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The Slaughter of Elephants in Vietnam Is Nearly Complete

The Slaughter of Elephants in Vietnam Is Nearly Complete | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
An "epic slaughter" of wild elephants is under way in Africa, with tens of thousands being killed every year for their ivory. Poachers have already done their worst in Vietnam, where only a few dozen elephants remain in the wild.

Via Maria Nunzia @Varvera , Sriram
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Garry Rogers
Natural history news and information for animals, plants, and habitats.  See more at http://garryrogers.com.
Curated by Garry Rogers
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Buffalo's 2014 November Snowstorm

Buffalo's 2014 November Snowstorm | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Earlier this week something rather interesting and disturbing happened to the Jet Stream. 

"In the extreme northwest, a large heat pool over Alaska and the Beaufort Sea in the Arctic Ocean kept temperatures in the range of 10 to 36 degrees Fahrenheit above average. To the south, a powerful super typhoon, gorged on Pacific Ocean waters ranging from 1-2 C hotter than normal, raced into the extratropical region of the Central and Northern Pacific. And to the north and east, the cold core that normally resides over the North Pole began slipping south.

"As the supertyphoon’s remnants hit the warm weakness in the Jet Stream near Alaska, it bombed out into a monster extra-tropical low. This kicked warm air even further north, causing a whiplash in the Jet and driving the cold air core south over Canada.

"Cold air rocketed down over the relatively warm waters of the Great Lakes. These waters, having soaked up the heat of yet another hotter than average American summer, squeezed an epic amount of moisture and storm feeding energy out into the air. Over the past two days, the result was as kind of thundersnow storm that parked itself in one location, dumping foot after foot of snow. By the time the final tally was counted this morning, as much as 8 feet had fallen over Buffalo New York. A record amount never before seen in so short a time span and yet so far ahead of winter."

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  As extreme weather events become more common, they will become more extreme, guaranteeing more exciting weather news cycles than ever before.

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Elephants are being wiped out, but not enough people seem to care | Bibi van der Zee

Elephants are being wiped out, but not enough people seem to care | Bibi van der Zee | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Progress on wildlife poaching is slow because there is little public pressure.
Garry Rogers's insight:

Perhaps the size of the financial commitment to protecting elephants has to be similar to the blackmarket value of the remaining tusks (http://www.havocscope.com/exotic-animals-for-sale/).  That might run as high as one billion dollars, or about one tenth of the annual U. S. arms exports to developing nations.

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China's New Great Wall Threatens One Quarter of World's Shorebirds

China's New Great Wall Threatens One Quarter of World's Shorebirds | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Every spring, tens of thousands of plump, russet-breasted shorebirds drop down onto the wetlands of China’s Bohai Bay, ravenous after traveling 3,000 miles from Australia. 

This Yellow Sea stopover point is crucial for the birds, called red knots, to rest and refuel for the second leg of their journey, which will take them another 2,000 miles up to the Arctic tundra.

Unfortunately for the red knots, the intertidal flats of Bohai Bay are rapidly disappearing, cut off from the ocean by new sea walls and filled in with silt and rock, to create buildable land for development.  In a society now relentlessly focused on short-term profit that seems like a wonderful bargain, and the collateral loss of vast areas of shorebird habitat merely an incidental detail. As a result, China’s seawall mileage has more than tripled over the past two decades, and now covers 60 percent of the mainland coastline. This “new Great Wall” is already longer than the celebrated Great Wall of China, according to an article published Thursday in Science, and it’s just getting bigger every year—with catastrophic consequences for wildlife and people.


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Warmest oceans ever recorded

Warmest oceans ever recorded | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
The current record-breaking temperatures indicate that the 14-year-long pause in ocean warming has come to an end.
Garry Rogers's insight:

The global-warming hiatus is probably over.  Now might be a good time to review the RobertScribbler post:  http://robertscribbler.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/its-worse-than-we-thought-new-study-finds-that-earth-is-warming-far-faster-than-expected/.


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50 Cruelty-Free Companies

50 Cruelty-Free Companies | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

Animal cruelty is the extreme measure of human disrespect for nature and other sentient beings. Environmental pollution, mass extinction, and failed land-use management are consequences of our disrespect.

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US Wet Areas to Get Wetter And Dry Areas To Get Drier

US Wet Areas to Get Wetter And Dry Areas To Get Drier | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

From NOAA

The twenty-first century may bring the United States more of the weather it's already got, whether wet or dry. The U.S. National Climate Assessment, issued in May 2014, examined multiple model projections of seasonal precipitation over the rest of this century. In general, precipitation is projected to increase in the northernmost parts of the country, and decrease in the southwestern United States.

