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News Article | April 25, 2017
Site: www.techtimes.com

The last surviving male of the northern white rhino species is named Sudan and has joined Tinder on April 25 in hopes of becoming "the most eligible bachelor in the world." This is the title of the public awareness campaign aiming to raise the $9 million necessary for saving northern white rhinos from extinction. Like any other Tinder user, Sudan is looking for love and has now put his trust in global exposure to make his cause heard and hopefully help his species win the race against time. Perhaps the most endearing profile ever made on a dating app, Sudan's Tinder account stemmed from eager conservation efforts trying to prevent northern white rhinos from completely dying out. According to a Fauna and Flora International (FFI) news release, the campaign to save northern white rhinos was launched by Tinder in partnership with Ol Pejeta Conservancy, which houses the male rhinoceros. "The plight that currently faces the northern white rhinos is a signal to the impact that humankind is having on many thousands of other species across the planet," said Richard Vigne, CEO of Ol Pejeta Conservancy. The ultimate goal of this endeavor is "to reintroduce a viable population of northern white rhino back into the wild, which is where their true value will be realized," noted Vigne. To accomplish this, Ol Pejeta Conservancy is hoping to raise enough money to fund Assisted Reproductive Techniques (ART) currently researched by a consortium of institutions in the United States, Germany, and Japan. "Once perfected, this technology, in particular in vitro fertilization (IVF), will aid to achieve successful pregnancies to gradually build up a viable herd of northern white rhinos," shows the FFI news release. The research aims to establish a herd of 10 specimens through a five-year process of IVF and represents conservationists' last resort to save the species, after all previous attempts to breed northern white rhinos failed. If this feat ends in success, it will constitute a premiere in the artificial reproduction of rhinos. Upon hitting the "Like" button on Sudan's Tinder profile, people will be directed to the Ol Pejeta Conservancy website, where they can make donations to support the northern white rhino cause. Yesterday afternoon, the web page was temporarily down due to the large number of people trying to access it. "We partnered with Ol Pejeta conservancy to give the most eligible bachelor in the world a chance to meet his match," said Matt David, head of Tinder's communications and marketing department, who added that the company is confident that Sudan's profile will be visible on the app in 190 countries and more than 40 languages. In his Tinder profile, Sudan is described as "one of a kind" — and that's no exaggeration. He is in fact the last male white rhino on the entire planet. "I perform well under pressure. I like to eat grass and chill in the mud," reads Sudan's Tinder profile, mentioning the eligible bachelor is 6 feet tall and weighs 5,000 pounds. Sudan spends his days at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, protected by armed guards, and enjoying the company of two females of his species, Najin and Fatu. A series of challenges that include old age have kept these northern white rhinos from breeding naturally. Nevertheless, conservationists are weighing the option of crossing the species with Southern white rhinos. Although a distinct subspecies, they could provide around 17,000 potential female suitors for Sudan. The death of Suni, the other fertile male of the species in 2014 left Sudan, the only remaining male that can guarantee the proliferation of northern white rhinos. However, time is of the essence and all efforts must be made to ensure the species' survival while the rhino, aged 43, is still alive to fulfill his task. "To win this run against time it is very crucial to find major funds as quickly as possible," said Steven Seet, spokesperson for the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, which is part of the consortium. In 1960, there were more than 2,000 northern white rhinos living in the wild, according to World Wide Fund for Nature. By 1984, their numbers were decimated to just 15 due to poaching, since the rhinos' ivory horns were sold for big money in Asia. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.


MACAO, May 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Sands China Ltd. is pleased to announce its partnership with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the world's leading conservation organisation, and the launch of WWF's Earth Hour 'Just One' Hotels Programme, joining forces to reduce environmental impact and giving hotel guests the opportunity to contribute to tackling climate change. A joint press conference was held Thursday at Sands® Cotai Central, attended by executives from Sands China and WWF. As part of Sands China's ongoing commitment to sustainability, hotel guests have the opportunity to take part in climate action and contribute through WWF by adding USD 1 (MOP/HKD 8) to their bill for every night spent at The Venetian® Macao or The Parisian Macao. The collected funds from the 6,000 guest rooms will then go toward supporting two initiatives: 1) the WWF-China Biomass Fuel Stove Project and 2) raising environmental sustainability awareness in Macao through the distribution of Earth Hour Home LED Kits. The Venetian Macao and The Parisian Macao are the first hotels in Macao and Hong Kong to partner with WWF through 'Just One.' "Sands China Ltd. has been working with WWF for many years now in support of Earth Hour," said Mark McWhinnie, Senior Vice President of Resort Operations and Development for Sands China Ltd. "So it is with great pleasure that we now embark on this new 'Just One' initiative, a three-year campaign to raise environmental awareness and make a positive impact on the environment through contributions by our hotel guests." The first beneficiary of the campaign is the WWF-China Biomass Fuel Stove Project, which will impact at least 1,000 families in several villages in mainland China, where coal is the current energy source used for cooking. The reduced environmental impact of the cleaner-burning biomass stoves benefits the communities in the form of: The second beneficiary of WWF's Earth Hour 'Just One' Hotels Programme is the Macao community. An estimated 5,000 Earth Hour Home LED Kits will be distributed among several local schools, raising environmental sustainability awareness with students and parents. Each kit includes all the information needed for families to #MakeTheSwitch to energy-efficient lighting and to participate in Earth Hour. The engagement with the local Macao community is part of Sands China's genuine commitment to helping build a sustainable future and encouraging a positive environmental change. Each kit contains: "WWF is excited Sands China Ltd. shares our vision of collectively creating a better future for our planet. Climate change affects everyone, everywhere. And everyone is part of the solution. Through WWF's Earth Hour 'Just One' Hotel Programme, hotel staff and guests can engage in climate action and learn more about how they can make a difference," said Sudhanshu Sarronwala, Executive Director of Communications & Marketing for WWF International. "No one causes climate change in isolation and no one can tackle it alone. Together, however, we can change climate change." Thursday's press conference included a kick-off ceremony for the Just One programme, officiated by McWhinnie; Sarronwala; Dave Sun, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Sands China Ltd.; and Bede Barry, Vice President of Hotel Operations for The Venetian Macao and Sands Cotai Central. Environmental sustainability is one of Sands China's core values. Annual participation in Earth Hour and the newly launched Just One campaign are just two of the many ongoing efforts of the company's Sands ECO360° global sustainability strategy, which seeks to minimise the company's impact on the environment and encourage green-minded action from its team members – at work and at home. Sands China's eco-friendly measures at its properties have contributed to more sustainable operations while earning the company recognition for its efforts. In April 2014, The Venetian Macao became the first entity in Macao and one of the first two integrated resorts in Asia to receive the prominent ISO 20121 Event Sustainability Management System certification. In 2015 it received an ISO 9001:2008 certification for the quality management system of its convention and exhibition services. Five hotels at Sands China properties are winners of the Macao SAR government's Macau Green Hotel Award at the Gold level. These and many other awards continue to highlight the success of Sands China's ongoing sustainability efforts. Sands China Ltd. (HKEx: 1928, Sands China or the Company) is a Cayman Islands registered company and is listed on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited. Sands China is the largest operator of integrated resorts in Macao. The Company's Cotai Strip portfolio is comprised of The Venetian® Macao, The Plaza™ Macao, Sands® Cotai Central and The Parisian Macao. The Company also owns and operates Sands® Macao on the Macao peninsula. The Company's integrated resorts contain a diversified mix of leisure and business attractions and transportation operations, including large meeting and convention facilities; a wide range of restaurants; shopping malls; world-class entertainment at the Cotai Arena, The Venetian Theatre, The Parisian Theatre and the Sands Cotai Theatre; and a high-speed Cotai Water Jet ferry service between Hong Kong and Macao. The Company's Cotai Strip portfolio has the goal of contributing to Macao's transformation into a world centre of tourism and leisure. Sands China is a subsidiary of global resort developer Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE: LVS). For more information, please visit www.sandschinaltd.com. WWF is one of the world's largest and most respected independent conservation organizations, with over 5 million supporters and a global network active in over 100 countries. WWF's mission is to stop the degradation of the earth's natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature, by conserving the world's biological diversity, ensuring that the use of renewable natural resources is sustainable, and promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption. Earth Hour is a property of WWF. Visit www.panda.org/news for latest news and media resources and follow us on Twitter @WWF_media.


