The World Wide Fund for Nature is an international non-governmental organization founded on April 29, 1961, and is working on issues regarding the conservation, research and restoration of the environment. It was formerly named the World Wildlife Fund, which remains its official name in Canada and the United States. It is the world's largest conservation organization with over 5 million supporters worldwide, working in more than 100 countries, supporting around 1,300 conservation and environmental projects. WWF is a foundation, in 2010 deriving 57% of funding from individuals and bequests, 17% from government sources and 11% from corporations.The group's mission is "to stop the degradation of the planet’s natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature." Currently, much of its work focuses on the conservation of three biomes that contain most of the world's biodiversity: oceans and coasts, forests, and freshwater ecosystems. Among other issues, it is also concerned with endangered species, pollution and climate change. Wikipedia.
News Article | May 12, 2017
The Saimaa ringed seal, named after their home in Europe's fourth-largest lake, is found only in these waters and is one of just five remaining freshwater seal species in the world. But milder winters have left few shoreline snow banks for the seals to burrow into lairs where they give birth to pups, and many get caught in fishing nets. During the next few weeks, viewers will be able to tune into the seal watch stream known as "Norppa Live," from the Finnish name for seal, although not that much action is expected. Often the seals are difficult to spot, lying motionless on the smooth rounded rocks they resemble. Sometimes all you can see is just an empty rock. "Not a lot happens," says Joonas Fritze, a conservationist from World Wildlife Fund Finland. "The highlights are seal climbing on a rock, seal turning on a rock, seal scratching itself, but that's the beauty of it ... I guess that's part of it, like, real slow TV. So it's kind of like an opposite of the hectic life people live." The organization is hoping for a large audience after its successful launch last year became an online hit in Finland, where it was broadcast in offices, schools, libraries and hotel lobbies, drawing more than 2 million viewers in the Nordic nation of 5.5 million. The irresistible seal pups, with their furry heads, often find rocks sheltered by tall reeds near the shoreline. Other, bigger specimens, sprawl out like lumps of soft rock, unaware of the hidden camera. Last year a male seal became so popular that thousands of people sent in suggestions to name him—the winner was Pullervo, which referred to his "chubby" shape. There were hopes of a romance with a popular female seal, but that apparently didn't materialize. As word has spread about the seals' plight, conservationists again expect millions of viewers to tune in hoping to catch a glimpse of one of the remaining 360 Saimaa seals—according to the latest count by Parks and Wildlife Finland. Although the seals have a fairly carefree existence in the sprawling labyrinth of waterways that make up Lake Saimaa, dotted with more than 1,300 islands, there is one real threat—fishing nets. The lake is a popular venue for Finns, who flock to thousands of summer villas spread along the shores of the country's 180,000 lakes, where fishing plays a major role in everyday activities, including laying nets. Young pups are particularly prone to getting caught in them and consequently drown. Fritze hopes that seals online will help. "We hope we can raise awareness of this special animal and tell people about the species and its threats," he says. "And people learn that a net fishing is a big threat to the seal." Lack of snow is also causing a worry for conservationists. "The ice came quite early, already in December, and there was time for the snow to accumulate and build those snow banks," said Petteri Tolvanen from WWF Finland. "And now the situation is much worse for the seals and in some years there (are) hardly any natural snow banks." In 2016, helped by a band of volunteers, conservationists decided to build their own snow banks, creating 211 man-made snowdrifts where 40 seal pups were born. Earlier this year, they constructed 277. "The ringed seal is totally dependent on ice and snow when breeding," Tolvanen said. Scientists from the nearby University of Eastern Finland in the city of Lappeenranta, are studying the seals with camera traps, using their unique fur patterns to identify them and produce useful data about their movements and population changes. It's not all bad news. The population has been slowly growing since hunting them was banned in 1955. "The population is slowly growing, the situation is getting better," said Meeri Koivuniemi, a scientist at the University of Eastern Finland, but cautions that should remain alert to the dangers facing the seals. WWF Finland launched the live stream wwf.fi/en/norppalive/ on May 10 and is expected to continue till the beginning of June. By that time the seals will have finished malting and will retreat back into the lake's cool waters. Explore further: Human intervention can help endangered Saimaa ringed seal adapt to climate change
News Article | May 12, 2017
