tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/china1 china news from mongabay.com 2014-09-22T20:47:08Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13815 2014-09-22T20:32:00Z 2014-09-22T20:47:08Z Chinese now emit more carbon per capita than Europeans Last year, the people of China emitted more carbon per person than those in the EU, according this year's Global Carbon Budget. The report, updated annually, also found that global emissions jumped 2.5 percent last year and are set to hit a record high of 40 billion tonnes this year. The findings highlight how little global society has done to stem emissions, despite numerous pledges and past global agreements. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13807 2014-09-19T17:39:00Z 2014-09-19T21:50:59Z Is there hope for the vaquita? IUCN calls for action to save world's smallest, rarest porpoise <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0919-vaquita1-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Since the baiji was declared extinct in the early aughts, the vaquita has taken its unenviable position as the world’s most threatened cetacean. The tiny porpoise currently numbers around 100, with accidental entanglement in gillnets primarily responsible for its decline. In response, the IUCN recently issued a statement calling for immediate action to curb vaquita bycatch and head off its extinction – which otherwise may lie just around the corner. Morgan Erickson-Davis 31.095548 -114.586877 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13719 2014-08-27T18:52:00Z 2014-09-02T17:50:41Z The Gran Canal: will Nicaragua's big bet create prosperity or environmental ruin? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0827.800px-Volcanic_Island.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A hundred years ago, the Panama Canal reshaped global geography. Now a new project, spearheaded by a media-shy Chinese millionaire, wants to build a 278-kilometer canal through Nicaragua. While the government argues the mega-project will change the country's dire economic outlook overnight, critics contend it will cause undue environmental damage, upend numerous communities, and do little to help local people. Jeremy Hance 11.392321 -85.465667 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13717 2014-08-26T20:18:00Z 2014-08-27T16:58:24Z How do we save the world's vanishing old-growth forests? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/sabah_1454.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>There's nothing in the world like a primary forest, which has never been industrially logged or cleared by humans. They are often described as cathedral-like, due to pillar-like trees and carpet-like undergrowth. Yet, the world's primary forests&#8212;also known as old-growth forests&#8212;are falling every year, and policy-makers are not doing enough to stop it. Jeremy Hance 5.159093 116.924597 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13708 2014-08-22T19:37:00Z 2014-08-23T18:01:38Z An uncertain future: world's last wild Siberian tigers threatened by illegal logging, global warming, disease (PART II) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0822-primorsky-tiger-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Every year, between 20 and 30 tigers are poached. Illegal logging is reducing the tigers' habitat, and illegal hunting is reducing its food supply. However, these are not the only threats to wild tiger survival -- other problems are cropping up and taking a toll on the iconic big cat. Morgan Erickson-Davis 46.646831 136.404467 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13696 2014-08-21T14:56:00Z 2014-08-21T15:17:04Z Next big idea in forest conservation? DNA fingerprinting trees to stem illegal logging <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0821.cannon.DSC_0527.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>As a professor at Texas Tech, Dr. Chuck Cannon has been, among other things, working to create a system of DNA fingerprinting for tropical trees to undercut the global illegal logging trade. 'If we just enforced existing laws and management policies, things would be pretty good, but unfortunately, that is where things fall apart in many tropical countries,' Cannon said. Jeremy Hance 15.038075 106.306014 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13687 2014-08-19T18:23:00Z 2014-08-22T19:52:58Z Logging of Russian Far East damaging tiger habitat, few intact forests protected (Part I) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0819-siberian-cub-derek-ramsey-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The destruction of Russian forests to supply timber to international markets is becoming one of the biggest threats to the world’s largest cat, the Siberian tiger. Russia has more forests than any other country, with more than half of the world’s coniferous forests. However, worldwide demand for high quality timber, along with weak regulations, has led to widespread logging of Russia’s trees. Morgan Erickson-Davis 49.072346 138.014209 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13686 2014-08-19T16:11:00Z 2014-08-19T16:32:54Z 20 percent of Africa's elephants killed in three years <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0819.elephants.14-03984-large1.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Around 100,000 elephants were killed by poachers for their ivory on the African continent in just three years, according to a new paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Between 2010 and 2012 an average of 6.8 percent of the elephant population was killed annually, equaling just over 20 percent of the continent's population in that time. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13655 2014-08-12T20:35:00Z 2014-08-12T20:42:11Z Demand for shark fin plunging <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0812.WildAid-Hilton4.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Shark fin demand has dropped precipitously in China in just a few years, according to a new report by WildAid. Shark fin traders in Guangzhou&#8212;the current informal capital of the shark fin trade&#8212;say their sales have fallen by 82 percent in just two years, according to WildAid. Jeremy Hance 23.121809 113.325348 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13652 2014-08-12T03:52:00Z 2014-08-12T03:57:02Z China failing to take effective action against timber smugglers Voluntary guidelines established by the Chinese government won't be enough to curb rampant timber smuggling by Chinese companies, putting 'responsible' actors at risk of having their reputations tarnished, argues a new campaign by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13642 2014-08-08T16:17:00Z 2014-08-08T16:19:07Z The threat of traditional medicine: China's boom may mean doom for turtles <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0808-mauremys-reevesii-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Despite a lack of scientific evidence demonstrating a causative link between turtle consumption and medicinal benefits, many people in China believe they can be used to cure disease and maintain health. Because of this, turtles have been highly sought after for more than 3,000 years. However, in recent years, China’s economy has changed in a way that has become increasingly threatening to the country’s wild turtle populations. Morgan Erickson-Davis 19.149867 109.541385 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13638 2014-08-07T16:44:00Z 2014-08-19T15:46:30Z Want to save Africa's elephants? Close all ivory markets <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0807.gabon-27820.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The only way to save the long-suffering elephants of Africa is to close every ivory market on the planet and destroy all ivory stockpiles, according to a bold new essay in Conservation Biology. Written by Elizabeth Bennett, the Vice President for Species Conservation at the Wildlife Conservation Society, the paper is likely to prove controversial. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13594 2014-07-28T23:03:00Z 2014-07-29T19:38:58Z Over a million pangolins slaughtered in the last decade <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0728.Phataginus_tricuspis_APWG_2.