INDONESIA: ancient forests fall to plantations of palmoil trees - audio slide show - The New York Times, April 29, 2006
CHINA OLYMPICS 2008: DESTROYING PAPUA'S ANCIENT RAINFORESTS TO RAISE THE OLYMPIC TORCH
Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2006 00:33:28 -0500
ACTION ALERT FORWARD WIDELY!
By Rainforest Portal, project of Ecological Internet, Inc. www.rainforestportal.org/
April 30, 2006
Protest China's Plundering of Ancient Indonesian Rainforests to Build 2008 Olympic Facilities
With two-and-a-half years to go until the start of the 2008 Olympics to be held in Beijing China, the Chinese government has recently placed a $1 billion rush order for endangered rainforest timbers from Indonesia's Papua province to be used in construction for the games. A proposed timber processing factory would industrially harvest 800,000 cubic meters of the famous and threatened merbau (intsia spp) rainforest timbers, to be
exported to China for the construction of sports facilities.
Indonesia's Papua province on the island of New Guinea has some of the world's last remaining large intact rainforests. These rainforests are millions of years old, contain untold biodiversity and evolutionary history, and provide critical regional and global ecosystem processes. An investment of this size will only serve to legitimize and further fuel illegal, highly unsustainable, and ecologically devastating logging, ensuring the destruction of this critically threatened ancient rainforest. It is against the Olympic ideals of bringing "people together in peace to respect universal moral principles" when the events are housed in ancient rainforest timbers of questionable legality and morality. Please insist the Chinese
government commit to hosting an "old-growth, ancient forest free" Olympics. Please take action now at www.rainforestportal.org/alerts/send.asp?id=olympic_timber
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Wednesday, March 22, 2006 5:50 PM
ACTION ALERT PLEASE FORWARD WIDELY!
Massive Gas Pipeline to Pierce the Amazon
By Rainforest Portal, a project of Ecological Internet, Inc.
March 22, 2006
Project Will Devastate South America's Rainforests, Water & Climate
Venezuela, Brazil and Argentina plan to build a massive natural gas pipeline of up to 9,000 km in length from Venezuela to Argentina through Brazil's Amazon rainforest. Construction of the pipeline would be the most ambitious physical infrastructure initiative in South America's history, costing up to $25 billion and taking up to seven years to build. The pipeline would pierce
the heart of the Amazon and ensure its destruction as a large, operable whole. Large areas of pristine rainforests will be destroyed during construction, and new roads will open the rest for colonization by ranchers and loggers.
The multitude of waterways traversing the Amazon will be polluted during construction and inevitable pipeline leaks. The pipeline will contribute to global warming through deforestation and oil production to access the gas. The similar existing Camisea gas pipeline through rainforests in Peru - which was touted as a model of sustainable development, environmental protection and respect for indigenous peoples - offers a cautionary tale of the damage caused by gas pipelines during construction and their operation. In three years of operation is has already experienced five major spills, severely damaging the environment and local communities.
The proposed pipeline is a major threat to the existence of the Amazon rainforest, as well as regional and global ecological sustainability. The leaders of Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina must be called upon to scrap plans for its construction.
Take action now:
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Sr. Nestor Kirchner
President of Argentina
Sr. Luis Inacio Lula da Silva
President of Brazil
Sr. Hugo Chavez
President of Venezuela
I am writing to express grave concerns with plans by Venezuela, Brazil and Argentina to build a massive natural gas pipeline through Brazil's Amazon rainforest. The pipeline would pierce the heart of the Amazon and ensure its destruction as a large, operable whole. It would devastate rainforests, water resources, the climate and indigenous populations across a huge swathe of South America.
The pipeline represents the most antiquated, primitive neo-liberal economic development policy which your governments rally against, and it is economically questionable. Both Brazil and Argentina have gas fields large enough to cover their own domestic demands, it is not clear that Venezuela has the capacity to maintain such a large steady supply of gas, nor that the gas could be offered at a competitive price given the huge investment required.
The similar existing Camisea gas pipeline through rainforests in Peru - which was touted as a model of sustainable development, environmental protection and respect for indigenous peoples - offers a cautionary tale of the damage caused by gas pipelines during construction and their operation. In three years of operation is has already experienced five major spills, severely damaging the environment and local
Given that the proposed pipeline is both economically and ecologically unsustainable, I call upon your governments to immediately cancel planning for its construction.