One of the most depressing articles I’ve read in a while is Borneo’s majestic rainforest is being killed by the timber mafia recently in The Guardian. This comes on top TV programs on of what seem like futile attempts to save the Orangutan. Wikipedia tells us:
The total number of Bornean orangutans is estimated to be less than 14 percent of what it was in the recent past (from around 10,000 years ago until the middle of the twentieth century) and this sharp decline has occurred mostly over the past few decades due to human activities and development.
The IPCC AR4 report put the net emissions from forestry at 17.4% of the total:
Continue reading What can save the majestic rainforests of West Kalimantan?
From the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies:
International marine scientists say that a huge coral death which has struck Southeast Asian and Indian Ocean reefs over recent months has highlighted the urgency of controlling global carbon emissions.
Many reefs are dead or dying across the Indian Ocean and into the Coral Triangle following a bleaching event that extends from the Seychelles in the west to Sulawesi and the Philippines in the east and include reefs in Sri Lanka, Burma, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, and many sites in western and eastern Indonesia.
“It is certainly the worst coral die-off we have seen since 1998. It may prove to be the worst such event known to science,” says Dr Andrew Baird of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook Universities. “So far around 80 percent of Acropora colonies and 50 per cent of colonies from other species have died since the outbreak began in May this year.”
This means coral cover in the region could drop from an average of 50% to around 10%, and the spatial scale of the event could mean it will take years to recover, striking at local fishing and regional tourism industries, he says.
The bleaching event has also hit the richest marine biodiversity zone on the planet, the ‘Amazon Rainforest’ of the seas, known as the Coral Triangle (CT), which is bounded by Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines.
Continue reading Coral bleaching hits the Coral Triangle
Climate talks in Tianjin, China have ended. That’s it now until Cancun, Mexico on 29 November-10 December, where the optimists hope than a binding post-Kyoto treaty on climate change might be concluded.
That can’t happen without China and the US patching up their differences. The chances of that approach zero, according to Bloomberg.
The BBC report goes further:
On Saturday, one of the Chinese climate negotiators reportedly accused the US of behaving like a preening pig, complaining about Beijing when Washington had done so little itself.
Reuters explains this reference to Chinese classical literature:
Su likened the U.S. criticism to Zhubajie, a pig in a classic Chinese novel, which in a traditional saying preens itself in a mirror.
“It has no measures or actions to show for itself, and instead it criticizes China, which is actively taking measures and actions,” Su said of the United States.
Continue reading Cancun looms, ready or not