News Article | May 18, 2017
Site: www.rdmag.com

WCS scientists have discovered a refuge for corals where the environment protects otherwise sensitive species to the increasing severity of climate change. The bad news is that the reefs are showing signs of being overfished and weak compliance with local fisheries laws needs to be reversed to maintain the fish that help to keep reefs healthy. The scientists describe their findings in the journal Ecosphere. The authors say reefs located in northern Mozambique and the Quirimbas Islands supports two types of refuges and a gradient of environments that create the potential for corals to adapt to climate change. The first refuge is an environment that has enough variability for corals to adapt but lacks temperature extremes that would kill them. A second is deeper, cooler water but with the full spectrum of light that allows many species to thrive and avoid heat stress. The second refuge area is associated with shipping channels that support coastal people and centers of heavy fishing. The authors found that many nearby reefs were not fished sustainably and fishers were therefore migrating to the second refuge to find profitable fishing. Identifying climate-resistant reefs, called “Reefs of Hope,” is a high priority among conservation groups as corals are collapsing globally due to higher water temperatures. The authors found warning signs of overfishing including small fishes, reduced numbers of species and the increasing occurrence of sea urchins and algae growth. Sea urchins can damage corals if not controlled by predators such as triggerfish, while algae can suffocate corals unless kept in check by grazing fish species. The authors recommend that these coral refuge areas maintain a fish biomass of greater than 500 kilograms per hectare, which, as previously published WCS research shows, is the threshold to maintain ecological functions while sustaining local fisheries. Said Tim McClanahan, WCS Senior Conservation Zoologist and lead author of the study: “Northern Mozambique Quirimbas reefs have a variety of refugia, environmental variability, and high diversity that give these reefs a high potential to adapt to rapid climate change.  If this region is to provide adaptive potential to climate change, fishing at a sustainable level and maintaining reef fish biomass, life histories, and functions is a high priority.” Management recommendations include gear restrictions and closing certain areas to fishing, and  enforcing regulations in the Quirimbas National Park, which was established many years ago, but has failed to implement restrictions. Research is showing that properly managing marine protected areas (MPAs) continues to remain a challenge due to insufficient personnel and expenditures needed to enforce management. Another recent WCS-co-authored study said widespread lack of personnel and funds are preventing MPAs from reaching their full potential. Global awareness continues to grow about the immediate threats facing coral reef ecosystems, as is a global commitment to address those threats. Last February, at the Economist World Ocean Summit in Bali, Indonesia, the ‘50 Reefs’ initiative was launched by the Global Change Institute of the University of Queensland and the Ocean Agency. The initiative brings together leading ocean, climate and marine scientists to develop a list of the 50 most critical coral reefs to protect, while leading conservation practitioners are working together to establish the best practices to protect these reefs. This work was supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; the US Agency for International Development; World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Mozambique; and the Sustainable Poverty Alleviation from Coastal Ecosystem Services (SPACES) NE-K010484-1 which is funded by the UK Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) program. ESPA is funded by the UK Department for International Development, the Economic and Social Research Council, and the Natural Environment Research Council. WCS’s efforts to protect marine biodiversity around the world will help inform the upcoming UN Ocean Conference. The conference will be convened by the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, June 5-9, 2017, and will support the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14 to conserve and sustainably use marine resources and to protect the world’s oceans and seas.


