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Forest Service, Esri, Mars, McDonald’s and Staples partner with American Forest Foundation and GreenBlue on new sustainability tool

GFIS - 15 hours 27 min ago

The American Forest Foundation (AFF) and GreenBlue announced the collaboration of a diverse set of partners that will support the development of a new forest sustainability tool that complements forest certification.

National Forest Foundation launches ambitious effort to plant 50 million trees

GFIS - 15 hours 44 min ago

Campaign addresses massive reforestation needs on National Forests and offers an easy way for Americans to support their public lands.

Old-growth is great, but here’s why we need new-growth forests, too

GFIS - 20 hours 14 min ago

If there’s been a central, unques­tioned tenet of bird conserva­tion in the past quarter-centu­ry, it’s been the absolute importance of large, intact tracts of mature woodland.

Two steps forward, one step back at restored springs south of Flagstaff

GFIS - 20 hours 18 min ago

Hoxworth Springs, 12 miles south of Flagstaff on the Coconino National Forest just west of Upper Lake Mary, have been a life-sustaining source of water in a dry landscape for centuries.

EU’s top court says logging in Poland’s ancient forest was illegal

GFIS - 20 hours 31 min ago

Polish government had limited felling in Białowieża Forest, after widespread protest, and said it would comply with the court’s ruling.

Environmentalists plan logging to restore California’s redwood forests

GFIS - Sun, 22/04/2018 - 22:44

$5 million project in Redwood National Park and Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park aims to grow large redwood trees faster by reducing competition for sunlight and water.

Community Conservation Resilience Initiative in Colombia

GFIS - Sun, 22/04/2018 - 06:44

Download the summary report here Summary Report of Preliminary Findings – Colombia INTRODUCTION In Colombia, Afro-descendant communities and peasants from La Alsacia, La Reserva Barbas de Mono and La Reserva Maklenkes have been participating in the CCRI since 2016, representing diverse territories, ecosystems and livelihoods. The Afro-descendant people of La Alsacia lives in the southwest of the country, on the western cordillera in the department of Cauca. [1] They are organised as a Community Council—a form of internal administration created …

The post Community Conservation Resilience Initiative in Colombia appeared first on Global Forest Coalition.

WHAT A GIANT SNAKE CAN TEACH US ABOUT DESIGNING CITIES FOR THE FUTURE

GFIS - Sat, 21/04/2018 - 00:57

Last week, a jockey at Cannon Racetrack in Cairns, Australia mistook a 15-foot-long Amesthetine Python for a “giant crack” in the raceway.  

He was rounding a corner at full gallop when the snake suddenly appeared before him.

The presence in a dense urban area of such a big reptile—a species notoriously vulnerable to being killed by speeding vehicles—can teach us something making our growing cities friendlier for wildlife.

Happily, such efforts make cities better for people too.  By 2100, there are projected to be around 11 billion people on Earth—of which an incredible 9 billion will be living in cities.

CITIES CAN SUSTAIN BIODIVERSITY

A surprising amount of biodiversity can persist among the skyscrapers, housing estates, shopping malls, parks, and greenbelts that constitute our modern cities.

Even some vanishingly rare species can use cities.  Imperiled plants have been discovered in weedy abandoned lots, endangered snails in irrigation pipes. 

In northern Queensland, Australia, critically endangered Cassowaries regularly enter homeowner’s back yards looking for fruiting plants, so long as dogs are not present.

Of course, many vulnerable species avoid cities—such as forest-interior specialists and strictly arboreal species.  And we won’t want big predators such as Grizzly Bears in cities, no matter how cuddly they look.

But that still leaves a great deal of biodiversity that could potentially use cities if we can make them more wildlife-friendly.

PUSH CONNECTIVITY

First, wildlife benefits greatly from ‘connectivity’—the ability to move from one place to another. 

Whenever possible, that means retaining or creating greenbelts, continuous wildlife corridors, and strips of intact vegetation along rivers and streams. 

