Daily blogs from the frontlines of the Greenpeace planet down under. 

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  • FADs – Floating Atoll Destroyers

    Blogpost by Dr. Cat Dorey - September 18, 2015 at 9:19

    The remote island atolls of St François and Farquhar are part of the Alphonse and Farquhar outer island groups in the Seychelles archipelago in the Indian Ocean. Like most of the Seychelles, these atolls are important nesting sites for sea birds and sea turtles, and are surrounded by some of the world's healthiest and most intact coral reefs. There is a small settlement on Farquhar atoll, but St François has no human inhabitants.

    In my mind, coral atolls like these have embodied a tropical paradise, untouched by human hand. How wrong could I be? When I went to the Seychelles last year, I discovered that even in these remote places the tuna industry is causing trouble.

    Yep, it's those FADs (Fish Aggregating Devices ) again, although I know a few less flattering acronyms to describe them!... Read more >

  • Reality check required on world's forests

    Blogpost by Greg Norman - September 17, 2015 at 14:34

    Such is the gap between World Forestry Congresses (5 years) that it prompted one of the facilitators to describe it as the forestry sector's Olympics and World Cup rolled into one.

    Taking place in Durban last week, the United Nations-funded event brings together politicians, scientists, civil society and other experts. This, the 14th iteration, is very much trying to create an air of positivity with regards to how we manage and protect the planet's forested area.

    Tree in DRC Rainforest. 15 Mar, 2008 © Thomas Einberger / argum / Greenpeace

    Drawing on the official event slogan of "Forests and People: Investing in a Sustainable Future" proceedings opened with much fanfare and the headline findings from a report sponsored by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) that claims the rate at which we are losing forests globally has halved in the last 25 years. The... Read more >

  • Delivering renewable energy for all: Let's go all the way!

    Blogpost by Daniel Mittler - September 17, 2015 at 14:30

    Children in Dharnai Village in India. 22 Jun, 2014 © Vivek M. / Greenpeace

    Little has been transformed more in recent years than the world of energy. It's hard to think of a sector that has undergone more changes in the years between the 2000 launch of the Millennium Development Goals and the new 2015 Sustainable Development Goals that will be formally endorsed at a global Summit at UN Headquarters this September.

    There is now 15 times more solar power and three times more wind power in the world than in 2007. On a global level, more clean power capacity is being installed than coal, oil, and gas put together. Solar power is growing faster than even we at Greenpeace predicted, and renewables are now the cheapest way to provide additional electricity in an ever-growing number of countries. In other words: renewable energy is winning the race against fossil fuels... Read more >

  • Block the Offer to Stop Deep Sea Oil

    Blogpost by Genevieve Toop - September 17, 2015 at 13:19

    From now until the 30th of October local councils, iwi and hapū around New Zealand have the opportunity to take a position on deep sea oil drilling off our coast.

    Every year the Government via NZ Petroleum and Minerals (NZPAM) proposes “block offers”. The ‘blocks’ are  huge swathes of our land, ocean and seabed that the Government wants to open up the following year to international oil companies to explore for oil and gas. The area that the Government has offered up this time - “Block Offer 2016” - is massive.  It is twice the size of New Zealand’s whole landmass, and includes nearly a quarter of the West Coast North Island Marine Mammal Sanctuary where the critically endangered Maui dolphins live. 

               Block Offer 2016

    But before the Government sells off our oceans they have asked for submission... Read more >

  • Matt Stoios is a man who has seen the world from many different perspectives, but mostly from above.

    A good natured Aussie bloke from Melbourne, you can find the Rainbow Warrior helicopter pilot in the skies over the Pacific Ocean, as he scours the seas for evidence of destructive tuna fishing.

    But, as Matt explains, becoming part of a campaign to fight out-of-control tuna fishing has seen him do a full circle in his life.

    We sit in the lounge area of the Warrior during a small break in a heavy work-day so that I can grill him about his experiences. It’s been particularly topsy-turvy weather and we’re all feeling a bit green around the gills, but the show must go on.

    He starts from the beginning. Soon after finishing high school, Matt set his heart on training as a helicopter pilot. Read more >

  • Ka'apor Indians setting up trap cameras in areas used by illegal loggers to invade the indigenous territory.

    For the Ka’apor people of Brazil, protecting the Amazon rainforest isn’t just about climate change or wildlife. It is about survival.

    As one community leader explains, “It's in the forest that lies our life. Without the forest, we are not the Ka'apor. 'Ka'apor' means 'forest dwellers' and this is why we must defend it.” 

    Lately, their land has needed a lot of defence. The Ka’apor live in a fragment of the Amazon rainforest—the Alto Turiaçu Indigenous Land—that is surrounded by deforestation. And that fragment has been shrinking as the global appetite for Amazon timber grows.

    Alto Turiaçu Indigenous Land

    click to enlarge

    Loggers are sneaking into Alto Turiaçu illegally—gouging roads into the forest floor and removing valuable tree species. In less than three decades, the Ka’apor have lost eight percent of thei... Read more >

  • Every 10 seconds...

    Blogpost by Elizabeth Monaghan - September 11, 2015 at 15:36

    24 hours per day. 7 days per week. For weeks on end. The Arctic Ocean is being blasted by deafening 259 decibel explosions. Why? To map oil deposits under the ocean floor so that Shell and other big oil companies know where to set their greedy gaze for future oil exploration.

    Until now, all this was happening in near-secret, at the top of the world, far from the public eye. But 7 million people and counting have registered their concerns for the Arctic region. And the Arctic Sunrise ship is in north-east Greenland to expose how seismic blasting is disrupting and harming ocean life.

    We invite you to share in this epic journey set against a breathtaking Arctic backdrop:

    Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, in summer. 14 Aug, 2015 © Christian Åslund / Greenpeace

    The tour gets off to a great start in picturesque Nuuk, Greenland’s capital...

    Arctic Sunrise Open Boat in Nuuk. 17 Aug, 2015 © Christian Åslund / Greenpeace

    ...where over 100 people are welcom... Read more >

  • Choked in smoke - living in the thick of Indonesia’s haze

    Blogpost by Zamzami - September 11, 2015 at 14:22

    Smoke caused by forest fires and peatland destruction, is covering about 80% of Sumatra, Indonesia. And it seems like no matter how far you try to escape, the smoke follows.

    A Greenpeace investigator documents fires on recently cleared peatland in the PT Rokan Adiraya Plantation oil palm plantation near Sontang village in Rokan Hulu, Riau, Sumatra. 23 Jun, 2013

    My wife and daughter should be at our home in Pekanbaru, Riau on the east of Sumatra right now. It’s been more than a month since we moved, or rather escaped to my parent’s house in West Sumatra. But like a dark cloud over my head I’ve since discovered that wherever I go, smoke follows.

    For the past fortnight, most of Sumatra has been blanketed by smoke, triggered by forest fires in South Sumatra and the central east and eastern provinces of Riau and Jambi. It’s currently the dry season and major companies are accused of intentionally and illegally burning to clear land for palm oil plantation; and individual far...

    Read more >

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