News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

MOMBASA, KENYA (May 17, 2017) - WCS scientists have discovered a refuge for corals where the environment protects otherwise sensitive species to the increasing severity of climate change. The bad news is that the reefs are showing signs of being overfished and weak compliance with local fisheries laws needs to be reversed to maintain the fish that help to keep reefs healthy. The scientists describe their findings in the journal Ecosphere. The authors say reefs located in northern Mozambique and the Quirimbas Islands supports two types of refuges and a gradient of environments that create the potential for corals to adapt to climate change. The first refuge is an environment that has enough variability for corals to adapt but lacks temperature extremes that would kill them. A second is deeper, cooler water but with the full spectrum of light that allows many species to thrive and avoid heat stress. The second refuge area is associated with shipping channels that support coastal people and centers of heavy fishing. The authors found that many nearby reefs were not fished sustainably and fishers were therefore migrating to the second refuge to find profitable fishing. Identifying climate-resistant reefs, called "Reefs of Hope," is a high priority among conservation groups as corals are collapsing globally due to higher water temperatures. The authors found warning signs of overfishing including small fishes, reduced numbers of species and the increasing occurrence of sea urchins and algae growth. Sea urchins can damage corals if not controlled by predators such as triggerfish, while algae can suffocate corals unless kept in check by grazing fish species. The authors recommend that these coral refuge areas maintain a fish biomass of greater than 500 kilograms per hectare, which, as previously published WCS research shows, is the threshold to maintain ecological functions while sustaining local fisheries. Said Tim McClanahan, WCS Senior Conservation Zoologist and lead author of the study: "Northern Mozambique Quirimbas reefs have a variety of refugia, environmental variability, and high diversity that give these reefs a high potential to adapt to rapid climate change. If this region is to provide adaptive potential to climate change, fishing at a sustainable level and maintaining reef fish biomass, life histories, and functions is a high priority." Management recommendations include gear restrictions and closing certain areas to fishing, and enforcing regulations in the Quirimbas National Park, which was established many years ago, but has failed to implement restrictions. Research is showing that properly managing marine protected areas (MPAs) continues to remain a challenge due to insufficient personnel and expenditures needed to enforce management. Another recent WCS-co-authored study said widespread lack of personnel and funds are preventing MPAs from reaching their full potential. Global awareness continues to grow about the immediate threats facing coral reef ecosystems, as is a global commitment to address those threats. Last February, at the Economist World Ocean Summit in Bali, Indonesia, the '50 Reefs' initiative was launched by the Global Change Institute of the University of Queensland and the Ocean Agency. The initiative brings together leading ocean, climate and marine scientists to develop a list of the 50 most critical coral reefs to protect, while leading conservation practitioners are working together to establish the best practices to protect these reefs. This work was supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; the US Agency for International Development; World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Mozambique; and the Sustainable Poverty Alleviation from Coastal Ecosystem Services (SPACES) NE-K010484-1 which is funded by the UK Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) program. ESPA is funded by the UK Department for International Development, the Economic and Social Research Council, and the Natural Environment Research Council. WCS's efforts to protect marine biodiversity around the world will help inform the upcoming UN Ocean Conference. The conference will be convened by the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, June 5-9, 2017, and will support the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14 to conserve and sustainably use marine resources and to protect the world's oceans and seas.


News Article | May 26, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

"The big beast stood like an uncouth statue, his hide black in the sunlight; he seemed what he was, a monster surviving over from the world's past, from the days when the beasts of the prime ran riot in their strength, before man grew so cunning of brain and hand as to master them." Theodore Roosevelt, former U.S. president and renowned big-game hunter, waxed poetic about a massive bull rhinoceros in his 1910 book, "African Game Trails: An Account of the African Wanderings of an American Hunter-Naturalist," after glimpsing the rhino during a safari in British East Africa and the Belgian Congo earlier that year. [In Photos: A Museum Honors Teddy Roosevelt] What happened next? Roosevelt shot the beast. He fired with his gun's right barrel, "the bullet going through both lungs," and then with the left, "the bullet entering between the neck and shoulder and piercing his heart," Roosevelt wrote. A third volley from another member of the hunting party brought down the great animal, "just thirteen paces from where we stood," according to Roosevelt. A black-and-white image of the aftermath shows Roosevelt in what was a common pose for him: standing alongside the lifeless body of a creature that he had hunted and killed. [In Photos: Endangered and Threatened Wildlife] More than 100 years later, thousands of people each year still visit wild spaces across Africa with guns in hand. They apply for permits to recreationally hunt big animals, many of which — leopards, lions and elephants, to name just a few — represent threatened or endangered species. And the "sport" is not without risks for human hunters — on May 19, a hunter in Zimbabwe was crushed to death by an elephant after the animal was shot by another member of his hunting party. So what motivates people to hunt these animals for pleasure, and to proudly display the bodies or body parts of their prey as precious trophies? The slaughtering of large, dangerous animals as a spectacle dates back thousands of years, with records from the Assyrian empire (about 4,000 years ago to around 600 B.C.) describing kings that boasted of killing elephants, ibex, ostriches, wild bulls and lions, according to a study published in 2008 in the journal Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research. These hunts were carefully orchestrated and conducted for the amusement of royalty and as demonstrations of their strength, Linda Kalof, a professor of sociology at Michigan State University, told Live Science in an email. "Ancient canned hunts were spectacular displays of royal power and dominance, and always took place with the king's public watching from the sidelines," Kalof said. "A successful hunt requires the death of unrestrained wild animals — animals who are hostile, shun or attack humans, and are not submissive to human authority." Even today, acquiring trophy animals is a way of displaying power, Kalof noted. In some African countries, where big-game hunting and trophy display are expensive forms of entertainment practiced predominantly by white men, hunting recalls ideologies that are deeply rooted in colonialism and patriarchy, Kalof said. And then there's the money involved. Legal hunting, which is conducted under the supervision of government agencies and official guides, involves expensive permits and is limited to specific animal populations and only in certain areas. Illegal poaching, on the other hand, circumvents all regulations and targets animals regardless of their age, sex, or endangered status. The price tag attached to legal big-game hunting is considerable, once you tally up the costs of travel and lodging expenses, state-of-the-art equipment, local guides, and hunting permits. Government-sanctioned hunting is a booming enterprise in some African countries, with visiting hunters spending an estimated $200 million annually, The New York Times reported in 2015. And when American dentist Walter Palmer notoriously shot a 13-year-old lion named Cecil in Zimbabwe in July 2015, he purportedly spent approximately $54,000 just on permits for the privilege. In other words, people who hunt recreationally — and share photos of their trophies — are broadcasting that they can support lavish habits, biologist Chris Darimont, a Hakai-Raincoast Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, told Live Science in an email. American anthropologist Osa Johnson and Jerramani, her African guide (right) pose with two dead lions in East Africa, in April 1930. With them are three Eagle Scouts who won a national Boy Scout competition to go on safari with the Johnsons in 1928, later writing the book 'Three Boy Scouts in Africa'. From left to right they are Robert Dick Douglas, Doug Oliver and David Martin. In a study on contemporary trophy hunting behavior, published in March 2016 in the journal Biology Letters, Darimont and his co-authors investigated whether evolutionary anthropology could provide answers about motives for recreational hunting. They suggested in their findings that men use hunting to send signals about their fitness to rivals and potential mates, noting that even subsistence hunters (those who kill animals for food) targeted animals that were more challenging for them to catch, simply to let others know that they could afford to take that risk. "The inference is that they have the physical and mental characteristics that allow them to behave in a costly way and absorb those costs," Darimont said. And by sharing images of their trophies on social media, hunters can now trumpet messages about their personal wealth and social status to a global audience, he added. [Black Market Horns: Images from a Rhino Bust] But there's yet another side to the recreational hunting story: Some hunters argue that the money spent on their hobby is funding important conservation work. When hunters pay thousands of dollars to government agencies for the privilege of hunting certain types of wildlife in designated zones, portions of those costs can be invested in federal programs and community efforts to preserve animals living in protected areas – and even safeguard them against poaching, according to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). "In certain limited and rigorously controlled cases, including for threatened species, scientific evidence has shown that trophy hunting can be an effective conservation tool as part of a broad mix of strategies," the WWF states on its website. Because legal hunting provides local jobs and revenue, it can work as a deterrent against poaching and helps to conserve ecosystems, professional hunter Nathan Askew, owner of an American company that leads hunting safaris for "dangerous game" in South Africa, Tanzania, Botswana and Mozambique, explained in a Facebook post. "The positive economic impact brought about by hunting incentivizes governments, landowners and companies to protect the animals and their habitats," Askew said. By demonstrating that wildlife has economic value, hunting can actively engage local communities in efforts to stop poachers and preserve wild spaces that might not otherwise be maintained for wildlife, a representative of the hunting organization Safari Club International (SCI), told Live Science in an email. Hunting under government supervision can also preserve the health of animal populations in the wild by weeding out individuals that are less fit. In Namibia, for example, black rhinos are listed as critically endangered, with only 5,000 individuals remaining in the wild. Yet the Namibian government maintains an annual hunting quota of five post-breeding males, to stimulate population growth by allowing younger males to breed, the SCI representative explained. [A Crash of Rhinos: See All 5 Species] "Not only does the black rhino hunting benefit rhino population growth, it also generates hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue that by law has to be put toward rhino conservation in Namibia. Therefore, hunting provides a direct cash benefit to rhino conservation that tourism can’t provide," the representative said in a statement. However, recent studies suggest that modern hunters may be overestimating their contributions to wildlife conservation. Not all countries that support recreational hunting are transparent about where that income goes, and it can be uncertain how much — if any — is actually benefiting African communities or conservation efforts.   A report that the Democratic staff of the House Committee on Natural Resources (a congressional committee of the U.S. House of Representatives) issued in June 2016 suggested that income from hunting in African countries such as Zimbabwe, Tanzania, South Africa and Namibia, from which the greatest number of hunting trophies are imported into the U.S., was not meeting conservation needs. "In assessing the flow of trophy hunting revenue to conservation efforts, we found many troubling examples of funds either being diverted from their purpose or not being dedicated to conservation in the first place," the report's authors wrote. Danish novelist Isak Dinesen (pseudonym of Baroness Karen Christence Blixen-Finecke) posing with dead lions and a rifle on a safari in Kenya, circa 1914. Other experts have also questioned hunting's usefullness as a tool for conservation. In fact, when it comes to lions, "trophy hunting adds to the problem," Jeff Flocken, North American director for the International Fund for Animal Welfare, wrote in August 2013, in an opinion column for National Geographic. Flocken argued that trophy hunting weakens the African lion gene pool because the most desirable trophy kills are young, healthy males. Removing them from the population means that their DNA won't contribute to the next generation of lions. Killing young males also destabilizes their prides, and can result in more lion casualties as rival males compete to take their place, he wrote. But perhaps most importantly, he added, legalized recreational hunting derails conservation efforts by simply devaluing the lives of the hunted animals. "It's a message that won't be heard as long as it is common and legal to kill lions for sport," Flocken said in the article. "Why should anyone spend money to protect an animal that a wealthy American can then pay to go kill?"   The World's Biggest Beasts: Here and Gone (Photos)