Crisscrossing cities with such linear features—the wider, the better—is a winning approach.

ZONE ROADS

Second, we must control our speeding vehicles. 

For endangered species such as Cassowaries and the Florida Panther, roadkill is their biggest threat. 

Many other species forage along roads, bask on warm roads at night, or ‘freeze’ in response to approaching vehicles—making them highly vulnerable.

So, creating road-free zones in urban areas—where foot-traffic and bikes might be allowed, but no roaring vehicles—is a great strategy for nature.

KILLER PETS

Third, as much as we love them, our domestic dogs and cats are dangerous.  They can create lethal ‘haloes’ for wildlife around human habitations.

They do this not only by killing or harassing wildlife, but simply via their odors and scent-marking—which many wild species avoid.

Ecologists talk about “landscapes of fear”—the fact that predators don't just reduce the numbers of their prey, but also greatly limit their habitat use and times of activity.

For urban and suburban areas, that means keeping pets completely out of wildlife-friendly areas—not merely on a leash.

LOW-DENSITY HOUSING

Fourth, we should avoid low-density housing sprawl into forests and other wildlife habitats.

Houses in such areas have great impacts on nature via the many roads they require, their dogs and cats, and their strong tendency to ‘internally fragment’ habitats.

URBAN ISLANDS

Finally, our cities will have a lot more wildlife if they don’t become urban ‘islands’. 

The goal is to maintain some wild or semi-wild habitat in the broader peri-urban areas surrounding cities—because such lands are a major source of wildlife.

Even isolated patches of habitat can be useful as ‘stepping stones’ for wildlife—and resting and feeding areas for scores of migratory species, such as many songbirds.

For migratory species, the world is big, and we need to think big if we’re going to invite them into our cities.

HAVE CLEAR GOALS—AND PUSH THEM

These principles just scratch the surface.  The “Singapore Index” provides a broad-based way for cities to gauge and monitor their efforts to conserve biodiversity.

We know that having clear goals is important—but they’ll be useless unless they’re implemented.

Far too often, urban planners don’t understand how to make cities more wildlife-friendly, and the financial and political pressures from land developers are enormous. 

Corruption and back-room deals can play a big role too.

Clearly, decision-makers will only make wildlife-friendly cities a priority if their constituents demand it. 

That means doing things like forming urban-wildlife groups, attending city-council meetings, and lobbying politicians.

And demanding proactive land-use planning—which is far more cost-effective than trying to restore broken cities ecologically, or buying back hyper-expensive urban land for nature.  

HEALTHIER FOR PEOPLE

The great news is that wildlife-friendly cities greatly benefit people too

Trees and other vegetation are highly effective in reducing harmful air pollution, limiting flooding, improving water quality, storing carbon, and improving urban climates via shading and evaporative cooling.

And native wildlife can have many benefits, such as limiting pest outbreaks and major disease-vectors like mosquitoes and rats.

Beyond all this, we know that appreciating nature is something people have to learn.  Exposing children in cities to nature—not just animals on TV or video games—is one of the best strategies for educating them about the vital need to make our world more sustainable.

CITIES FOR THE FUTURE

The bottom line: We all have a big stake in making our burgeoning cities friendlier for nature.

Just ask that big python on Cannon Racetrack in Cairns, Australia—which the jockey and his galloping horse happily managed to miss. 

Though in the middle of a city, the racetrack is encircled by trees, and wallabies and other wildlife that the snake would feed on are protected and plentiful.

The snake was obviously happy on the racetrack—it sun-baked there for four hours.

Earth’s mammals have shrunk dramatically, and humans are to blame

GFIS - Fri, 20/04/2018 - 19:35

Something about substantial animals makes them more vulnerable to population collapse, said William Ripple, director of the Global Trophic Cascades Program at Oregon State University. For starters, there are usually fewer of the big animals, at least compared with the little guys.(more)

Additional Information: Full StoryWilliam Ripple

Trees are worth more than gold to Fatimata

GFIS - Fri, 20/04/2018 - 15:41

Fatimata is 36, has 4 children and lives in Boulzoma village in Burkino Faso. TREE AID is working with people like Fatimata to help them grow trees sustainably and harvest them for food. By supporting communities to grow nutrition gardens full of trees that provide healthy foods, they are able grow their way out of

The post Trees are worth more than gold to Fatimata appeared first on TREE AID.

