Permaculture and Cranes

The Drakensberg Crane Conservation Project’s priority community engagement work is focused on conservation agriculture and capacity building, public awareness and education, and health and environment. International Crane Foundation project communities, such as KwaMkhize, are predominantly unemployed and surviving mainly on social grants and agricultural products. Even though agriculture is seen as key in addressing food security in communities along the Drakensberg, the extent of alien plant infestation, soil erosion, overgrazing and poor soil quality continue to be impediments to enhancing food security in the area. To find a lasting solution to the issue, the project facilitated training on permaculture gardening. Permaculture is the development of agricultural ecosystems intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient. Much like no-till farming, permaculture protects the soil structure of the ground and allows the carbon sequestration capability to remain intact, benefitting the environment.

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Farmers lead the way in cultivating solutions to climate change

A milestone for the environment in South Africa! The country’s first landowner has signed a carbon project development contract. South Africa’s Carbon Tax Act creates a market for those who can sequester or trap carbon, such as those with suitable farmlands – and habitat for cranes – to receive payment from polluters in carbon credits.

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International Day of Action for Rivers 2021

The 24th Day of Action for Rivers will take place on March 14, 2021. The International Day of Action for Rivers is a day dedicated to solidarity – when diverse communities around the world come together with one voice to say that rivers matter. That communities having access to clean and flowing water matters. This past International Day of Action for Rivers on March 14, 2020, thousands of river stewards, defenders, and allies took action both in-person and online. Despite the health and safety challenges faced by many countries around the world with the COVID-19 pandemic, over 50 direct actions were registered across 23 countries/nation-states with hundreds more joining in via social media and digital outreach. The outpouring of solidarity with #RiversUniteUs during this time is a testament to the commitment of so many communities and individuals around the world to protecting vital freshwater. The International Day of Action Against Dams and For Rivers, Water and Life was adopted by the participants of the first International Meeting of People Affected by Dams, March 1997 in Curitiba Brazil. Representatives from 20 countries decided that the International Day of Action would take place on March 14 – Brazil’s Day of Action Against Large Dams. Our aim on this International Day of Action for Rivers, is to raise our voices in unison against destructive water development projects, reclaim the health of our watersheds, and demand the equitable and sustainable management of our rivers.

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IACACT is proud to announce the launch of its new and innovative initiative dedicated to biodiversity: “22.92 – Conservation Project” aims to raise awareness, create dialogue and establish partnership with schools, organizations and general audience. Biodiversity is important to most aspects of our lives because it includes not only species considered rare, threatened, or endangered but also every living thing, from humans to organisms such as microbes, fungi, and invertebrates. Over the last century, humans have come to dominate the planet, causing rapid ecosystem change and massive loss of biodiversity across the planet.

“22.92 – Conservation Project” will work through online classes, 2.0 workshops and webinar in order to share useful information to foster proactive behaviors and best practice among youth. «We are very excited – said Daniele Mariani, founder of IACACT – because it is very important not stopping educational programms on topics like environment and biodiversity especially during these hard times in order to keep chasing the sustainable development goals».

IACACT in parthership with Psyco Prod. released the promo video for the launching campaign of  “22.92- Conservation Project” at .

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Continue Fighting for Sea Turtles

Eddie Peng, the China Sea Turtle Conservation Alliance and WildAid launched a new campaign in China to inspire public action on saving sea turtles. In the new campaign, popular actor Eddie Peng encourages the public to become “sea turtle warriors” by taking simple actions that can help reduce threats to sea turtles and other marine wildlife. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a mixed fate to sea turtles around the world. The steep decline in crowds on beaches from Brazil to Thailand has resulted in increased numbers of nesting turtles. However, exponential increases in disposable plastic consumption from food delivery and protective equipment are adding to already high levels of plastic debris in the oceans, posing threats to marine life that mistake it as food, especially sea turtles. Of the seven species of sea turtles, five are found in Chinese waters. The primary active nesting sites in China are now in the remote Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. The Huidong Sea Turtle Nature Reserve in Guangdong had around 500 nesting turtles 70 years ago but by 2012 only 2 nesting turtles were counted.