News Article | May 12, 2017
Site: www.prnewswire.com

Set in 2016 as part its broader 2025 Agenda, the new climate goal takes into account PepsiCo's direct operations, owned-fleet fuel use and purchased electricity, which account for approximately 7% of the company's total carbon footprint. Importantly, however, the goal also includes the 93% of PepsiCo's carbon footprint that emanates from sources outside PepsiCo direct operations, such as farming, packaging, third-party transportation and consumer use of its products. To date, 44 companies worldwide have had their climate targets validated by the Science Based Targets Initiative, a partnership between CDP, the World Resources Institute, the World Wide Fund for Nature and the UN Global Compact, with over 200 more companies awaiting validation. "The Paris Climate Agreement that entered into force in April 2016 set out the obligation for collective action to limit the impact of climate change," said Dr. Mehmood Khan, PepsiCo Vice Chairman and Chief Scientific Officer, Global Research and DevelopmentGlobal Research and Development. "We believe combating climate change is critical to the future of our company, our customers, consumers and our world.  Our new target represents a meaningful and measurable contribution to meeting the two degree global goal. Such rigor is now a requirement of any responsible business." Cynthia Cummis, Director of Private Sector Climate Mitigation at the World Resources Institute and a member of the Science Based Targets Initiative Steering Committee, said: "The threat of climate change calls for governments and businesses to commit to science-based action. We congratulate PepsiCo on their science-based target. By seeking to decarbonize its value chain, the company is showing leadership within the food and agriculture sector and strengthening its competitive advantage in the transition to the low-carbon economy." PepsiCo will work to reduce its GHG emissions by: Among new actions already underway, PepsiCo has joined the Business Renewables Center at the Rocky Mountain Institute and signed on to the Renewable Energy Buyers Principles, which were developed by leading NGOs and set out the future purchasing expectations of large companies regarding renewable energy in the United States. These actions are informing PepsiCo's renewable energy procurement strategy. PepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers one billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated approximately $63 billion in net revenue in 2016, driven by a complementary food and beverage portfolio that includes Frito-Lay, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Quaker and Tropicana. PepsiCo's product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including 22 brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales. At the heart of PepsiCo is Performance with Purpose – our fundamental belief that the success of our company is inextricably linked to the sustainability of the world around us. We believe that continuously improving the products we sell, operating responsibly to protect our planet and empowering people around the world is what enables PepsiCo to run a successful global company that creates long-term value for society and our shareholders. For more information, visit www.pepsico.com. The Science Based Targets initiative champions science-based target setting as a powerful way of boosting companies' competitive advantage in the transition to the low-carbon economy. It is a collaboration between CDP, World Resources Institute (WRI), the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and one of the We Mean Business Coalition commitments. The initiative defines and promotes best practice in science-based target setting, offers resources and guidance to reduce barriers to adoption, and independently assesses and approves companies' targets." For a full list of companies that have committed to set science-based targets visit www.sciencebasedtargets.org/companies-taking-action To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/pepsico-embraces-science-based-targets-in-the-fight-against-climate-change-300456475.html


