Friday, June 29, 2012


Many Chimney swifts were seen this evening over the marsh feeding on insects.  Perhaps 10 were in the sky at once- probably adults and young.  These birds are threatened provincially and nationally due to the loss of breeding and roosting sites. It is good to see these birds doing so well here. 

Durrell reaches crucial milestone in the battle to save the rarest tortoise in the world

The discovery of two baby ploughshare tortoises born in the wild to parents bred in Durrell’s conservation breeding programme provides hope that despite huge challenges the fight to save the world’s rarest tortoise can be won.

There are probably as few as 500 adult ploughshare tortoises, or angonoka in Malagasy, left in their natural range, the bamboo scrub of Baly Bay in north-western Madagascar. Historically the main pressures on the ploughshare were habitat loss and introduced species, but in recent years the rise in poaching for the illegal pet trade outside of Madagascar has threatened to send the angonoka to extinction.

Durrell has been working for 25 years to save this species by reducing pressures to the remaining wild population and its habitat. Early successes included the establishment of Baly Bay National Park and the empowerment of local communities to protect habitat from bushfires. A core component of Durrell’s efforts was the establishment of a captive breeding programme that would act both a safety net and the basis for a reintroduction programme.

The breeding programme has been a great success but it takes a long time for tortoises to reach an age when they can be released back to the wild. First trial releases began in 1998 into an area of bamboo scrub habitat from which the species had previously been wiped out. Since that time, a total of 65 animals have been released with the goal that they would reach maturity and start breeding to secure the viability of the re-introduced population.

The tortoises were released as sub-adults and it has taken them a few years to reach maturity and so it only now that we are seeing the first generation of tortoises to be born from animals released from the programme into the wild.

Dr Lee Durrell MBE, the Trust’s Honorary Director, was in Madagascar recently to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Durrell’s conservation work in the island. She said: “The importance of the discovery of the baby ploughshares cannot be over-emphasised. These tortoises are the result of so many years of hard work and hope, and everyone involved gets a real thrill from seeing them. It is what our work at Durrell is all about and they represent a beacon for the future of not only the iconic ploughshare in Madagascar but many other species whose survival relies on similar conservation breeding programmes.”

The two babies are a little over a year old, measuring only five centimetres from head to tail and weighing just 30g. They were discovered by Henri Rakotosalama, who monitors the released animals. These tortoises are extremely difficult to find even when they are large adults, so finding a tiny baby was a major achievement. He said: “I’m so happy to have found these babies after six years of studying the released tortoises. It was a really emotional moment. It’s tough working out here in the scrub, but these tiny babies show it’s worth all the effort. I hope we find more very soon.”

Dr Durrell said: “We have waited a long time to see baby ploughshare tortoises hatch in the wild from our released animals and we can only hope that they will continue to flourish. The Madagascar habitat that is their home is a tough one - there are bush pigs, buzzards, a harsh climate and poachers to contend with - but they are healthy and strong and we believe they stand a good chance. They are the first of what we hope will become a brand new population of tortoises helped by our successful conservation breeding programme.”

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


According to Tibet Regional Forest Bureau, over 80 percent of nature reserves (61 reserves covering an area of 41.29 million hectares) in the region are effectively protected. Over the years, the population of rare and endangered wild animals in these reserves has also increased. The government has spent 280 million Yuan in the last five years for the protection of nature reserves. Recently, wildlife department has launched a wildlife disease monitoring system for snow leopard, Tibetan antelope, Chinese yew and Piceasmithiana.
15 June
Image by Mike Leveille


A botanical park in Rumtek of Sikkim gets its first moss garden built which is spread across an area of 40 m square and it is built around a 20m x 20m rock graphic phyllite outcrop. Mosses of Bryopsida and Lycopodiopsida species have been used in the garden.
18 June


Along with hundreds of migrant harvesters headed to collect caterpillar fungus in northern part of Bajhang District, west Nepal, are teachers and students of a local school.  As the school remains closed during the harvest season, they have decided to continue their classes in the field when they have time. Children accompany their elders for harvest as they are more efficient than their elders. Meanwhile, locals in highlands of Dolpa are concerned about the influx of harvesters as trampling is damaging the pasture lands.
18, 20 June
The Himalayan Times


Dang, a district in west Nepal, is reeling under acute water shortage due to prolong drought and drying up of river and water sources. Drinking Water Division in the district is supplying only 1.6 million liters against the demand of 24.3 million liters. Meanwhile, the District forest office in Dang is in the process of evicting forest encroachers. It is estimated that around 3500 hectares of forest land has been encroached where more than 7000 houses has been built.
18, 20 June
The Himalayan Times, Karobar Daily


We are on the front line to STOP this deadly road that will destroy more than 60 indigenous communities.

