leads to increased natural greenhouse gas emissions. Our detailed measurements reveal a clear pattern of greater methane emissions from lakes at higher temperatures,” says Sivakiruthika Natchimuthu, doctoral student at Tema Environmental Change, Linköping University, Sweden, and lead author of the latest publication on this topic from her group.”  From:

GR:  More bad news.  (Just had to include the book cover somewhere.)

Amazon deforestation report is major setback for Brazil ahead of climate talks

“Satellite data revealed that 5,831 square kilometers of land was cut down or burned in the Brazilian Amazon in year to 1 August: a 16% increase on the destruction of the previous 12 months.

“This is the second acceleration in three years, following almost a decade of impressive declines. That suggests the state’s efforts – which include high-tech monitoring, stiffer financial penalties and boots on the ground – are having a diminishing impact.”

GR:  Demand for the crops and beef raised on cleared land is continuing to grow.  The developed world including the U. S. is responsible.  Everyone having a steak tonight is responsible.

Overgrazing is a major cause of the horror in Syria

“In 1958, the vast semi-arid to arid Syrian steppe was made into a free access (unrestricted) commons by the Syrian national government. This overturned the sustainable type of grazing practiced by the Bedouins for centuries. The tribes and clans of the steppe had developed systems of limiting exploitation of the steppe beyond the grazing that would be sustainable. They even had large rest and restoration areas set by tribal custom and decision.

“Turning the whole thing into a commons led exactly to what we should expect, “the tragedy of the commons.” After almost 50 years of this degradation came the 2006–10 drought. Then came the collapse of the economy and great destabilization of society in the rural interior. The rebellion against the Syrian government had its origins there” From:

GR:  Grazing mismanagement of Earth’s arid lands has eroded the soil, introduced invasive weeds, reduced productivity, and reduced biodiversity in a process known as desertification.  Add climate change droughts and floods exacerbated by climate change, and it is no surprise that people are unhappy.

Consume more, conserve more: sorry, but we just can’t do both | George Monbiot

“Governments urge us both to consume more and to conserve more. We must extract more fossil fuel from the ground, but burn less of it. We should reduce, reuse and recycle the stuff that enters our homes, and at the same time increase, discard and replace it. How else can the consumer economy grow? We should eat less meat to protect the living planet, and eat more meat to boost the farming industry. These policies are irreconcilable. The new analyses suggest that economic growth is the problem, regardless of whether the word sustainable is bolted to the front of it.

“It’s not just that we don’t address this contradiction; scarcely anyone dares even name it. It’s as if the issue is too big, too frightening to contemplate. We seem unable to face the fact that our utopia is also our dystopia; that production appears to be indistinguishable from destruction.”  From:

GR:  In Arizona, the government asks us to conserve water while, at the same time, the government invites more people and businesses to move here.  Perhaps we should begin awarding huge cash prizes for promoting zero growth.

For T-Day: Save Yourself from the Digital Zombie Apocalypse

“Kids should be outside for an hour or two every day between school and dinner. That doesn’t mean parents have to drive them someplace. Unorganized playtime is fine. Give them the freedom to find their own games and make up their own rules. Teachers should make a point of giving regular homework assignments in the real world: Describe five trees where you live. Follow a squirrel for 45 minutes, and take field notes on what it’s doing. Count how many birds you can find on your street.

“The rest of us need to walk away at regular intervals (and especially at dinner time) from our alluring but soul-sucking lives online. According to a Nielsen report release earlier this year, Americans over 18 average 11 hours a day on electronic media. Given that most of us are awake 16 or 17 hours a day and presumably spend part of our waking hours in school or at work, adults are not providing a great example. Think of it as an addiction because that’s exactly what your Internet suppliers have designed it to be. Facebook, Twitter, and the rest mean to keep us compulsively clicking, in the words of Nir Eyal, web consultant and author of the book Hooked: How to Build Habit-forming Products, so we end up doing so “over and over, in the same basic cycle. Forever and ever.”  More at:

GR:  Excellent family advice.  Essential appreciation of nature will not come from screens.  Information might, but the reasons for applying the information come from outdoor experiences. One might add that if your neighborhood isn’t safe enough for children to be out doors, you are in the wrong place to raise a family.