While trekking through the lush Guatemalan jungle years ago, local environmentalists encountered a problem. Fundaeco, a conservation group they worked for, wanted them to engage the local communities, and enlist their help in protecting the valuable ecosystem. But half of the population were too sick to help. "Here we were trying to do conservation, trying to get communities involved in conservation, and women were dying giving birth," said Marco Cerezo, Fundaeco's general director. In rural Guatemala there are stark rates of maternal and neonatal mortality, and limited access to health care of any kind, let alone reproductive care.This realization spurred Fundaeco to shift its focus on not just rainforest conservation but also women's health. And it found something remarkable: in the areas where women were given access to reproductive health care and education, Fundaeco's conservation efforts started to improve. Helping women wasn't only the right thing to do, it was a major contributor to protecting the rainforest. Without prioritizing the health and role of women in the community, there's only so much progress to be made on an environmental front, according to Felisa Navas Pérez, the president of one of the forestry concessions in the Mayan Biosphere Reserve, which shifts forest stewardship back to local indigenous communities. "One of the challenges is educating people to understand that women have to be active in all fields and decision-making processes," Pérez told me. "Otherwise it creates a conflict between what is good for them as a woman and the actual decisions that are made." But Cerezo and other like-minded conservationists have struggled to get recognition with the worlds of conservation and women's health. Even as more evidence mounts that the two efforts benefit each other, many in the global development field are reluctant to break down long-established silos. I met Cerezo in Guatemala City, far from where he and his colleagues do their field work. He told me that he presented this idea the global conference for the International Union for Conservation of Nature last fall. This summit is held just once every four years, and is the world's largest gathering of conservationists, but Cerezo's ideas on combining women's health with environmentalism were not embraced. "If people understood how powerful this is, they would get on board." "Unfortunately, only about 35 people attended," Cerezo told me. But what he's preaching seems to work. Fundeco started to provide reproductive health care, including midwifery and new medical clinics. And the women, in turn, started to become advocates for the rainforest, especially since they're usually the ones directly interacting with natural resources. "Women in these communities are the ones who go out to fetch wood, or collect water, and if they're not empowered, the community doesn't even know if they had to walk for four hours to get firewood [because of deforestation]," Cerezo said. "If they're not even allowed to complain, then nobody will take care of the problem." The organization now operates the largest network of rural women's health clinics in Guatemala, with 22 clinics in some of the country's farthest corners. "The women are healthier, they're using family planning methods, and they're becoming leaders," Cerezo said. "They can participate in taking care of their water, and forests, and all of a sudden women are becoming our main partners in the community because they're health, they feel better, and they're empowered." So far, all the evidence they have is anecdotal, which Cerezo said it frustrating. There's a "gap" he says, between what researchers sitting in labs say and what he sees every day in the field, and it makes it difficult to convince his peers in conservation that this kind of collaborative approach works. Robert Engelman, a senior fellow at the Worldwatch Institute, an environmental research group in DC, co-authored a report for Worldwatch that combed through scientific research to look for evidence of the impact population health, particularly reproductive health, has on the environment. They found a smattering of data points that showed a positive impact: in general, when women have access to reproductive health care, they're more likely to participate in their communities, and that has a positive impact on conservation efforts. But nothing was anywhere near conclusive. Part of the problem is that it's tough to get funding for this kind of research, and it's difficult to execute: how, for example, would you do a control group? Offer one group of women in the community access to reproductive health but not others? Engelman said it's also not been a priority on the ground. This lack of peer-reviewed evidence, combined with a squeamishness about treading too close to population control, has made it even more difficult to convince people that it's the right move. But major conservation groups have dabbled in the idea of folding in women's empowerment and health care to their environmental goals. The World Wildlife Fund, for example, has a program in partnership with CARE, the international relief nonprofit. Though it used to do some work on health care, the focus now is purely on women's empowerment. The workers in this program have seen results, too, but also struggle with preaching the importance to the wider conservation community. "Field staff tend to get it more," said Althea Skinner, a senior program officer with Care-WWF. "There's a bit of a disconnect in terms of having a conversation about gender integration in conservation. There's a gap between the field and headquarters. If people understood how powerful this is as a tool, they would get on board." For now, those involved in this kind of strategy are soldiering on, hoping that enough anecdotal evidence might compel other groups to give this holistic approach a shot. At the end of the day, even if a direct link between women's health and conservation can't be established, is working together towards a common goal really such a bad idea? Travel expenses while reporting this story were funded through a fellowship provided by the UN Foundation. Subscribe to Science Solved It , Motherboard's new show about the greatest mysteries that were solved by science.
