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REDD in the news: 11-17 July 2016

2016-07-18-154753_1386x989_scrotREDD-Monitor’s round-up of the week’s news on forests, climate change, and REDD. For regular updates, visit REDD-Monitor’s “REDD in the news” page, or follow @reddmonitor on Twitter.


 

11 July 2016

POP Aims to be Carbon-Neutral
POP press release, 11 July 2016
POP is planning to be an airline that scores a number of firsts. The first to operate non-stop flights between the UK and two of India’s key secondary cities, Amritsar in Punjab and Ahmedabad in Gujarat. The first to donate at least 51 percent of its net profits to charities working in the communities it plans to serve. And the first international airline to be truly carbon neutral.

[Australia] Massive mangrove die-off on Gulf of Carpentaria worst in the world, says expert
By Michael Slezak, The Guardian, 11 July 2016
Climate change and El Niño have caused the worst mangrove die-off in recorded history, stretching along 700km of Australia’s Gulf of Carpentaria, an expert says.
The mass die-off coincided with the world’s worst global coral bleaching event, as well as the worst bleaching event on the Great Barrier Reef, in which almost a quarter of the coral was killed – something also caused by unusually warm water.
And last week it was revealed warm ocean temperatures had wiped out 100km of important kelp forests off the coast of Western Australia.

Boreal Forest Fires In Canada Have Great Impact On Global Climate
By Elaine Hannah, Science World Report, 11 July 2016
The Boreal forest fires in Canada that began in early May are still ravaging the woods. These can affect the global climate, according to NASA study and Forrest Hall. The fires consume millions of acres of trees and burn the soil on the forest floor.
Peter Griffith, the founding director of NASA’s Carbon Cycle and Ecosystems Office explained that these forests matter to the rest of humans on Earth because of how they help control climate by keeping carbon in the soil and in the trees and out of the atmosphere. He further explained that where the fires are getting bigger and happening more often. These impact the world. He added that it’s laying more greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere that would have remained locked up for perhaps hundreds of years.

Indonesia suspends land-clearing licences of 27 firms over forest fires
By Samhati Bhattacharjya, International Business Times, 11 July 2016
Indonesia government has suspended land-clearing licences of 27 companies, which were found responsible for the land and forest fires, leading to the haze crisis last year.
The Environment and Forest Ministry officials said that the decision was taken after the companies failed to prevent fires in their concession lands, which resulted in one of the worst environmental crises for South-east Asia in recent history.
Apart from the sanctions, the ministry has also filed civil law suits against five oil palm companies allegedly responsible for some of last year’s fires.

[UK] More Brexit woes: Developing countries take $3.8 billion loss
By Tom Murphy, Medium, 11 July 2016
A slumping British economy and devalued currency are bad news for Brits after voting to leave the European Union. For developing countries, the short-term losses add up to about $3.8 billion, according to the U.K.-based think tank the Overseas Development Institute. There are some potential benefits in the long term as the U.K. will hopefully stabilize its economy and work out new trade deals, but a lot of uncertainty remains.
The authors of the report estimate that export goods from least-developed countries to the U.K. will decline by about $500 million. Bangladesh, Fiji, Kenya and Mauritius are the four countries expected to be affected. The second hit comes from the value of foreign aid dropping by $18.7 billion (based on a 10 percent devaluation of the currency). It similarly causes the value of money sent home from migrants living in the U.K. to drop by $1.4 billion, with Nigeria and India taking $370 million in losses alone. Declining investments and the poor performance of the financial markets complete the bleak picture for developing countries.

[USA] California Governor Looks to Extend Climate-Change Efforts
By Ellen Knickmeyer and Juliet Williams, Associated Press, 11 July 2016
California Gov. Jerry Brown has launched a campaign to extend some of the most ambitious climate-change programs in the country and ensure his environmental legacy when he leaves office in two years.
The centerpiece of the push is a cap-and-trade program that aims to reduce the use of fossil fuels by forcing manufacturers and other companies to meet tougher emissions limits or pay up to exceed them. The program has been one of the most-watched efforts in the world aimed at the climate-changing fuels.
The four-year-old program, however, is only authorized to operate until 2020 and faces a litany of challenges, including a lawsuit questioning its legality, poor sales of credits, and lukewarm support among Democratic legislators to extend it.
On Tuesday, the California Air Resources Board will release a proposed blueprint for continuing the cap-and-trade program until 2030, with a vote expected next year.

