Digest of Socio-Ecological Union International for December 17, 2023. №62

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 December 17, 2023. №62

 

In northeastern Georgia, at the foot of the Central Caucasian Ridge, near the small town of Lagodekhi, there is a nature reserve of the same name. The reserve was established in 1912. He owes much of his appearance to the naturalist, zoologist, botanist and pioneer of the study of Caucasian nature Ludwig Frantsevich Mlokosevich. Today, Lagodekhi National Park is a beautiful corner of wild pristine nature with an area of 17,818 thousand hectares. Most of the territory is covered with forests, almost 5 thousand hectares are occupied by alpine and subalpine meadows, about 90 hectares are all kinds of reservoirs (many rivers, springs, springs, lakes and more than thirty waterfalls).

 

The European Parliament and EU member states reached an agreement on Thursday, November 9, on a key biodiversity bill aimed at rewilding EU land and water habitats. The law will force EU countries to put in place measures to restore at least 20 % of the EU's land and 20 % of the EU's seas by 2030, said a statement by the council, which represents the 27 member states.

The European flag, left, flies Tuesday, April 18, 2023 at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France. JEAN-FRANCOIS BADIAS / AP

There had been attempts by the parliament's biggest grouping, the conservative European People's Party (EPP), to shoot down the text earlier this year. Read more

 

The European Union has become the first international body to criminalise wide-scale environmental damage “comparable to ecocide”. Late on Thursday, lawmakers agreed an update to the bloc’s environmental crime directive punishing the most serious cases of ecosystem destruction, including habitat loss and illegal logging, with tougher penalties. Marie Toussaint, a French lawyer and MEP heading EU efforts to criminalise ecocide, said the decision “marks the end of impunity for environmental criminals” and could usher in a new age of environmental litigation in Europe.

A image that the environment NGO Agent Green says is evidence of large-scale deforestation and habitat degradation in the Cindrel mountains of Romania. Photograph: Agent Green/AP

The environmental crime directive will be formally passed in the spring, and member states will then have two years to put it into national law. Although the agreed text does not itself include the word “ecocide”, its preamble says it intends to criminalise “cases comparable to ecocide”. These are actions that cause widespread, substantial and irreversible or long-lasting damage to large or important ecosystems, habitats or the quality of air, soil or water. This closely follows a definition of ecocide developed by an international panel of legal experts in 2021. Read more

 

The European Union today agreed a landmark law that will help prevent large companies from damaging the environment and threatening human rights, after negotiators concluded late-night talks on the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD). For the first time, there will be a comprehensive legal framework for communities anywhere in the world to sue companies responsible for human rights abuses and environmental harms in European courts.Companies will also need to write and put into effect climate transition plans, which will put Europe’s biggest corporate players – including fossil fuel majors – on a pathway towards reducing their emissions in line with the Paris Agreement and the EU’s climate targets. While banks and insurers will have to implement climate transition plans – steps that would bring them closer to climate-friendly investments - the financial sector secured a broader carve-out and will not be obliged to ensure that their loans or investments are not tied to human rights abuses. Read more

 

Ahead of World Rhino Day on 22 September 2023, African authorities have estimated that there were 23,290 rhinos across the continent at the end of 2022, 5.2% more than in 2021. Nonetheless, at least 561 rhinos were illegally killed (poached) across the continent during 2022. South Africa is still home to more rhinos than any other country but continues to experience high losses to poaching – 448 rhinos illegally killed in 2022 compared to 451 in 2021. 

Photo: Rudi van Aarde

Namibia detected 93 poached rhinos in 2022 compared to 47 the previous year. In Kenya, official figures showed that one rhino was poached in 2022, down from six the year prior. A combination of protection and biological management initiatives have resulted in an overall tally of 6,487 black rhinos in Africa, up 4.2% from 2021. White rhinos now number around 16,803 animals, an increase of 5.6%. Notably, this is the first increase in white rhino numbers since 2012. Read more

 

Removal of the diversion dam restores flows to historic Klamath River canyon for the first time in nearly a century.  This week, crews put the final touches on the removal of the Copco No. 2 Dam and its diversion infrastructure. Removal of the dam structure was completed in September, and crews spent the last month removing the remaining diversion infrastructure, grading the river channel, and performing erosion control.

