The U.S. crackdown on drugs is, unfortunately, also driving deforestation throughout Central America according to new research. As cocaine traffickers try to avoid detection, they venture further into remote rainforests to hide, often cutting down key protected areas along the way. In fact, they often launder their drug money by posing as loggers and ranchers who are still illegally cutting down precious rainforest.
Participants in the Vatican synod on the Amazon region proposed adding “sins against the environment” to lists of traditionally recognized sins in their second day of discussions and deliberations.Synod fathers called for an “ecological conversion” that would allow people to see “the gravity of sins against the environment as sins against God, against our neighbour, and against future generations,” Vatican News reported Wednesday.“This would imply a need to produce and spread more widely a theological literature that would include ‘ecological sins’ alongside traditional sins,” the report stated.
More than 150 groups are pushing the maker of Charmin toiler paper and Bounty paper towels to use recycled materials in its products. Currently, neither of those products uses recycled paper, and about one-third of it is sourced from Canada's boreal forest — a large swath of virgin forest that rings the Arctic Circle and acts as a critical check on climate change.
Michael Shellenberger: "Against the picture painted by celebrities and the mainstream media that fires around the world are caused by economic growth, the truth is the opposite: the amount of land being burned is declining thanks to development, including urbanization. That's because the amount of land being converted into ranches and farms has been going down, not up, and because more of it is being done with machines than with fire. For the last 35 years, the world has been re-foresting, meaning new tree growth has exceeded deforestation. The area of the Earth covered with forest has increased by an area the size of Texas and Alaska combined.
Less land is being converted into agriculture globally in part because farmers are growing more food on less land. Much of the re-forestation is occurring in deserts and tundra that had been barren, thanks to human-led reforestation initiatives, such as in China and Africa, and because of global warming. Warmer temperatures are what have allowed forests to grow in tundra.
"The wealthy countries hold big speeches on the need to avoid deforestation but they already deforested everything. "Few countries have the moral authority to talk about deforestation with Brazil." - Luis Inácio "Lula" da Silva (2007)