Press Release, Haiti Chery. Lawyers Newton Louis St Juste and André Michel have legally challenged the Secretary General of the United Nations to clarify whether Bill Clinton’s 18 months as Co-Chair of the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission (CIRH or IHRC) from 2009 to 2011, while he was UN Special Envoy for Haiti entitles him to UN privileges and immunities against prosecutions being considered in courts of Haiti and other countries.
By Edgardo Ayala, Tierramerica via IPS. El Salvador’s Jiquilisco Bay, a tiny hidden corner of the Pacific Ocean and home to the country’s longest stretch of mangrove forests, is becoming a haven for endangered sea turtles. Local authorities, national and foreign environmental groups, and fisher folk from the region maintain incubators for turtle eggs and promote mechanisms for community involvement in their care. (English | Spanish)
By Staff (WJL), HPN | Staff, Nouvel Observateur via RadioTV Caraibes | Translation by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Residents from the Jalousie neighborhood of Petion-Ville took to the streets on Thursday, July 12 to call for a halt to the measures from Haiti’s Ministry of the Environment to demolish thousands of their homes. “It’s not right that a person should be offered only 20,000 gourdes (US $465) after his house is demolished,” said a protestor. UPDATED on July 30, Aug 2. (English | French)
Amos Cincir, Le Nouvelliste | Staff, HPN | Translation and editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Over 2,000 Haitian children are adopted each year by foreigners, over 55 percent of them French. This is an activity fraught with scandal. The Haitian government has announced that it would resume international adoptions that had been frozen since the earthquake. This decision follows two years of pressure from a group of French nationals to tie the delivery of French aid to an ex post facto legalization of the removal of undocumented Haitian children.
By Mirel Bran, Guardian Weekly | Sofia News Agency via Novinite. A small groups of concerned citizens have successfully pressured the Bulgarian Parliament into withdrawing a permit issued to Chevron and deciding, in January, to ban exploration of shale-gas reserves by the controversial hydraulic-fracturing (fracking) technique. Bulgaria, with shale-gas reserves of over 300 billion cubic meters, thus became the second European state to put a ban on fracking.
By Staff (kft, rc, apr), AlterPresse. More than five tremors of magnitude 3.4 to 5.1 have shaken the Dominican Republic since the new year. A study by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) suggests that Haiti’s January 12, 2010 earthquake might represent the start of a new seismic cycle for the Enriquillo fault system, and the island might suffer strong earthquakes in coming years. These conclusions rely partly on estimates of earthquake epicenters and intensities from historical accounts of damage descriptions. Complete report included. (English | French)
By Ellen Cantarow, Tom Dispatch. “This is what my kids are made of. They are made of water. They are made of the food that is grown in the county that I live in. And they are made of air. We inhale a pint of atmosphere with every breath we take… And when you poison these things, you poison us. That is a violation of our human rights, and that is why this is the civil rights issue of our day.” – Sandra Steingraber
Bill Quigley and Amber Ramanauskas, Courrier Internationale | San Francisco Bay View | Live from Haiti, Video. Emergency aid funds for Haiti were used by the U.S. mostly to pay itself. An alternative way to think about this story is to consider that earthquake-ravaged Haiti donated massive amounts of aid funds to the west — especially the U.S.– and Haiti is the world’s biggest “aid donor” per capita. (English | French)
By Staff (gp apr jsr kft), AlterPresse | Translated by Dady Chery for Haiti Chery. Thousands marched through Port-au-Prince on the eve of the 2nd anniversary of the earthquake to present to the Haitian Parliament a document detailing demands regarding land reform, decentralization, social housing, and transparency in the management of public affairs, among other things. (English | French)
Staff, British Columbia Women’s Institute | Maggie Schneider, CNN | Josh Fox, You Tube | By Muriel Kane, Raw Story. Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) is looking increasingly like a technology that will have to be left alone, not only because it pollutes the atmosphere and water, but also because the high-pressure injection of waste water from this process is thought to allow ancient faults to slip, leading to earthquakes. UPDATE Mar 9, 2012: Ohio concludes fracking causes earthquakes, strengtens regulations.
By Lester Haines, The Register | Matt Walker, BBC Earth News. Five days before an earthquake the number of male common toads in a breeding colony fell by 96%, and two days later the number of breeding pairs suddenly dropped to zero. Scientists believe that the toads were responding to massive releases of positively-charged particles into the atmosphere by rocks under extreme tectonic stress.