Today Wednesday June 27 enters to the city of La Paz the IX March in Defense of TIPNIS, this march is compose by almost 500 people; families, women and children fighting for the RIGHT OF MOTHER NATURE they come from 20 indigenous nations like the Yurakares, the Tsimanes, Esejjas, Aymaras, Quechuas, Uchupiamonas, etc.

In this sense we ask for your support and sing this petition on line:

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Jeremy Mallinson, Durrell’s Director Emeritus, receives prestigious award (UK)

Jeremy Mallinson, who was Gerald Durrell’s right-hand man from the early days of the Jersey Zoo (now Durrell Wildlife Park), has won the prestigious “Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Zoo Community” from the Zoological Society of London.

At the awards ceremony in London on 16th June 2012, ZSL's Secretary, Professor Geoff Boxshall, explained why the award had been made. "Jeremy’s contributions to the zoo community are immense in both scope and influence. Jeremy has been a pioneer of coordinated captive-breeding programmes in zoos, helping to establish a framework for cooperation that is now standard practice internationally. He has been directly involved in the conservation of lion tamarins for over 20 years, linking the zoo community with in situ conservation work in Brazil.

“In addition, Jeremy has an ambassadorial role in promoting zoos and conservation worldwide, and has held a number of influential positions within the zoo community, government and NGOs …… Jeremy has made a significant impact by being influential on the many changes that have taken place in zoological collections over the last fifty years, ensuring that they are fit to meet the challenges of nature, both today and in the future”.

Previous winners of the award are Leobert De Boer (2010) of Apenheul Primate Park in the Netherlands and William Conway (2011) of the Wildlife Conservation Society in New York.

Image by the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust

Monday, June 25, 2012

Lonesome George

Lonesome George has died. 
The Giant Tortoise Center for Reproduction and Captive Breeding is a program of the Galapagos National Park. Lonesome George was the last known individual of the Pinta Island Tortoise (Geochelone nigra abingdoni) and was taken into protective custody from its island in 1972. George was estimated to be 90 to 110 years old. Females of a related species had been introduced in the hopes of breeding with George. No fertile eggs resulted.

Painted tortoise is based on an image from putneymarkflickr

EIA and Telapak campaigners have held a series of successful training workshops to help a remote forest community

EIA and Telapak campaigners have held a series of successful training workshops to help a remote forest community in Indonesia’s East Kalimantan province take an effective stand against the aggressive spread of palm oil plantations.

Since last year, we have been working to raise awareness of, and support for, the indigenous Dayak Benuaq community of Muara Tae in its confrontation

During last month’s return visit, we donated cameras, laptops and GPS devices, and taught participants how to use them effectively to capture visual evidence of the destruction of their ancestral lands and to expose such abuses to a wider audience.

EIA’s new Visual Communications Officer, Emma Clark, was one of those who took part in the workshops and, while in Muara Tae, she prepared a behind-the scenes look at the workshops in action as well as a glimpse into the unique lives of the villagers.


Giant tortoise Lonesome George’s death leaves the world one subspecies poorer

QUITO — Lonesome George has died, leaving the world one subspecies poorer.  Estimated to be more than 100 years old, the creature’s cause of death remains unclear and a necropsy is planned. Lonesome George is being kept in a cold chamber to prevent decomposition prior to the procedure.

Lonesome George was discovered on Pinta Island in 1972 at a time when giant tortoises of his type, Geochelone nigra abingdoni, were already believed to be extinct.  He will be missed.  Image by Eric Gauthier (2011)

Sunday, June 24, 2012


Painted turtle stretching her legs.

Long-legged flies

Deer mice sleeping their day away.

