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wildfires

Beware the planet-killing candies of the Anthropocene

By Mark A. Bonta / December 13, 2019 / Comments Off on Beware the planet-killing candies of the Anthropocene

In 2019, our collective love of Oreos, KitKats, or any of myriad other products made with palm oil, has resulted in the burning of an area the size of Puerto Rico. Global consumption of palm-oil-based food products has also released in that one-year period as much carbon dioxde pollution as the United Kingdom produced during […]

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These forest dwellers are seeing their home and culture turned into charcoal

By Mark A. Bonta / October 17, 2019 / Comments Off on These forest dwellers are seeing their home and culture turned into charcoal

The roughly 1,000 members of the Mikea people are Madagascar’s last hunters and gatherers. Yet the island nation’s dependence on charcoal for cooking may destroy their home, the dry Mikea Forest, much of which is a national park. Their entire culture — including their food sources, medicines and religion — is dependent on their namesake […]

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The Amazon is still burning, and investors are cranking up the pressure on Brazil

By Mark A. Bonta / October 11, 2019 / Comments Off on The Amazon is still burning, and investors are cranking up the pressure on Brazil

Massive fires continue to burn in the Amazon rainforest, and the investors are getting restless. Now, a coalition of 230 investment funds managing more than US$16 trillion in assets worldwide is considering different ways to confront the crisis. The funds include such powerhouses as the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, China Asset Management and Mitsubishi […]

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Forests are on fire around the world: Indonesia edition

By Mark A. Bonta / September 23, 2019 / Comments Off on Forests are on fire around the world: Indonesia edition

The Amazon isn’t the only tropical region up in flames this year. The rainforests of Sumatra and Borneo in Indonesia are also being put to the torch, provoking the ire of environmental activists as well as the governments of neighboring countries such as Singapore and Malaysia, whose citizens are breathing in the smoke. Locally, tens […]

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A strange alliance is forming against the destruction of the Amazon rainforest

By Mark A. Bonta / September 11, 2019 / Comments Off on A strange alliance is forming against the destruction of the Amazon rainforest

As the Amazon rainforest burns with historic ferocity, a strange alliance of ecological advocates and industry is forming to confront the inflammatory rhetoric of Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro. At a meeting in Sao Paulo, Brazil, representatives from the industrial-agriculture sector joined with ecological-advocacy groups to protest the increased deforestation of the Amazon this year. Worried […]

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Here’s who to blame for the Amazon rainforest inferno

By Mark A. Bonta / September 7, 2019 / Comments Off on Here’s who to blame for the Amazon rainforest inferno

A confusing tangle of allegations made it difficult to figure out who was at fault for the wildfires consuming Brazil’s Amazon rainforest this summer. President Jair Bolsonaro has famously blamed environmental organizations for setting the fires, claiming that they are disgruntled after he cut off their access to foreign funds. One ruralist — the cattle […]

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