These maps show projected seasonal precipitation changes for the final decades of this century (2071-2099) compared to the end of the last century (1970-1999) depending on two possible scenarios for greenhouse gas emissions. One scenario assumes that greenhouse gas emissions peak sometime between 2010 and 2020 and rapidly decline afterwards. The other scenario assumes that greenhouse gas emissions continue increasing throughout the 21st century.

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  These results confirm earlier predictions. The projected changes are milder if we cut greenhouse gas emissions now, but they still occur.  Interesting that while drought continues in the Southwest, the Arizona monsoon will intensify.

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Africa: Bringing More International Pressure to Bear On Wildlife Crime

Africa: Bringing More International Pressure to Bear On Wildlife Crime | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
[IPS]Quito -A surge in wildlife crime is fuelling criminal syndicates, perpetuating terrorism, and resulting in the loss of major revenues from tourism and industries dependent on iconic species while also endangering the livelihoods of the rural...
Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  Does anyone else feel that the poaching problem is growing worse?

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Just 90 companies caused two-thirds of man-made global warming emissions

Just 90 companies caused two-thirds of man-made global warming emissions | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

Oil, coal and gas companies are contributing to most carbon emissions, causing climate change and some are also funding denial campaigns. Photograph: David Gray/Reuter.


Suzanne Goldenberg: Chevron, Exxon and BP among companies most responsible for climate change since dawn of industrial age, figures show

"The climate crisis of the 21st century has been caused largely by just 90 companies, which between them produced nearly two-thirds of the greenhouse gas emissions generated since the dawning of the industrial age, new research suggests.

"The companies range from investor-owned firms – household names such as Chevron, Exxon and BP – to state-owned and government-run firms.

"The analysis, which was welcomed by the former vice-president Al Gore as a "crucial step forward" found that the vast majority of the firms were in the business of producing oil, gas or coal, found the analysis, which has been published in the journal Climatic Change."

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  They're not going to stop.

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New Campaign Aims to Make the Fur Industry a Thing of the Past | Care2 Causes

New Campaign Aims to Make the Fur Industry a Thing of the Past | Care2 Causes | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Emy Will:MAKE FUR HISTORY
Originally posted on Life or Lunch?:
Forced to live and die in the most unbearable conditions imaginable, today’s large scale fur industry results in the confinement and slaughter of millions of animals every year.
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Great Barrier Reef Australia, Turtle Rehabilitation Program - Oceans2earth.Org

Great Barrier Reef Australia, Turtle Rehabilitation Program - Oceans2earth.Org | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Volunteer At A Rehabilitation Centre Treating Injured & Sick Sea Turtles From The Great Barrier Reef & Cape York Peninsula In Australia. Click To Know More
Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  Here's a chance to see the Great Barrier Reef and northern Australian coast while learning about and working with turtles.

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Animal Bill of Rights Week - Animal Legal Defense Fund

Animal Bill of Rights Week - Animal Legal Defense Fund | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Each day this week you can take action to support our campaign for basic legal rights for all animals.
Garry Rogers's insight:

Start today, and you can catch up on Monday too.

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IPCC Final Report: We've Blown Two-Thirds of Our Carbon Budget

IPCC Final Report: We've Blown Two-Thirds of Our Carbon Budget | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
"Human influence on the climate system is clear, and recent anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases are the highest in history. Recent climate changes have had widespread impacts on human and natural systems", said the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) today, in the final installment of their once-every-seven-year report on the climate. Today's Synthesis Report summarizes the key messages from Parts I, II, and III, issued in September 2013 - April 2014. The Synthesis Report warns that "continued emission of greenhouse gases will cause further warming and long-lasting changes in all components of the climate system, increasing the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems. Limiting climate change would require substantial and sustained reductions in greenhouse gas emissions which, together with adaptation, can limit climate change risks." During the press conference accompanying the report release, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said "action on climate change can contribute to economic prosperity, better health and more livable cities,” but warned that inaction would “cost much, much more.” I'll comment on just three key themes from today's report:
Garry Rogers's insight:

Another perspective on the IPCC final report.  "Given the massive wealth and political power of a fossil fuel industry intent upon preserving its $27 trillion stock value, it's no wonder that the dire messages on climate change given by the Nobel prize-winning IPCC, a volunteer organization with almost no PR budget, are drowned out by a stupendous amount of industry-funded misinformation, echoed by politicians they help elect and sympathetic media outlets" (Dr. Jeff Masters).

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38 federal agencies reveal their vulnerabilities to climate change — and what they’re doing about it

38 federal agencies reveal their vulnerabilities to climate change — and what they’re doing about it | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

Chris Mooney, The Washington Post:  "The Obama administration published a small library's worth of climate change documents on Friday, outlining 38 federal agencies' vulnerabilities to global warming and how they will address them -- as well as a separate and even larger set of new government-wide plans to cut down on greenhouse gas emissions and achieve new targets for sustainability.