A Scarlet lily beetle

The Indian NGO Forum will have a meeting on the 1st of July in Delhi

The Indian NGO Forum will have a meeting on the 1st of July from 3-7 p.m at the WWF Auditorium in Delhi to discuss preparations for COP11 and MOP6. They have also requested for members of the CBD Alliance to join, so that together we can start shaping and planning together for the upcoming COP-MOP in Hyderabad this oct.
While the broad agenda is COP-MOP Preps, some of the points that could be discussed are

- key substantive issues that INFC, CBD Alliance and other CSOs want to take forward
- possible joint activities - actions, events, etc.
- sharing a calendar of side events...who is doing what, when
- Hyderabad practicalities and logistics
- misc. any other items the group wants to add
Since some of you would be in Delhi for the ICNP2, I would request that if you are available then please to attend the meeting. This could also be open to other CBD Alliance Indian NGO members who are based in Delhi (or around) and would like to attend. If your attendance is indeed possible then kindly let me ( If you are unable to attend but think that certain substantive points need to be discussed then do also highlight them. This has to be soon, so it is request to respond

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rio + 20 outcome recognizes importance of biodiversity for sustainable development

Rio de Janeiro 22 June 2012. The nations of the world have recognized the crucial role of biodiversity in ensuring sustainable development in the outcome document of the Rio + 20 conference and called for greater efforts to implement the Convention on Biological Diversity. The outcome document, entitled: “The Future we Want,” agreed by heads of state in Rio de Janeiro reiterated the international commitment to the achievement of the three objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, which was opened for signature at the 1992 “Earth Summit” held in Rio De Janeiro.

In keeping with this, governments affirmed the importance of implementing the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, and its twenty Aichi targets, which were adopted by the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity at their tenth meeting in Nagoya Japan in 2010.

Noting the adoption of a new legal instrument on access and benefit-sharing for genetic resources – the Nagoya Protocol, Parties to the Convention were invited to ratify or accede to the Protocol so as to ensure its entry into force at the earliest possible opportunity. Governments recognized the need for resources and therefore welcomed the strategy for resource mobilization in support of the achievement of the three objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, including the commitment to substantially increasing resources from all sources in support of biodiversity.

“This document shows that the world recognizes that biodiversity is a central intertwined component of sustainable development, and further that the Convention on Biological Diversity is the tool needed to ensure that it is protected and used sustainably for all in present and future generations” said Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Executive Secretary for the Convention on Biological Diversity.

“I call upon governments to look at the commitments in this document and to use the opportunity of implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity and its Protocols, including the Nagoya Protocol, to take the actions in support of the future we want. The agenda of sustainable development agreed by heads of states at the Rio+20 shall provide an enabling environment for an effective implementation of the objectives and targets of the CBD” he said.

The document also contained references to action in oceans, forests and dry and sub humid lands that support the programmes of work of the Convention on Biological Diversity.


Peter Kent addressed the delegations at the Earth Summit today. The transcription is available at:

Suu Kyi’s call for business to aid in the reform of Burma

I sat in Westminster Hall on Thursday, waiting to hear Aung San Suu Kyi speak to both houses of Parliament, friends and many advocates who have supported the fight for freedom and democracy in Burma.

An extraordinary event in itself, in that she is the first woman from abroad, the first person from an Asian nation and the first person who is not a head of state to address both houses of Parliament.

But as I sat and waited for her to arrive, my thoughts went back to the very darkest days in Burma when she was first released from house arrest, re-arrested, incarcerated, survived a brutal and violent attempt on her life, and was placed under house arrest again. Many of my friends and even people I met and worked with during those days – some I have still yet to meet up with – were some of the bravest and most courageous people I have ever worked with in my 25 years as an activist. I remember those days and they are not ones I wish to be attached as it is the future for Burma and all of its people on which we must focus our time.

It was a wonderful moment when she appeared at the top of the stairs of Westminster Hall and was greeted with a resounding long ovation and applause. Around me were many Burmese and ethnic nationalities, some who have had to live in exile, have lost their homes and livelihoods, who have fought hard so far away from their homes to get their country back. It felt unreal to me and, as Suu Kyi was introduced and took to the podium, her voice resounding through the great hall, a moment of disbelief took over.