New chairman: Ivar Ekanger works for cooperation with the forest industry

GFIS - Fri, 20/04/2018 - 12:41
Since the turn of the year, Norway has the chairmanship of SNS. The chairman is Ivar Ekanger, a man with many assignments and long experience, who would like to see that SNS connects more closely with the forestry industry.   Ivar Ekanger is a happy dot with great engagement and…

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U.S. log exports increase

International Forest Industries - Fri, 20/04/2018 - 11:27
U.S. log exports increased 15.5% YoY to 1.15 million m3 in February 2018, the exports value exceeded $238.2 million (+27.4%), according to the USDA.

U.S. log exports to China, the largest consumer of U.S. log, have jumped 24.7% to 544.3 thousand m3 and 33.1% by value ($126.0 million). The exports to second-largest consumer Canada have declined 2.3% to 305.2 thousand m3, and exports to Japan have increased 13.5% to 171.4 thousand m3.

The average price of U.S. log in February 2018 was $207 per m3, increase 10.3% from the same period last year. The average price of log exports to China was $231 per m3 (+6.7%), to Canada was $98 (-2.9%), and to Japan was $266 (+21.6%).

The post U.S. log exports increase appeared first on International Forest Industries.

Columbia Forest Products to expand its plywood mill in North Eastern Ontario

International Forest Industries - Fri, 20/04/2018 - 11:10

Ontario is supporting Columbia Forest Products to expand its plywood mill in Hearst and Rutherglen, helping to create and maintain almost 350 jobs and boost economic growth.

With support from Ontario’s Jobs and Prosperity Fund, the company will be able to grow its business and increase efficiency by modernizing its infrastructure and purchasing new equipment to maximize production capacity, increase competitiveness and expand into new markets, while ensuring resources are managed sustainably.

Ontario’s plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.

Columbia Forest Products is one of North America’s largest manufacturers of hardwood plywood and hardwood veneer products.

The post Columbia Forest Products to expand its plywood mill in North Eastern Ontario appeared first on International Forest Industries.

UDT-CERT withdraws PEFC certificate from RDLP Bialystok

GFIS - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 20:45
UDT-CERT has decided to withdraw the forest districts Hajnówka, Białowieża and Browsk from the scope of the certificate issued to RDLP Bialystok. This follows the ruling by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) that Poland has failed its obligations to protect Białowieża forest under the...

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Small changes in rainforests cause big damage to fish ecosystems

GFIS - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 19:09
Using lasers, researchers have connected, arranged and merged artificial cells, paving the way for networks of artificial cells acting as tissues.

First-Ever Africa Climate Week Provides Regional Input to Talanoa Dialogue

GFIS - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 19:02
Africa Climate Week aimed to capture regional concerns to motivate climate action on the ground in such sectors as energy, agriculture and human settlements. UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa called on Africa to implement integrated policies that align with the goals of the Paris Agreement and the SDGs. During the Africa Carbon Forum, speakers called for a “new and robust” mechanism to help African countries meet emissions targets, and emphasized the “unique capacity” of Africa to innovate.

Mountain Partnership Unveils Baseline Data for SDG Indicator 15.4.2

GFIS - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 18:58
The Mountain Partnership has published baseline data for the Mountain Green Cover Index, one the official indicators for Sustainable Development Goal target 15.4. To develop the baseline data, interactive visualizations were derived from FAO’s Collect Earth and the 2015 global map of mountains produced by FAO and the Mountain Partnership Secretariat.

How Big Forests Solve Global Problems

GFIS - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 16:30
They can help turn around issues like climate change, species extinction and dwindling human cultures.

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by Dr. Radut