Nearly a year after smoke and haze blanketed Borneo and threatened thousands of critically endangered orangutans, emergency funds provided by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) have helped protect those populations and their rainforest homes against future crises.
Asian supermodel Nadya Hutagalung joined A-list celebrities to launch a United Nations campaign against the illegal trade in wildlife that is pushing species to the brink of extinction, robbing countries of their natural heritage and profiting international criminal networks.
The role of zoos has evolved to prioritize research, education, and conservation in modern times. While some groups still condemn their existence based on a reputation of entertainment and fun-fairs started in the 1800s, many zoos are working hard to change that narrative. In collaboration with scientific agencies, governments and other conservation bodies, zoos are now playing their part in the much bigger picture of the conservation of our natural world
A web-based tool that superimposes maps of valuable above ground carbon stocks with great ape distribution in Africa and Asia – thereby making the strongest possible argument for protecting both – was launched this week in Monrovia, Liberia, by the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP) and the United Nations Collaborative Programme for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (UN-REDD Programme).
Palm oil is the most widely consumed vegetable oil globally and is found in approximately 50% of consumer products including chocolate among others. It is estimated this year that the U.S alone will spend $18 billion on chocolate and gifts for Valentine’s Day.
The Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP) strengthened its ability to tackle orangutan conservation in Borneo through the addition of two organizations that increased the partnership to 102, following a vote by the GRASP Executive Committee.
GRASP welcomes the Orangutan Appeal UK, which works to protect orangutans and their habitat and provides direct support to the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sabah, and the Gunung Palung Orangutan Conservation Program, which engages local communities and governments in the conservation of critical wild populations in West Kalimantan.
Indonesia is one of the most richly biodiverse places on the planet, with countless species and others that have yet to be discovered. But fires that were set in June to clear land for agricultural development – which were whipped far beyond control by the El Nino meteorological conditions – turned an annual environmental concern into a global crisis. Nearly 120,000 fires have been counted so far, and the resulting haze spread across Southeast Asia. An estimated one-third of the remaining wild orangutans on Borneo were threatened by the fires, which destroyed 2 million hectares of forest land.
The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) joined the battle to protect endangered orangutans from the fires and haze ravaging Southeast Asia today with a $100,000 USD contribution to support Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP) projects in Borneo.
Ambassadors for the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP) today called on the government of Indonesia to immediately ban the use of fire to clear land if sustainable practices cannot be implemented, following the environmental crisis currently unfolding in Southeast Asia.
Jane Goodall, Richard Leakey, Russell Mittermeier, Richard Wrangham and Nadya Hutagalung issued a joint statement that warned endangered orangutans are at risk in Sumatra and Borneo and globally important biodiversity is at stake.