And yet here it was, a moment so many people had spent so long fighting for, believed in no matter how long it took. A free Suu Kyi, speaking freely, travelling freely and without a thought in anyone’s mind that she would not be allowed back. As ever, she spoke with humour and conviction as she made a call for support for the people of Burma from Britain as a “friend and an equal”.

But it was her call to British business to be part of the reform process in Burma through “democracy-friendly investment” that made me start thinking of how – through our work in the Asia region and Europe with our many civil society partners, networks and individuals – businesses engaged in natural resource extraction in Burma need to take note. And not just British businesses; this falls on Europe too. The deforestation, illegal logging and illegal trade in timber have helped to sustain the military regime for over 60 years; millionaires have embarked on their exclusive lifestyles and connections to corrupt decision-makers by logging Burma’s forests. The military itself has also relied on revenues from the forests. Through a corrupt, opaque and military-led system, Burma’s forests and the people who rely on them have been living in crisis – and this is still the case.

But here is an opportunity. While sanctions against the direct trade of timber have been lifted, nothing within Burma and the timber trade has changed, from how materials are extracted to who actually received the profits. The myth that the British practice of extraction is still employed throughout the country is just that, a myth.

EIA has for the past 10 years fought a campaign to force transparency within the international timber trade, and this has been recognised with the new European Timber Trade Regulation taking effect in March 2013. Here is the opportunity to work with the different stakeholders who rely on the forests, an opportunity for reform within the forestry sector. We need to ensure that investment is directed towards those who work with and live from the forest, the many foresters who really know how the forest works, know how to sustain and ensure that this resource is around for a long, long time. We must invest in the people whose entire livelihoods rely on the forest.

Burma’s neighbours bear a major responsibility for the state of Burma’s forests today, but they are also part of the solution. Businesses that rely on supply from those countries know that their days of just ordering what they want, no matter the consequences, are limited. They are being watched – and we will expose, name and shame them, as we have done for the past decade.

My friends in Burma have the best opportunity ever to campaign with other networks and activists from the region who have also faced military regimes. Visiting the country this month, I met with and discussed activities we hope will make those who have lived with crushing oppression, and faced it with such energy and determination, a part of the decision-making process for Burma. They must have a seat at the table.

Of all its abundant but threatened natural resources, it is the Burmese people that business needs to invest in. Civil society in Indonesia is now formally part of third party independent monitoring of the forests – if they can do it, so can Burma.

Faith Doherty
Head of Forests Campaign

For environmental crime, the misrule of law applies

This week, as part of the Rio+20 summit in Brazil, over 200 judges, prosecutors, attorneys and legal experts gathered at the World Congress on Justice, Governance and Law for Environmental Sustainability. Issues discussed during the three-day meeting included new legal approaches to increase the effectiveness of global environmental agreements and combating transnational environmental crime.

Illegal timber seized on the Malaysian border of Indonesia in August 2005 (c) EIA

While the focus on the role of law in environmental protection is laudable, a reality check is in order here. At the international and national levels, a plethora of laws relating to the environment already exist. The problem is that all too often they are not enforced. An honest appraisal of the reasons behind this failure is needed, but the main factors – lack of political will and corruption – make for uncomfortable discussions at international conferences.

Half a world away from Rio, the town of Mong Cai in northern Vietnam is a glaring example of unrestrained environmental crime in action. Lying on the border with the Chinese province of Guangxi, Mong Cai provides a gateway for a host of illicit products, notably wildlife, ivory, precious wood and electronic waste. Trade in all of these is controlled by international law – but apparently not in Mong Cai, where criminal gangs and corruption are rife.

Detailed analysis by an NGO found that 98 per cent of all cross-border traffic is illegal, moving across the river boundary via a host of “informal” routes. As a Financial Times journalist who visited the town reported: “In the past few years, Mong Cai has emerged as an international smuggling nexus, funnelling illegal goods from around the world to feed China’s soaring demand for everything from women to banned electronic waste products to tiger penis for use in traditional medicine. This illegal trade is extensive and well-organised and, remarkably, much of it takes place in plain sight.”

In the course of our work, EIA has come across many similar flagrant breaches of environmental laws. Although Laos bans the export of round logs, hundreds of thousands of cubic metres flow into neighbouring Vietnam every year via official checkpoints, orchestrated by companies with powerful political and military connections. In Indonesia, rules preventing the development of palm oil plantations on deep peatlands are often flouted. In fact, the Government’s own task force found that only 67 out of 352 oil palm plantation companies operating in the Indonesian province of Central Kalimantan possessed the required licences.