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>One of the world's most bizarre animal groups is now at risk of complete eradication, according to an update of the IUCN Red List. Pangolins, which look and behave similarly to (scaly) anteaters yet are unrelated, are being illegally consumed out of existence due to a thriving trade in East Asia. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13563 2014-07-21T15:48:00Z 2014-07-21T16:02:55Z Germany tops energy efficiency rating while U.S. remains stuck near the bottom Two years after the first energy efficiency ranking report put out by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), and the U.S. still lags widely behind most of the world's other large economies. In the second report, the U.S. came in at number 13 out of 16 nations&#8212;even beaten by new-comer to the report, India&#8212;while Germany took the top spot. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13495 2014-07-07T13:25:00Z 2014-07-07T13:42:30Z Price of ivory triples in China In the last four years the price of ivory in China has tripled, according to new research from Save the Elephants. The news has worrying implications for governments and conservationists struggling to save elephants in Africa amidst a poaching epidemic, which has seen tens-of-thousands of elephants butchered for their tusks across the continent annually Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13492 2014-07-03T23:10:00Z 2014-08-18T17:55:58Z No restrictions: Japan's demand for illegal wood driving rampant deforestation in Siberia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0703-tiger-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table> Illegal logging is taking a huge toll on forests around the world. In response, many countries have banned the import of timber whose legal harvest cannot be verified. However, Japan has made no strides to reduce its import of illegal timber. Instead, it is knowingly importing mass quantities of wood sourced from vulnerable forests in Siberia, according to a recent report. Morgan Erickson-Davis 49.405385 137.501450 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13485 2014-07-02T18:00:00Z 2014-07-02T18:06:56Z Horror movie bugs: new wasp species builds nest with the bodies of dead ants <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0702.face.bonehousewasps.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>If ants made horror movies this is probably what it would look like: mounds of murdered ants sealed up in a cell. The villain of the piece&#8212;at least from the perspective of the ants&#8212;is a new species of spider wasp, which scientists have aptly dubbed the bone-house wasp (Deuteragenia ossarium) in a paper released today in PLOS ONE. Jeremy Hance 29.425675 118.365562 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13415 2014-06-19T17:07:00Z 2014-06-19T17:24:45Z Chinese fishermen get the ultimate phone video: a swimming tiger Two Chinese fishermen got the catch of their lives...on mobile phone this week. While fishing in the Ussuri River, which acts as a border between Russia and China, the fishermen were approached by a swimming Siberian tiger. These tigers, also known as Amur tigers, are down to around 350-500 animals. Jeremy Hance 46.941552 134.076563 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13330 2014-06-03T17:35:00Z 2014-06-03T17:51:44Z Turning point? U.S. and China announce major actions on global warming Could 2014 be a turning point for efforts to slash global greenhouse gas emissions? Maybe: in less than 24 hours the world's two largest emitters of carbon dioxide announced plans to finally rein-in the gas most responsible for global warming. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13251 2014-05-20T14:53:00Z 2014-05-20T14:58:19Z Chinese officials seize nearly a thousand dead pangolins <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0520.pangolin.seizure.2.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In one of the biggest pangolin trafficking cases yet recorded in China, officials confiscated 956 animals stuffed into 189 coolers this month. The dead pangolins were being carried overland in a truck, with the total haul weighing four tonnes. The traffickers were caught at the border of Guangdong Province. If convicted, they face up to ten years in jail. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13249 2014-05-19T16:23:00Z 2014-05-19T16:24:39Z Dams be damned: study finds large dams are too expensive <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0519-congo-river-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Hydroelectric power, supplied mostly from dams, provides approximately 20 percent of the world's electricity, an amount of energy equivalent to 3.6 billion barrels of oil. However, a recent study by researchers at Oxford University has found that large dams cost so much money and take so long to build that they may not be economically viable. Morgan Erickson-Davis -5.555227 13.565246 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13246 2014-05-17T23:31:00Z 2014-05-17T23:39:34Z Hong Kong begins destroying 131,000 pounds of elephant ivory <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/namibia/150/namibia_1042.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Hong Kong has begun destroying its 29.6-metric-ton stockpile of confiscated ivory. On Thursday authorities in the semi-autonomous Chinese city crushed and incinerated a ton of seized ivory in an action they hope will send a message to poachers and traffickers. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13229 2014-05-15T15:36:00Z 2014-05-15T15:47:50Z Chinese poachers caught with 555 marine turtles, most dead (PHOTOS) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0515.20140509-pawikan-fishing-vessel-pnp-01-carousel.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>On Friday, eleven Chinese fishermen were caught by Filipino police with 555 marine turtles, 378 of which were dead. Officials in the Philippines have since released the 177 living turtles. But the incident has sparked an international standoff between the Philippines and China as the Chinese nationals were arrested in disputed waters in the South China Sea. Jeremy Hance 9.784405 118.175065 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13212 2014-05-12T17:19:00Z 2014-05-12T17:41:21Z Chinese luxury furniture linked to murder, near extinction <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0512.eia.rosewood.table.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Intricately carved, meticulously designed, and costing hundreds of thousands of dollars: this is "hongmu," or Chinese luxury furniture reflecting the elite styles of the Ming and Qing dynasties. But while the red-colored furniture may be aesthetically beautiful, it comes with a blood price. Jeremy Hance 14.241349 102.996604 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13207 2014-05-12T14:17:00Z 2014-05-12T14:27:50Z India, not China, has the world's worst urban air pollution Breathing in urban India is hard: of the world's top twenty cities with the worst air, 13 of them are found in India, according to a new analysis by the World Health Organization (WHO). Despite the attention recently given to Chinese cities for atrocious air pollution, many of India's cities are actually worse when comparing annual averages of fine airborne particulates. Jeremy Hance 28.617115 77.205427 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13197 2014-05-08T15:46:00Z 2014-06-02T17:31:19Z China pledges $10 million to combat poaching in Africa The Chinese Premier, Li Keqiang, has pledged $100 million to combat poaching in Africa during a visit to the African Union headquarters in Addis Ababa. Jeremy Hance 9.000698 38.741573 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13148 2014-04-29T14:28:00Z 2014-04-29T14:41:24Z Chinese who eat endangered species could face over ten years in jail It's well known that much of the world's massive illegal wildlife trade ends up in China, including poached tigers, pangolins, and bears. But now those who order pangolin fetuses, tiger blood, or bear bile at a restaurant or market may see significant jail time. