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Brazil’s Amazon deforestation surges to 15-year high, undercutting government pledge

Brazil Rondonia State Amazon deforestation

Brasilia, BrazilReuters Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest soared 22 per cent in a year to the highest level since 2006, the government’s annual report showed on Thursday, undercutting President Jair Bolsonaro’s assurances that the country is curbing illegal logging. Brazil’s space research agency, INPE, recorded 13,235 square kilometres of deforestation in the world’s largest rainforest […]

From beef to chocolate, illegal deforestation found behind many everyday foods

Brazil Para State cattle

Bogota, ColombiaThomson Reuters Foundation Nearly 70 per cent of tropical forests cleared for cattle ranching and crops such as soybeans and palm oil were deforested illegally between 2013 and 2019, a study showed on Tuesday, warning of the impact on global efforts to fight climate change. Illegal logging was behind the loss of 4.5 million […]

One year on, family of murdered Amazon land defender say nothing has changed

Thomson Reuters Foundation Illegal loggers are operating unchecked in Brazil’s Amazon as coronavirus rages despite government vows to act after an Indigenous land activist was killed exactly one year ago trying to protect the rainforest, said his cousin. Paulo Paulino Guajajara, or Lobo – ‘wolf’ in Portuguese – was hunting on 1st November, 2019, inside […]

Medicine not chainsaws: Indonesian clinic keeps villagers and forests healthy

Indonesia West Kalimantan cleared forest

Thomson Reuters Foundation Offering affordable healthcare to villagers and Indigenous communities living near forests could help reduce illegal logging and fight climate change, researchers said on Monday. A new study led by Stanford University analysed a clinic providing such a service, set up by two non-profits adjacent to Gunung Palung National Park in West Kalimantan […]

Under the cover of lockdown, illegal logging surges in Tunisia

Tunisia Logging

Gabes, TunisiaThomson Reuters Foundation As Tunisia’s streets emptied and shops shuttered after the 6pm national curfew to stem the novel coronavirus outbreak, a clandestine group headed to the forest. Over two nights in early April, a group of people in the north-west region of Ain Draham illegally felled 400 trees, a species known as Algerian […]

Malaysia plans tougher penalties for illegal loggers in forest law reform

Xavier Jayakumar

Putrajaya, MalaysiaThomson Reuters Foundation Malaysia is set to beef up its decades-old forestry laws this year in an effort to protect its rainforests from illegal loggers, a senior minister said last week. The move would stiffen penalties, including fines and jail terms, for those found guilty of cutting down trees without permission, Xavier Jayakumar, Malaysia’s […]

Wildlife-loving Gabon minister seeks to stamp out illegal logging

Gabon rainforest

Johannesbury, South AfricaThomson Reuters Foundation Gabon’s new environment minister, Lee White, a British-born conservationist, has vowed to fight illegal logging by strengthening governance of forests after a national scandal in which about 350 containers of rare kevazingo wood went missing. Illegal logging, political apathy and climate change are key reasons why White made the move […]

Uncontacted tribes at risk amid ‘worrying’ surge in Amazon deforestation

Rio de Janeiro, BrazilThomson Reuters Foundation Illegal loggers and militias cleared an area three times the size of Gibraltar in Brazil’s Amazon this year, threatening an “uncontacted” indigenous tribe, activists said on Tuesday. Satellite imagery collected by Instituto Socioambiental, a Brazilian advocacy group, detected about 4,600 acres (1,863 hectares) of deforestation this year in the […]