[USA] Governor Jerry Brown in talks with Big Oil over carbon trading program
By Dan Bacher, Daily Kos, 11 July 2016
Jerry Brown, who frequently grandstands as an alleged “climate leader” and “green governor” at climate conferences and other photo opportunities in the U.S. and throughout the world, is, ironically, a big supporter of the expansion of fracking for crude oil in California.
That is not surprising when you consider that Brown’s “climate leadership” facade, continually promoted in press releases from the Governor’s Office and in puff pieces in the mainstream media, is based on the unjust, environmentally destructive neo-liberal policies of carbon trading and REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) programs.
As protests against oil trains took place in Sacramento and across the nation took place last week, oil industry leaders, led by Catherine Reheis-Boyd, the President of the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), were talking with Brown administration officials In “hopes of reaching a consensus on extending California landmark climate change programs,” according to LA Times reporters Chris Megerian and Melanie Mason.

12 July 2016

Why are the world’s cap-and-trade markets struggling to keep prices up?
By Adam Ashton, The Sacramento Bee, 12 July 2016
The cost of sending a ton of greenhouse gas emissions into the air isn’t what it used to be, at least not in the handful of markets that are putting a price on climate change.
Similar to California’s weak May auction for carbon credits, the world’s two other greenhouse gas cap-and-trade markets are notching falling prices this year.
One in Europe is still adjusting to a glut of emission allowances it handed out before the recent recession drove down energy use.
The other, a collection of nine states in the northeast called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, is recording low prices while energy producers await a Supreme Court decision that could shape its future.

Why we should all worry about the Amazon catching on fire this year
By Chris Mooney, The Washington Post, 12 July 2016
When you Google “Amazon fires,” the first thing you encounter is a tablet device. But in the coming months, if scientific forecasts prove correct, that may change.
Researchers are increasingly concerned that the Amazon rain forest — the world’s largest tropical forest, a huge repository of carbon and a vital cycler of water into rainfall across much of South America — will soon burn in a way that has not been seen in many years.
The reason is the lingering effect of the recent El Nino event. Forecasts from NASA and the University of California-Irvine, and from the International Research Institute for Climate and Society suggest that because of how El Nino reduced precipitation in the region earlier this year, the Amazon is far drier than usual, and primed to burn once the dry season reaches its height this summer (the fire season runs from June through November with a September peak).

True crime is jeopardizing the future of the Amazon, but indigenous groups and Brazil’s police are fighting back – together
By Steve Schwartzman, EDF, 12 July 2016
A new operation against land grabbers and illegal loggers in Brazil’s state of Pará is showing how collaboration between indigenous and forest communities and law enforcement can take on the biggest ongoing threats to the Amazon forest: illegal logging and illegal deforestation for land grabbing.
Launched June 30th, the operation started with an investigation two years ago after leaders from the Kayapô indigenous group reported clandestine deforestation on the western border of their territory to the Brazilian federal environmental enforcement agency, IBAMA.
Guided by the Indians, IBAMA agents discovered encampments of workers who were clearing the forest in the indigenous territory and on adjacent public land, while leaving the tallest trees; this hid the illegal deforestation from satellite monitoring. The workers, who according to police labored under semi-slave conditions, would then burn the understory and plant pasture grass. Meanwhile, another part of the gang surveyed and forged land registry documents to sell the land. IBAMA agents shut down the camps, detained personnel and issued fines – and brought in the Prosecutor’s Office and Federal Police to investigate.

[Fiji] Vast wasteland a real worry
By Luke Rawalai, The Fiji Times, 12 July 2016
Deforestation in Fiji may be at a low standing at 0.07 per cent but the real worry is the amount of wastelands that have been created over the years around the country.
Forest Conservator Eliki Senivasa said there were vast wastelands created every year through exploitation.
Mr Senivasa said a lot of deserts were being created every year as a result of farming and development.
“We need to restore and regrow trees in these wastelands in order to restore their natural balance,” he said.
“Under the REDD Plus program the department has a requirement to restore about 200,000 hectares of forests which is a big task needing a lot of funding.
“The department is working on a financial incentive where people get money to plant trees because people will not plant trees until they are paid.”

