Recent News

Restoration of Degraded Ecosystem

Brazil may boost ethanol production without deforestation

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[SÃO PAULO] By integrating the cultivation of sugarcane for ethanol with beef cattle breeding on the same land, Brazil could increase food and sustainable fuel production without extra deforestation, a study suggests. Brazil is already the world’s largest sugarcane producer, the largest sugar producer, and the second largest ethanol producer. In 2017, the country produced over 600 million tonnes of sugarcane. Continue reading..

Restoration of Degraded Ecosystem

Report slams global failure to curb emissions

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After stalling for two years, global emissions are on the rise again, further reducing the world's slim chances to keep global warming within 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, a landmark study has revealed. Unveiled today (6 December) at the UN climate talks in Katowice, Poland, the Global Carbon Project 2018, a research effort that captures emissions and energy consumption trends, found that by the end of this year humans will have pumped 2 per cent more greenhouse gases in the atmosphere than they did in 2017. Continue reading..

Sustainable Management of Intensively Used Ecosystems/Landscapes

The tech fix that won’t secure food supplies

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Eight years ago, some 2,000 farming households in the Philippines signed up to a project designed to help them better manage how they grow rice and boost their incomes. The idea was to build a stronger system of irrigation, with a mix of other offerings such as marketing support and field schools for farmers.   After a five-year run, the UN agency behind the project – the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) – did an impact evaluation that brought some good news. Continue reading..

Sustainable Management of Intensively Used Ecosystems/Landscapes

Keeping animals out of home key to improved nutrition

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[CAPE TOWN] Keeping animals out of the home may improve childhood nutrition and reduce instances of stunting, according to a study undertaken in a Gambian village. The study analysed 230 children of Gambian staff living at the Medical Research Unit in rural Keneba between 1993 and 2009. The staff included scientists, physicians, laboratory technicians and support staff, such as cleaners. Continue reading..

Sustainable Management of Intensively Used Ecosystems/Landscapes

New Dwarf Trees Set to Revolutionize Palm Oil Market

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The dwarf trees at a government research center in Malaysia’s southern state of Johor are clones of a new variety bred to be 30 percent smaller than regular oil palms when they mature. That’s a significant advantage for farmers harvesting the red and orange fruit that can grow between thorny fronds up to five stories high. Seedlings of the Clonal Palm Series 2, or CPS2, variety -- which can cost up to two times more than conventional plants -- are being rolled out by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board, the agency responsible for promoting and developing the country’s most valuable agricultural export. Continue reading..

Conservation and Sustainable Use of Unique Ecosystems/Landscapes of High Biodiversity

Reliance on natural healing cultivates respect for nature in Indonesian village

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PAKULI INDUK, Indonesia — In a remote village on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi lies a small garden of near-mythic repute — a place whose stewards grow not mere plants, but hopes and cures that have served the community for generations. Packed into a single hectare (2.5 acres) in Pakuli Induk village, in Central Sulawesi province, are 400 different types of herbal plants, first collected and grown by Sahlan, a shaman, or sando, from the Kaili tribe. Continue reading..

Conservation and Sustainable Use of Unique Ecosystems/Landscapes of High Biodiversity

Deforestation-linked palm oil still finding its way into top consumer brands: report

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JAKARTA — Pledges by major brands to stop buying palm oil from companies known to destroy rainforests have failed to stop the clearance of a total area of forest the size of Los Angeles in just the last three years. That’s the finding from a new report by Greenpeace, which sought to gauge the progress made by leading consumer brands and palm oil firms in making good on their promises to break the link between the palm oil they buy and the destruction of rainforests and other ills. The report found that palm oil suppliers to these top brands had cleared more than 1,300 square kilometers (500 square miles) of rainforest in Southeast Asia since the end of 2015, despite a growing number of commitments by most major refiners, traders and end users of palm oil to stop doing business with deforesters and land grabbers. Continue reading..

Sustainable Management of Intensively Used Ecosystems/Landscapes

In Indonesia, commuters pay for the bus with plastic waste

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RESIDENTS of Indonesia’s second largest city Surabaya can now pay for the bus in a novel way – by trading in used plastic. The city’s mayor Tri “Risma” Rismaharini last month announced the roll out of the new Suroboyo Bus, comfortable, air-conditioned buses which are, importantly, accessible for disabled, elderly and pregnant passengers. While the buses might be shiny and new, passengers are invited to pay for their rides not just with money, but with plastic they turn in at designated bus stops and recycling stations around the city. Continue reading..

Sustainable Management of Intensively Used Ecosystems/Landscapes

Intensified farming 'rarely' aids wellbeing, environment

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[NAIROBI] Agricultural intensification rarely leads to simultaneous benefits for ecosystem services such as biodiversity and human wellbeing, researchers say.   In a study published in Nature Sustainability journal, which involved analysis of 60 case studies from countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America, they found that fewer than 20 per cent of cases had benefits across both these outcomes.   Agricultural intensification — activities that aim to increase either the productivity or profitability of agricultural land — tends to get high priority as a strategy for sustainable food production. Continue reading..

Conservation and Sustainable Use of Unique Ecosystems/Landscapes of High Biodiversity

Global warming to increase water in South Asian rivers

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[ISLAMABAD] A wetter future awaits South Asia, says a new study based on global climate change models that informed the fifth assessment report of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The South Asia region will see a 20–30 per cent increase in mean annual runoff for the period 2046–2075 relative to the study baseline period of 1976–2005, says Hongxing Zheng, corresponding author of the study published this month (August) in the Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies. The study was carried out by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australia. Continue reading..