Notorious Malaysian illegal loggers Rimbunan Hijau have diversified into mining in primary rainforests, in East Sepik threatening unique nomadic cave-dwellers and their 20,000 year old ancient stenciled cave art. Support the local resistance and demand an end to indigenous genocide and rainforest ecocide in the name of false development that is little more than pillaging and plundering of cultural and biological diversity.
India is a thriving democratic nation with tremendous potential to achieve just, equitable, and ecologically sustainable national development that could last forever. Yet India is heading towards social and ecological collapse unless it stops burning coal and clearing its natural ecosystems, especially important old-growth forest remnants. The momentum of unfettered economic and population growth sweeping India is so severely damaging to the environment that failure to stop burning and cutting threatens the nation's reliable climate, food and water supplies, and its future potential for sustained national advancement. India is an amazing place in so many ways. There is still hope that they will come to understand the importance of a different development model based upon intact natural ecosystems.
The Areng Valley in the Cardamom Mountains of south-west Cambodia is threatened with flooding by a Chinese hydropower dam. This biodiversity gem - home of the Siamese crocodile and indigenous Khmer Daeum - is to be destroyed for a relatively small amount of electricity. Standing large, connected, and ecologically intact old-growth forests are required for local and global ecological sustainability and well-being.
Please support Ecuador's Kichwa villagers, who the Guardian newspaper reports vow to resist oil prospecting by the state-backed company Petroamazonas at all costs. The Kichwa tribe has said they are ready to fight to the death to protect their rainforests, which cover 70,000 hectares, adjacent and part of Yasuni National Park, and huge additional Ecuadorean rainforests are threatened by new industrial oil auctions as well. Industrial development of rainforests for oil in the Amazon has a long history of destroying ecosystems, including fouling water. Tell President Correa that standing, intact old-growth forest ecosystems are a requirement for local advancement and for local and global ecological sustainability; and demand that the invasion of indigenous nations' rainforests be halted.
Recent revelations of illegal logging in the Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC) rainforests demonstrate yet again that globally logging of old growth forests remains irredeemably corrupt and inevitably devastating to rainforest ecology. After years of international assistance and a "moratorium" on new rainforest logging, it is revealed that local permits for individuals to clear rainforest are being abused by the government and industrial loggers, even as the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and NGOs pressure for "sustainable" industrial destruction of Congo's primary rainforests. For DRC's local people and the biosphere, it is time to ban old growth logging in the DRC and globally. The DRC government must be convinced to abandon inherently corrupt industrial-scale rainforest clearance for log export – before the nation's rainforests, ecological sustainability, and future development potential are gone forever – and be justly compensated for doing so. Instead they must focus upon developing ways for local communities to benefit from standing old forests. Both local and global ecological sustainability depend upon doing so.
There exists near unanimous scientific consensus that abrupt climate change is occurring, that it is caused by burning fossil fuels and clearing natural ecosystems, and that observable and escalating impacts indicate it may be worse than worst case predictions, threatening the habitability of our one shared biosphere. Almost certainly there is no way to stop entirely the warming and climate weirding; it is already too far progressed. Yet our immediate actions in the short term to cut – or fail to cut – carbon and greenhouse gas emissions will determine its severity, whether it will eventually stabilize or become runaway, and whether it is survivable. The single policy action that could occur most quickly, and significantly reduce emissions, is to place a price upon emitting carbon through a tax. The funds raised from a carbon tax can replace other taxes, be returned to low-income earners, and be used for other laudable goals including paying down the deficit, developing low-emission energy systems, and protecting and restoring global ecosystems. Abrupt climate change will not be appeased, but it can be taxed, and thus reduced, through first a national and eventually a global carbon tax.
New logging contracts have been issued across 40% of Liberia's primary rainforests in only two years of resumed industrial logging. A full one quarter of Liberia’s total landmass – half of its best primary rainforests – were granted using secretive and illegal logging permits. Malaysian logging giant Samling, who has a long history of illegal logging from Cambodia to Guyana to Papua New Guinea, is a major beneficiary. Such major corruption – after years of logging fueled war, $30 million in international subsidies for "sustainable" rainforest logging, and a resumption of logging only since 2010 – shows clearly that Liberia's rainforest logging remains irredeemably corrupt and inevitably ecologically devastating. What if the $30 million invested in resuming "sustainable logging" had been used instead to find ways for local communities to benefit from standing old forests? For local peoples and the biosphere, it is time to ban primary forest logging in Liberia and globally.
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