News Article | May 24, 2017
Analysis of residual material elements in shrimp could help importers trace the shrimp's country of origin, according to a study by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). Researchers from Auburn University and Ocean University of China looked at farmed Pacific white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) from three major exporting countries – India, Vietnam, and Thailand. Using elemental profiling to analyze a set of the elements that make up a material or species, they found the method could distinguish shrimp from different countries with a 98% level of certainty. "With greater refinement, elemental profiling may help importers, customs officials, retailers, and others trace globally traded seafood back to its source, which can shed light on production practices," said WWF. Aaron McNevin, Ph.D., director of sustainable food at WWF added: “Traceability allowing a consumer to know where their shrimp came from largely isn’t possible in the mainstream markets today. Without knowing where a product is coming from, it is impossible to determine if the environment at a farm is being compromised or if workers are being mistreated." "Elemental profiling gets us one step closer to farm origin and that’s what we are after.” While the study confirmed accuracy in the traceability of shrimp to a parent country, it found that trying to trace the origin down to states or provinces showed promise, but was not as reliable as traceability on the country scale.
News Article | May 23, 2017
Utilities are breaking away from traditional electricity products to offer customers access to large-scale renewable energy. Until very recently, utilities did not differentiate the sort of power they offered customers. With very few exceptions, everyone shared in the cost and used electricity from the same fleet of power generating stations. But over the past four years, even regulated U.S. utilities have begun to offer new, large-scale renewable energy options to customers. World Resources Institute (WRI) data shows that across 10 U.S. states, utilities now offer 13 green tariffs -- programs that let customers purchase large-scale renewable energy over the grid. We take a closer look at the trends and motivations that have made utilities important players in the rapid scale-up of renewable energy to serve corporate buyers in the U.S. In markets where wind and solar power have become cost-competitive, utilities have more economic incentives to add renewable energy. Renewable resources offer a great low price for the next 20 years -- without the risks of fossil-fuel price spikes. Utility leaders overwhelmingly anticipate substantial solar and wind power growth in the next 10 years, according to Utility Dive's 2017 survey of the sector. Among utility executives, 71 percent say utility-scale wind will increase moderately or significantly over the next 10 years, and 82 percent predict the same for utility-scale solar. Recently, Pat Vincent-Collawn, CEO of PNM Resources, announced a plan to eliminate coal by 2031 and move toward renewables and natural gas, calling it “the best, most economical path to a strong energy future for New Mexico.” WEC Energy Group CEO Allen Leverett told shareholders in May 2017 that the company is exploring solar: “Probably the biggest change we’ve seen in last five years is solar and the cost of solar. The technology curve really has fallen fast in terms of improvement in cost.” MidAmerican Energy, a Berkshire Hathaway Energy subsidiary, has talked about its extensive investments in wind in the same way -- as an effective way to keep prices low for customers. The company also used its wind investments to serve the renewable energy requirements of major data centers, such as Facebook and Google, in their service territory. Through RE100, 90 companies have committed to 100 percent renewable power. Clean energy and greenhouse-gas reduction targets are now the norm for Fortune 500 and Fortune 100 companies. The World Wildlife Fund and Ceres’ Power Forward 3.0 report shows that almost half of the Fortune 500 and a majority of the Fortune 100 now have climate and energy targets. Companies with renewable energy commitments can only go so far with on-site solar and efficiency. To meet the most ambitious targets, like a 100 percent renewable energy goal, companies have to tap into the grid and are turning to their utility to provide solutions. Big businesses have communicated their needs to U.S. utilities. Sixty-five companies have signed on to the Renewable Energy Buyers’ Principles, which tell utilities and other suppliers what industry-leading, multinational companies are looking for when buying renewable energy from the grid. And utilities are listening. Utilities without green tariffs or state mandates are still considering new renewable energy options to attract businesses. Describing a new wind project, Appalachian Power’s new president Chris Beam told the Charleston Gazette-Mail, “At the end of the day, West Virginia may not require us to be clean, but our customers are. […] We have to be mindful of what our customers want.” To meet customer demand for renewable energy, traditional utilities have now created 13 green tariff options across 10 states. In the six months since the last update to WRI’s issue brief, "Emerging Green Tariffs in U.S. Regulated Electricity Markets," utilities have added three more green tariff options -- including the first offered by a public power company, Nebraska’s Omaha Public Power District (OPPD). States