"In sum, the reports represent over a thousand pages of climate change threat assessment and sustainability planning by a vast federal complex that collectively operates 360,000 buildings, maintains 650,000 vehicles and spends $25 billion on energy costs per year.

"In many cases, the vulnerabilities revealed are stark. The Department of Agriculture, for instance, sees "the potential for up to 100 percent increase in the number of acres burned annually by 2050" by wildfires, according to its new adaptation report. The agency notes that fire suppression expenditures have already grown from 13 percent of the Forest Service's budget in 1991 to 40 percent of it today, and says the service's other operations are imperiled by the continual demand to throw more resources at fires."


Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  Interesting that NASA worries that climate change might interfere with the agency's ability to launch.  Good.  Shut 'em down and focus on Earth until we resolve the multitude of crises we have right here.

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BLM Issues Deadly Permit for Wolf Derby

BLM Issues Deadly Permit for Wolf Derby | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
The BLM’s self-righteous propensity to play God over the native creatures of our public lands stretches far beyond the destruction of our wild horses and burros but all the way to the very predators that would naturally regulate the herds, IF they even needed to be regulated.  Nature has been doing just fine for eons without the interference of human management but the rouge feds prefer to deal with special interest groups and the collusion of monetary gain instead of making sound decisions on scientific data and facts.” ~ R.T.
Garry Rogers's insight:

We need the wolves, we don’t need hunters, and open-range grazing is obsolete. So, let’s end ranching and return the land to wildlife.

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‘The Chain,’ by Ted Genoways

‘The Chain,’ by Ted Genoways | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
In the tradition of “The Jungle,” a journalist investigates the hidden costs — animal, human, environmental — of cheap meat.
Garry Rogers's insight:

Genoways is one of my favorites.  Nice review of his new book.

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Holiday Gravy

Holiday Gravy | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Browning the vegetables before making the gravy stock is what sets this rich sauce apart. And, just as good, the gravy can be made ahead of time. Double the recipe if you’ve got a gravy-loving crowd. Holiday Gravy, 4.0 out of 4 based on 1 rating
Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  This is my choice for this year's tofu turkey.

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PEER - BLM Grazing Reform

PEER - BLM Grazing Reform | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

"On more than 250 million acres of public lands in the American West, grazing by domestic livestock constitutes by far the most widespread human-caused impact on fundamental range conditions, including habitat quality, riparian functioning, and endangered species. More extensive than the impacts of logging and mining combined, commercial livestock grazing exacts an enormous toll on native ecosystems and wildlife throughout the American West. It is a contributing factor to the endangerment of 22 percent of all federally listed threatened and endangered species, and a major contributor to non-point source water pollution and desertification. 

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the nation’s largest public lands-managing agency and administrator of grazing permits, is required to monitor the ecological impacts of grazing on its lands. BLM conducts evaluations of whether its grazing allotments meet “Land Health Standards” (LHS), but until now the results of these evaluations have been largely inaccessible to those outside the agency and their results have escaped independent review."

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  PEER's interactive maps give you BLM's land health assessment, and let you zoom in to see actual conditions on the ground. 

In 2012, BLM respond to a PEER statement that grazing allotment health was not accurately reported (http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/grazing.html). The BLM did not explain why many allotments described as healthy have large areas that have been overgrazed and trampled excessively.

Using the Peer maps, citizen naturalists can visit nearby BLM grazing allotments and perform their own assessment.  Weeds, trampled shrubs, barren trails, and more are visual testaments to excessive cattle use.  Once problems are reported, BLM will make necessary corrections.

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Behind the Fur Coat: The Story of Chinchillas in 20 Photos Animal Writes: PETA Foundation’s Blog

Behind the Fur Coat: The Story of Chinchillas in 20 Photos Animal Writes: PETA Foundation’s Blog | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

To celebrate the excellent news that Sweden’s last chinchilla fur farm has just been closed down, we decided to take a closer look at these sweet animals – and how they suffer at the hands of the global fur trade.

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  We should be restoring and protecting chinchilla habitat instead of killing and wearing chinchilla skins like the scalps of a defeated enemy.

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LA Planners Do Not Want City Council to Ban Fracking

LA Planners Do Not Want City Council to Ban Fracking | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

Anne C. Mulkern, E&E Reporter: "Los Angeles planners after a nine-month review are advising their City Council not to attempt a ban on fracking and other unconventional oil drilling."


GR:  Smart Growth joins Sustainable Development in the Urban planner's arsenal of deceptive terms.  They don't realize how oxymoronic they are.

Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  Planners are always on the side of growth and development.  Society's "progress" syndrome prepares young people for their final brainwashing in college.  Imaginations constrained by courses, teachers, and fellow students, planners can't conceive of a world without growth.  Quality planning becomes full utilization of space for human benefit.