This work prepares the river canyon for consistent river flows, likely commencing within 30 days, which the canyon hasn’t seen in 98 years.  Currently, flows in the canyon are fluctuating due to work being done to prepare Copco No. 1 for drawdown. “Copco No 2 is the first dam to be removed due to its small stature, location, and lack of reservoir,” noted Mark Bransom, CEO of the Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC), the entity tasked with the safe and efficient removal of the four lower Klamath hydroelectric dams. “However, while Copco No. 2 was significantly smaller than the other dams slated for removal, it still had a significant impact on the river.”  Read more

 

Deforestation rates plummeted in the Amazon. There’s been a dramatic turnaround in the Amazon, where deforestation rates have fallen significantly in a year. That’s according to analysis by Amazon Conservation, a nonprofit that monitors the rainforest across nine countries.

Image: JarnoVerdonk/iStock

It said that deforestation rates are down 55.8% compared to last year, following efforts to halt tree loss, notably in Brazil. Separate data from the organisation Climate Trace had more good news. It reported that emissions from deforestation in Indonesia – a country once plagued by slash-and-burn agriculture – fell by 56% between 2015 to 2022. However, globally, emissions from deforestation still rose by 5% in 2022. Read more

 

Ecuador returned land to an Indigenous tribe. Eight decades after they were expelled from their ancestral land in the Amazon, the Indigenous Siekopai people will now be able to return. It follows a landmark court ruling in Ecuador, which ordered the government to return 42,360 hectares of jungle near the Peruvian border to the tribe. The Siekopai people lived there for centuries, until they were expelled in 1941 due to the war between Ecuador and Peru.

Image: Jeff Stapleton

 The judicial decision is “historic,” said Justino Pianguaje, the head of the Siekopai Nation, in an interview with the Spanish newspaper El País. For the first time, he said, Ecuador has recognized an Indigenous population’s right to “possess a territory that has been declared a protected area.” Read more

 

Quebracho and Condor Natural Reserve in the Cordillera de Laderas was created on Aug. 24 this year in response to the poisoning deaths of 34 Andean condors two years earlier. The community of Ladera Norte pushed for their entire territory of nearly 3,300 hectares (8,150 acres) to be designated as a nature reserve, citing the importance of the condor as the national bird.

The reserve also protects the white quebracho, a tree species native to this region of Bolivia, which is threatened by the loss and fragmentation of habitat. Read more

 

On Nov. 12, the government of Papua New Guinea declared two large new marine protected areas totaling more than 16,000 square kilometers (6,200 square miles) that reportedly triple the country’s marine area under protection.  The announcement capped a six-year effort led by U.S.-based NGO Wildlife Conservation Society to consult with local communities about how to set up the MPAs to curtail the harvest of threatened species and restore the health of fisheries that people have depended on for generations. 

Subsistence fishing has become more difficult for communities near the two new MPAs as populations increase and commercial fishing squeezes stocks. Image © Elodie Van Lierde | WCS.

The NGO called the announcement “one of the first and most ambitious community-led MPA wins” since countries agreed last year to protect 30% of land and sea area by 2030 under the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity. Read more

 

Crédit Agricole, one of France's biggest banks, announced on Thursday, December 14, it would no longer finance any new fossil fuel extraction projects, a day after delegates agreed on the COP28 climate deal that saw the first-ever call for a "transition" away from fossil fuels approved. "In a context of climate emergency, we need to amplify our commitment towards measures supporting the transformation of society," chief executive Philippe Brassac said in a statement. In addition to not financing any new fossil fuel extraction projects, Crédit Agricole said it would adopt a selective approach to supporting energy players engaged in this transition. This would "reduce greenhouse gas emissions of this sector twice as fast as the Net Zero 2050 scenario defined by the International Energy Agency," it said. Read more

29.10 В мире

 

 

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