with renewable energy options are more competitive when attracting high-growth corporate business. When Omaha Public Power District announced a new green tariff to supply a Facebook data center, Tim Burke, OPPD’s president and CEO, told the Omaha World-Herald, “We have several customers right now that are putting together potential expansion projects and will utilize that [new] rate to grow.” Who is using these tariffs? To date, customers have contracted for approximately 900 megawatts of new renewable energy under five of the tariffs. This is approximately enough electricity to power 160,000 average American homes a year. This spring, utilities and customers are negotiating hundreds more megawatts of additional purchases. In April 2017 alone, major announcements from Puget Sound Energy and OPPD confirm that buyers are ready and willing to act in partnership with their utility. WRI's interactive U.S. Renewable Energy Map: A Guide for Corporate Buyers shows all of the green tariffs that utilities offer across the nation. The map also details one-on-one special contracts that customers have signed with utilities. These special contracts show a utility is willing to explore options, even if they haven’t gone as far as creating a new tariff. Today, green tariffs are a small part of the overall U.S. renewable energy market, reflecting their pilot status. But the programs create a runway for renewables at a time when demand is increasing, not just from businesses, but also cities, universities, hospitals and smaller companies. Innovative partnerships will continue to emerge between utilities and their customers as both grapple with the rapidly changing electricity sector. Green tariffs are only three years old, but with increasing demand, interest in renewables by utilities and the continued fall in renewable energy prices, green tariffs look like they’re here to stay. This post was republished with permission from the World Resources Institute.
News Article | May 23, 2017
"I'm truly excited that Strand Equity Partners and Leonardo have joined the HIPPEAS family. As the brand continues to grow with such momentum in the marketplace, it's incredible to bring on board partners who align with our vision and values as a company. We are very enthusiastic to be sharing in this journey with them," says Bisterzo. "HIPPEAS is a high-growth and differentiated brand that has been created in a short amount of time," said Seth Rodsky, Managing Partner of Strand Equity Partners. "The unprecedented traction the brand has achieved is a testament to its unique offering that combines nutrition with a creative flavor profile. We look forward to partnering with Livio, and the talented management team at HIPPEAS, to lead the next evolution of 'better for you' snacking." HIPPEAS is a new brand of organic chickpea puffs calling all snackers to #GivePeasAChance and try the new "better for you" snack while also "doing good" for the world. HIPPEAS believes that "tastes good" and "do good" are two philosophies that should go hand in hand – that's why they've partnered with Farm Africa, a charity working to end hunger and bring wealth to rural eastern Africa. For each pack sold, the brand will donate a portion of sales to support farmers in eastern Africa to grow themselves out of poverty, helping them build a more prosperous life for themselves and their families. HIPPEAS is currently sold in over 20,000 stores in the US and UK with customers including Starbucks, Whole Foods, Wegmans, Albertson's, Safeway, Boots, Waitrose, Amazon.com and more. Light and crunchy with a serious punch of protein and fiber, HIPPEAS are low-calorie, certified organic, certified gluten-free, vegan, kosher and non-GMO. With three grams of fiber and four grams of protein per single-serve, one-ounce bag, HIPPEAS are the new go-to snack choice for consumers who demand tasty snacks made with high-quality ingredients. About HIPPEAS™ Light and crunchy with a serious punch of protein and fiber, HIPPEAS™ are low-calorie, certified organic, certified gluten-free, vegan, kosher and non-GMO. With 3 grams of fiber and 4 grams of protein per single-serve, 1-ouncebag, HIPPEAS™ are the new go-to snack choice for consumers who demand tasty snacks made with high-quality ingredients. HIPPEAS™ are available in five far out flavors: Vegan White Cheddar, Sriracha Sunshine, Far Out Fajita, Pepper Power,and Bohemian Barbecue. About Strand Equity Partners Strand Equity Partners ("Strand") is a leading growth equity fund focused on making investments in emerging and dynamic consumer brands. Strand adds value to its portfolio companies through its marketing and operational expertise as well as its extensive network of industry relationships. Strand investments include Artsy, Chop't, Dos Toros, Revive Kombucha, Sweaty Betty, Thom Browne, Vita Coco, WTRMLN WTR and Bai Brands, which recently sold to Dr Pepper Snapple Group for $1.7Bn, to name a few. About Leonardo DiCaprio Leonardo DiCaprio is an Academy Award-winning actor, producer, and activist. He founded the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation in 1998 for biodiversity and habitat conservation, and climate change solutions. He is as a UN Messenger of Peace for Climate, and a recipient of the Clinton Global Citizen Award and the World Economic Forum Crystal Award. DiCaprio serves on the boards of World Wildlife Fund, Natural Resources Defense Council, National Geographic's Pristine Seas, Oceans 5, and International Fund for Animal Welfare To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/hippeas-announces-new-investors-300461842.html
