tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/asia1 asia news from mongabay.com 2015-07-02T14:39:18Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15075 2015-07-02T14:37:00Z 2015-07-02T14:39:18Z Happy July 4th weekend: new red, white, and blue species discovered An independent researcher has described a spectacular red, white, and blue crayfish just in time for the fourth of July. The new species, named Cherax pulcher, was first discovered in Japanese pet shops by Christian Lukhaup before he finally tracked down the animal to creeks in remote West Papua, Indonesia. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15060 2015-06-30T21:03:00Z 2015-07-02T03:31:37Z Taking technology out in the cold: working to conserve snow leopards <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0630Snow_leopard-Uncia_uncia150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Conservation work is important not just in tropical rainforests, but also in snow-covered peaks and steep slopes, the home of snow leopards and a number of unusual ungulates, including blue sheep and Asiatic ibex. When these and other native prey are scarce, snow leopards may resort to eating more livestock, which turns herders against them. Rhett Butler 48.728329 88.058417 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15051 2015-06-29T18:42:00Z 2015-06-30T21:02:54Z Big reserve expansion gives tigers a boost in India <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/1029-thumb-morgan-tiger.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A hundred years ago, there were thirteen times as many tigers in the world as there are today, ranging from Turkey across the Eurasian continent to the eastern coast of Russia. The 13 countries that contain the world’s last tigers today - a mere, 2,500 mature individuals - are challenged with increasing protected tiger habitat to prevent crowding and inbreeding, while facing extreme funding and space constraints. One state in India, however, has found a cost-effective way to give tigers more room. Morgan Erickson-Davis 12.243857 75.764144 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15048 2015-06-29T15:40:00Z 2015-06-29T15:57:57Z Chinese turtle heist sends rare Philippine species to brink of extinction, international rescue underway <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0626_gs_150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>On Friday, June 19, Philippine authorities raided a warehouse on the island of Palawan and confiscated more than 4,000 live, illegally harvested rare turtles, only days before they were to be shipped to foreign food and pet markets. The massive haul included over 3,800 critically endangered Philippine forest turtles – animals in very poor health and showing signs of severe neglect from long captivity. Tiffany Roufs 9.542699 118.496978 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15033 2015-06-25T13:47:00Z 2015-06-25T13:49:45Z Video: camera traps highlight wildlife diversity of 'forgotten' park Things appeared to be on the upswing in Cambodia's vast Virachey National Park in the early 2000s. Conservation groups were surveying the area and the World Bank had committed $5 million in funds. But then the Cambodia government handed out a mining exploration permit covering 90 percent of the park. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15017 2015-06-23T05:30:00Z 2015-06-24T20:01:03Z Controversy emerges over alleged deforestation policy breach by APRIL supplier <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0622gfw_ahl_satellite150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Less than three weeks after APRIL unveiled a sustainability policy that is supposed to protect natural forests, an environmental group is alleging that one of the Indonesian forestry giant's subsidiaries is already breaching the commitment. But APRIL refuted the claim and says it continues to stand by the policy. Rhett Butler 3.556065 117.073839 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15008 2015-06-19T22:48:00Z 2015-06-19T22:53:02Z Many tropical species surprisingly resilient, if not actively persecuted <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/papua/150/papua_5138.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Dr. Richard Corlett is the current Director of the Center for Integrative Conservation at the Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, which is part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He is also a former president of ATBC, and one of the keynote speakers for this year’s conference in Hawaii. Dr. Corlett recently spoke with Mongabay.com about some of the insights he’s gained from his research in tropical ecology and conservation. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14997 2015-06-19T12:58:00Z 2015-06-19T14:13:55Z Can we save the Sumatran rhino? Indonesia holds out hope <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0619.THUMB.Andatu-DCandra-DSC_0221.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>'One percent of the world's population,' veterinarian Zulfi Arsan says as he nods towards Bina, a 714-kilogram, 30-year-old female Sumatran rhinoceros leisurely crunching branches whole. A gentle and easygoing rhino, pink-hued Bina doesn't seem to mind the two-legged hominids snapping pictures and awing at her every move at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary. Jeremy Hance -5.016160 105.758490 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14964 2015-06-15T18:16:00Z 2015-06-15T18:18:06Z A toad's relationship with its prey endures in the face of deforestation for palm oil <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-imgs.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0611_dulaney_toads_toad_thumbnail.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Biologists and conservationists have studied the effects of habitat degradation on individual species, but have rarely investigated how logging and conversion of rainforests to oil palm agriculture change interspecies relationships. A study of a toad and its ant prey found that while the toad dwindled in disturbed habitats, a shortage of food was not the reason. Rebecca Kessler 8.008197 116.118019 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14944 2015-06-11T17:03:00Z 2015-06-11T17:04:29Z Experts question White House claim that new free trade agreements have strong environmental protections <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-imgs.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0611-MGaworecki_TradeAgreements_Thumbnail.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A report released by the Obama administration last month claims that new international trade deals now being negotiated have stronger environmental protections than past trade agreements, but many experts are not convinced. Rebecca Kessler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14936 2015-06-10T15:10:00Z 2015-06-10T15:18:07Z Conservationists appeal to donors after mystery kills 134,252 saiga <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0610.saiga.dead.THUMB.IMGP7053.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The good news: conservationists believe that whatever killed off over a hundred thousand saiga in Kazakhstan in less than a month has abetted. The bad news: the final death tally is 134,252 saiga or around half the population of an animal already considered Critically Endangered. Given the dire situation, conservationists are now asking for emergency donations. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14931 2015-06-09T15:53:00Z 2015-06-09T15:54:00Z Happy tigers: Siberian population continues to grow <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0609.THUMB.Julie-Larsen-Maher_4358_Amur-Tiger-in-Snow_TM_BZ_01-06-15.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Siberian tiger population continues to rebound, according to the latest numbers from the subspecies' stronghold in Russia. Ten years ago, conservationists estimated 423-502 Amur tigers in Siberia. But last month, the Russian government and WWF said numbers had risen to 480-540 tigers, including an estimated 100 cubs. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14925 2015-06-08T20:01:00Z 2015-06-09T12:50:59Z Passenger pigeon redo? Superabundant bird collapses across Eurasia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0608.THUMB.trapped-YBB_China_Nov2012_Huang-Qiusheng-(3).jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In 1914 the world's last passenger pigeon died. Nicknamed, Martha, she was not killed by hunters, but simply old age. With her passing, the passenger pigeon fell into extinction. A hundred years before Martha's death, however, the passenger pigeon may have been the most populous bird in the world with a population often estimated in the billions. Now, conservationists warn history may be repeating itself. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14903 2015-06-03T23:01:00Z 2015-06-03T23:03:16Z Student becomes first researcher to hold an Annamite striped rabbit <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0603.annamite.rabbit.ground.92886.THUMB.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Almost nothing is known about the Annamite striped rabbit. First described in 1999, this beautifully-colored rabbit is found in Annamite Mountains of Vietnam and Laos, but&#8212;rarely seen and little-studied&#8212;it's life history is a complete mystery. But Sarah Woodfin, a student at the University of East Anglia, got lucky when undertaking a three month research trip on the species. Really lucky. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14892 2015-06-02T07:25:00Z 2015-06-23T14:20:43Z Director-generals inaugurated as merger of Indonesian Environment, Forestry Ministries continues <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/DHFEq__XWiMfi3yBHGXP3ZePJGnPRuhjKCx0_N5xstk=w150-h100-no" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Indonesia's newly merged Environment and Forestry Ministry completed a major step in its restructuring last week with the inauguration of 13 director-generals, with important implications for President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's agendas on climate change, land reform and more. Notable appointments include Climate Change Oversight Director-General Nur Masripatin, Environmental and Forestry Spatial Planning Director-General San Afri Awang and Social Forestry and Environmental Partnerships Director-General Hadi Daryanto. Philip Jacobson -6.206389 106.800687 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14872 2015-05-28T16:35:00Z 2015-05-28T16:37:04Z 120,000 dead: half of the world's saiga die in less than a month No one knows what's killing them, but scientists estimate that almost half of the world's saiga (<i>Saiga tatarica</i>) have perished since May 10th. To date, researchers on-the-ground unofficially estimate that 120,000 saiga have died in Kazakhstan from what appears to be a wildly virulent disease, although no cause has been ruled out. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14870 2015-05-28T12:59:00Z 2015-06-23T14:23:45Z GAR, Wilmar punish palm oil supplier for clearing rainforest in New Guinea <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/i/indonesia/150/aceh_0828.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Palm oil trader Golden Agri-Resources announced today that it would suspend purchases of crude palm oil from plantation developer Austindo Nusantara Jaya Agri, which was outed in an NGO report last week for the third time in the past year for clearing forest in Indonesia's West Papua province, in violation of Golden Agri's no-deforestation commitment. Wilmar has also frozen its dealings with the company, though Asian Agri and Musim Mas, which also buy from it, have given no indication they will do the same. Philip Jacobson -1.767753 132.428972 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14864 2015-05-27T16:47:00Z 2015-05-27T20:16:32Z Greenpeace re-engages with APP after response to activist's killing Greenpeace is re-engaging with Asia Pulp &amp; Paper (APP) after the Indonesian forestry giant quickly responded to the killing of a community activist on one of its suppler plantations. Rhett Butler -1.209058 102.410036 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14858 2015-05-27T08:30:00Z 2015-06-23T14:46:13Z Can improved oil palm productivity and Indonesia's forestry moratorium go hand in hand? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/indonesia/150/sumatra_0739.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>An op-ed from Mongabay-Indonesia chief editor Ridzki R. Sigit, who calls for renewed efforts to boost smallholder productivity on Indonesia's oil palm plantations in the wake of the renewal of the country's moratorium on new concessions in primary forests and on peat. Philip Jacobson 1.344530 101.913580 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14852 2015-05-26T15:16:00Z 2015-05-26T17:54:08Z Nepal's rhino population rises by 72% in ten years A new survey in Nepal counted 645 one-horned rhinos, up from 375 animals ten years ago and 534 animals in 2011. This represent a rise of 72 percent over the last ten years, an impressive feat given that the world's rhinos are facing a savage poaching crisis. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14848 2015-05-23T14:39:00Z 2015-06-18T02:11:35Z Palm oil activist murdered in Jakarta <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="//lh3.googleusercontent.com/-yOsxwSw-cVE/VWCRap0GchI/AAAAAAAABpI/QIdnNoO1xEQ/w150-h100-no/11099993_10152901494684862_3956272262438267001_n%2B%25282%2529.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>An Indonesian activist who opposed unbridled oil palm expansion was stabbed to death by a group of men before dawn this morning outside a nightclub in South Jakarta. Whether the attack was related to his activism or the spontaneous result of a barroom brawl is not yet clear. But Indonesian media are reporting that one of the assailants shouted that he was a soldier as he brandished the knife that killed Jopi Peranginangin, the 39-year-old head of campaigns for Sawit Watch, which strives for social and ecological justice in the palm oil industry. Philip Jacobson -6.266200 106.818030 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14836 2015-05-21T08:35:00Z 2015-05-21T23:11:01Z Timber 'mass graves' uncovered as Malaysian authorities pursue illegal loggers A crackdown on illegal logging in Peninsular Malaysia's largest continuous forest complex has uncovered three timber 'mass graves' – burial sites where valuable logs have been stashed beneath tons of earth to hide evidence. The loggers apparently made haste in fleeing the hilly terrain where they left the timber. A joint operation by Malaysia's antigraft agency and Forestry Department found parts of logs sticking out of the ground and the red earth still unsettled, indications their quarry had hurriedly concealed the felled trees. Philip Jacobson 5.543306 101.341206 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14835 2015-05-21T06:32:00Z 2015-06-18T14:37:37Z Indonesia sinks 41 foreign vessels in a single day to counter illegal fishing <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0317-thumb-imf-boat-bombing.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Indonesian Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry redefined fireworks yesterday. In coordination with the national navy, it blew up 41 illegal foreign fishing vessels to commemorate National Resurgence Day, the birthday of the country's first native political party. The mass sinking brings to 60 the number of boats new administration of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has scuttled on charges of illegal, underreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Philip Jacobson 3.810402 98.742737 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14832 2015-05-20T12:19:00Z 2015-06-23T14:51:38Z Sumatran tiger found dead in a pig trap <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="//lh5.googleusercontent.com/-kb6bJTAyWi4/VVx85A60csI/AAAAAAAABnU/ceD70NjuvZU/w150-h100-no/harimau-padang-evakuasi.