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WILDAID Launches Campaign to End Wildlife Consumption in Vietnam

To emphasize and warn of the dangers of wildlife consumption to public health, WildAid and CHANGE launched The Host campaign, an innovative effort featuring MC/Journalist Trac Thuy Mieu and MC Phan Anh, among others.The four campaign videos urge the public to stop consuming wildlife in order to help prevent similar pandemics in the future. They highlight the public health hazards associated with the wildlife trade that supplies consumers and specialty restaurants, as many species can carry pathogens which pose a danger to humans when transmission occurs. In a recent study by the Wildlife Conservation Society, coronavirus prevalence rates and risk of infection in field rats sold into the wildlife trade in Vietnam increased from 20% to 55% as the rats became increasingly stressed as they moved through the supply chain from initial seller to market to restaurant.

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Across WildAid’s Africa program focus countries, we have seen relatively little in the media that clearly makes the link between the COVID-19 pandemic and wildlife or explains  zoonotic diseases and how they can be prevented. Furthermore, there has been little to nothing targeted specifically at everyday African audiences.  WildAid is releasing a new animation in six widely-spoken languages aimed at filling this gap. The cartoon, made by Kenyan animator Mark Kinuthia, follows the journey of Oringo, who, after cutting down a tree with a chainsaw, learns how his actions could cause the next pandemic. Throughout the two-minute piece, viewers are reminded of the many benefits that wild animals bring humans, taking care not to create or reinforce negative associations between wildlife and disease. The underlying message is that all life systems on earth are connected; if one is damaged or destroyed, all creatures – including us – suffer. It is up to all of us to do our part to prevent this.

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Forests of the biogeographic region of Chocó in critical danger of disappearing

The biogeographic region of Chocó ranges from the eastern region of Panamá, through the Pacific coast of Colombia, to the southwest of Ecuador. In Colombia, this neotropical corridor, which covers the Pacific coast to the foothills of the western mountain range, forms a natural barrier that has generated some of the country’s highest biodiversity within earth’s rainforest ecosystems.

This region has very high endemism; for example, 25% of the bird species and 35 species of palm trees are unique. Chocó is among 25 regions of the world classified as a priority for nature conservation, a Biodiversity Hotspot. It has been a great challenge for Fundación ProAves to protect these ecosystems and their environmental services. In 2002 ProAves Reserve El Pangán was created with the aim of conserving the forested foothills near the multi-cultural town of Junín, Nariño.

Here one finds the town’s indigenous Awá fabrics, the sounds of the timbas in Afro-Colombian communities, and the wisdom of mountane farmers.

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ProAves in the development of bird tourism in Colombia

In Colombia bird watching tour began in the early 1990s where pioneers like Paul Coopmans and Steve Hilty brought a few clients. Between 1996 and 1999, Dr. Paul Salaman led the first tours in Colombia with the goal of observing 1,000 bird species in 30 days in order to promote the country as a travel destination.Unfortunately, between 1998 and 2003 the security situation in Colombia became very difficult, delaying the development of bird tourism.

However, between 2003 and 2009, the Belgian Jurgen Beckers travelled extensively and designed tour routes incorporating many interesting species, and helped move the country away from the bad reputation it had due to the internal conflict.

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Mongolia Protects White-naped Crane Breeding Area

The Government of Mongolia recently designated core breeding habitat for White-naped Cranes as a national-level nature reserve, a vital step in increasing reproduction in the rapidly-declining Western population of this threatened species.

The Khurkh-Khuiten River Valleys (KKRV) in Northeast Mongolia is a diverse ecosystem supporting a mix of grasslands and wetlands that provide a haven for the world’s most important breeding concentration of Vulnerable White-naped Cranes.The International Crane Foundation, working closely with its partner, the Wildlife Science and Conservation Center (WSCC) of Mongolia, has been supporting research, monitoring and conservation of cranes and wetlands in KKRV since 2013, with a focus on White-naped Cranes that nest in the wetlands scattered through the area.

Experts from the U.S. Forest Service have provided valuable capacity training on rangeland management, socio-economic survey and the complex hydrology of the valleys, including the impact of permafrost melting on the wetlands as a result of climate change.

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