News Article | May 24, 2017
Farmed shrimp from Thailand, Vietnam, and India could be traced back to their countries of origin with more than 98 percent confidence through a process known as elemental profiling, according to a new World Wildlife Fund (WWF) report. With greater refinement, elemental profiling may help importers, customs officials, retailers, and others trace globally traded seafood back to its source, which can shed light on production practices with critical environmental and social implications. The report, conducted by WWF researchers and supported by Auburn University and Ocean University of China, looked at farmed Pacific white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) from three major exporting countries – India, Vietnam, and Thailand. The study concluded that elemental profiling could distinguish shrimp from different countries with a 98 percent level of certainty. “Traceability allowing a consumer to know where their shrimp came from largely isn’t possible in the mainstream markets today,” said Dr Aaron McNevin, director of sustainable food at WWF. “Without knowing where a product is coming from, it is impossible to determine if the environment at a farm is being compromised or if workers are being mistreated. Elemental profiling gets us one step closer to farm origin and that’s what we are after.” Today, when it is even possible, tracking farmed shrimp to its source depends on records often provided by exporters. There is no objective way to verify these records with certainty, leaving opportunities for mislabeling and fraud. Lack of transparency and traceability prevents buyers from obtaining critical information including environmental stewardship and natural resource use, as well as worker welfare and food safety. The average American eats about four pounds of shrimp per year, over 80 percent of which is imported. Overall, the US imported 567,551 tons of shrimp valued at $6.7 billion in 2014 from 39 countries, many from farms. “We have attempted elemental profiling in the southeastern US and it worked well for catfish and shrimp – the logical choice was to expand to the major farming countries,” said Dr Claude Boyd, Professor of Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences at Auburn University. “This research demonstrated that we also have some ability to differentiate shrimp from provinces and states in countries, albeit not to the same level of confidence as the country.” Elemental profiling is the process of analyzing a set of the elements that make up a material or species. In this case, 23 elements found in shrimp were examined. While the study confirmed accuracy in the traceability of shrimp to a parent country, it found that trying to trace the origin down to states or provinces showed promise, but was not as reliable as traceability on the country scale.
News Article | May 26, 2017
With a Focus on Resolving Major Environmental and Social Issues HONG KONG, May 26, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Landsea Green Properties Co., Ltd., ("Landsea" or the "Company" and its subsidiaries collectively the "Group") (stock code: 00106), China's leading integrated property development services company with green technology, is pleased to announce its first independent Corporate Social Responsibility Report. The report is based on The Environmental, Social and Governance Reporting Guide by the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited and the Sustainability Reporting Guidelines by the Global Reporting Initiative. It takes into account Landsea's concept of social responsibility, strategies, and business focus. It better conveys to the relevant stakeholders its concept and achievements in terms of social responsibility. The Company aims to make the report into a key tool that improves transparency and enhances sustainable development management. Adhering to its people-oriented corporate philosophy, Landsea adopts a sustainable operational model that is socially and environmentally friendly and follows the principle of minimizing the total consumption of resources throughout the whole life cycle of buildings. Landsea provides healthy, comfortable, energy-saving and green products, as well as services for customers to advocate a green and healthy lifestyle. To resolve the problem of indoor and outdoor air pollution, the Company controls the level of pollutants indoors, including formaldehyde, VOC, PM2.5 and carbon dioxide throughout the design, procurement, construction, furniture, monitoring and other intermediate links. The solutions are based on the improvement in resident comfort level and comprehensive optimization of indoor air quality, temperature and humidity. With this kind of solution, indoor temperature is kept within the range of 18 to 26 degrees Celsius, which is the most comfortable to the human body, and humidity is maintained between 30% and 70%, improving indoor living quality. In response to the change in global climate, the roughly 3 million square meters of projects under Landsea's operation save 75 million kWh of electricity and reduce 50,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually through its "passive construction" and "renewable energy" technologies. The solutions can push forward urban renewal and rejuvenate buildings. In addition to launching green products and promoting a healthy lifestyle, Landsea proactively implements the sustainable development concept of green, energy-saving and low-carbon in its development