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Authorities in the Indonesian province of West Sumatra buried the rotting carcass of a critically endangered female tiger that died after being ensnared by a pig trap on a rubber plantation earlier this month. The creature, a mother who was probably teaching her young to hunt, was found covered in wounds, its neck entangled in wire. Philip Jacobson -0.852865 100.525781 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14831 2015-05-20T10:04:00Z 2015-06-17T23:37:46Z Golden Agri takes another hit as sustainability guru suspends its membership <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/indonesia/150/kalteng_0079.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The charity that Indonesia's Golden Agri-Resources has enlisted to devise and implement its zero-deforestation and community-engagement commitments suspended its cooperation with the palm oil giant yesterday, following breaches of the policies they had designed together. A few hours later, Golden Agri announced the resignation of its chief sustainability officer. Philip Jacobson 0.600217 112.076059 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14829 2015-05-20T04:05:00Z 2015-05-20T05:12:11Z Tennis star responds to rainforest advocates Roger Federer has responded to two Indonesian activists who asked the tennis star to use his influence to encourage Credit Suisse to end its relationship with a controversial logging company, reports the Bruno Manser Fund. Rhett Butler 1.0730227 132.477214 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14828 2015-05-19T20:57:00Z 2015-06-16T22:01:33Z High pressure: is U.S. policy deterring illegal wood imports? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia/150/kalbar_2232.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Some countries, such as the U.S., have imposed legislation at the consumer level, banning the import of illegally sourced wood through their borders. A new study finds that such legislation can be effective, with a 2008 amendment to the Lacey Act significantly reducing the influx of illegal wood into the U.S. Morgan Erickson-Davis -0.580975 111.495203 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14820 2015-05-19T05:02:00Z 2015-06-23T14:57:45Z Luxury hotel chain linked to destruction of rainforests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/riau/150/riau_0035.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Mandarin Oriental hotel chain has landed in environmentalists' crosshairs for the practices of its sister company Astra Agro Lestari, a rapidly expanding palm oil producer with fully developed plantations on an area larger than Singapore. The new She's Not a Fan campaign – a play off Mandarin's celebrity-fan endorsement drive – launched yesterday with a petition calling on Astra to stop destroying forests and elephant habitat. Multinational conglomerate Jardine Matheson owns both firms. Philip Jacobson tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14818 2015-05-18T21:04:00Z 2015-06-16T22:02:38Z China’s investment in Latin America taking toll on the environment, setting the stage for conflict <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/brazil/150/brasil_055.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>China has been investing heavily in Latin America’s natural resources and crude oil. Recently, the country even pledged to invest $250 billion over the next decade to strengthen its presence in the region, and compete with the U.S. But this increasing Chinese trade and investment in Latin America is also increasing environmental and social conflict, finds a new report published by Boston University. Morgan Erickson-Davis -11.330873 -53.852581 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14765 2015-05-08T03:09:00Z 2015-05-08T03:25:07Z Indian fabric giant adopts forest policy <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/sabah_26440_150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>One of the world's largest fabric makers for the fashion industry today announced a policy to exclude fiber produced at the expense of endangered forests, reports Canopy, an environmental group that helped broker the commitment. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14746 2015-05-05T19:37:00Z 2015-05-05T19:43:58Z Sarawak leader pledges no more logging, palm oil expansion Sarawak's leader has allegedly pledged to stop granting industrial timber and palm oil concessions in the Malaysian state's increasingly endangered rainforests, asserts the Bruno Manser Fund (BMF). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14725 2015-05-01T17:59:00Z 2015-05-01T18:03:05Z Ongoing overkill: loss of big herbivores leading to 'empty landscapes' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0501.ripple5HR.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Ten thousand years from now, human historians&#8212;or alien ones&#8212;may view the current wave of biodiversity loss and extinctions as concurrent with the Pleistocene extinction. At that time, peaking around 11,000 years ago, many scientists argue that human hunters killed off the majority of the world's big species. According to a paper today in history may be repeating itself. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14724 2015-05-01T15:52:00Z 2015-05-01T16:03:47Z Sarawak increases fines for illegal logging After decades of intense logging that has left its rainforests degraded, fragmented, and stripped of valuable timber in many areas, the Malaysian state of Sarawak has passed a new forestry bill that could boost penalties for illegal logging. Rhett Butler 1.287446 111.010594 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14719 2015-04-30T23:51:00Z 2015-05-01T00:59:36Z Tapping into evolutionary responses to guard crops against elephants <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/namibia/150/namibia_0969.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The search for effective measures to reduce human-elephant conflict is a top priority for wildlife managers and a significant challenge. Ongoing conflict incidents exacerbate anti-wildlife sentiments among rural populations, as conflict events can lead to the deaths of both people and elephants. The continued expansion of development and agriculture into traditional wildlife grazing lands pushes elephants into more frequent contact with people and crop fields. Rhett Butler 11.668104 76.631985 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14705 2015-04-28T23:25:00Z 2015-04-28T23:48:53Z Selective logging leaves more dead wood in rainforests Up to 64 percent of above-ground biomass in selectively logged forests may consist of dead wood left over from logging damage, argues a paper published this week in <i>Environmental Research Letters</i>. Rhett Butler 4.632820 116.950086 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14702 2015-04-28T17:39:00Z 2015-04-28T17:39:41Z Five tons of frozen pangolin: Indonesian authorities make massive bust <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0428,MR7A5347.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Five tons of frozen pangolin, 77 kilograms (169 pounds) of pangolin scales, and 96 live pangolins: that's the grisly haul of the latest pangolin bust in Indonesia. Officials confiscated the illegal wildlife goods in Medan, Sumatra and busted the smuggler, who has only been identified as SHB. This is the largest pangolin bust in Indonesia since 2008. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14694 2015-04-27T23:57:00Z 2015-04-28T04:35:23Z 'Deforestation fronts' revealed <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0427wwf_deforestation_pressure150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Environmental group WWF has released a new report projecting where the organization believes the bulk of global deforestation is likely to occur over the next 15 years. The analysis, published today, highlights eleven regions where 'the bulk of global deforestation is projected to take place' by 2030. Rhett Butler 1.386919 110.181317 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14681 2015-04-23T19:15:00Z 2015-06-10T18:31:55Z Officials: Sumatran rhino is extinct in the wild in Sabah <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0423_r_IMG_8536_Small.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>There are no Sumatran rhinos left in the wild in the Malaysian state of Sabah, confirmed Masidi Manjun, the Tourism, Culture and Envi­ronment Minister, over the weekend. In 2008, conservationists estimated there were around 50 rhinos in the state. Five years later, it dropped that estimate to just ten. Now, it's admitted the awful truth: the wild rhino is very likely gone. Jeremy Hance 5.194121 117.002418 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14677 2015-04-22T23:48:00Z 2015-04-25T14:46:22Z Activists target Roger Federer as brand ambassador for bank linked to deforestation <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0422federer_cs_brand_ambassador150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Environmentalists are asking tennis star Roger Federer to deliver a message to Credit Suisse over the banking giant's continued financing of a logging company linked to ongoing destruction of wildlife habitat in Indonesia. According to the Bruno Manser Fund two members of a rainforest community in Sumatra have written to Federer to ask for his help in persuading Credit Suisse to stop financing logging of peat forests. Rhett Butler 0.993473 102.401074 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14676 2015-04-22T22:01:00Z 2015-04-22T22:01:15Z Photo essay: the flying fox show <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0422.flyingfoxessay.IMG_7594.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Rain or clear, wind or still, full moon or no. Every night thousands of flying foxes rise from a small mangrove island among the lesser Sunda islands of Indonesia. Around sunset the Sunda flying fox begin to stir in their roots&#8212;their stomachs waking them&#8212;until the boldest among them takes off into the sky. Jeremy Hance -8.606811 119.767311 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14654 2015-04-18T15:53:00Z 2015-04-20T15:41:31Z Growing need for deforestation-free rubber as tire demand destroys native forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/laos/150/laos_0448.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Surging demand for natural rubber is decimating some of the world's most endangered forests, putting wildlife and critical ecosystem services at risk, warn scientists writing in the journal <i>Conservation Letters</i>. Reviewing a large body of published research, Eleanor Warren-Thomas of the University of East Anglia and colleagues detail the crop's expansion across across Southeast Asia in recent decades. Rhett Butler 20.888908 101.326675 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14640 2015-04-15T14:27:00Z 2015-04-20T21:58:49Z Expert panel rebukes Japan's new whaling proposal <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0415.thumb.800px-AustralianCustoms-WhalingInTheSouthernOcean_3.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last year, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that Japan must halt its whaling activities in the Southern Ocean as it found no evidence that the killing of hundreds of Antarctic minke whales was scientifically justified. The ruling sent Japan scrambling for a new plan to continue its 'scientific' whale hunt. But, now an expert panel has rebuked Japan's latest plan as well. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14617 2015-04-10T03:43:00Z 2015-04-15T13:37:12Z Scientists raise concern over road proposed through protected forest in Cambodia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/cambodia-FOREST-LOSS150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A group of scientists have expressed 'strong concerns' about mounting threats to wilderness and wildlife in Cambodia. In a resolution issued at the conclusion of their annual gathering in Phnom Penh, the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ATBC) urged the Cambodian government to carefully evaluate the impacts of a proposed road in Eastern Cambodia. Rhett Butler 13.250159 105.561705 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14597 2015-04-06T22:40:00Z 2015-04-06T22:48:41Z Palm oil companies, NGOs endorse new deforestation-limiting toolkit <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/sabah/150/sabah_0727.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Forests not only house many of the world's species, but also much of its carbon. Now, a toolkit has been developed by a group of companies and organizations with the aim of helping other companies and NGOs identify High Carbon Stock (HCS) forests. The toolkit was endorsed last week by major NGOs and plantation companies in Singapore. Morgan Erickson-Davis -1.788594 110.702850 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14594 2015-04-06T17:21:00Z 2015-06-18T01:08:54Z Fighting fire with money: can finance protect Indonesia’s forests? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia-java/150/java_0551.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In previous articles, we have seen an overview of the problems with the Indonesian palm oil industry. Such problems are largely caused by rent-seeking politicians and businessmen, who are willing to sacrifice endangered wildlife, the health of their countrymen and long-term environmental stability in the pursuit of profit. These actors exert a significant influence on and within the Indonesian government. As a result, Indonesia remains conflicted between the opposing goals of conservation and economic growth. Rhett Butler -2.904811 112.032508 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14556 2015-03-30T15:24:00Z 2015-03-30T15:55:57Z Large animals invaluable for tree-seed dispersal and regeneration of tropical forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0318_bear_150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Nearly two-thirds of tropical forests in Southeast Asia have been degraded by logging, agriculture and other human uses, and their fauna have been decimated by hunting and the bushmeat trade. But if those degraded tropical forests are to recover naturally, they will need to rely on their remaining large wild animals to disperse large tree seeds, according to a new study. Brittany Stewart -2.233333 103.316667 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14550 2015-03-28T23:58:00Z 2015-03-29T01:01:27Z APRIL suspends contractor after environmentalists expose ongoing deforestation Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL) has suspended a contractor and a plantation manager after environmentalists exposed deforestation that violates the logging giant's sustainability policy. Rhett Butler 0.993471 102.401073 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14541 2015-03-26T23:39:00Z 2015-03-27T02:52:11Z APRIL violates sustainability policy by clearing peat forest after Jan cut-off <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0326rapp_greenomics150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>New data shows Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL) is continuing to destroy rainforests on deep peat despite a high profile pledge to clean up its operations. Today Greenomics-Indonesia released an analysis of two NASA Landsat images confirming that APRIL's subsidiary PT Riau Andalan Pulp Paper (RAPP) has cleared significant tracts of peat forest on Pulau Pedang island off Sumatra's coast since January 2015. Rhett Butler 0.993470 102.401072 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14537 2015-03-26T08:05:00Z 2015-06-23T04:19:57Z Indonesia's biodiversity-protected areas no match for encroachers, finds study <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/indonesia/150/sumatra_9166.