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Praise Conservation of Free-Tailed Bat Colony

Praise Conservation of Free-Tailed Bat Colony | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

"Target:  Ron Nirenberg, San Antonio District 8 City Councilman Goal:  Praise Ron Nirenberg’s efforts to save the largest colony of free-tailed bats in the world. 

"On October 31, 2014, the City of San Antonio obtained 1,521 acres of land adjacent to BCI’s Bracken Bat Cave, the largest colony of free-tailed bats in the world, to protect the bats that live there. Applaud the city’s move to conserve these bats’ environment in the face of human expansion and development.

"The Bracken Cave is home to around 20 million Mexican free-tailed bats. Every night at 7:30, visitors see millions of bats fly out of the cave to hunt for bugs in nearby cornfields. The sight has been a source of awe and wonderment for many bat enthusiasts. The area, known as Crescent Hills, could not have been secured without the efforts of San Antonio District 8 City Councilman Ron Nirenberg, who led the effort, along with numerous conservation groups such as the Nature Conservancy and Bat Conservation International. Councilman Nirenberg called the efforts a “true conservation partnership.”

Garry Rogers's insight:

Texas bat protection continues.  Sign the thanks petition here

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Coalition bid to strip Tasmanian forests of world heritage cover 'disappointing'

Coalition bid to strip Tasmanian forests of world heritage cover 'disappointing' | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

Leading conservationist says Australia needs to understand the importance of leaving carbon-dense forests standing.

The WWF analysis used 40 years of satellite imagery and land use mapping to find that nearly half of 5,815 Australian terrestrial ecosystems, covering an area of approximately 257m ha, would be listed as threatened under IUCN criteria because of land clearing and degradation.

This vast number of threatened ecosystems, primarily due to the clearing of land for agriculture, dwarfs the 66 ecological communities officially listed as threatened by the Australian government.

Garry Rogers's insight:

Australian developers are interested in short-term profit, and they are willing to sacrifice ecosystems, wildlife, and their country's future to get it.  Wait. . . did I say Australian?  How small of me--it's developers everywhere. My neighbor Canada has caved in, let's hope Australia can find the strength and pride to resist.

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World governments failing Earth's ecosystems, says top conservationist

World governments failing Earth's ecosystems, says top conservationist | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Julia Marton-Lefèvre, director general of the IUCN, says political leaders have not properly embraced conservation Continue reading...
Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  No news here, but the Guardian's wide reach might catch the attention of a few more people and help us edge closer to popular consensus.  Of course, some might say that the only edge here is the one we are sending our fellow creatures over.

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What if humans abandoned half the planet to wildlife?: A conversation with E.O. Wilson

What if humans abandoned half the planet to wildlife?: A conversation with E.O. Wilson | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it

"E.O. Wilson is a scientist and author who's concerned with everything from insect society to the consciousness of humans. Over the past 60 years, he's uncovered fascinating facts about the altruism of ants, won two Pulitzer Prizes for non-fiction, and created the field of sociobiology — the study of how evolution affects our behavior today.

"His latest book, The Meaning of Human Existence, features his scientifically driven musings about the nature of humanity and the biggest challenges we face as a species. I recently spoke to him about what scientific disciplines he thinks are key to solving them — and why he believes we need to set aside half the Earth for other species as soon as possible."


Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  In this interview, Wilson also talks about his next book, the one that argues for half the planet for wildlife.

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Lam Dong launches biodiversity conservation action plan

Lam Dong launches biodiversity conservation action plan | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
The Central Highlands province of Lam Dong is designing projects to preserve biodiversity and create protection corridors around sensitive ecosystems in need of conservation as part of its biodiversity action plan for 2015-2020.
Garry Rogers's insight:

GR:  Good news.  More please.

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EAI Volunteer Program 2015 | EAI Shop

EAI Volunteer Program 2015 | EAI Shop | Garry Rogers | Scoop.it
Build Chain-free Corrals in Nepal~Unshackle 32 Elephants
A life-changing experience—for you and the elephants!
Project overview

Elephant Aid International’s (EAI) Free the Elephants Volunteer Project is the perfect opportunity for you to get involved with a truly groundbreaking project that will forever change the way in which Nepal’s working elephants are housed, treated and managed.

As a participant, you’ll join a team of hard-working volunteers whose mission it is to successfully complete Phase Two of EAI’s “Chain Free Means Pain Free” Project in Nepal—building chain-free corrals in Chitwan National Park and releasing 32 elephants from leg chains…forever!

You’ll work in concert with EAI Founder and President Carol Buckley.  Best of all, you’ll have the opportunity to witness first-hand as the elephants experience their first joyous moments of freedom from leg chains—an event you’ll help create and one you’ll never forget!

Garry Rogers's insight:

Like elephants and want to visit Nepal? This might be the place for you.

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