New Tool to Predict Fire Risks Unveiled As Indonesia’s Dry Season Takes Hold
Voice of America, 12 July 2016
A map using satellite technology to warn of fire risks aims at helping Southeast Asian governments better deploy their resources to combat raging blazes, which cloak the region in haze every year, an expert on forest fires said on Tuesday.
Slash-and-burn agriculture, much of it clearing land for palm oil crops, blanketed Singapore, Malaysia and northern Indonesia in a choking “haze” for months last year. Updated daily, the Fire Risk Map calculates the risk of a fire catching and spreading using the latest satellite data on temperature, humidity and rainfall in the region. Drier conditions signal higher risks of blazes starting and spreading.

[Kenya] Does burning homes save the water towers? Quite the opposite
By Peter Kitelo, The Star, 12 July 2016
On Monday, June 20, armed guards of the Kenya Forest Service (KFS) began burning the homes of Ogiek living on their ancestral lands around Kapsang and Etapei in the forests of Chepkitale, Mt Elgon.
Who is committing this violation of rights under the constitution, and why?
The County Commissioner?
Some media reported that the Bungoma county commissioner Joshua Chepchieng, denied knowledge of the ongoing evictions (Standard newspaper, June 21 ).
The current county commissioner’s predecessor, Maalim Mohamed, convened a meeting on March 24 because he had been told that there had been a lot of destruction of the forest. However, he quickly discovered that the situation was the opposite of what he had been made to believe: the Ogiek community are taking care of their forest, and he congratulated them for doing so.

Tackling deforestation in Kenya through WISE REDD+ initiative
By Jackson Bambo, The Standard, 12 July 2016
It was early morning and smoke wafted over grass-thatched huts in Garamara along the side of the highway, as we sped along the Isiolo-Marsabit Road. “What’s the main driver of deforestation in Isiolo?” I ask, peering out the charcoal producer lady. Expecting the usual causes such as the illegal cutting of trees, grazing, infrastructure development, or slash and burn, I was surprised by her answer: “Makaa” meaning “Charcoal.” Deforestation and forest degradation accounts for about 17-18 percent of anthropogenic global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the biggest contributor after energy supply (power and fossil fuel), which accounts for about 26 percent of emissions (IPCC 2007). In Kenya, Biomass is a major source of energy in Kenyawith 68 percent of the population relying on it.

[USA] Why Obama’s top scientist just called keeping fossil fuels in the ground ‘unrealistic’
By Chris Mooney and Juliet Eilperin, The Washington Post, 12 July 2016
White House science adviser John Holdren’s comment Monday that it was “unrealistic” to halt fossil fuel extraction altogether in the U.S. may have seemed like stating the obvious. But it has further highlighted the tensions that exist even among top American policy makers and environmental advocates concerned about curbing the rate of climate change.

13 July 2016

Earth’s hot streak continues with warmest May since at least 1880
By Andrew Freedman, Mashable, 13 July 2016
Another month, another shattered global temperature record.
According to preliminary readings from NASA, May 2016 was the warmest such month on record for the planet, dating back to 1880. Global average surface temperatures were 0.93 degrees Celsius, or 1.67 degrees Fahrenheit, above average for the month, beating out the old record, which was set in May 2014.
This makes May the 8th straight warmest month on record in NASA’s database. According to the World Meteorological Organization, it was also the warmest northern hemisphere spring on record, in part due to much milder than average conditions in the Arctic.

REDD+ politics – or why it is so difficult to tackle large-scale drivers of deforestation
By Efrian Muharrom, Melaky Bekele, Cynthia Maharani, Pham Thu Thuy, Grace Wong and Maria Brockhaus, CIFOR Forest News Blog, 13 July 2016
What challenges do REDD+ countries have in common, where do they differ? And how do a country’s politics play out in managing drivers of deforestation?
Representatives from more than a dozen countries across three continents had the rare opportunity to discuss these and other questions at a recent REDD+ knowledge-sharing event held from 8-10 June in Addis Adaba, Ethiopia.
The three-day meeting, hosted by the Wondo Genet College of Forestry and Natural Resources at Hawassa University, brought Ethiopian policymakers and practitioners together with researchers from 15 REDD+ countries in Africa, South America and Southeast Asia to present and analyze their progress.
Discussions showed that while countries develop their own approaches to REDD+, incorporating national circumstances in their policy design, the challenges they face in avoiding deforestation remain largely similar.

