Brazil, Indonesia, Tanzania, and Google Earth dominated the list of popular mongabay.com stories for the month of June.
Brazil approved the controversial Belo Monte dam, a hydroelectric project that will generate 11 megawatts peak power production by blocking the Xingu River, one of the Amazon’s largest tributaries. Belo Monte will inundate some 40,000 hectares of rainforest and displace more than 16,000 people. The project is expected to exacerbate deforestation in surrounding areas.
Also in Brazil, satellite data confirmed an increase in deforestation over last year. Analysis by INPE and Imazon both showed a marked rise in forest clearing and degradation. The news came as a poll commissioned by environmental groups showed that the majority of Brazilians do not support efforts to weaken the country’s forest code.
Meanwhile the Tanzanian government won applause from conservationists when it announced a scaling-back of a road that would bisect Serengeti National Park, threatening to kill the region’s world-famous Wildebeest migration. The government however remains resolved to construct a gravel road through the park.
A Greenpeace campaign targeted Matel and other toymakers that use packaging materials sourced from Asia Pulp & Paper (APP), a notorious logger in Indonesia. The campaign featured Youtube videos with Ken mocking Barbie for her role in deforestation in order to “wrap herself” in cheap packaging.
A study used Google Earth to track marine animal behavior in Australia. Around the same time that the study was published, Google Earth announced a major enhancement to its oceans layer.
And finally a group of scientists, including researchers from NASA, published a new carbon map for the world’s tropical forests. The research, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by an international team of scientists, used data from 4,079 plot sites around the world and satellite-based measurements to estimate that forests store 193 billion tons of carbon in their vegetation and 54 billion tons in their roots structure. The study produced a carbon map for 2.5 billion ha (6.2 billion acres) of forests.
Most popular mongabay.com news articles – June 2011
- Brazil’s shame 
- Google Earth enhances oceans’ layer 
- Serengeti road cancelled 
- Egyptian jackal is actually ancient wolf 
- Could palm oil help save the Amazon? 
- Barbie, Legos, other toys linked to destruction of Indonesia’s rainforests 
- Last chance to see: the Amazon’s Xingu River 
- Conservation issues in Tanzania 
- New global carbon map for 2.5 billion ha of forests 
- Google Earth used to identify marine animal behavior 
- Majority of Brazilians reject changes in Amazon Forest Code 
- New technology enables scientists to map rainforest biodiversity by airplane 
- Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon continues to rise; clearing highest near Belo Monte dam site 
- Conservation biology loses a leader: Navjot Sodhi, 1962-2011 
- Malaysian palm oil company violates Indonesia’s logging moratorium 
- Interview with Indonesian climate official on rainforest logging moratorium 
- Assassinations of environmentalists continue in Brazil’s Amazon, deforestation rises 
- Ocean prognosis: mass extinction 
- Over 900 species added to endangered list during past year 
- Photo: Scientists discover ‘SpongeBob’ mushroom in Borneo 
- Global warming could doom the walrus 
- NASA picture of largest fire in Arizona history 
- Turquoise ‘dragon’ among 1,000 new species discovered in New Guinea 
- 300 species discovered during expedition to Philippines 
- Environment versus economy: local communities find economic benefits from living next to conservation areas 
- World deforestation rates and forest cover statistics, 2000-2005 
- How do we save Africa’s forests? 
- Brazil confirms existence of new uncontacted Amazon tribe 
- Future threats to the Amazon rainforest 
- Profit, not poverty, increasingly the cause of deforestation 
- 600 new species discovered in Madagascar since 1999 
- FSC mulls controversial motion to certify plantations responsible for recent deforestation 
- Photos: Cambodians rally as ‘Avatars’ to save one of the region’s last great rainforests 
- Rash of murders threatens to silence environmental and social activism in Brazil 
- Arctic on the line: oil industry versus Greenpeace at the top of the world 
- Mattel shuts down Barbie’s Facebook page in response to Greenpeace campaign 
- Vietnam plans to build 90 coal plants 
- South Sudan’s tropical forests fast disappearing 
- Tropical forests more effective than temperate forests in fighting climate change 
- Visiting the rainforest – a practical guide 
- Food security in developing world threatened by climate change 
- How do we save the Sumatran rhino? 
- How to save the Amazon rainforest 
- Poverty doesn’t drive deforestation, argues new survey 
- Endangered Madagascar wildlife on sale in Thailand 
- Indonesia to investigate palm oil company that allegedly breached moratorium 
- Peru cancels massive dam project after years of protests 
- New bee species sports world’s longest tongue 
- Green tigers: new research shows protecting forests will deliver new economic boom for Southeast Asia 
- Why is oil palm replacing tropical rainforests