News Article | February 13, 2017
Site: www.theguardian.com

There is so much being done to help stop elephants being wiped out in the wild. We’ve identified more than 50 campaigns and organisations around the world, from well-known charities like the World Wide Fund for Nature to grassroots groups like Elephanatics in Canada and Laos-based ElefantAsia. If you think we’ve missed anyone or anything, let us know at elephant.conservation@theguardian.com. We’ll update the list with your suggestions. Please note, however: presence on this list does not constitute an endorsement. Organisations take differing approaches to elephant conservation, and even the most secure-looking can run into financial difficulties. As a conscientious giver it is your responsibility to make sure your contribution will be used wisely. Set up petitions, organise marches, lobby politicians or just spread the word: there are a number of ways in which you can campaign and really make an impact. There are many inspiring grassroots groups that do amazing work; why not join one of these, or set up your own if there’s none in your country? In the UK, Action for Elephants has organised marches and talks to highlight the importance of banning the ivory trade. This grassroots group also campaigns against keeping elephants in captivity. Even though 179 countries have signed up to Cites, the UN’s Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, the illegal trade in wild animals remains a multibillion-dollar industry. The Bloody Ivory campaign aims to put pressure on Cites to do more to prevent poaching and ivory trafficking. Its online petition to tackle the black market in ivory has 56,000 signatures (and counting) and will be presented at the next Cites meeting in 2019. Based in Vancouver, Canada, Elephanatics aims to raise awareness of the poaching crisis and ensure the long-term survival of elephants through education, conservation and fun activities like the annual global march for elephants and rhinos. Inspired by her childhood in Africa, Joyce Poole has been studying elephant behaviour and communication for more than 30 years. She has a particular interest in how poaching and habitat destruction affects herds’ social dynamics. Through ElephantVoices, which she founded in 2002, Poole campaigns for elephants and promotes research and conservation projects, while providing others with the resources they need to do the same. Conducting the first pan-African aerial survey of elephant populations in 40 years and covering 345,000 square miles across 18 countries, this ambitious project set out to count and map Africa’s savannah elephants. The final report, published last year, showed a 30% fall in numbers over the last seven years. While the census itself is complete, the organisation is now using its database to help governments, scientists and NGOs manage and protect elephant populations. Committed to bringing an end to animal poaching and trafficking, IFAW campaigns for the bolstering of wildlife trade policy with supranational organisations such as the UN and the EU, while helping to train customs agents and wildlife rangers. It also investigates online crime. This offshoot of WildAid – one of the largest conservation groups working to eliminate demand for wildlife products such as elephant ivory and rhino horn – is responsible for the #JoinTheHerd campaign. Showing your support is as easy as uploading a photo of yourself – which the website then stitches to one of an elephant – and sharing the resultant image on social media, with the #JoinTheHerd hashtag. This non-profit aims to fight ivory trafficking on every front, training rangers, supplying sniffer dogs, working to make ivory less prestigious … Responsible for the #SaveElephants social media campaign, it also provides plenty of highly shareable pictures for your own activities. Named after the 96 animals killed for their ivory every day in Africa, this offshoot of the Wildlife Conservation Society works to highlight the plight of elephants and supports organisations caring for them around the world. Campaigns include Origami for Elephants (“create your own customised digital origami elephant”) and the #ElephantYogaChallenge (“You can help save elephants with yoga”). Putting pressure on politicians both at home and overseas is a powerful way to effect change. Save the Asian Elephant provides template letters and contact details for top-ranking officials, including the British prime minister, Theresa May, and India’s minister for tourism, Dr Mahesh Sharma, which you can use to urge them to follow through on their promises to protect Asian elephants. A grassroots organisation dedicated to raising awareness about the ivory trade and the fate of elephants across Africa. It offers a space to share knowledge, lobby government and join marches. Founded by two zoology students from the University of Exeter, this little organisation focuses on producing short films that target a wildlife crime or human-wildlife conflict issue. These are then shown to affected communities through a bicycle-powered cinema. In Malawi, Stop Wildlife Crime, Protect Malawi’s Wildlife, about elephants and the illegal ivory trade, was shown to more than 14,000 people. This World Wide Fund for Nature initiative is focused on ending Thailand’s ivory trade – once the world’s second largest – and has already enjoyed much success. In 2015, its efforts helped the Thai government to pass new regulations, while last year’s Ivory-Free Thailand campaign enlisted the help of local celebrities to discourage consumers from buying or accepting gifts of ivory. Launched by the World Elephant Society, which creates and distributes educational information about elephant conservation, World Elephant Day (12 August) asks elephant-lovers the world over to share their appreciation of these endangered animals. Youth 4 African Wildlife works with young people in the hope that they’ll become global conservation ambassadors. It offers conservation internships for people from all over the world, and also raises awareness through community outreach in the greater Kruger National Park area in South Africa. If you want to help elephants and have time to spare, these organisations want to hear from you. Some offer hybrid travel and volunteering experiences that will let you interact with elephants in their own habitat. Others need assistance with campaigns or administration. As always, make sure you understand their aims and approaches before signing up. Set in the lush countryside of Thailand’s northern Mae Chaem district, this sanctuary serves as a retirement community for some of the country’s 4,000-plus registered captive elephants, which have endured long lives of hard graft and exploitation, predominantly within the tourism and logging industries. Tasks for volunteers range from feeding and bathing the animals to teaching English to local children. With stays at the charity’s Cambodian elephant sanctuary lasting anywhere between one and four weeks, a good level of fitness is a must, as volunteers are expected to spend much of their time hiking through the Mondulkiri province’s mountainous terrain. Activities include observing the elephants in their natural habitat and planting seedlings to counteract deforestation. Elephants in Lagos are traditionally used in logging and worked to the point of exhaustion. The Conservation Center is home to the country’s first elephant hospital dedicated to victims of logging accidents, and has an elephant breeding programme. Reliant on donations and fees from volunteers, the centre invites visitors to learn about elephants and the importance of conservation in their natural environment. A useful starting point for any well-intentioned volunteer who doesn’t quite know where to start. There are dozens of opportunities across Africa and Asia to choose from, including data collection and research projects in Thailand, community outreach and wildlife education programmes in South Africa, and hands-on caretaking roles in a Sri Lankan elephant sanctuary. Human-animal conflict is one of the greatest threats to some of the world’s most at-risk elephant populations. The Great Projects links volunteers to conservation efforts in Asia and Africa; these include protecting the Namibian desert elephants – whose slowly recovering numbers were as low as 300 in the 1990s – by working with the local farmers, who frequently come into violent contact with the animals. Dedicated to protecting the Asian elephant, Save the Elephant Foundation provides a safe home for rescued elephants in its Elephant Nature Park in Chang Mai, Thailand. It invites volunteers and visitors to spend time with the animals, feeding, bathing and giving them care and affection in their natural habitat. One of the largest human-elephant conflict resolution projects in the world, this scheme run by the Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation Society sees volunteers