Digest of Socio-Ecological Union International for February 3, 2023. №57

Dear friends and co-fighters!

Welcome to the next issue of Positive News.

Let you spread it among your friends and co-fighters in your countries and around the Earth.

We will be glad to receive and publish your positive news from the fields and offices.

Welcome to send us photos of your country's Nature Reserves.

Sviatoslav Zabelin, SEU coordinator

 

Digest of Socio-Ecological Union International for February 3, 2023. №57

 

"Land of the Leopard" is a national park created in Primorsky Krai, Russia on April 5, 2012 with the main goal of preserving and restoring the population of the rarest large cat in the world — the Far Eastern leopard, whose number in Russia is now only 121 individuals. Today, more than half of them live in the "Land of the Leopard". In addition, there is another cat listed in the Red Book — the Amur tiger.

 

Manta ray populations are thriving in Indonesia’s Raja Ampat archipelago, a new population assessment shows, highlighting the importance of marine protected areas to the species’ conservation. The study showed that reef manta ray (Mobula alfredi) populations saw up to 10.7% compound annual increase from 2009-2019 in the region, even as global ray and shark populations undergo a sweeping decline.

A manta ray in Bali, Indonesia. Image by Anett Szaszi / Ocean Image Bank.

The study authors attribute this to well-planned and -implemented conservation measures by Indonesian authorities, conservation groups and local communities. The finding chimes with the discovery earlier this year that manta ray populations are also flourishing in Komodo National Park, another tightly regulated protected area in Indonesia. Read more

 

On Dec. 15, the U.S. Senate passed legislation that will ban the shark fin trade within the nation. It’s estimated that fins from as many as 73 million sharks annually end up in the global market, but it is difficult to fully grasp the size and severity of the shark fin industry since much of it is unregulated.

Scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini). Image by ErikvanB via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0).

This forthcoming ban follows other measures to protect sharks, including the listing of many shark species on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and a ban on gear that is used to target sharks in the Pacific. Read more

 

It was the first year since 1977 that no rhinos were killed in Kaziranga national park, a wildlife-filled haven in India’s Assam state. The news is a win for conservationists who have been working hard to protect the animals. Local police said that 58 poachers were arrested last year, Reuters reported

Image: Soumabrata Moulick

The global population of one-horned rhino has soared from 200 to more than 4,000 since the turn of the 20th century, according to the International Rhino Foundation. Read more

 

The Biden administration is banning mining for 20 years in a giant watershed near Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, the president’s latest effort to deliver on conservation pledges that would shape the future of America’s wild lands.

Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is the most heavily visited wilderness area in the country, according to the Interior Department. (Salwan Georges/The Washington Post)

The move, announced Thursday, extends a temporary decision from a year ago to block copper, nickel and other hard-rock mining that the Trump administration had tried to greenlight near the Canadian border. Officials said they determined the potential toxic leaching from mining would be too threatening to nature, local Native American communities and a growing recreation economy. Boundary Waters is the most heavily visited wilderness area in the country, according to the Interior Department. And Thursday’s decision will affect 225,000 acres of federal lands and waters in the Rainy River Watershed, which abuts the wilderness area northwest of Lake Superior. Read more

 

The Biden administration on Wednesday restored protections for more than half of Alaska’s Tongass National Forest, safeguarding one of the world’s largest intact temperate rainforests from new roads and logging. The Tongass is a relatively pristine expanse in the state’s southeast that has been the focus of a long fight between environmentalists and Alaskan timber interests.

A truck carrying recently cut old-growth trees drives through the Tongass National Forest in Alaska in July 2021. (Salwan Georges/The Washington Post)

State leaders had persuaded the Trump administration in 2020 to open it up to new roads and logging, undoing protections dating to the Clinton era, in a bid to boost economic development. Biden administration officials said Wednesday that the forest is vital both for wildlife habitat — especially fish — and fighting climate change. The administration’s decision, through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, will repeal the 2020 Alaska Roadless Rule, making it illegal again for logging companies to build roads and cut and remove timber throughout more than 9.3 million acres of forest. Read more

 

US environmental authorities on Tuesday blocked a huge gold and copper mine project in Alaska's pristine salmon-rich Bristol Bay. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) move is a victory for environmental activists, the fishing industry and indigenous groups who had been fighting the Pebble mine for two decades.

Citing the Clean Water Act, the EPA said it was blocking the project to "help protect Bristol Bay, the most productive wild salmon ecosystem in the world." "The Bristol Bay watershed is a vital economic driver, providing jobs, sustenance, and significant ecological and cultural value to the region," EPA administrator Michael Regan said in a statement. Assistant administrator Radhika Fox said the EPA had determined that discharge from the proposed mine would have "unacceptable and adverse effects on certain salmon fishery areas in the Bristol Bay watershed." Read more

 

Citing threats to the endangered North Atlantic right whale, federal officials are invoking an emergency rule to ban lobster and crab trap and pot fishermen from working in a vast area of Massachusetts Bay over the next three months. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on Tuesday said the emergency rule, which was also deployed in 2022, means that trap and pot fishermen fishing federal waters in an area known as the Massachusetts Restricted Area Wedge "must remove all trap/pot gear from this area, and may not reset trawls being actively fished, or set new trawls in this area for the period from February 1 - April 30, 2023."

NOAA cited a "high likelihood that endangered right whales are present throughout this area and in adjoining waters during February through April" and said fishing in that area "poses a particularly high risk of mortality or serious injury from entanglement in fishing gear." Read more

 

Dear friends and co-fighters! Welcome to the next issue of Positive News. Let you spread it among your friends and co-fighters in your countries and around the Earth. We will be glad to receive and publish your positive news from the fields and offices. Welcome to send us photos of your country's Nature Reserves. Sviatoslav Zabelin, SEU...

 

Dear friends and co-fighters! Welcome to the next issue of Positive News. Let you spread it among your friends and co-fighters in your countries and around the Earth. We will be glad to receive and publish your positive news from the fields and offices. Welcome to send us photos of your country's Nature Reserves.

 

Dear friends and co-fighters! Welcome to the next issue of Positive News. Let you spread it among your friends and co-fighters in your countries and around the Earth. We will be glad to receive and publish your positive news from the fields and offices. Welcome to send us photos of your country's Nature Reserves.

 

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