Interactive Map Launched to Spot Potential Fires in Indonesia’s Forests
By Beh Lih Yi and Ratri M. Siniwi, The Jakarta Globe, 13 July 2016
The World Resources Institute’s global forest monitoring network, Global Forest Watch (GFW), has launched a new tool that can spot potential forest fires as the dry season draws nearer in Indonesia.
The Fire Risk Map, launched last Thursday (07/07), will help authorities prevent fires before they spread to forests in Indonesia and Malaysia — the cause of last year’s haze emergency.
“We hope the Fire Risk Map will help government officials and land managers to be more proactive about fires,” Susan Minnemeyer, a forest fire expert at GFW, told Thomson Reuters Foundation on Tuesday (12/07).

[USA] Shannondale earns $1 million-plus from California’s carbon credit market
By Andrew Sheeley, Salen News, 13 July 2016
Seven years ago Shannondale Minister Jeff Fulk was full of desperate prayers. His rural mission in north Shannon County had a proud history, but was teetering on the edge of ruin. Although its tree farm had stood since 1949, its future was in question due to the tough times created by the Great Recession.
“After the economic downturn hit in 2008, donations went down for not only us but for our entire conference, the Missouri Mid-South Conference of the United Church of Christ,” Fulk says. “There was serious talk of Shannondale being sold like many other outdoor ministries. I remember sitting up here one day and praying ‘God I need a miracle, I need you to tell me what we are going to do.’”
Fulk says his plea was answered three days later in the form of a forester with the L-A-D Foundation who told him about a new innovation, carbon offset credits.

14 July 2016

World will not meet 2C warming target, climate change experts agree
By David Adam, The Guardian, 14 July 2016
Almost nine out of 10 climate scientists do not believe political efforts to restrict global warming to 2C will succeed, a Guardian poll reveals today. An average rise of 4-5C by the end of this century is more likely, they say, given soaring carbon emissions and political constraints.
Such a change would disrupt food and water supplies, exterminate thousands of species of plants and animals and trigger massive sea level rises that would swamp the homes of hundreds of millions of people.

DiCaprio’s foundation grants USD 15.7 M to stop climate change
Business Standard, 14 July 2016
Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio’s foundation is set to donate USD 15.7 million to help solve environmental issues, such as climate change.
The 41-year-old actor announced that the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is to pledge the huge sum to fund conservation and environmental programmes to help combat climate change, reported Us Weekly.
“Today we are greatly increasing our level of vital grant making and strategic partnerships to help solve some of the world’s most pressing environmental challenges,” the actor said.
The latest pledge means DiCaprio’s organisation has donated USD 59 million since 1998.

The Carbon Chronicle
Ecosystem Marketplace, 14 July 2016
General Motors bought a whopping eight million of them over the past five years. Delta Air Lines purchased one million of them in 2014 from landfill gas, avoided deforestation, and clean cookstoves projects. And in the same year, the South Africa headquartered-bank Barclays Africa bought 880,000 of them from projects in Kenya, India, Indonesia, and China. We’re talking about offsets, of course – each representing one tonne of emissions avoided or carbon sequestered somewhere in the world.
At least 314 major companies include offsets in their efforts to mitigate climate change, according to Ecosystem Marketplace’s newest report, Buying In: Taking Stock of the Role of Offsets in Corporate Carbon Strategies, released today and available for download here.

Marco Albani: TFA 2020 and the transformation of supply chains
CIFOR Forest News Blog, 14 July 2016
Director of the Tropical Forest Alliance 2020, Marco Albani, speaks on the sidelines of the Global Landscapes Forum: The Investment Case, held on 6 June 2016 in London.
Today there’s about $500 billion of forestry commodities produced every year. About $200 billion of those are in tropical rainforest countries. So transforming those commodities to deforestation-free commodities is actually a big transformation. There’s a role for the private sector in that.

New Service Will Help Business Get the Edge in Implementing Natural Capital Protocol and Social Capital Accounting
By Rhiannon Szmigielski (Climate Care), 2degrees, 14 July 2016
Climate and sustainable development expert ClimateCare has joined forces with specialist Natural and Social Capital consultancy Sustain Value to offer businesses a cost-effective way to implement Natural and Social Capital frameworks. Together the two organisations are able to help businesses identify, measure and evaluate environmental and social impacts, plan the best actions to mitigate and offset these impacts and take real action on the ground.