muck in across a wide variety of tasks. Daily activities might include observing elephant herds, identifying game trails, developing a dialogue with local communities, or maintaining the scenically situated base camp in north-western Sri Lanka. Giving money may seem the easiest way to help a cause you believe in. But deciding which organisation to donate to can be a daunting task. Some will use the money across their programmes, while others will let you back specific projects. Be sure to check that the organisation is legitimate and fits your objectives. Study its website, check its credentials and search the web to learn about its reputation and status. In addition to government regulators, these organisations provide advice for charitable giving: Charity Navigator, GuideStar, Charity Watch and GreatNonprofits. The rangers who risk their lives to prevent wildlife poaching and trafficking make little money and often spend months at a time away from their families. A guaranteed 100% of donations to this WWF-run initiative fund the equipment and infrastructure they need to do their jobs effectively and safely. For more than 30 years Born Free has been working to keep wildlife in the wild. You can support its work by (symbolically) adopting either orphaned Asian elephant calf Jubilee, or African elephant Emily Kate, who now has a calf of her own. The welcome pack includes a cuddly toy and personalised adoption certificate. Since its creation three years ago, this joint initiative between Save the Elephants and the Wildlife Conservation Network has channelled donations to the areas where elephant populations are collapsing the quickest, and the projects on the ground best placed to do something about it. Its celebrity-backed anti-ivory campaign in China played a vital role in changing policy in the country. With donations funding information-gathering operations and deep-cover field investigations, the EAL adopts an intelligence-led approach to uncovering and disrupting the criminal networks behind poaching and ivory trafficking. As well as using specialist investigators to infiltrate the criminal organisations profiting from the exploitation of wildlife, the EIA runs evidence-backed campaigns to advocate for meaningful policy change at a governmental level. Investigations typically cost between £10,000 and £20,000 and rely on donations from the public. Rather than paying into a pot that the charity will redistribute as it sees fit, this foundation allows donors to choose a specific programme and guarantees that 100% of their donation will reach their intended recipients. There are more than 20 research and conservation projects to choose from, including the Mounted Horse Patrol Anti-Poaching Unit for Mount Kenya. As well as its own investigative and policy work, the IFAW partners with media organisations around the world to raise awareness of the illegal ivory trade and the destruction it causes. Donations help to fund future media campaigns and awareness-raising projects. From elephants and tigers to chameleons and carnivorous plants, this research project run by the International Union for Conservation of Nature is aiming to gauge the health of the world’s biodiversity by assessing 160,000 species by 2020. It’s almost halfway there. Donations will support this ongoing research as well as supporting on-the-ground conservation projects. Elephants and tigers play vital roles in the ecosystem, and JTEF aims to raise awareness of their importance. It has several programmes to support conservation work, and reduce Japanese demand for wildlife products. It’s not just elephants and other wildlife that are at the mercy of the poachers’ weapons: more than 1,000 park rangers are estimated to have been killed in the past decade simply for standing in their way. This Australian-run foundation seeks to “protect nature’s protectors” by providing training and vital anti-poaching equipment, while also offering financial support to the families of those killed in the line of duty. Wild Philanthropy supports at-risk ecosystems and communities in Africa through grants to NGOs that are involved in managing protected areas. It also provides secured loans to local eco-tourist businesses.. As an all-volunteer organisation, the WAF uses every penny donated to help secure the longevity of animals and the delicate ecosystems that they inhabit. To show your support for elephants specifically – rather than the plethora of protected species ranging from fireflies to fish – you can symbolically adopt one for $35 (£28) a year. When elephants come into contact with farmland, they can wreak havoc and destroy livelihoods by eating or crushing crops. Many farmers respond by setting out poison or taking other extreme measures. World Animal Protection works with communities to come up with simple and sustainable solutions that allow humans and elephants to coexist, such as the introduction of chilli fences in Mikumi National Park in Tanzania. Most poaching takes place after dark, when rangers aren’t around. This initiative from the Lindbergh Foundation runs drone operations at night in collaboration with local rangers. With thermal imaging sensors, it can locate wildlife as well as poachers, and position rangers before an incident takes place. In two years of testing in a park in South Africa that had been losing 18 rhinos a week, not one animal was lost. Air Shepherd has now conducted around 5,000 missions, across South Africa, Malawi and Zimbabwe. Stepping in where local governments are unwilling or unable to act, African Parks manages 10 national parks in seven countries, taking complete responsibility for the day-to-day management and preservation of 6 million hectares of protected land. Already employing 600 rangers – the largest counter-poaching force on the continent – it aims to increase its conservation operation by 2020 to 20 parks and more than 10m hectares. The communities who share their land with elephants are best placed to conserve their natural heritage, but they often lack the means to do so. The African Wildlife Foundation recruits, trains and equips wildlife scouts from these areas, providing employment opportunities to local people and creating a large and effective poaching deterrent in the process. Renowned wildlife researcher and conservationist Cynthia Moss has been studying elephants in the Amboseli National Park, straddling the Kenya-Tanzania border, since the early 1970s. She founded the Amboseli Trust for Elephants after seeing elephant populations in Kenya plummet by an estimated 85%. As well as groundbreaking scientific research, the trust conducts extensive community outreach programmes with the local Maasai community. One such scheme compensates anyone who has lost livestock to elephants, which has more than halved the number of animals speared and killed in retribution. Policing the 2m acres of elephant habitat in the Amboseli-Tsavo-Kilimanjaro region of east Africa takes courage and dedication, with wildlife rangers spending weeks in remote outposts, putting their lives at risk every day. The Big Life Foundation employs hundreds of Maasai rangers, providing them with field units, vehicles, tracker dogs and aerial surveillance. You can support their efforts by joining the Ranger Club with a one-off or monthly donation. An elephant calf depends on its mother’s milk for the first two years of its life. So when one becomes orphaned – often because its mother has fallen foul of ivory poachers – the calf’s life hangs in the balance. The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust fosters, feeds and rears these orphaned calves, eventually reintroducing them to the wild in the Tsavo East National Park. To date, 150 calves have been saved in this way. A research-based organisation that began life as Save the Elephants – South Africa, Elephants Alive! has been monitoring one of South Africa’s largest continuous elephant populations for over 20 years. It believes that extensive knowledge of elephants’ movements and needs is vital to ensure their long-term survival. An offshoot of the Wildland Conservation Trust, this non-profit organisation works with Maasai communities in Kenya to help elephants and other wildlife. On the banks of the Zambezi river, where Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe share a border, lies the town of Kazungula, from where Elephants Without Borders (EWB) runs its transnational conservation operation. African elephants regularly cross these international boundaries, leaving them at the mercy of changeable policy and conservation laws. Using state-of-the-art monitoring technology, EWB tracks their movements and works with the local authorities to create safe migratory corridors through which the elephants can move freely. In Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, elephant and other wildlife populations are at risk from bone-dry summers as well as from humans. In 2005, a