When it comes to land rights, wherever the rule of law is absent civil strife ensues. A report released this week by the campaigning group Global Witness found that over 700 people died between 2001 and 2011 “defending their human rights or the rights of others related to the environment, specifically land and forests”.

When environmental laws are properly enforced, the benefits are clear. For instance, at the start of the last decade illegal logging rates in Indonesia reached 80 per cent. The tide turned in 2005 when an unprecedented enforcement operation led to the illegal logging rate falling by half over the following few years. This intervention effectively prevented the loss of 15 million hectares of forests.

So let’s hope that when the judges and prosecutors return home from Rio they will start to push to close the gap between environmental laws on paper and enforcement in the real world.

Julian Newman

Canadian Earth Summit Coalition

Today's Topic Summary

Thursday, June 21, 2012

20 years after their birth, three sister Rio Conventions reaffirm their collective responsibility for sustainable development

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 21 June 2012 – The heads of the secretariats of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) reaffirmed their determination to work to generate synergies in national implementation in support of sustainable development.

In a joint statement issued today, the Executive Secretaries of the three Rio Conventions committed to tackle sustainable development challenges by focusing on prioritized cross-cutting themes. These include landscape and ecosystem-based approaches to adaptation, generating and sharing information on climate change impacts and vulnerability when considering biodiversity and land use and mainstreaming gender into activities related to the implementation of the conventions act.

The three top officials of the three Conventions that came of Rio in 1992 emphasized the need for “coordinated, concrete, concerted, simple and attainable solutions” to achieve “a truly sustainable future”. To this end, they called on countries and governments to set sustainable development goals, including achievable targets on land, biodiversity and climate change.
Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Executive Secretary of the CBD said: “Twenty years of experience under these three agreements has produced the body of policy that we need to realize sustainable development. We now need to accelerate the implementation of this framework – at all levels, and in so doing, increase coordination so we can realize the important synergies that are needed for development.”

Luc Gnacadja, Executive Secretary of the UNCCD said: “Further commitment by the international community is needed to achieve The Future We Want. Going carbon neutral, becoming land degradationneutral and halting the loss of biodiversity are intertwined goals. Countries and governments should set sustainable development goals that take into account existing inter-linkages among the three pillars of sustainable development and that recognize the important goals and targets already agreed upon among the Rio Conventions."

Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC said: “Governments are on the right track in terms of designing international policy frameworks. Under the UNFCCC, they have set the goal of a maximum 2 degrees Celsius temperature rise, with a view to considering 1.5 degrees Celsius. They are building the support infrastructure for developing countries and are working towards a new universal climate change agreement, whilst increasing ambition now. There is no doubt that the scope and speed of action urgently needs to be stepped up, and that holds true for all three Conventions."

The joint statement was first disclosed on the occasion of the 20th Anniversary of the three Rio Conventions by their respective Executive Secretaries at a breakfast round-table with the current Presidencies of the respective Conference of the Parties. The Anniversary was celebrated with a full day programme at the Rio Conventions Pavilion (

The Rio Conventions have played a key role in framing global and national policy responses to the challenges of climate change, loss of biodiversity, desertification and land degradation. Their collaboration is facilitated in the context of the Joint Liaison Group run directly by the Executive Secretaries of the three Conventions.

Wanting world leaders to end fossil fuel subsidies at Rio

One million people have called on world leaders to end fossil fuel subsidies at the Rio Earth Summit -- but our leaders have failed to deliver on this policy no-brainer! Now the only chance to save the talks rests with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

Urge her to take action now -- join the campaign:

9th Annual Wild Toy Animal Hospital-TORONTO, CANADA

Sunday, June 24
Africa Picnic Site 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
(last visit with the Doctor 1:30 pm)

Real Vets for plush pets! Let the Toronto Zoo's Wildlife Health Centre give your Wild Toy the tender love and care it deserves with a full check-up, weigh-in, x-ray, microchipping and heart monitoring stations - we promise it won't hurt! Children 12 and under, one toy per child. No live animals please!