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Indonesia's biodiversity-focused protected areas are failing to slow deforestation, while other categories have achieved mixed results, finds a new study. The coupling of poor law enforcement with the presence of high-value timber seems to be the main culprit. Philip Jacobson tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14528 2015-03-24T15:28:00Z 2015-03-24T16:26:14Z 'How about that extension?' activists ask as forest exploitation moratorium deadline nears <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia/150/kalbar_1043.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Less than two months before the expiration of an Indonesian forest exploitation moratorium set up under an agreement with Norway, activists called on Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakar to extend the prohibition, as she promised to do after taking office last year. Tiffany Roufs -3.546837 104.358517 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14517 2015-03-20T18:41:00Z 2015-03-20T18:50:10Z Pleasure palace in Lao facilitates wildlife poaching for Chinese elites A city-sized resort complex in Laos is facilitating large-scale wildlife trafficking for Chinese tourists, exacerbating commercial poaching in the Southeast Asian nation, warns a new report published by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14509 2015-03-19T01:12:00Z 2015-06-18T16:32:17Z Who's funding palm oil? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0319sabah_0587x150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Palm oil may be the single most important crop that you never heard of. A vegetable fat that resembles reddish butter at room temperature, palm oil is derived from the fruit of the oil palm tree. Both nutritious and highly versatile, palm oil is now an important component of products ranging from biofuels and food to soaps and cosmetics. Estimates indicate that as much as 50 percent of the products used by the average Western consumer every day contain palm oil or its derivatives. Rhett Butler -1.687367 112.950424 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14508 2015-03-18T22:52:00Z 2015-06-23T04:21:59Z Indonesia's small islands being rapidly damaged by industrial activities <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0318Kendawangan150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Intense exploitation of Indonesia's natural resources is taking a special toll on the country's small islands, with many subject to an outpouring of mining concessions that cover huge swaths of their tiny areas, often to the chagrin of local populations. Philip Jacobson -2.728779 110.100523 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14501 2015-03-17T16:09:00Z 2015-03-19T16:59:48Z Conservationists catch-and-release record-smashing freshwater fish <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0317.stingrayrelease.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Conservationists and scientists have managed to catch-and-release what could be the world's biggest freshwater fish ever for an upcoming episode of Ocean Mysteries. Naturalist and host of the show, Jeff Corwin&#8212;along with wildlife veterinarian, Nantarika Chansue, and the tourist fishing group, fishsiam.com&#8212;managed to reel in a giant freshwater stingray. Jeremy Hance 13.964295 99.604843 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14500 2015-03-16T23:28:00Z 2015-06-18T16:33:28Z Declining palm oil prices: Good news and bad news for smallholders <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/cr/150/costa_rica_aerial_0210.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Declining crop prices usually spell bad news for farmers, and poor smallholders in particular. The drop in the price of palm oil from a recent high of US$860 per metric ton in March 2014 to below US$640 in March 2015 (and far below 2010-2012 prices which exceeded US$1000) heralds a shift in perceptions of oil palm from an economic boon to poverty-stricken smallholders, to a liability that ties small-scale farmers to a less profitable commodity. Rhett Butler 1.733095 -78.794792 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14495 2015-03-14T01:58:00Z 2015-03-14T03:02:37Z Proposed law could decimate Indonesia's remaining forests A seemingly well-intended law that aims to turn forests over to traditional users could instead lead to large-scale destruction of Indonesia's native ecosystems, warns a prominent conservation biologist. Rhett Butler 0.430953 110.737270 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14491 2015-03-13T16:38:00Z 2015-03-13T16:47:39Z New wormy amphibians discovered in Southeast Asia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0313_cec_150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Worms come in all different sizes, shapes, textures, colors, and flavors. Some attack human digestive systems, some surface after a rainstorm, and some come in plastic wrappers, covered in sour sugar, at the local grocery store. Despite their similar features and anatomies, many of the real worms (not the sugar kind) demonstrate convergent evolution, meaning they are not related but have independently evolved similar features. Tiffany Roufs 11.419119 107.426307 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14487 2015-03-12T20:18:00Z 2015-03-12T20:34:27Z New report: commercial agricultural expansion fueling illegal logging and land conflicts in Myanmar <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0312-thumb-Forest%20Trends_cleared%20forest%20for%20agribusiness%20concession%20in%20Tanintharyi%20Region.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Myanmar government has been allocating land for large-scale private agricultural businesses in the country’s biodiversity-rich forests at an alarming rate, according to a new report released by Forest Trends, a Washington-based non-profit organization. And these concessions may be fueling illegal timber harvests and intensifying land conflicts, the report alleges. Morgan Erickson-Davis 26.353588 97.496193 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14474 2015-03-10T21:44:00Z 2015-03-12T13:53:05Z Tiger family photo surprises scientists <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0310.amur-tiger-family.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In a frigid Russian forest, a camera trap snapped 21 family photos over two minutes. This wasn't a usual family, though, this was a tiger family, more specifically an Amur tiger family. And this wasn't even a usual tiger family: the cameras showed a dad leading the way. Jeremy Hance 44.229676 133.948678 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14464 2015-03-06T18:07:00Z 2015-03-06T20:35:15Z New bird species confirmed in Sulawesi 15 years after first sighting <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0306-thumb-streaked-flycatcher.png" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Although it’s a hotspot of avian biodiversity, the Indonesian island of Sulawesi has been “poorly studied ornithologically,” according to a study published in the scientific journal PloS one. Case in point: the subject of the study, a new species of flycatcher first observed in 1997 but not formally described by scientists until November 2014. Morgan Erickson-Davis -1.315497 120.042114 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14453 2015-03-04T20:17:00Z 2015-06-18T14:40:52Z Indonesian fisheries ministry imposes new limits on gear and fish harvests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/thumbnails/indonesia/java/java5709.