particularly devastating drought saw scores of animals lose their lives. On the back of this disaster, Friends of Hwange was formed to pump water from underground sources, providing waterholes even in the most extreme conditions. Zambia sits at the heart of southern Africa, surrounded by four countries identified by Cites as centres of ivory poaching and trafficking. The Game Rangers International Wildlife Crime Prevention Project works with conservation organisations and law enforcement to end the illegal wildlife trade in and through Zambia. Malawi is one of the poorest, and fastest-growing, countries in the world, which is putting its natural habitat under severe strain. In 2008 the Lilongwe Wildlife Trust launched its first project, the Wildlife Centre, as a sanctuary for rescued animals and an education centre. The NGO now works across the country in rescues, advocacy and conservation education. Based in Tanzania, PAMS Foundation works in conservation to benefit both wildlife and the community. Its initiatives include training dogs to detect ivory being smuggled at borders, and supporting the Tanzanian government to undertake anti-poaching efforts. The elephants of northern Kenya’s Samburu National Reserve are some of the best studied in the world, thanks to the work of Save the Elephants. The charity’s main research centre is located in Samburu, from where it once pioneered the GPS tracking of elephant populations, and continues to try to understand ecosystems from an elephant’s perspective. Donations go towards various research and protection projects, from anti-poaching aerial surveillance to better understanding the herds’ migratory movements. Poaching is the immediate threat. But there is another, perhaps even more serious threat to Africa’s elephants: the loss of their habitat as economies grow and land competition surges. Space for Giants is pioneering efforts in Kenya, Gabon, and Uganda to lessen human-elephant conflict with specially-designed electrified fences, and spends a lot of time working with local communities explaining why fences help. This Japanese-Kenyan NGO is best known for its “No Ivory Generation” campaign, aimed at changing Japanese consumers’ attitudes to ivory. Tusk has invested about £30m in 60 conservation projects across Africa since its founding in 1990. Education and sustainable development are at the heart of its approach to conservation, working with local schools and rural communities to promote happy cohabitation between at-risk wildlife and the ever-expanding human population. The group behind the Ninety-Six Elephants campaign (see the campaign, lobby and educate section above) has a presence in 15 of the 37 African elephant range sites, from the savannahs of east Africa to the Gulf of Guinea. Donations help WCS’ efforts to stop the degradation of elephant habitats and prevent wildlife crime by providing rangers with essential technological and intelligence-gathering resources. A US Fish and Wildlife Service initiative financed by a mixture of government contributions and public donations, the fund awards grants to a variety of conservation and animal welfare projects. Recent beneficiaries include a scheme to mitigate human-elephant conflict in Nepal; counter-poaching operations in Thailand; and veterinary training to improve the care of captive elephants in Indonesia. As an all-volunteer organisation, the AES uses 100% of donations to fund numerous and diverse programmes everywhere from India to Vietnam. These range from English as a Second Language classes so that mahouts can develop their careers, to meeting the veterinary and housing needs of retired working elephants. ElefantAsia promotes alternative, cruelty-free careers for the elephants and mahouts that have traditionally served the logging industry in Laos and other parts of south-east Asia. The Laos-based non-profit also providing veterinary care in the form of mobile clinics and an elephant hospital in Sayaboury province. By making a one-off donation or sponsoring an elephant – generally a pregnant female, a mother with a baby, or an elderly or injured animal – donors can support the ECC’s efforts to rescue elephants from the Lao logging industry and re-home them in 106 hectares of protected forest. Rather than impose western ideas of how to run conservation projects, Elephant Family empowers local experts to develop their own solutions to protect Asian elephants in India, Thailand, Indonesia, Myanmar, Cambodia and Malaysia. Soraida Salwala founded Friends of the Asian Elephant’s first elephant hospital in Thailand in 1993. Since then, more than 4,000 elephants have received medical treatment in her facility. In their spare time, a group of young people based in Gudalur work in nature conservation in the Nilgiri region of south India. Part of their work involves research into how people and elephants can coexist peacefully. The next generation of conservationists could be the key to ensuring elephants’ long-term survival. Through its educational programmes, Think Elephants International is keeping the subject alive in classrooms both at home in the US and in Thailand, with ambitions to spread the word far beyond. Formed almost 20 years ago in response to the threats to wildlife in India. With 150 employees, the group is dedicated to nature conservation through a wide range of projects. For example, it has supported anti-poaching training for more than 15,000 people working with wildlife. You can make a real difference to conservation efforts by becoming a citizen scientist. You don’t need a PhD to help track elephant populations. Run by the University of Cape Town, the MammalMAP project asks travellers and citizen scientists to share their photos of African wildlife, along with information about the date and location that the photograph was taken. In so doing, you will be helping to build a valuable picture of the mammal population and how it is changing. This Android app, created by ElephantVoices, allows users to upload sightings and observations of Mara elephants to help the conservation charity with its research and campaign work. A must-download for locals and visitors to Maasai Mara. A fun, simple and interactive way to conduct valuable scientific research from anywhere in the world. Snapshot Serengeti asks citizen scientists to help classify the animals caught on some of the hundreds of camera traps dotted throughout the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. You will be shown a photo and provided with a user-friendly and searchable list of native animals. Get clicking to help researchers better understand the park’s animal populations. You don’t have to travel all the way to Mozambique to be part of the Gorongosa National Park’s conservation team. Simply review webcam and camera trap footage to help identify the movements of the park’s animal populations. Whether you would rather bake cakes or trek across Kenya, your hard work can raise money (and awareness) for elephant conservation. Just make sure you obey local regulations. Described by National Geographic as one of the “most authentic, most innovative … and most sustainable tours” out there, this annual nine-day expedition involves trekking across the Kenyan countryside, encountering wildlife and the people responsible for its conservation along the way. Participants are asked to raise upwards of $1,000 (£800), which goes towards preventing the slaughter of the region’s elephants. Simply select an elephant-focused charity or conservation project from the website’s vast database, and within a couple of minutes you can set up your own fundraising page. Crowdrise promises that at least 97% of the proceeds will go to your chosen cause. Alternatively (or additionally), you can sponsor and support others in their fundraising efforts. Functioning in much the same way as its crowd-funding cousin Crowdrise, JustGiving provides users with a simple way to share news of their fundraising campaigns with friends and family and to collect sponsorship. Whether you want to run the London Marathon, climb Mount Kilimanjaro or hold a bake sale in the name of elephant conservation, Tusk’s team can support your fundraising endeavours, be that by helping you get a place at an event, or by providing you with useful tips and ideas. An anti-poaching initiative, Veterans 4 Wildlife sends skilled veterans – and volunteers – to support rangers across Africa. Often poverty is the cause of poaching, so this organisation does a lot of community-based work, such as building schools and creating jobs. Provides all the tools and tips you need to create a successful fundraising campaign. Download flyers, posters and pictures direct from the website, or draw inspiration from other fundraising efforts. It’s easy to become so fascinated by elephants that you overlook ways in which you are harming them. Here are some of the things you should not do if you want to prevent exploitation and abuse.