Global Witness Employees Expelled from DRC under False Allegations
Global Witness, 14 July 2016
Two Global Witness employees have today been expelled from the Democratic Republic of Congo on false accusations that they were inciting a revolt and were in the country without permission.
At a press conference in Kinshasa the DRC Minister of Environment Robert Bopolo Bogeza accused Global Witness of threatening national peace and stability by encouraging communities to rise up against the logging companies that are operating in their forests.
“The accusations levied against us are completely false,” said Alexandra Pardal of Global Witness. “Global Witness has been active in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 2007, working with the government and international donors on improving the transparency and governance of the forest sector.”

[Indonesia] Provident Agro to divest oil palm units ahead of moratorium
The Jakarta Post, 14 July 2016
In the wake of the government’s plan to impose a moratorium on new oil palm plantation licenses, publicly listed plantation firm Provident Agro has announced a plan to sell millions of shares in four subsidiaries for up to Rp 2.7 trillion (US$206.1 million) in an effort to provide more capital to finance its operations and future expansion.
The company, jointly owned by investment firms Saratoga Sentra Business and Provident Capital Indonesia, will sell its shares in West Kalimantan-based firms, namely Global Kalimantan Makmur (2.2 million shares), Semai Lestari (100,000 shares), Nusaraya Permai (40,000 shares) and Saban Sawit Subur (200,000 shares).

Pacific ​​islands nations consider world’s first treaty to ban fossil fuels
By Michael Slezak, The Guardian, 14 July 2016
The world’s first international treaty that bans or phases out fossil fuels is being considered by leaders of developing Pacific islands nations after a summit in the Solomon Islands this week.
The leaders of 14 countries agreed to consider a proposed Pacific climate treaty, which would bind signatories to targets for renewable energy and ban new or the expansion of coalmines, at the annual leaders’ summit of the Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF).

[Russia] It took month to put out forest fire in Barguzin reserve in Siberia
The forest protection service and smoke jumpers have liquidated a forest fire that started in the Barguzin Nature Reserve in Russia’s Buryatia republic on June 13, the republic’s Forestry Agency reported on Thursday.
“The fire has been extinguished in an area of 2,100 hectares. It started in a remote mountainous area, so the fire-fighters, including from the Federal Aerial Forest Fire Center (Avialesookhrana) were transported to the area by air,” the agency’s press service said.

[UK] Brexit will force EU countries ‘to make deeper, costlier carbon cuts’
By Arthur Neslen, The Guardian, 14 July 2016
Brexit will force the European Union’s remaining 27 countries to spend billions of euros on cutting carbon emissions more deeply to compensate for the UK leaving, according to experts.
The UK will be included in a Brussels communique on 20 July, setting out individual targets for EU signatory states to meet a bloc goal of a 40% emissions cut by 2030, as pledged in Paris last year.
But once Britain invokes article 50 and begins its journey to the EU’s exit door, the bloc will have to draw up new CO2 plans for the other 27 countries.
This is because the UK is a large economy with a relatively advanced green sector, and its departure will oblige each EU state to raise their climate ambition by between 0.2-1.7%, according to an analysis by Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe.

15 July 2016

NASA images show the Amazon could be facing an intense wildfire season this year
By Mike Gaworecki, mongabay.com, 15 July 2016
Conditions created by the strong El Niño event that warmed up Pacific waters in 2015 and early 2016 altered rainfall patterns around the world. In the Amazon basin, that meant reduced rainfall during the wet season, plunging some parts of the region into severe drought.
According to NASA, the Amazon is the driest it’s been at the start of the dry season since 2002 — and that probably means the rainforest is in for a particularly nasty wildfire season, according to Doug Morton, an Earth scientist with the U.S. agency and a co-creator of the Amazon fire forecast, which uses climate observations and active fire detections by NASA satellites to predict fire season severity.
“Severe drought conditions at the start of the dry season have set the stage for extreme fire risk in 2016 across the southern Amazon,” Morton said in a statement. The Brazilian states of Amazonas, Mato Grosso, and Pará are reportedly at the highest risk.

India attempts to set record by planting 50 million trees in 24 hours
By Adam Boult, The Telegraph, 15 July 2016
More than 800,000 volunteers took part in a mass tree-planting exercise in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh earlier this week, attempting to plant 50 million trees in 24 hours
Uttar Pradesh’s Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav told volunteers assembled in the city of Kannauj: “The world has realised that serious efforts are needed to reduce carbon emissions to mitigate the effects of global climate change. Uttar Pradesh has made a beginning in this regard.”
The state was hoping to set a world record for trees planted in one day, which was previously set by Pakistan in 2013, with a comparatively paltry 847,275 trees.