Rio +20 brings in a new landscape for the protection of global Roadless Areas

A major step towards the protection of the world's roadless areas was one of the fruits of the Rio+20 Summit. For the first time, roadless areas were mapped globally and presented to the public. The European Parliament's Rapporteur on Forests, MEP Kriton Arsenis, UNEP, IUCN, the Society for Conservation Biology (SCB), and the Indigenous Peoples' International Centre for Policy Research and Education, Tebtebba joined forces to co-organize a side event aimed at putting the protection of roadless areas in the heart of the international environmental debate. Two interactive maps of the world's remaining roadless areas were presentedby Google and the European Environmental Agency. These maps reveal areas which remain insulated from the uncontrolled human pressure exerted by roads on natural resources and they pave the way for global action towards the protection of biodiversity in a cost efficientand effective way.
The Google Earth maps of roadless areas can be found at
EEA's Eye on Earth maps will soon be available publicly.


A senior forest officer in Sarpang range office in Sarpang Dzongkhag was detained for his involvement in illegally felling of nine Sal trees from a community forest. According to the sources, the alleged officer approved the felling of trees by forging the signature of the territorial chief forest officer of Sarpang.
13 June


According to the Natural Resources Development Corporation Limited (NRDCL), this year Bhutan’s target supply of timber is 2.3 million cu ft (2 million cu ft in 2011) for commercial purposes against the demand of 5 million cu ft. Of the targeted demand, it has already met 40 percent by the month of May. For timber harvest, government has deemed 14 percent of the total forests cover of the country but NRDCL is exploiting only 8 percent for harvesting and remaining area lies under Department of Forest for planning and preparation.
9 June


According to Tibet Tourism Bureau, Tibet welcomes 1000 tourists everyday and this year (first five months) arrival of tourists has went up by 25.7 percent with 1.45 million tourist.  Of the total arrival, domestic tourism accounts for 1.42 million tourist earning revenue of 1.36 billion Yuan. The peak tourist season in Tibet is May to October and arrival of 10 million tourists is expected this year. In 2011, Tibet welcomed 8.427 million domestic tourists and 270,800 foreign tourists.
12 June



Kaziranga National Park is soon to be equipped with an electronic eye, a surveillance system in the lines of the close-circuit cameras, to keep tab on poachers. The park authority will install 8 high end security cameras in the park.
11 June


An elephant calf was hacked to death by the villagers in Bahundangi of Jhapa District, east Nepal. The calf had entered the area in search of food from the bordering Indian forest. Following the killing of a calf, a herd of 150 enraged elephants wrecked havoc in the village.
13 June
The Kathmandu Post


Black-bellied tern (Sterna acuticauda), Nepal’s residential water bird, is listed as endangered in the IUCN Red List. With this, 36 bird bird species in Nepal are in the globally threatened list. Similarly, Oriental white-backed vulture (Gyps bengalensis) around the East-West Highway across the Tarai is declining. Recent study shows an annual decline of 14 percent in vulture population in Nepal (lower than India and Pakistan).
10, 13 June
The Kathmandu Post


According to Ministry of Agriculture Development, the country require 74,000 tons of paddy seeds for its cultivation in around 1.5 million hectares of land but the nation is falling short of 7,000 tons of paddy seeds every year. Meanwhile, farmers of five districts (Kavre, Sindhupalchowk, Dolakha, Ramechhap and Okhaldhunga) in central Nepal staged protests against the short supply of chemical fertilizers in the market. It is estimated that these districts need 15,000 tons of urea and 1500 tons of Diammonium Phosphat (DAP).
9, 10 June


Many parts of the country are reeling under severe heat wave with the maximum temperature shooting over 3 to 4 degree Celsius above normal.  Several districts in Tarai region recorded the highest temperatures above 40 degrees. According to Meteorological Forecasting Division (MFD) official, this year the country experienced scant rainfall in April and May compared to previous year.
9 June
The Kathmandu Post


Office bearers of the proposed community forest in Sunsari District, east Nepal, have been accused of felling 900 cu ft of timber and in Dhading District, central Nepal. Security personnel arrested community forest chairman along with other accomplices for their involvement in timber smuggling. In western Nepal, to rehabilitate freed Kamaiyas in Bardiya District, District Forest Office is axing trees in more than half a dozen community forests.  Similarly, involvement of forest officers in rampant cutting of pine trees for sap extraction has been reported from the eight districts of far west Nepal.
8, 9, 11 June
The Kathmandu Post,

Canadian Earth Summit Coalition- CANADA

Today's Topic Summary

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The need to clearly define forests as a biologically diverse ecosystem

Rio+20 Conference-  There is still no recognition of the need to clearly define forests as a biologically diverse ecosystem, which means a lot of the forest texts could benefit monoculture tree plantations as well as real forests.  What can we do as individuals or members of ngos to correct this?  Food for thought.  Comments?