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Indonesian fisheries ministry has introduced two divisive pieces of legislation aimed at increasing the sustainability of Indonesia’s depleted ocean fisheries. Permen KP 1/2015 imposes size limits on wild-caught lobsters and crab, and forbids catching egg-bearing crustaceans. Permen KP 2/2015 bans trawl and seine fisheries. Fishermen last Thursday demonstrated outside the Ministry to protest the damage this will cause to their livelihoods. Morgan Erickson-Davis -5.127633 111.942737 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14445 2015-03-02T15:32:00Z 2015-03-05T14:52:15Z Giant panda population rises by nearly 17 percent <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/i/animals/150/animals_05361.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>One of the most iconic animals on the planet got good news this week. The world's giant panda population has risen by 268 individuals over the last decade, hitting a total of 1,864 animals, according to China's fourth decadal survey. This represents a total rise of 16.8 percent. Jeremy Hance 30.737124 104.142824 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14440 2015-02-27T16:57:00Z 2015-02-27T19:19:14Z Reports slam Malaysian timber companies, urge reforms in forest management <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0227-thumb-sarawak-morgan.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Two international NGOs have called out Malaysia in recent months over the country’s widespread illegal logging. Malaysia has been accused of not doing enough to protect its diminishing forests and thwart the illicit timber trade, particularly in Sarawak, the site of the country’s worst deforestation. Lax oversight, endemic corruption and limited transparency have allowed for Malaysia’s forests to be plundered by both the government and the private sector. Morgan Erickson-Davis 2.994144 114.270160 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14436 2015-02-26T19:25:00Z 2015-02-27T05:37:03Z Jokowi's environmental commitments in Indonesia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia-java/150/java_0456.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last fall Indonesia elected its first president with no ties to the established political order or the military. Joko Widodo's election was widely heralded by reformers who hoped the politician's capable management in his stints as mayor of the town of Solo and metropolis of Jakarta could transform Indonesia's chronically underperforming bureaucracy, potentially ushering in a new era of improved human rights, better environmental stewardship, reduced corruption, and healthier economic growth. Rhett Butler -6.659257 106.131028 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14434 2015-02-26T18:26:00Z 2015-02-26T18:32:45Z Photos: Amur leopard population hits at least 65 <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0226.thumb.Ma_r_28_cam2a-small.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Most of the world's big predators are in decline, but there are some happy stories out there. This week, WWF announced that the Amur leopard population has grown to a total of 65-69 cats. This represents a more than doubling of the population in eight years. Still, the Critically Endangered subspecies remains perilously close to extinction. Jeremy Hance 43.989510 133.453888 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14432 2015-02-25T23:24:00Z 2015-02-27T17:03:31Z Reports blame illegal logging for felling Sarawak forest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/malaysia/150/borneo_5424a.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A recent report by the international affairs think tank Chatham House has highlighted Malaysia’s lack of progress in dealing with illegal logging, blaming corruption and a lack of transparency on the country’s sluggish approach to environmental policy reform. Morgan Erickson-Davis 2.653982 114.292133 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14430 2015-02-25T21:32:00Z 2015-03-25T18:04:54Z Cambodia deports activist leader...then suspends controversial dam On Monday, Cambodia deported well-known environmental activist, Alex Gonzalez-Davidson, back to his native Spain. Co-founder of the Cambodian NGO, Mother Nature, Gonzalez-Davidson played a vital role in blocking efforts to build the Cheay Areng Dam. But a day after deporting the activist, Cambodia's Prime Minister, Hun Sen, said the country would postpone the dam until 2018. Jeremy Hance 11.367026 103.385691 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14427 2015-02-25T19:30:00Z 2015-02-26T19:21:38Z Rainforest loss increased in the 2000s, concludes new analysis <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0225fao-vs-kim-pan_tropical150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Loss of tropical forests accelerated roughly 60 percent during the 2000s, argues a paper published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. The findings contradict previous research suggesting that deforestation slowed since the 1990s. The study is based on a map of 1990 forest cover developed last year by Do-Hyung Kim and colleagues from the University of Maryland. The map, which includes 34 countries that contain 80 percent of the world's tropical forests, enabled the researchers to establish a consistent baseline for tracking forest cover change across regions and countries over time. Rhett Butler -0.504437 27.230473 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14421 2015-02-24T23:59:00Z 2015-02-25T00:53:03Z Santander Bank cuts off APRIL due to deforestation Banking giant Santander says it will not extend further financing to Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL) due to evidence that the Singapore-based pulp and paper company is continuing to destroy rainforests in Indonesia. The move comes after Greenpeace launched a global campaign against the bank. Rhett Butler 1.013991 102.330548 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14417 2015-02-24T16:00:00Z 2015-02-25T15:17:59Z Locals lead scientists to new population of near-extinct reptile <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0223.thumb.A-mro-villagers-with-a-King-Cobra-for-lunch_Photo_Chirag--Roy.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>By the early Twentieth Century, the world had pretty much given up on the Arakan forest turtle, named after the hills where it was found in 1875 in western Myanmar. Now, this Lazarus reptile &#8212;which has been dubbed one of the 25 most threatened turtles on the planet &#8212;has more good news: researchers have documented an entirely new population where no one Jeremy Hance 21.483210 92.525138 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14415 2015-02-23T23:35:00Z 2015-06-18T16:35:54Z New Guinea rainforest being leveled for palm oil, revealing gaps in zero deforestation pacts <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0223ANJ_RSPO_WILMAR-POLICY_2FEB2015_BY_GREENOMICS150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>An Indonesian palm oil firm is destroying rainforests in New Guinea despite high profile zero deforestation pledges from its customers, finds research by Greenomics-Indonesia. Landsat imagery acquired and analyzed by Greenomics shows that Austindo Nusantara Jaya Agri (ANJ) is clearing high carbon stock forests in the southern part of West Papua's Bird's Head Peninsula in Indonesian New Guinea. Rhett Butler -1.807874 132.433094 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14413 2015-02-23T15:42:00Z 2015-02-25T21:53:28Z Are small-scale hydro projects always greener? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0222.thumb.Impact-of-Kadmane-small-hydel-project-on-the-wet-evergreen-forests-of-Western-Ghats--South-India-Photo-Niren-Jain.