News Article | February 12, 2016
Site: www.techtimes.com

After the sixth decade of life, who would have thought giving birth is still an option? For this 65-year-old Laysan albatross, however, motherhood is still her thing. Wisdom, the oldest known bird in the wild, hatches what could be her 40th chick, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said. Baby Kūkini, a Hawaiian term for "messenger", was seen cracking out of its shell on Feb. 1 at Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge in Hawaii. Gooo, the hatchling's father, served on incubation duty for more than two weeks while waiting for Wisdom to return from hunting and gathering food for Kūkini. When Wisdom hatched a chick in 2013, it already astonished scientists. Now, she did it again and at an older age. Like other birds, albatrosses are thought to be infertile when they reach old age, but Wisdom defied this belief and proved that the species can be a mother, no matter how old it is. According to the World Wide Fund for Nature, albatrosses usually live up to 60 years. These birds attain sexual maturity at about 5 years old, but usually breed when they are 7 to 10 years old. Laysan albatrosses (Phoebastria immutabilis) face several threats to their survival. Bycatch poses the biggest threat to this species. When they hunt for fish, they dive for the bait, and sometimes they get entangled on the hook then drown. In 2001, an analysis estimated that about 5,000 to 18,000 Laysan albatrosses are killed because of pelagic longliners in the North Pacific. In terms of nesting grounds, invasive species pose threats to the eggs and hatchlings, too. The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources lists Laysan albatrosses as near threatened species. Aside from bycatch, other threats include organochlorine contamination, plastic ingestion, lead poisoning, and human disturbance. Like humans, older birds experience weakness and they do not have the same endurance as when they were younger. This poses a threat to their health, especially when they go hunting. Wisdom, is obliged to hunt food for her hatchling and in the process, since she is not as strong as she was before, might face tremendous threats in the environment.


News Article | February 27, 2017
Site: cleantechnica.com

Portugal’s largest electricity utility, EDP, has received the seal of approval from the Science Based Targets Initiative on the company’s target to reduce its carbon footprint across its entire value chain. EDP is Portugal’s largest generator, distributor, and supplier of electricity, and also has significant business in neighboring Spain, as well as 12 other countries. The company recently announced that it has now received approval of its target to reduce its carbon footprint across its entire value chain by experts at the Science Based Target Initiative — a collaborative project between CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project), World Resources Institute, the World Wide Fund for Nature, and the United Nations Global Compact. The company’s specific target is as follows: “EDP commits to reduce scope 1 and 2 emissions from electricity production 55% per TWh by 2030, from 2015 levels. The company also commits to reduce absolute scope 3 emissions 25% over the same time period.” The target is in line with the company’s previously announced intention to reduce specific emissions of CO2 by 75% by 2030. EDP has already been making moves to reduce its emissions, but the new approval from the Science Based Target Initiative means the company now has what it describes as “a clearly defined pathway to future-proof growth by specifying how much and how quickly they need to do so.” “This recognition confirms how robust EDP’s ambitious strategy is,” said Rui Teixeira EDP Board Member . “Our commitment on a decarbonization pathway achieved noteworthy results in this first year, highlighting the new 1.3 GW of renewable installed capacity. The sustainable management of our business, strengthened by the global partnerships we have joined, reveal our commitment to playing our part in ensuring the success of the Paris Agreement.” “We congratulate EDP on getting their ambitious target approved,” added Pedro Faria, member of the Science Based Targets initiative steering committee. “Their efforts will help accelerate the transition to the low-carbon economy in Portugal and globally. We encourage all companies to follow their lead and better position themselves to experience the increased innovation, reduced regulatory uncertainty, strengthened investor confidence, improved profitability and competitiveness that other businesses have seen after setting and implementing science-based targets.” Buy a cool T-shirt or mug in the CleanTechnica store!   Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech daily newsletter or weekly newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.


News Article | October 27, 2016
Site: news.yahoo.com

An elephant breastfeeds its young one at the Amboseli National Park, southeast of Kenya's capital Nairobi, April 25, 2016. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya/File Photo OSLO (Reuters) - Worldwide populations of mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles have plunged by almost 60 percent since 1970 as human activities overwhelm the environment, the WWF conservation group said on Thursday. An index compiled with data from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) to measure the abundance of biodiversity was down 58 percent from 1970 to 2012 and would fall 67 percent by 2020 on current trends, the WWF said in a report. The decline is yet another sign that people have become the driving force for change on Earth, ushering in the epoch of the Anthropocene, a term derived from "anthropos", the Greek for "human" and "-cene" denoting a geological period. Conservation efforts appear to be having scant impact as the index is showing a steeper plunge in wildlife populations than two years ago, when the WWF estimated a 52 percent decline by 2010. "Wildlife is disappearing within our lifetimes at an unprecedented rate," Marco Lambertini, Director General of WWF International, said in a statement of the group's Living Planet Report, published every two years. "Biodiversity forms the foundation of healthy forests, rivers and oceans," he said in a statement. "We are entering a new era in Earth's history: the Anthropocene," he said. WWF is also known as the World Wide Fund for Nature. The index tracks about 14,200 populations of 3,700 species of vertebrates - creatures that range in size from pea-sized frogs to 30-metre (100 ft) long whales. The rising human population is threatening wildlife by clearing land for farms and cities, the WWF's report said. Other factors include pollution, invasive species, hunting and climate change. But there were still chances to reverse the trends, it said. "Importantly ... these are declines, they are not yet extinctions," said Professor Ken Norris, Director of Science at ZSL. "I don't speak at all about doom and gloom – we do see a lot of positive signs," Nel said. One hopeful sign is a global agreement by almost 200 nations last year to curb climate change could, for instance, help protect tropical forests, slow a spread of deserts and curb an acidification of the seas caused by a build-up of carbon dioxide. And a 2015 U.N. plan for sustainable development by 2030, seeking to end poverty with policies that safeguard the environment, would also help if properly implemented. Also, some species are recovering. Last month, the giant panda was taken off an endangered list after a recovery in China.

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