process. Unlike the conventional real estate development process, the Company continues to incorporate technological innovations, and consolidate internal and external resources, so as to weave a thread of a "Green Development Process" through its product development. This means green construction planning and design, green procurement, green construction as well as green operational management and protection with a view to strictly controlling every intermediate link from planning to construction. In the early stages of project planning and design, the Company conducts on-site investigation and applies green technology in five aspects: land saving and outdoor environment; energy conservation and utilization of energy sources; water saving and utilization of water resources; materials saving and utilization of material resources; as well as indoor environment quality. The Company clearly spells out its related environmental requirements during the procurement and tendering process. For example, during the procurement of doors and windows, Landsea requires all aluminum material to undergo a chrome-free treatment, thereby lowering the use of the harmful chemical hexavalent chromium. During the procurement of floor boards, Landsea only uses floor boards with a formaldehyde emission of less than 0.5 mg/L, which is a stricter level than the international standard. The Company is a member of the Global Forest & Trade Network under the World Wildlife Fund for Nature, and in compliance with the principle of using only timber which has been legally harvested, contributing for the conservation of forest resources. Landsea also prompts upstream suppliers to engage in sustainable development, environmentally friendly production processes, and to be in compliance in terms of the environmental effects of their production technology and the discharge of pollutants during production. During the process of project construction, aside from conventional requirements of "4 Savings and 1 Protection", which means "saving of energies, land, water and materials, and environmental protection", Landsea realized differentiated green construction and differentiated green, fine decoration. Measures mainly include reducing energy expenditure through fully utilizing heat energy, and closely monitoring and controlling the level of formaldehyde during the process of fine decoration. Landsea has built up a centralized energy control platform and a dispatching center in its headquarters. Up to now, there are 25 projects in nine cities connected to this platform, in order to realize remote control and data analysis, thereby providing support to the energy-saving approach. Under the new positioning of the green development strategy following the transformation and upgrade, the Company continues to execute the development strategy characterized by product diversification, asset-light transformation and market-internationalization. Landsea will endeavor to become an international real estate development and service company with the capability for developing green products as well as expertise in vertical integration. Product diversification has always been the core capability that sets Landsea apart from other developers. Landsea is engaged in projects where it has a minority interest, in cooperation projects, and in entrusted developments. It has set up funds and REITs, innovative real estate financing, and developed asset operation and services, to transform the company's previous heavy asset model. Landsea plans corporate development based on global perspectives to realize sharing of resources such as customers, capital, talent, and technologies between various markets, learning from the business models of the US and European green construction technologies to push forward the comprehensive development of its businesses. Mr. Tian Ming, Chairman of the Board of Landsea Green Properties, concluded: "In its 16 years of development, Landsea has actively executed the concept of sustainable development while focusing on residential properties. We continuously adopt innovative green building technology to resolve major environmental and social issues. We honor our social responsibility as a corporate citizen, actively promoting the industry and society's awareness of environmental and social issues. Looking ahead, we will further our efforts in housing and other industries in the long term and become an international residential property developer and service company with professional vertical integration capabilities." About Landsea Green Properties Co., Ltd Landsea Green Properties Co., Ltd. (Company website: www.landsea.hk) is the only listed platform under the Landsea Group (Group website: www.landsea.cn), which is engaged in green residential property development. Its businesses include property investment, development and management in China and the U.S. With green building technologies and its advancing capabilities in effecting vertical integration of property development, Landsea Green Properties has resolutely executed the strategy of "Product-differentiation, Asset-light transformation and Market-internationalization", transforming from a traditional developer to an asset-light company and a green business focusing on providing property development services.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA-Infra | Phase: INFRA-2010-1.1.19 | Award Amount: 9.36M | Year: 2011