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Rising energy demand and global efforts to mitigate climate change have made renewable energy projects increasingly attractive. One widely known and well-developed source of renewable energy is hydroelectricity. However, past environmental campaigns against large dams have resulted in policy changes in some parts of the world, leading to an increasing number of small hydropower projects. Jeremy Hance 13.825588 74.900236 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14399 2015-02-19T16:55:00Z 2015-02-20T17:19:17Z Authorities catch kingpin responsible for killing 20 rhinos <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0218.thumb.800px-One_horned_Rhino.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>With the aid of Interpol, authorities have arrested the leader of a rhino poaching gang responsible for killing a 20 Indian rhinoceros in Nepal. Last month, authorities nabbed Raj Kumar Praja in Malaysia where he had been evading capture for two years. Kumar was already evicted of 15 poaching incidents in absentia and sentenced to 15 years in prison. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14394 2015-02-18T18:25:00Z 2015-02-18T18:26:54Z Chinese banks funding rainforest destruction in Indonesia While Santander Bank has made headlines in recent days for financing an Indonesian forestry giant's ongoing clearance of carbon-dense forests in Sumatra, Chinese banks among the largest funders of the company, reveals analysis conducted by BankTrack.org. Rhett Butler 1.013997 102.330555 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14390 2015-02-17T23:38:00Z 2015-06-18T16:40:32Z Indonesia to squander fuel savings on biofuel subsidies that may drive deforestation, say groups <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/africa/150/congo_0021.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Instead of wisely investing the windfall generated by cutting petrol subsidies, Indonesia is poised to squander funds by increasing subsidies for biofuel production that could exacerbate social conflict and drive deforestation, warn environmental groups. Rhett Butler -1.639488 103.493185 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14388 2015-02-17T19:19:00Z 2015-06-18T16:44:47Z Indonesian forestry and fishery ministries move to eradicate corruption <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia/150/sulawesi-tangkoko_0663.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Today Indonesia’s Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) signed a memorandum of understanding with the national forestry and fishery ministries as well as a number of provincial governors to better integrate management and monitoring of the country’s oceans and forests. Rhett Butler -6.212259 106.830984 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14387 2015-02-17T16:21:00Z 2015-02-20T16:23:14Z 42 pangolins rescued...then sold to restaurants On February 1st, local police seized 42 live Sunda pangolins from poachers and handed them over to forest rangers in Vietnam's northern province of Bac Ninh. While the poachers were slapped with a fine, the rangers turned around and sold the live pangolins to local restaurants for a reported $56 a kilo, netting a total of $11,300 for the Critically Endangered mammals. Jeremy Hance 21.143798 106.103456 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14382 2015-02-16T14:43:00Z 2015-02-20T16:24:08Z Sabah shocked by banteng poaching Malaysia's Daily Express recently published graphic photos of poachers in the Malaysian state of Sabah posing proudly with a number of illegally slaughtered large animals, including the incredibly rare and cryptic banteng. Wild, forest cattle, banteng are scattered across parts of Southeast Asia, but Borneo is home to a distinct subspecies: Bos javanicus lowi. Jeremy Hance 4.992757 118.267348 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14369 2015-02-11T02:33:00Z 2015-02-11T02:35:57Z Banco Santander targeted over deforestation link Greenpeace has opened a new front in its campaign against a controversial Indonesian logging company by targeting one of its major financiers: Banco Santander. Rhett Butler 1.013995 102.330545 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14368 2015-02-11T01:47:00Z 2015-02-11T02:55:56Z Indonesia dissolves agency charged with forestry reform <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia/150/sulawesi-tangkoko_0329.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The world's first cabinet-level ministry dedicated to implementing REDD+ has been dissolved. In accordance with Indonesian Presidential Decree No. 16/2015 the agency known as BP REDD+, along with the National Council on Climate Change, has been absorbed into the newly merged Ministry of the Environment and Forestry (MoEF) as part of a massive government restructuring. Rhett Butler -1.649491 103.504287 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14364 2015-02-10T03:03:00Z 2015-02-10T03:11:06Z Malaysian authorities failing to take action against poachers Authorities in Sabah are failing to enforce anti-poaching laws, undermining governance and wildlife protection efforts in the Malaysian Borneo state, argues a letter published by several local conservation groups. Rhett Butler 4.816280 117.253647 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14362 2015-02-09T14:50:00Z 2015-02-09T14:53:09Z Pollinator collapse could lead to a rise in malnutrition Saving the world's pollinators may be a public health issue, according to recent research. Scientists have long believed that pollinators are important for human nutrition, but this is first time they have tested the hypothesis. What they found is disturbing: pollinator collapse could increase nutrient deficiency across local populations by a up to 56 percent in four developing counties. Jeremy Hance -15.831249 23.960145 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14356 2015-02-05T20:31:00Z 2015-02-07T23:33:04Z Forestry giant's zero deforestation commitment put to test <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/riau/150/riau_1448.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>An independent audit of the world’s largest pulp and paper producer found that the company had achieved a wide range of results in meeting promises to end deforestation and resolve conflicts with forest communities. In 2013 Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) announced its Forest Conservation Policy (FCP), which included a pledge to end deforestation among its suppliers, improve communication and conflict resolution with forest communities, protecting peatlands, and sourcing fiber only from responsible suppliers. Rhett Butler 0.645332 101.490370 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14340 2015-02-03T23:03:00Z 2015-02-04T00:05:10Z Norway asked to divest from company linked to Malaysian official Activists have petitioned the world's largest sovereign wealth fund to drop its investment in a company they say is linked to large-scale corruption in the Malaysian state of Sarawak. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14338 2015-02-03T20:06:00Z 2015-06-18T14:41:21Z In unprecedented move, Indonesia punishes illegal manta ray trader For the first time, Indonesia has sentenced an illegal manta ray trafficker to jail time and a fine, reports the Wildlife Conservation Society. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14324 2015-01-29T20:08:00Z 2015-01-29T20:13:17Z When is a forest a forest? How definitions affect monitoring <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/colombia/150/colombia_4621.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>What exactly is a forest? With forest definitions differing from country to country, and primary forests, secondary forests, and even tree plantations all perceived collectively as "tree cover" by satellite data, how does one accurately keep tabs on land changes? Morgan Erickson-Davis 5.5768616 117.3028865 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14317 2015-01-28T18:46:00Z 2015-01-28T18:50:59Z China tries out logging ban in northeastern province <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0128-siberian_tiger-10.