Indonesia to Impose Five-Year Moratorium on New Palm Oil Concessions
By Tabita Diela, Jakarta Globe, 15 July 2016
The Indonesian government will soon issue a presidential instruction that would serve as legal basis for a five-year moratorium on new palm oil concessions as part of the country’s effort to reduce the negative impact of the plantations on the environment.
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has put environmental issue as one of his administration priorities, seeking to put an end to Indonesia’s deteriorating tropical forests.
Last year, the president extended a moratorium on peatland exploitation, which has been in place since 2011. Jokowi also said in April that he wanted to stop oil palm plantations and mining taking up forested land.
“The new policy is part of the previous ones, but this time, we come prepared with more data,” Coordinating Economics Minister Darmin Nasution said on Friday (15/07).

[Malaysia] More resources needed to fight Sabah forestry poaching, fires
By Dionysius Sharma (WWF), MalaysiaKini, 15 July 2016
It is very worrying that a sanctuary for the orang utan, elephants and other wildlife in Borneo was allegedly set on fire by poachers recently (front page of the Daily Express, Kota Kinabalu, on July 15, 2016).
This is particularly so as this news came on the heels of the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List recent upgrading of the Bornean orang utan species from ‘Endangered’ to ‘Critically Endangered’ status.
The Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary was declared by the Sabah government as Sabah’s ‘Gift to the Earth’ in 1999.
WWF-Malaysia is particularly concerned with encroachment and poaching in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary as it is one of the last homes of the Bornean orang utan, a species that is declining due to habitat loss and degradation through drought and forest fires.

Palm Oil’s Bear Market Won’t Help Relieve Singapore’s Haze
By Bruce Einhorn, Bloomberg, 15 July 2016
Nearly a year after haze from Indonesian forest fires created some of the worst air pollution ever in Singapore, fire season is starting again. The Indonesian government agency in charge of disaster mitigation said via a Twitter post on July 13 that an alert was in effect until Oct. 8 for land and forest fires in Central Kalimantan, on the island of Borneo. On July 14, the same agency said over 1,300 hectares (3,212 acres) were already burning in Riau, on the island of Sumatra.
To be fair, it’s too early to break out the facemasks and air purifiers: the Sumatra fires are still small. Moreover, it’s unclear whether this year’s fires will cause haze as bad as the pollution that darkened Singapore’s skies in 2015, when the smog led to school closures and disruptions of air and sea traffic.

[UK] Companies offering ‘investment’ in US oil wells closed down
Insolvency Service, 15 July 2016
Two companies that sold dubious oil investment products to members of the public in the UK have been wound-up in the High Court.
Winding-up orders were made against Eco-Energy Corp (Eco – incorporated in Belize) and Sturgeon Estates Limited (Sturgeon), on 8 June on the petition of the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, following investigations by Company Investigations, part of the Insolvency Service.
The investigation found Eco acted as the contracting party and received customers’ money through an account with a firm of UK solicitors. Payments supposedly entitled investors to a percentage interest in the profits made by a number of oil wells in Texas, USA. Customers had no way to independently corroborate that their investments were in fact genuine, or being properly handled.

16 July 2016

Palm Oil Industry Indonesia: Five-Year Moratorium on New Concessions
Indonesia Investments, 16 July 2016
The government of Indonesia plans to issue a five-year moratorium on new palm oil plantation concessions through a presidential instruction. For Indonesian President Joko Widodo it is one of the top priorities to safeguard a healthy and sustainable environment, especially after international criticism on Indonesia’s weak environmental policies heightened due to the flaring up of devastating forest fires on Kalimantan and Sumatra as well as the spread of toxic haze to other parts of Southeast Asia between June and October 2015.

17 July 2016

UK Government Shuts Down Climate Change Department In Major Reshuffle
By Jhesset E, Nature World News, 17 July 2016
In a major departmental reshuffle in the United Kingdom, the government has decided to shut down the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), following a series of political events in the country, starting with Brexit and the appointment of a new prime minister.
The DECC will be merged into an expanded Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, to be headed by Greg Clark, BBC reported.
Clark expressed excitement over the leadership opportunity, which he said could further the government’s relationship with the business sector and can better deliver affordable and clean energy.
Andrea Leadsom has been appointed by new Prime Minister Theresa May as environment secretary.
 

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