tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/pakistan1 pakistan news from mongabay.com 2014-03-25T20:42:19Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12982 2014-03-25T19:43:00Z 2014-03-25T20:42:19Z Europe approves vet drug that killed off almost all of Asia's vultures <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0325.cinereous_vulture-01.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>When Europeans first arrived in North America, they exterminated three to five billion passenger pigeons (<i>Ectopistes migratorius</i>) in the short span of a century through a combination of habitat destruction and hunting. In 1914, the last living passenger pigeon perished at the Cincinnati Zoo. Despite the staggering scale of this extinction event, three species of vulture from Southeastern Asia retain the dubious distinction of having had the most rapid population crash of any avian fauna. They might not have begun with numbers as large as the passenger pigeon, but within the space of a single decade, their populations were reduced by 96 to 99 percent. Jeremy Hance 25.365863 78.632792 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12874 2014-03-05T01:17:00Z 2014-03-05T01:18:59Z Pakistan to launch palm oil industry with Malaysia's help The government of Pakistan is in negotiations with the Federal Land Development Authority of Malaysia to establish industrial oil palm plantations in Sindh and Balochistan. Rhett Butler 25.403585 63.321762 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12374 2013-11-13T18:14:00Z 2013-11-13T18:50:16Z Richest countries spent $74 billion on fossil fuel subsidies in 2011, eclipsing climate finance by seven times In 2011, the top 11 richest carbon emitters spent an estimated $74 billion on fossil fuel subsidies, or seven times the amount spent on fast-track climate financing to developing nations, according to a recent report by the Overseas Development Institute. Worldwide, nations spent over half a trillion dollars on fossil fuel subsidies in 2011 according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10636 2013-01-03T18:21:00Z 2013-02-05T15:01:56Z An avalanche of decline: snow leopard populations are plummeting The trading of big cat pelts is nothing new, but recent demand for snow leopard pelts and taxidermy mounts has added a new commodity to the illegal trade in wildlife products, according to the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). Traditionally, the market for large cat products has centered around tiger bones and parts for traditional Chinese medicine. Snow leopards (Uncia uncia), however, are a novel trend in the illegal wildlife trade arena and skins and taxidermy mounts are the most recent fad in luxury home décor. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9895 2012-07-24T14:43:00Z 2013-02-05T15:16:45Z Conservation success: markhor population climbing <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/Grahm-Jones-male-markhor-and-kid-1.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Pakistan's national mammal, the markhor, is making a remarkable comeback in the country as a result of community conservation efforts, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). Surveys this year in the Kargah region of Northern Pakistan's Gilgit Baltistan territory, have estimated 300 individuals of this large wild goat, up from a low of 40-50 animals in 1991. What's more, the surveys suggest that numbers across the whole Gilgit Baltistan territory may have boomed to 1,500 individuals, whereas in 1999, there were believed to be fewer than 1,000 left. This represents an impressive climb&#8212;even for the markhor. Jeremy Hance 35.969115 74.7052 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9771 2012-07-03T16:07:00Z 2012-07-03T16:32:56Z Animal picture of the day: rare image of Asiatic cheetah and cubs The Asiatic cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus venaticus), also known as the Iranian cheetah, is one the world's rarest cat subspecies with somewhere between 70-110 individuals left. No surprisingly it is considered Critically Endangered by the IUCN Red List. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9484 2012-05-07T13:08:00Z 2012-05-07T13:33:10Z Pictures of the day: activists highlight personal impacts of climate change worldwide On Saturday, people around the world gathered to highlight the varied impacts of climate change on their lives. Organized by 350.org, the global day of action was a call to "connect the dots" between a warming Earth and extreme weather events, such as droughts, floods, and fires among other impacts. Nearly 1,000 events were held worldwide. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8914 2012-01-02T19:29:00Z 2012-01-02T19:30:45Z Small town rises up against deforestation in Pakistan The town of Ayun, home to 16,000 people in the Chitral district of Pakistan, has been rocked by large-scale protests and mass arrests over the issue of corruption and deforestation in recent days. Villagers are protesting forest destruction in the Kalasha Valleys, the home of the indigenous Kalash people. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8673 2011-11-10T18:08:00Z 2011-11-10T18:12:29Z Chemotherapy tree facing extinction A yew tree in the Himalayas that produces the chemotherapy drug, Taxol, is in danger of extinction. An update to the IUCN Red List, has moved the tree, named Taxus contorta, from Vulnerable to Endangered. Overharvesting for medicine and fuelwood have placed the species in serious danger. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8633 2011-11-02T16:41:00Z 2011-11-02T16:42:07Z Climate change already worsening weird, deadly, and expensive weather Unprecedented flooding in Thailand, torrential rains pummeling El Salvador, long-term and beyond-extreme drought in Texas, killer snowstorm in the eastern US&#8212;and that's just the last month or so. Extreme weather worldwide appears to be both increasing in frequency and intensity, and a new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) connects the dots between wilder weather patterns and global climate change. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7541 2011-03-08T19:16:00Z 2011-03-08T19:19:41Z India plans to aid dwindling Ganges River dolphin The Indian government has announced that it plans to develop a program to raise the population of its native Ganges river dolphin (<i>Platanista gangetica gagnetica</i>), a subspecies of the South Asian river dolphin. During a question and answer session Jairam Ramesh, India's Environment and Forests Minister, said that the dolphin's current population was estimated at 2,000 to 3,000 individuals in the Ganges. However, other estimates have placed it lower. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7125 2010-11-30T20:52:00Z 2010-11-30T20:54:05Z Climate change linked to 21,000 deaths in nine months Extreme weather events linked to climate change has caused the deaths of 21,000 people worldwide in the first nine months of 2010, according to Oxfam. This is already twice the casualties of 2009. In a new report <i>More than ever: climate talks that work for those that need them most</i>, the organization outlines the casualties of such weather-related disasters, for example devastating floods in Pakistan which killed 2,000 people and affected more than 20 million. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7097 2010-11-23T18:11:00Z 2010-11-23T18:13:48Z Record number of nations hit all time temperature highs To date, nineteen nations have hit or matched record high temperatures this year, according to Jeff Master's Wunder Blog, making 2010 the only year to have so many national records. In contrast, no nation this year has hit a record cold temperature. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6645 2010-08-19T20:14:00Z 2010-08-19T20:24:23Z NASA image captures one of the warmest Julys on record The NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) has found that the global average temperature of July 2010 was nearly 1 degree Fahrenheit (0.55 degrees Celsius) higher than average temperatures from July1951-1980. In fact, this July was tied for the warmest on record with July 2005 and 1998. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6594 2010-08-09T19:55:00Z 2010-08-09T21:07:21Z Summer from hell: seventeen nations hit all-time heat records The summer isn't over yet, but already seventeen nations have matched or beaten their all-time heat records. According to Jeff Masters' WunderBlog, Belarus, the Ukraine, Cyprus, Russia, Finland, Qatar, the Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Niger, Chad, Kuwait, Iraq, Pakistan, Colombia, Myanmar, Ascension Island, and the Solomon Islands have all equaled or broken their top temperature records this year. In addition, the hottest temperature ever recorded in Asia was taken in Pakistan at 128 degrees Fahrenheit (53 degrees Celsius); this incredible temperature still has to be reviewed by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6590 2010-08-08T20:14:00Z 2010-08-08T20:16:57Z Officials point to Russian drought and Asian deluge as consistent with climate change Government officials are pointing to the drought and wildfires in Russia, and the floods across Central and East Asia as consistent with climate change predictions. While climatologists say that a single weather event cannot be linked directly to a warming planet, patterns of worsening storms, severer droughts, and disasters brought on by extreme weather are expected as the planet warms. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4946 2009-09-07T19:32:00Z 2009-09-07T20:25:27Z Apple's Snow Leopard helps real-life cats Apple's release of its new operating system, dubbed "Snow Leopard", is helping raise awareness of the plight of one of the world's most endangered big cats, reports the Snow Leopard Trust, a group working to protect the real-life snow leopard in its mountainous habitat across Central Asia. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4554 2009-05-19T17:45:00Z 2009-05-19T17:52:05Z UN: Population growth rates fall to 1.1 percent in Asia-Pacific The population growth rate in the Asia-Pacific region has dropped to 1.1 percent, according to the Statistical Yearbook for Asia and the Pacific 2008, compiled by the UN’s Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The 1.1 percent growth rate is the lowest in the developing world. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3378 2008-10-28T14:30:00Z 2012-09-12T21:18:34Z How to Save Snow Leopards <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/08/1027rj150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The snow leopard (Panthera uncia) is one of the rarest and most elusive big cat species with a population of 4,500 to 7,500 spread across a range of 1.2 to 1.6 million kilometers in some of the world&#x27;s harshest and most desolate landscapes. Found in arid environments and at elevations sometimes reaching 18,000 feet (5,500 meters), the species faces great threats despite its extreme habitat. These threats vary across its range, but in all countries where it is found &#8212; Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Nepal, Mongolia, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and possibly Myanmar &#8212; the species is at risk. In some countries snow leopard are directly hunted for their pelt, in others they are imperiled by depletion of prey, loss of habitat, and killing as a predator of livestock. These threats, combined with the cat&#x27;s large habitat requirements, means conservation through the establishment of protected areas alone may not be enough save it from extinction in the wild in many of the countries in which it lives. Working to stave off this fate in half a dozen of its range countries is the Snow Leopard Conservancy. Founded by Dr. Rodney Jackson, a biologist who has been studying snow leopard in the wild for 30 years, the Conservancy seeks to conserve the species by &quot;promoting innovative grassroots measures that lead local people to become better stewards of endangered snow leopards, their prey, and habitat.&quot; Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3290 2008-09-26T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:13Z Past climate change drove mass extinction in Pakistan Research on long-vanished mammals in the Siwalik region of Northern Pakistan has yielded results relevant for today. In the span of two-and-a-half million years climate change caused a shift in Siwalik habitat from wet monsoon forest to savannah, dooming over half the mammal species to local extinction. The research was published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3335 2008-09-09T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:24Z Drug use blamed as vulture population crashes 99% in India and Pakistan Captive breeding programs are not large enough to ensure the oriental white-rumped vulture&rsquo;s survival, reports a new study in Biological Conservation. Rhett Butler