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>China's Heilongjiang province, which borders Russia to its north and east, contains 18.5 million hectares of state forest - more natural forest than any other province in the country. However, since the mid-twentieth century, Heilongjiang has had over 600 million cubic meters of timber extracted from its woodlands. Now, China is trying out a complete ban on commercial logging in the province's state-owned forests. Morgan Erickson-Davis 52.272578 124.746463 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14314 2015-01-27T23:45:00Z 2015-01-27T23:46:28Z China’s recent forest tenure reforms threaten panda habitat <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0127-panda2-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Since the 1950s, plantations and second-growth forests in China have been locally managed by village communities as collective forests, which today account for 58 percent of China's forestland. Many of these collective forests lie within mountainous rural areas, some of which are also home to the 1,600 or so wild giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) that survive today. Morgan Erickson-Davis 31.790358 103.323123 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14309 2015-01-27T03:06:00Z 2015-01-27T03:29:16Z Rogue cop missing from jail An Indonesian police official busted for illegal logging in West Papua has been missing from jail for nearly a year after being granted permission to seek medication treatment, reports the <i>The Jakarta Post</i>. Rhett Butler -0.816249 131.337449 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14307 2015-01-27T02:58:00Z 2015-01-27T03:42:21Z Company run Sarawak governor has amassed $1.4B in state infrastructure contracts Cahya Mata Sarawak, a publicly-listed infrastructure company run by relatives of Sarawak's former chief minister and current governor, has received over $1.4 billion in state contracts over the past 20 years, alleges an investigative report released by the Bruno Manser Fund. Rhett Butler 3.229565 114.797140 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14306 2015-01-27T02:56:00Z 2015-01-27T02:58:17Z 155 Chinese nationals arrested for illegal logging in Myanmar 155 Chinese citizens have been arrested in Myanmar for illegal logging, reports <i>Agence France-Presse</i>. Rhett Butler 25.995140 98.176897 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14300 2015-01-22T20:46:00Z 2015-01-22T20:59:52Z Half of Borneo's mammals could lose a third of their habitat by 2080 <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/malaysia/150/borneo_5424a.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Borneo consistently makes the list of the world’s “biodiversity hotspots” – areas full of a wide variety of forms of life found nowhere else, but which are also under threat. To better understand the hazards, a study published today in the journal Current Biology examines the effects of climate change and deforestation in the coming decades on mammals living on the island. Morgan Erickson-Davis 0.605527 113.329920 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14294 2015-01-22T14:22:00Z 2015-01-22T14:36:41Z Palm oil giant launches online platform to support zero deforestation push <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0122KencanaAgri150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Wilmar, the world's largest palm oil company, has unveiled a tool it says will help eliminate deforestation from its global supply chain. The tool is an online dashboard that maps the company's supply chain, including the names of locations of its refineries and supplier mills. Rhett Butler 0.729198 121.270847 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14291 2015-01-21T20:01:00Z 2015-01-21T20:11:10Z Sundarbans still reeling from effects of December oil spill <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0121.kid_cleanup-1024x768.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last month, an estimated 350,000 liters of fuel oil spilled into the Sundarbans delta on the Bay of Bengal. An oil tanker that had collided with a cargo vessel on December 9th sank into the Shela River, spilling its oil into a protected sanctuary for the rare and endangered Irrawaddy dolphins (Orcaella brevirostris) and the Ganges river dolphins (Platanista gangetica). Jeremy Hance 21.968151 89.527303 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14287 2015-01-21T17:33:00Z 2015-01-30T16:17:23Z Video: clouded leopards and elephants grace drowned forest in Thailand Camera trap video from Khlong Saeng Wildlife Sanctuary in southern Thailand has revealed an impressive array of wildlife, including scent-marking clouded leopards and a whole herd of Asian elephant. The camera traps were set by HabitatID, an organization devoted to using remote camera traps to prove to government officials that wildlife still flourishes in forgotten places. Jeremy Hance 8.972407 98.790539 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14283 2015-01-20T18:33:00Z 2015-01-22T20:51:48Z India's tiger population up by more than 500 animals in four years The tiger is in major trouble. In 1900, the global population was over 100,000 animals; today, it is on the precipice of extinction, hovering around just 3,000. In response, tiger range countries have pledged to double to the population by 2022. But there has been little evidence of success until now: India has announced that its tiger population has jumped a remarkable 29 percent in the last four years. Jeremy Hance 18.643618 78.028492 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14281 2015-01-20T00:15:00Z 2015-01-20T19:22:22Z Indonesia's moratorium not enough to achieve emissions reduction target <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/riau/150/riau_1186.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>When Indonesia's former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono declared a moratorium in May 2012 on the issuance of new permits for logging in primary forests and on peat lands, it was widely hailed as an important, albeit far too limited, step in clamping down on the country's levels of deforestation. Rhett Butler 0.726830 121.278234 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14280 2015-01-19T22:55:00Z 2015-01-22T22:56:21Z High deforestation rates in Malaysian states hit by flooding <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0119kemaman150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Five states hard hit by flooding last month in Malaysia had high rates of forest loss in recent years, bolstering assertions that environmental degradation may have worsened the disaster. According to satellite data from researchers led by the University of Maryland's Matt Hansen and displayed on Global Forest Watch, the states of Johor, Kelantan, Pahang, Perak, and Terengganu each lost more than 10 percent of their forest cover between 2001 and 2012. Loss was greatest in areas with dense tree cover. Rhett Butler 4.270459 103.178102 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14273 2015-01-18T23:13:00Z 2015-01-19T01:31:35Z Facing legacy of deforestation and corruption, Sarawak may cease granting new logging concessions Sarawak Chief Minister Adenan Satem says his government may stop granting new logging concessions, reports Malaysian state media. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14255 2015-01-13T18:01:00Z 2015-01-14T17:45:32Z Mother and cub: researchers photograph rare cat with cub in Sumatra <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/15/0113.Kucing_emas_Kerinci-Seblat-Clouded-Leopard-Project.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Researchers working in Kerinci Seblat National Park have captured a remarkable image of a mother Asian golden cat (Catopuma temminckii) carrying her young in her mouth. The image was taken in mid-2014 as reported by Mongabay Indonesia by the Sumatran Tiger Research Team. Jeremy Hance -0.876586 100.527871