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13129 2014-04-25T00:00:00Z 2014-07-23T12:49:31Z The beef with beef: how 12 strategies could drastically cut agricultural emissions <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/colombia/150/colombia_6299.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Eating less beef, cutting food waste, and utilizing farm landscapes to sequester carbon are three ways a new report suggests the world could rapidly tackle agricultural emissions. Currently, global agriculture accounts for nearly a fifth of the world's greenhouse gas emissions when agriculturally-linked deforestation is included. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13118 2014-04-22T18:50:00Z 2014-05-01T21:57:58Z After widespread deforestation, China bans commercial logging in northern forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0422-hinggan-yalu-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Forestry authorities in China have stopped commercial logging in the nation's largest forest area, marking an end to more than a half-century of intensive deforestation that removed an estimated 600 million cubic meters (21 billion cubic feet) of timber. The logging shutdown was enacted in large part to protect soil and water quality of greater China, which are significantly affected by forest loss in the mountainous region. Morgan Erickson-Davis 50.980009 123.533821 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13116 2014-04-22T15:30:00Z 2014-04-22T15:40:30Z Illegal logging makes up 70 percent of Papua New Guinea's timber industry <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/papua/150/west-papua_5011.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Corruption, weak governance, and powerful timber barons are illegally stripping the forests of Papua New Guinea, according to a new report from the Chatham House. The policy institute finds that 70 percent of logging in Papua New Guinea is currently illegal, despite the fact that 99 percent of land is owned by local indigenous communities. Jeremy Hance -6.843058 145.777812 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12951 2014-03-19T19:43:00Z 2014-04-29T22:02:08Z 3 environmental reporting prize winners to explore drivers of deforestation, community forestry, and sustainable seafood in China <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia-java/150/java_0667.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Mongabay.org, the non-profit arm of environmental science web site Mongabay.com, has selected winners of three environmental reporting prizes under its Special Reporting Initiatives (SRI) program. The three prizes, which were launched in January, explore the impacts of rising human consumption on forest and marine ecosystems. The winners, selected from more than 150 applicants by a panel of issue-area experts, include Robert S. Eshelman, Ruxandra Guidi and Bear Guerra, and Dominic Bracco II and Erik Vance. Tiffany Roufs 9.244400 -78.196967 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12727 2014-02-05T13:31:00Z 2014-02-05T13:53:51Z Alpine bumblebees capable of flying over Mt. Everest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0205.800px-Alpenglow_on_Everest.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The genus Bombus consists of over 250 species of large, nectar-loving bumblebees. Their bright coloration serves as a warning to predators that they are unwelcome prey and their bodies are covered in a fine coat of hair - known as pile - which gives them their characteristically fuzzy look. Bumblebees display a remarkably capable flight performance despite being encumbered with oversized bodies supported by relatively diminutive wings. Jeremy Hance 27.986443 86.922022 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12698 2014-01-29T05:15:00Z 2014-01-29T05:16:58Z Investigation finds Chinese factory slaughters 600 whale sharks a year A four-year investigation by WildLifeRisk, a Hong Kong-based marine conservation group, has found that a single factory in China’s Zhejiang Province slaughters some 600 whale sharks a year to produce oil for cosmetics and health supplements. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12683 2014-01-24T19:52:00Z 2014-01-24T19:57:26Z Hong Kong to destroy 4,000 dead elephants' worth of ivory <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/namibia/150/namibia_1100.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The government of Hong Kong will destroy 28 tons of ivory confiscated from traffickers, reports CNN. The announcement, which comes just weeks after China destroyed six tons of seized ivory, suggests that the leaders of the world's largest market for ivory may be getting more serious about addressing a global poaching boom, say conservationists. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12678 2014-01-23T15:09:00Z 2014-01-24T10:53:25Z How “insect soup” might change the face of conservation <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://travel.mongabay.com/brazil/150/brazil_0996.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Much of what we know about patterns of biodiversity has come from extensive fieldwork, with expert researchers sampling and identifying species in a process that takes thousands of man-hours. But new technologies may revolutionize this process, allowing us to monitor changes in biodiversity at speeds and scales unimaginable just a decade ago. Tiffany Roufs 51.566814 -1.785454 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12674 2014-01-22T17:24:00Z 2014-01-22T17:59:36Z New frog species discovered on tallest mountain in Indochina <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/1125frogs150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A team of Australian and Vietnamese researchers recently discovered a new species of frog in the high elevations of Vietnam’s Mount Fansipan, according to a new paper in Zootaxa. The amphibian was named Botsford’s leaf-litter frog (<i>Leptolalax botsfordi</i>) as a tribute to Christopher Botsford for his role in amphibian biodiversity research in Asia. Tiffany Roufs 15.072124 108.010253 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12668 2014-01-20T23:47:00Z 2014-01-20T23:50:04Z Emissions outsourced to China return to U.S. in form of air pollution Twenty percent of China's air pollution can be attributed to goods exported to America, with some of those emissions drifting back to the Western United States, finds a study published this week in the journal <i>Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences</i>. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12598 2014-01-06T18:57:00Z 2014-01-06T19:01:06Z China destroys 6 tons of elephant ivory China authorities destroyed 6.1 tons of illegal ivory during a public event held in Guangzhou on Monday. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12594 2014-01-03T22:12:00Z 2014-01-03T22:37:31Z China to destroy ivory stockpile The Chinese government plans to destroy a stockpile of contraband elephant ivory and other seized wildlife products next week during a public ceremony in Guangzhou, reports the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). Rhett Butler 23.132783 113.268828 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12540 2013-12-19T15:01:00Z 2013-12-27T03:54:13Z Top 10 HAPPY environmental stories of 2013 <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1101olinguito.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>China begins to tackle pollution, carbon emissions: As China's environmental crisis worsens, the government has begun to unveil a series of new initiatives to curb record pollution and cut greenhouse emissions. The world's largest consumer of coal, China's growth in emissions is finally slowing and some experts believe the nation's emissions could peak within the decade. If China's emissions begin to fall, so too could the world's. Jeremy Hance 39.906576 116.413665 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12496 2013-12-10T14:09:00Z 2013-12-27T03:35:31Z Top 10 Environmental Stories of 2013 <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/south-africa/150/south_africa_kruger_1126.