Opening of the Base Camp of 1000 Days for the Planet, an expedition led by Jean Lemire Honorary Ambassador to theThe Green Wave for biodiversity

Montreal, 20 June 2012
– Coinciding with the opening of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20), Montreal Space for Life is opening the doors of the Base Camp of 1000 Days for the Planet, a three-year expedition aboard the schooner Sedna IV. The expedition is a major contribution to the celebrations of the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity 2011-2020.

One of the goals of the Decade is to ensure that by 2020 at the latest, the world's citizens, especially youth and children, know about the value of biodiversity and ways to protect it. A major objective of 1000 Days for the Planet, led by Canadian biologist, fimmaker and explorer and The Green Wave Honorary Ambassador, Jean Lemire, is to raise public awareness of environmental issues and to encourage the public to act in order to preserve and safeguard biodiversity.

The mission’s Base Camp will allow the hundreds of thousands of visitors to the Montreal Botanical Garden to follow the adventures of the 1000 Days for the Planets' team.  The exhibit invites the world to communicate live with the Sedna crew and learn about their discoveries on the state of biodiversity, at sea and on land.


The Macoun Marsh Trail is being prepared for our official opening on July 10. Seven plaques featuring local species were illustrated and written by St-Laurent Academy grade 6-7 students. Each bronze plaque is firmly attached to a large granite stone.

This plaque describes the blue-spotted salamander and the water bear.  Other plaques include one introduction sign, one each for painted turtles, chimney swifts, our outdoor classroom, and the fossils of the marsh.

This plaque celebrates the star of the marsh, our Native Butternut tree. This species is endangered.  Financial support came from the TD Friends of the Environment Fund.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Rio meeting with GYBN

Everyone of you who is in Rio Centro tomorrow (Wednesday) and is interested in biodiversity and UN CBD processes: we will meet at 1pm in the court yard to meet and introduce you to the Global Youth Biodiversity Network (GYBN).

Monday, June 18, 2012


Reports from Rio+20
The first Earth Summit in Brazil addressed international concerns about the state of the world’s environment. But 20 years later, those issues have evolved and the world is gathering again in Rio this week.

The outcomes of Rio+20 will have major potential impacts on small-holder farmers, and that’s why USC Canada is attending: to help carry their voices and to present examples – from our SoS program – of what their work can accomplish.
We'll be live-tweeting throughout the conference. We’ll also provide reports on our website from the summit over the next week. And you can check out our growing list of resources to get a handle on the basics and learn more about the issues being discussed at Rio+20

Canadian Earth Summit Coalition Topics

Today's Topic Summary

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Friday, June 15, 2012

BirdLife Partnership message to world leaders

Find here the BirdLife Partnership message to world leaders on Rio+20 urging governments to ensure biodiversity and nature are central to decisions taken on sustainable development.

Macoun Marsh Update- Ottawa, Canada

Lunch with Grade 6s

Our students were among the first to try out Environment Canada's Ottawa-Gatineau Biokit. This kit will be used for local schools.

One of the marsh's green frogs.

Two orphan baby raccoons were discovered near the marsh by Cemetery staff yesterday. The babies will be sent to an animal care center today. Our students got to observe them- teachers too!

A beautiful baby!

Earth Summit Coalition: Abridged summary of

Today's Topic Summary

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Rio+20 Dialogues- Deadline tomorrow

All you have to do is click to vote, and your expertise will help shape The Future We Want!

10 topics

10 recommendations per topic

What recommendations do you want to see discussed at the Rio+20 Dialogues? This is your moment to speak up!