Environmental change and particularly amplified global climate change are accelerating in the Arctic. These changes already affect local residents and feedback from the Arctics land surface to the climate system, will have global implications. However, climate change and its impacts are variable throughout the wide environmental and land use envelopes of the Arctic. Unfortunately, the Arctic is generally remote, sparsely populated and research and monitoring activities are more restricted in time and space than elsewhere. This limitation comes when there is a rapidly expanding need for knowledge as well as increasing technological opportunities to make data collection in the field and accessibility more efficient. INTERACT is a network under the auspices of SCANNET, a circumarctic network of terrestrial field bases. INTERACT specifically seeks to build capacity for research and monitoring in the European Arctic and beyond. Partnerships will be established between Station Managers and researchers within Joint Research Activities that will develop more efficient networks of sensors to measure changing environmental conditions and make data storage and accessibility more efficient through a single portal. New communities of researchers will be offered access to Arctic terrestrial infrastructures while local stakeholders as well as major international organisations will be involved in interactions with the infrastructures. This will lead to increased public awareness of environmental change and methods to adapt to them, increased access to information for education at all levels, and input to major international research and assessment programmes.The whole consortium will form a coherent and integrated unit working within a concept of a wide environmental and land use envelopes in which local conditions determine the directions and magnitudes of environmental change whereas the balance and synergies of processes integrated across the whole region have global impacts.
Barber-Meyer S.M.,World Wildlife Fund
Conservation Biology | Year: 2010
Illegal international trade in wildlife (excluding fisheries and timber) has been valued at more than US$20 billion. A more precise figure has not been determined in part because of the clandestine nature of the trade, and for this same reason even regional and local levels of wildlife trade are difficult to assess. The application of recent developments in wildlife field-survey methods (e.g., occupancy) now allows for a more-accurate estimation of wildlife trade occurrence, including its hidden components at a variety of scales (e.g., regional, local) and periods (e.g., single season, 1 year, multiple years). Occupancy models have been applied in wildlife field studies to address the problem of false absences when conducting presence-absence surveys. Occupancy surveys differ from traditional presence-absence surveys because they incorporate repeat surveys, allowing for the likelihood of detecting a species (the probability of detection) to be estimated explicitly (in contrast to traditional surveys that often incorrectly treat this probability as close to one to allow for estimation of presence). Occupancy methods can be applied to a variety of wildlife-trade surveys, including, for example, single-species availability, links between two illegally traded species (i.e., co-occurrence), and disease occurrence in live trade. In addition, free user-friendly software (i.e., PRESENCE) allows even nonstatisticians to adequately address this issue. I simulated a hypothetical wildlife-trade market survey that resulted in an apparent 20% decline in naïve occupancy (proportion of surveyed towns engaged in the trade) over 2 years, but when I accounted for change in probability of detection over the years the difference in occupancy was not statistically significant. As more sophisticated methods, such as occupancy, are applied to wildlife-trade market surveys, results will be more robust and defensible and therefore, theoretically, more powerful when presented to conservation policy and decision makers. ©2010 Society for Conservation Biology.
Mascia M.B.,World Wildlife Fund |
Pailler S.,World Wildlife Fund
Conservation Letters | Year: 2011
National parks and other protected areas (PAs) are the foundation of global efforts to conserve biological diversity. Conservation policy and practice assume that PAs are permanent fixtures on the landscape, but scattered evidence points to widespread-yet largely overlooked-PA downgrading, downsizing, and degazettement (PADDD). As a preliminary investigation of PADDD and its implications for conservation science and policy, we explore the published literature and contemporary media reports. We identify 89 historic instances of PADDD, in 27 countries, since 1900. Contemporary accounts reveal that PADDD has recently occurred or is currently under consideration in at least 12 countries worldwide. Proximate causes of PADDD vary widely, but center on access to and use of natural resources. Case studies from India and South America highlight the fact that PAs are socially defined and socially constructed governance regimes, responsive to social pressures-including conservation demands-at local to global scales. PADDD challenges longstanding assumptions underlying conservation policy and practice, including efforts to reduce deforestation and forest degradation (REDD), and underscores the need for resilient and robust conservation strategies. Because many fundamental questions regarding PADDD remain unanswered, further research is required to understand this conservation phenomenon and develop tailored policy responses. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.