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>1. Carbon concentrations hit 400ppm while the IPCC sets global carbon budget: For the first time since our appearance on Earth, carbon concentrations in the atmosphere hit 400 parts per million. The last time concentrations were this high for a sustained period was 4-5 million years ago when temperatures were 10 degrees Celsius higher. Meanwhile, in the slow-moving effort to curb carbon emissions, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) crafted a global carbon budget showing that most of the world's fossil fuel reserves must be left untouched if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12484 2013-12-05T13:19:00Z 2013-12-05T13:40:41Z Humans are not apex predators, but meat-eating on the rise worldwide <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1205.maps.meateating.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A new paper in <i>Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences</i> has measured the "trophic level" of human beings for the first time. Falling between 1 and 5.5, trophic levels refer to where species fit on the food chain. Apex predators like tigers and sharks are given a 5.5 on trophic scale since they survive almost entirely on consuming meat, while plants and phytoplankton, which make their own food, are at the bottom of the scale. Humans, according to the new paper, currently fall in the middle: 2.21. However, rising meat-eating in countries like China, India, and Brazil is pushing our trophic level higher with massive environmental impacts. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12473 2013-12-02T15:28:00Z 2013-12-02T16:57:13Z 22,000 elephants slaughtered for their ivory in 2012 As the African Elephant Summit open in Botswana today, conservationists released a new estimate of the number of African elephants lost to the guns of poachers last year: 22,000. Some 15,000 elephants killed in 42 sites across 27 countries on the continent, according to newly released data from the CITES program, Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE). But conservationists estimate another 7,000 went unreported. The number killed is a slight decrease over 2011 numbers of 25,000. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12471 2013-12-02T02:37:00Z 2013-12-02T02:53:41Z Hedge fund downgrades stock over company's links to illegal logging in Russian Far East <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/1201-lumber-liquidators-stock-price-150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A hedge fund manager has downgraded Lumber Liquidators' stock over the company's alleged links to illegal logging in the Russian Far East, reports The Wall Street Journal. Speaking at the Robin Hood Investors Conference on November 22, Whitney Tilson, the founder of Kase Capital Management, said Lumber Liquidators' stock price may be inflated due to purchases of illegally sourced timber from Russia. Rhett Butler 47.171044 134.532223 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12467 2013-12-01T17:17:00Z 2013-12-01T17:23:42Z Journalism prizes explore community forestry, commodity supply chains, China's seafood consumption <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia-java/150/java_0884.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Mongabay.org announces three new $20,000 environmental reporting prizes under its Special Reporting Initiatives program. Three new environmental journalism prizes will enable journalists to do in-depth reporting on three important environmental topics: the role of community forest management in addressing climate change, cleaning up commodity supply chains, and the market for more sustainable seafood in China. The prizes come under Mongabay.org's Special Reporting Initiatives(SRI), a program that provides funding for environmental reporting. Mongabay.org will commit up to $20,000 to fund the top proposal. Tiffany Roufs tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12453 2013-11-26T18:50:00Z 2014-01-27T15:10:40Z Camera traps reveal Amur leopards are breeding in China (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1126.amurleopards.1.1.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Good news today about one of the world's rarest mammals: camera traps in China's Wangqing Nature Reserve have captured the first proof of breeding Amur leopards in the country, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). The photos show a mother Amur leopard with two cubs. A recent survey by WWF-Russia estimated the total wild population of Amur leopards at just 50 individuals, but that's a population on the rise (from a possible nadir of 25) and expanding into long-unused territory. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12381 2013-11-14T19:04:00Z 2013-11-14T19:19:19Z Scientists identify 137 protected areas most important for preserving biodiversity <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1114.Varecia-rubra_R.A.Mittermeier.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Want to save the world's biodiversity from mass extinction? Then make certain to safeguard the 74 sites identified today in a new study in <i>Science</i>. Evaluating 173,000 terrestrial protected areas, scientists pulled out the most important ones for global biodiversity based on the number of threatened mammals, birds, and amphibians found in the parks. In all they identified 137 protected areas (spread over 74 sites as many protected areas were in the same region) in 34 countries as 'irreplaceable.' Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12359 2013-11-12T05:56:00Z 2013-11-15T15:22:14Z Kids' stories and new stoves protect the golden snub-nosed monkey in China <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/1112GSM150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Puppet shows, posters and children’s activities that draw from local traditions are helping to save an endangered monkey in China. The activities, which encourage villagers—children and adults alike—to protect their forests and adopt fuel-efficient cooking stoves, have worked, according to a report published in <i>Conservation Evidence</i>. Local Chinese researchers, supported by the U.S.-based conservation organization Rare, designed the campaign to protect the monkeys. Rhett Butler 33.360356 104.874065 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12304 2013-11-01T21:22:00Z 2013-11-01T21:25:07Z Bolivia, Madagascar, China see jump in forest loss Loss of forest cover increased sharply in Bolivia, Madagascar, and Ecuador during the third quarter of 2013, according to an update from NASA scientists. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12293 2013-10-31T15:23:00Z 2013-10-31T15:46:23Z 'Remarkable year': could 2012 mark the beginning of a carbon emissions slowdown? Global carbon dioxide emissions hit another new record of 34.5 billion tons last year, according to a new report by the Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency and the European Commission's Joint Research Centre, but there may be a silver lining. Dubbing 2012 a "remarkable year," the report found that the rate of carbon emission's rise slowed considerably even as economic growth continued upward. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12273 2013-10-29T17:40:00Z 2013-10-29T17:51:11Z New campaign: hey China, stop killing the 'pandas of Africa' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1029.Do-you-want-to-own-ivory-dripping-with-blood_-When-the-buying-stops-the-killing-can-too.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A new public-service campaign in China will ask potential ivory and rhino horn buyers to see the victims of these illicit trades in a new light: as the "pandas of Africa." The posters are a part of WildAid's 'Say No to Ivory and Rhino Horn' campaign, which was launched earlier in the year. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12267 2013-10-28T19:24:00Z 2013-10-28T19:31:34Z Shanghai to ban coal by 2017 China's largest city and one of the world's biggest, Shanghai, is set to ban coal burning in just four years, according to a new Clean Air Action Plan. The city-wide ban on coal burning is one effort among many to get Shanghai's infamous smog under control as well as another sign that China has begun to take its pollution problems more seriously. Jeremy Hance 31.190483 121.509933 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12207 2013-10-16T17:59:00Z 2013-10-16T18:18:53Z Advertising campaign changing minds in China on ivory trade <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1016elephant150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>For three years, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) has been running advertizing campaigns in Chinese cities to raise awareness on the true source of ivory: slaughtered elephants. A recent evaluation of the campaign by Rapid Asia found that 66 percent of those who saw the ads said they would "definitely" not buy ivory in the future. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12158 2013-10-02T18:57:00Z 2013-10-03T17:23:35Z Unlikely success: how Zimbabwe has become a global leader in rhino conservation <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1002.LRT-rhino-monitor,-Hence,-tracking-a-black-rhino-cow.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>With its collapsed economy, entrenched poverty, and political tremors, one would not expect that a country like Zimbabwe would have the capacity to safeguard its rhinos against determined and well-funded poachers, especially as just across the border South Africa is currently losing over two rhinos a day on average. And indeed, without the Lowveld Rhino Trust (LRT), rhinos in Zimbabwe would probably be near local extinction. But the LRT, which is centrally involved in the protection of around 90 percent of the country's rhinos in private reserves along with conservancy members, has proven tenacious and innovative in its battle to safeguard the nation's rhinos from the poaching epidemic. Jeremy Hance -20.541387 32.08162 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12006 2013-09-03T17:43:00Z 2013-09-03T18:16:52Z China punishes top oil companies for failing to clean up their acts China's top two oil companies have been penalized for missing pollution targets, reports China Central Television (CCTV). The Ministry of Environmental Protection has suspended all refinery projects for China National Petroleum Corporation (CPNC) and the China Petrochemical Corporation (Sinopec) until they meet their pollution targets. The move is a part of a wider crackdown on pollution across China, which has suffered from record air pollution. Jeremy Hance 39.963438 116.405411 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11934 2013-08-19T13:05:00Z 2013-08-19T13:19:06Z China pledges $275 billion over 5 years to cut record air pollution Last week China announced it was going to spend over a quarter of a trillion dollars ($275 billion) to fight rampant and life-threatening pollution in its urban centers over the next five years. Recent decades of unparalleled economic growth has taken a drastic environmental toll in China, including record air pollution levels in Beijing. The announcement follows other news, including that the Chinese government has recently scrapped a massive 2,000 megawatt coal plant project near the cities of Hong Kong and Shenzhen. Jeremy Hance 39.887611 116.408157 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11915 2013-08-14T20:40:00Z 2013-08-14T20:42:52Z Endangered Chinese monkey population recovering The number of black snub-nosed monkeys in southwestern China has increased by more than 50 percent since the 1990's due to conservation efforts, reports Chinese state media. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11912 2013-08-14T14:22:00Z 2013-08-14T14:26:20Z China's growing wine industry threatening pandas and other endangered species In 1985, Li Hua visited a valley in the foothills of the Tibetan plateau. The area was better known for its panda population, but the oenologist realized that its high altitude, hours of sunshine, sandy soil and low precipitation also offered ideal conditions for growing grapes. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11834 2013-07-25T14:23:00Z 2013-07-25T14:33:28Z Booming cashmere trade eating up habitat for snow leopards, saiga, and wild yak <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0725.saiga.Berger_055a.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Snow leopards, wild yaks and other iconic wildlife on the world's highest mountains and great steppes are becoming "fashion victims" of the surging global trade in cashmere, new research has revealed. Scientists found wildlife being driven to the margins of survival by the "striking but unintended consequences" of huge increases in the numbers of the goats producing the luxurious lightweight wool. Jeremy Hance 42.55308 88.315428 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11823 2013-07-24T14:57:00Z 2013-08-21T15:36:23Z Zoos call on governments to take urgent action against illegal wildlife trade (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0722.chimp.zaccBASKET_DB9F392FAD98F.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In a single night in March, a band of heavily-armed, horse-riding poachers slaughtered 89 elephants in southern Chad, thirty of which were pregnant females. The carnage was the worst poaching incident of the year, but even this slaughter paled in comparison to the 650 elephants killed in a Cameroon park in 2012. Elephant poaching is hitting new records as experts say some 30,000 elephants are being killed every year for their ivory tusks. But the illegal wildlife trade&#8212;estimated at $19 billion&#8212;is not just decimating elephants, but also rhinos, big cats, great apes, and thousands of lesser-known species like pangolins and slow lorises. This growing carnage recently led to representatives of over 40 zoos and dozens of wildlife programs to call on governments around the world to take immediate action on long-neglected wildlife crime. Jeremy Hance 41.604661 -93.646889 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11811 2013-07-23T15:35:00Z 2013-07-23T15:48:38Z First ever pangolin conference concludes all eight species in trouble Demand for scales, meat, and even fetuses of pangolins have pushed all eight species of this unique mammalian order&#8212;Pholidota&#8212;toward extinction, according to the world's first ever pangolin conference with the International Union for Conservation of Nature - Species Survival Commission (IUCN-SSC) Pangolin Specialist Group. Meeting in Singapore earlier this month, 40 conservationists from 14 countries discussed the plight of these little-known scaly mammals and how to turn around their global decline. Jeremy Hance 1.283233 103.854733 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11796 2013-07-22T13:35:00Z 2013-07-22T13:47:49Z Mammals of China - book review China is home to greater than 10% of the Earth's mammals. In the Mammals of China, Andrew T. Smith, PhD and Yan Xie, PhD have produced a comprehensive easy-to-read pocket guide to this outstanding biodiversity. Mammals of China is the first time that the natural history of all the mammals of China are included in a single pocket guide book resource. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11783 2013-07-17T14:59:00Z 2013-07-17T15:06:17Z Stunning moth species discovered in the mountains of China <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0717Moth150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A new species of moth (Stenoloba solaris) was discovered in the Yunnan province of China, a new addition to the nascent genus of moth, Stenoloba. The discovery was published in the open access journal ZooKeys. The moth is colloquially known as the “sun moth” because of the intricate pattern that covers its upper wings and resembles the rising sun. Tiffany Roufs 25.085599 101.506347 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11752 2013-07-08T20:27:00Z 2013-07-08T20:45:53Z Chinese lose 2.5 billion years of life expectancy due to coal burning Chinese who live north of the Huai River will lose an aggregate 2.5 billion years of life expectancy due to the extensive use of coal burning in the region, concludes a new study published in <i>Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences</i>. Rhett Butler 32.901497 115.839629 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11748 2013-07-07T18:41:00Z 2013-07-07T19:01:54Z Yangtze finless porpoise drops to Critically Endangered The newest update to the IUCN Red List has downgraded the status of the Yangtze finless porpoise (Neophocaena asiaeorientalis asiaeorientalis) from Endangered to Critically Endangered, reflecting the deteriorating state of arguably the world's most degraded river system. The downgrade follows a survey last year that counted only 1,000 animals, a 50 percent decline from 2006. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11714 2013-07-03T16:57:00Z 2013-07-03T17:05:53Z New long-horned beetle discovered in China <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0703beatle150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Recent expeditions by the Chinese Academy of Science’s Institute of Zoology to the Yunnan Province of China have uncovered the existence of a new species of long-horned beetle. This newly discovered beetle has a beautifully colored blue-green body with short, slender, and distinctively blue legs according to a new article in Zookeys. Tiffany Roufs 24.607069 101.378173 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11706 2013-07-02T16:24:00Z 2013-07-02T16:24:53Z In age of climate change, Australia's vast coal fields could become worthless Australia's huge coal industry is a speculative bubble ripe for financial implosion if the world's governments fulfill their agreement to act on climate change, according to a new report. The warning that much of the nation's coal reserves will become worthless as the world hits carbon emission limits comes after banking giant Citi also warned Australian investors that fossil fuel companies could do little to avoid the future loss of value. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11582 2013-06-12T16:19:00Z 2013-06-12T16:39:36Z Featured video: gorgeous golden takin caught on camera trap The takin (<i>Budorcas taxicolor</i>) is a goat-antelope species that lives in the Himalayan Mountains. Takins are social bovines and are often spotted traveling in packs of 15 or more. Packs tend to be composed of female takins as the male takin is largely solitary outside of the summer rutting season. The takin is listed as a Vulnerable species by the IUCN Red List and is considered to be Endangered in China. Tiffany Roufs 33.961586 109.608764 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11571 2013-06-10T14:24:00Z 2013-06-19T23:54:41Z Tibetan monks partner with conservationists to protect the snow leopard <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0610.Snow-Leopard.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Tibetan monks could be the key to safeguarding the snow leopard (<i>Panthera uncia</i>) from extinction, according to an innovative program by big cat NGO Panthera which is partnering with Buddhist monasteries deep in leopard territory. Listed as Endangered by the IUCN Red List, snow leopard populations have dropped by a fifth in the last 16 years or so. Large, beautiful, and almost never-seen, snow leopards are the apex predators of the high plateaus and mountains of central Asia, but their survival like so many big predators is in jeopardy. Jeremy Hance 33.504759 87.963865 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11550 2013-06-05T21:39:00Z 2013-06-05T21:52:38Z African militias trading elephant ivory for weapons <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0304.800px-Loxodontacyclotis.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) is using lucrative elephant poaching for ivory to fund its activities, according to a report published on Tuesday. Eyewitness accounts from park rangers, Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) escapees and recent senior defectors report that the fugitive warlord Joseph Kony, who is wanted by the international criminal court for war crimes and crimes against humanity, ordered African forest elephants to be killed in Garamba national park in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the tusks sent to him. Jeremy Hance 4.16721 29.499062 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11477 2013-05-23T18:24:00Z 2013-05-23T18:36:33Z Scientists discover two mini-spiders in China (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0523.twominispiders.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Scientists have uncovered two miniature spiders living on mountains in China's southern region, one of which is among the smallest spiders recorded worldwide, according to a new paper in ZooKeys. Both spiders belong to the Mysmenidae family, which is made up of mini-spiders with eight eyes. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11474 2013-05-23T13:34:00Z 2013-05-23T13:37:50Z China to begin cutting carbon emissions one city at a time China has unveiled details of its first pilot carbon-trading program, which will begin next month in the southern city of Shenzhen. The trading scheme will cover 638 companies responsible for 38% of the city's total emissions, the Shenzhen branch of the powerful National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) announced on Wednesday. The scheme will eventually expand to include transportation, manufacturing and construction companies. Jeremy Hance 22.525243 114.058456 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11458 2013-05-21T15:59:00Z 2013-05-21T16:26:03Z China approves another mega-dam that will imperil endangered species Chinese environmental authorities have approved construction plans for what could become the world's tallest dam, while acknowledging that the project would affect endangered plants and rare fish species. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11315 2013-04-29T15:39:00Z 2013-04-29T16:02:22Z What if companies actually had to compensate society for environmental destruction? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/kenya/150/kenya_0414.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The environment is a public good. We all share and depend on clean water, a stable atmosphere, and abundant biodiversity for survival, not to mention health and societal well-being. But under our current global economy, industries can often destroy and pollute the environment&#8212;degrading public health and communities&#8212;without paying adequate compensation to the public good. Economists call this process "externalizing costs," i.e. the cost of environmental degradation in many cases is borne by society, instead of the companies that cause it. A new report from TEEB (The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity), conducted by Trucost, highlights the scale of the problem: unpriced natural capital (i.e. that which is not taken into account by the global market) was worth $7.3 trillion in 2009, equal to 13 percent of that year's global economic output. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11300 2013-04-24T22:31:00Z 2013-04-24T22:36:10Z China to phase out super greenhouse gas Some eight billion tonnes of greenhouse gases could be kept out of the atmosphere if China sticks to a deal with the United Nation's Montreal Protocol to eliminate the production of hydro-fluorocarbons (HCFCs). In return for phasing out HCFC production by 2030, the Multilateral Fund of the Montreal Protocol on Substances has promised China of funding up to $385 million. Jeremy Hance 45.506347 -73.578415 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11296 2013-04-24T17:33:00Z 2013-04-24T17:43:09Z China 'looting' Africa of its fish Just 9% of the millions of tonnes of fish caught by China's giant fishing fleet in African and other international waters is officially reported to the UN, say researchers using a new way to estimate the size and value of catches. Fisheries experts have long considered that the catches reported by China to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (UNFAO) are low but the scale of the possible deception shocked the authors. Jeremy Hance 4.171115 -1.721192 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11289 2013-04-23T14:45:00Z 2013-04-23T15:07:07Z The river of plenty: uncovering the secrets of the amazing Mekong <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0423.6799022660_06814e41d7_h.boat.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Home to giant catfish and stingrays, feeding over 60 million people, and with the largest abundance of freshwater fish in the world, the Mekong River, and its numerous tributaries, brings food, culture, and life to much of Southeast Asia. Despite this, little is known about the biodiversity and ecosystems of the Mekong, which is second only to the Amazon in terms of freshwater biodiversity. Meanwhile, the river is facing an existential crisis in the form of 77 proposed dams, while population growth, pollution, and development further imperil this understudied, but vast, ecosystem. Jeremy Hance 18.033586 101.890783 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11281 2013-04-22T16:21:00Z 2013-04-22T16:31:30Z Rhino horn madness: over two rhinos killed a day in South Africa Rhino poachers have killed 232 rhinos during 2013 so far in South Africa, reports Annamiticus, which averages out to 2.1 a day. The country has become a flashpoint for rhino poaching as it holds more rhinos than any other country on Earth. Rhinos are being slaughter for their horns, which are believed to be a curative in Chinese traditional medicine, although there is no evidence this is so. Jeremy Hance -23.185813 31.343079 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11278 2013-04-22T13:24:00Z 2013-04-22T13:37:50Z 'Carbon bubble' could cause next global financial crisis The world could be heading for a major economic crisis as stock markets inflate an investment bubble in fossil fuels to the tune of trillions of dollars, according to leading economists. "The financial crisis has shown what happens when risks accumulate unnoticed," said Lord (Nicholas) Stern, a professor at the London School of Economics. He said the risk was "very big indeed" and that almost all investors and regulators were failing to address it. Jeremy Hance 40.707873 -74.009063 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11245 2013-04-16T16:30:00Z 2013-04-16T16:45:56Z Yangtze porpoise down to 1,000 animals as world's most degraded river may soon claim another extinction <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0416.yangtzeporpoise.WEB_105591.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A survey late last year found that the Yangtze finless porpoise (Neophocaena asiaeorientalis asiaeorientalis) population has been cut in half in just six years. During a 44-day survey, experts estimated 1,000 river porpoises inhabited the river and adjoining lakes, down from around 2,000 in 2006. The ecology of China's Yangtze River has been decimated the Three Gorges Dam, ship traffic, pollution, electrofishing, and overfishing, making it arguably the world's most degraded major river. These environmental tolls have already led to the likely extinction of the Yangtze river dolphin (Lipotes vexillifer), or baiji, and possibly the Chinese paddlefish (Psephurus gladius), which is one of the world's longest freshwater fish. Jeremy Hance 29.118574 116.283188 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11239 2013-04-15T19:55:00Z 2013-04-15T20:01:33Z Double bad: Chinese vessel that collided with protected coral reef holding 22,000 pounds of pangolin meat What do you do when you're smuggling 22,000 pounds of an endangered species on your boat? Answer: crash into a protected coral reef in the Philippines. Last Monday a Chinese vessel slammed into a coral reef in the Tubbataha National Marine Park; on Saturday the Filipino coastguard discovered 400 boxes of pangolin meat while inspecting the ship. Pangolins, which are scaly insect-eating mammals, have been decimated by the illegal wildlife trade as their scales are prized in Chinese Traditional Medicine and their meat is considered a delicacy. Jeremy Hance 8.515836 120.419311 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11216 2013-04-12T18:53:00Z 2013-04-12T21:33:47Z Market figures out that geckos don't cure AIDS, but killing continues Millions of tokay geckos continue to be traded for traditional medicine, despite waning belief that the colorful lizards are a cure for AIDS, reports a new study from TRAFFIC. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11201 2013-04-09T17:25:00Z 2013-04-09T17:33:02Z Amur leopard population rises to 50 animals, but at risk from tigers, poachers <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0409.amurleopard.wwd.WEB_257680.250.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In the remote Russian far east, amid pine forests and long winters, a great cat may be beginning to make a recovery. A new survey estimates that the Amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis) population has risen to as many as 50 individuals. While this may not sound like much, it's a far cry from the a population that may have fallen to just 25 animals. Sporting the heaviest coat of any leopard, the Amur leopard largely hunts hoofed animals, such as deer and boar, in a forest still ruled by the Siberian tiger. Jeremy Hance 44.715514 134.60083 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11197 2013-04-09T15:52:00Z 2013-04-09T16:03:39Z Air pollution killed 7 million people in 2010 Seven million people died from air pollution in 2010, according to new data from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010, published in the medical journal Lancet. The research found that indoor air pollution killed 3.5 million people in 2010, outdoor air pollution 3.3 million, and ground level ozone pollution 200,000 people. Jeremy Hance 39.929748 116.344986 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11172 2013-04-05T18:01:00Z 2013-04-06T16:53:06Z 30% of Brazil's emissions from deforestation are export-driven <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0405graph150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>2.7 billion tons of carbon dioxide emissions or 30 percent of the carbon associated with deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon between 2000 and 2010 was effectively exported in the form of beef products and soy, finds a new study published in the journal <i>Environmental Research Letters</i>. The research underscores the rising role that global trade plays in driving tropical deforestation. Rhett Butler -6.476338 -52.50103 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11156 2013-04-03T14:38:00Z 2013-04-03T14:54:01Z Infamous elephant poacher turns cannibal in the Congo <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/deadokapi.okapi.unesco.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Early on a Sunday morning last summer, the villagers of Epulu awoke to the sounds of shots and screaming. In the eastern reaches of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, that can often mean another round of violence and ethnic murder is under way. In this case, however, something even more horrific was afoot. Jeremy Hance 1.402462 28.572299 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11146 2013-04-01T15:32:00Z 2013-04-01T15:52:21Z Poachers enlisting impoverished wildlife rangers as accomplices in elephant, rhino killing Corruption among wildlife rangers is becoming a serious impediment in the fight against poaching, fuelled by soaring levels of cash offered by criminal poacher syndicates, senior conservation chiefs have admitted. Rangers in countries as diverse as Tanzania and Cambodia are being bribed by increasingly organised poaching gangs keen to supply ivory, rhino horn and tiger parts to meet huge consumer demand in Asia. Jeremy Hance -9.069551 37.582397 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11138 2013-03-29T13:15:00Z 2013-03-29T16:29:20Z Progress in incentive-based protection of forests and other watersheds There are two ways to look at Charting New Waters: State of Watershed Payments 2012 - the latest report released by Forest Trends on incentive-based water protection. One is that investments in watershed protection are fast approaching a tipping point - rising 25% from the previous year and with 25% of all recorded investments occurring within last two years. The other is that investments in watershed protection have a long ways to go before they are more than a scant drop in the bucket in terms of world GDP, prevalent outside of China, or independent of government/non-profit aid. The truth lies somewhere in between. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11114 2013-03-26T06:33:00Z 2013-03-26T06:37:42Z China may push geoengineering as solution to climate change The political dilemma over geoengineering – deliberate, large-scale intervention in the climate system designed to counter global warming or offset some of its effects – will perhaps be most acute in China. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11048 2013-03-17T09:47:00Z 2013-03-17T09:58:56Z China's 80 billion-a-year chopstick habit impacts forests China's surging demand for disposable chopsticks is taking an increasing toll on the country's forests, reports Chinese state media. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11039 2013-03-14T16:56:00Z 2013-03-17T10:16:18Z Elephant woes: conservationists mixed on elephant actions at CITES <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0314.800px-Horn_Louvre_OA4069.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Conservationists couldn't agree if the glass was half-full or half-empty on action to protect elephants at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in Bangkok, Thailand. Elephants, especially in Africa, have faced a massive rise in poaching over the last decade with tens-of-thousands shot dead every year. Forests elephants in central Africa have been especially targeted: new research estimates that an astounding 60 percent of the world's forest elephants have been slaughtered for their tusks in the last ten years alone. While conservationists had hopes that CITES would move aggressively against elephant poaching, the results were a decidedly mixed-bag. Jeremy Hance 13.743387 100.510941 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11032 2013-03-12T18:07:00Z 2013-03-12T18:10:35Z Dozens of tropical trees awarded new protections at CITES Numerous species of rosewood and ebony from Madagascar, Latin America, and Southeast Asia were granted protection today at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in Bangkok, Thailand. The ruling comes one day after CITES granted the first protections ever to sharks and manta rays. Jeremy Hance 13.743387 100.510941 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11023 2013-03-11T16:42:00Z 2013-03-12T14:52:42Z Sharks and rays win protections at CITES <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0311.traffic.Manta-ray.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Today, for the first time, sharks and rays have won the vote for better protection under CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species), the world's regulating body on trade in threatened species. Five shark species and manta rays, which includes two species, have received enough votes to be listed under Appendix II of CITES, which means tougher regulations, but not an outright ban. However, the votes could still be overturned before the end of the meeting. Jeremy Hance 13.743387 100.510941 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11009 2013-03-07T22:04:00Z 2013-03-07T22:16:50Z China delays carbon tax China will not introduce a carbon tax in 2013, reports Bloomberg. Rhett Butler 39.911316 116.340065 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11007 2013-03-07T20:13:00Z 2013-03-07T21:37:23Z What happened to the elephants of Bouba Ndjida? [warning: graphic photos] <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0307.cameroon.elephants.bullets._DSC0738.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A new report released by the Wildlife Conservation Society says that poachers have killed a staggering 62 percent of Africa's forest elephants in the last decade. The insatiable demand for elephant ivory hails mainly from China and Thailand, which is ironically hosting this year's CITES (CoP16) meeting. The meeting will continue until March 13 2013. The study is based on a survey of five elephant range states including Cameroon. Cameroon is the home of Bouba Ndjida National Park, where the dizzying massacre of 650 elephants occurred last year. Jeremy Hance 8.628323 14.668034 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10976 2013-03-05T01:01:00Z 2013-03-05T01:04:39Z Has shark fin consumption peaked at 100M dead sharks per year? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0304.799px-Scalloped_hammerhead_cocos.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>While a new study warns that up to 100M sharks are killed annually, there are signs out of China that demand for shark fin may be on the decline. A study published last week in the journal Marine Policy estimated shark deaths at 100 million in 2000 and 97 million in 2010, suggesting a slight drop in shark killing. Meanwhile reports out of China in recent months suggest an accelerating decline in shark fin consumption. China is the top market for shark fin, which is consumed as a status symbol, typically at wedding ceremonies and business dinners. Jeremy Hance 22.248429 114.211121 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10974 2013-03-04T20:15:00Z 2013-03-04T22:35:32Z New illegal logging ban in EU could sever all ties with companies working in DRC <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0304.greenpeace.2013-03-04-at-2.05.31-PM.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Yesterday, the EU joined the U.S. and Australia in banning all timber that was illegally harvested abroad. The new regulation could have a major impact on where the EU sources its timber, and no where more so than the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). According to a new report by Greenpeace, the DRC's current moratorium on industrial logging is being systematically circumvented making all timber from the country suspect. Jeremy Hance -4.784469 18.960571 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10972 2013-03-04T18:37:00Z 2013-03-04T18:47:34Z Thailand's Prime Minister commits to ending ivory trade <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0304.800px-Loxodontacyclotis.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Yesterday, Thailand's Prime Minister, Yingluck Shinawatra, committed to ending the ivory trade in her country. Her announcement came during the opening of the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES) in Bangkok, which seeks to regulate trade in biodiversity across borders. Wildlife groups say that Thailand's legal trade in domestic ivory&#8212;international ivory is illegal of course&#8212;has created an easy opening for smugglers from abroad. Currently the ivory trade in Thailand is estimated to be second only to that of China. Jeremy Hance 13.743387 100.51506 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10966 2013-03-04T01:22:00Z 2013-03-04T19:49:21Z Elephant and Rhino issues to be debated at CITES 16th Conference of Parties <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/animals/sf/150/rhino_3082.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>When the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) meets from March 3-14 in Bangkok for its 16th Conference of Parties (CoP16), elephants and rhinos will be at the top of the agenda. While there are no proposals to open up trade in either elephant ivory or rhino horn, there are several other items on the agenda that will likely generate debate, including proposals for extension of the moratorium on ivory trade, a decision-making mechanism for ivory trade, and suspension of any rhino trophy hunting. Also to be discussed are enforcement mechanisms, including how to prevent illegal ivory from entering existing legal domestic markets. Rhett Butler -23.513626 31.349487 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10931 2013-02-26T18:52:00Z 2013-02-26T19:09:42Z Chinese government creating secret demand for tiger trade alleges NGO (warning: graphic images) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0226.China_Chaohu_tiger-skin-rug-for-sale-with-permit-at-Xiafeng-taxidermy-copyright-EIA.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The number of tigers being captive bred in China for consumption exceed those surviving in the wild&#8212;across 13 countries&#8212;by over a third, according to a new report by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). The report, Hidden in Plain Sight, alleges that while the Chinese government has been taking a tough stance on tiger conservation abroad, at home it has been secretly creating demand for the internationally-banned trade. Few animals in the world have garnered as much conservation attention at the tiger (Panthera tigirs), including an international summit in 2010 that raised hundreds of millions of dollars for the vanishing wild cats. Jeremy Hance 25.273262 110.285854