Please share!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

COP-MOP 6, COP 11 in Hyderabad, India

Reference is made to the sixth meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties (COP-MOP 6) to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and the eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 11) to the Convention on Biological Diversity to be held from 1 5 October and 8-19 October, respectively, in Hyderabad, India.
The Hyderabad COP 11 CBD Promotion Committee has created an information web page for exhibitors at the above mentioned meetings. The Interactive Fair for Biodiversity will take place in Hall 2 at Hyderabad International Trade Exhibition centre (HITEX), adjacent to the Hyderabad International Conference Centre, venue for COP-MOP 6 and COP 11. All details related to the fair can be found at the following link:
Environmental protection is a high priority for COP-MOP 6 and COP 11. The aim is to avoid negative environmental impacts as much as possible during the whole conference, including side-events and exhibitions. Therefore, exhibitors are requested to commit to the environmental requirements when designing and operating their exhibition stands.
Participating governments and organizations wishing to book exhibition space are invited to submit their applications, no later than15 July 2012, to the MCI Management (COP 11 Exhibition Promotion Committee), the focal organization designated by the Secretariat of the Government of India for CBD-COP-11, by e-mail or by fax; at the following coordinates:
MCI Management (COP 11 Exhibition Promotion Committee)
Tel: +91-124- 4974160
Fax: +91-124-4108917
Any request received after the deadline will not be considered. Any enquiry related to these exhibition stands should be sent toMCI Management (COP 11 Exhibition Promotion Committee).
The text of this notification is also available on the CBD website at:


Run For Biodiversity - Calgary and Ottawa

Thanks for supporting Farmers in Nepal

A huge thank you goes out to the hundreds of USC supporters who sponsored our team of 55 Runners and Walkers in the recent Run for Biodiversity events in Calgary and Ottawa!
You've helped us raise a record $11,500 in support of farming families in the remote Himalayan district of Humla, Nepal.

The Global Youth Biodiversity Network (GYBN)

The Global Youth Biodiversity Network (GYBN), an international network that intends to provide a global platform for exchange between youth organizations and individuals active on Biodiversity and also aims to coordinate youth participation in the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), is about to be officially launched at a Kick-Off Meeting this August. 

Since the end of the UN Biodiversity Summit (CBD COP10) in Nagoya in October 2010, an interim steering committee has spend the past 18 months to make preparations for the creation a democratic, transparent and globally representative youth network.

Biodiversity loss doesn’t stop at national boarders - join our network and help us to halt the loss of Biodiversity!

Roots & Shoots community deadline

Stay a part of the Roots & Shoots community by sharing how your group has made an impact, and receive your 2012 Certificate of Recognition!
Would you like to continue your Roots & Shoots membership? Yes No
Membership renewal deadline:
Friday, June 15th, 2012

We Canada in Rio for the Earth Summit 2012

Greetings from Rio! In preparation for the Earth Summit 2012, We Canada is officially releasing its consultation report from the Tour and Earth Summit Dialogues. Our team was overwhelmed with the overall quality of the ideas shared by Canadian youth. Twenty key priorities were highlighted related to energy, water, green cities, sustainable consumption and production, environmental conservation and humanitarian issues and social justice. Here are are some noteworthy quotes:
“We need to use resources properly. We are one of the lucky countries that have an abundance of natural resources; let’s use them sustainably and to their greatest value.”
“We should implement a clear environmental policy, especially on the oil sands, to protect our planet.”
We invite you to read the report to discover the creativity and brilliance of Canadian youth! Most importantly, we ask that you share the report on your social networks. Please find below a sample Tweet and Facebook message. Lastly, we’d like to thank you for all your hard work in spreading our news. Without you, our messages would not have reached so many people. For that and for everything else, we thank you very much! Here is a link to full report (English only) and executive summary (in English and French):

@wecanada toured the country & talked to 8,000 Cdn youth. They had great ideas for the #futurewewant: #RioPlus20 #cndtour
Find out how 8,000 Canadian youth want to be represented at #RioPlus20: #futurewewant

We Canada gathered feedback from over 8,000 Canadians, primarily youth, about how they want to be represented at the Rio+20 Earth Summit. Read the We Canada report "What We Heard From Canadians" for 20 key priorities related to energy, water, green cities, sustainable consumption, environmental conservation and humanitarian issues and social justice: