By Mark Johanson, International Business Times. The South Pacific Ocean’s Cook Islands, a country with a combined landmass slightly larger than Washington, D.C., announced on Tuesday August 28 the creation of a more than 600,000 square mile reserve. With the collaboration of Conservation International, the 16-member Pacific Islands Forum has laid out a plan to protect 25 million square miles of ocean: an area larger than the lunar surface.
Editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery | Staff, AFP via Yahoo!7 News | Elena L. Aben and Ellalyn B. De Vera, Manila Bulletin | Manuel Mogato, Rosemarie Francisco and Ed Lane, Reuters | By Staff, Sun Star | Rio Rose Ribaya, Reuters via Yahoo! | By Kim Arveen Patria, Yahoo! Large farming towns north of the capital Manila, as well as heavily populated coastal areas remain under waist-deep floods. Fierce winds and heavy rains from slow-moving Typhoon Gener (international codename Saola) have battered the country, killing at least 39 people and displacing about 200,000. UPDATE Aug 7: The typhoon left the Philippines on Friday Aug 3 but was immediately followed by tropical storm Haikui, which raised the number of casualties to more than 50 and of the displaced to more than 270,000 people. UPDATE Aug 16: New tropical storm Helen (international name Kai-Tak) kills 7 and causes yet more flooding and destruction.
By Milo Milford (kft, gp), AlterPresse | Translation by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery | YouTube. Lac Azuei, also called Etang Saumatre, is Haiti’s main natural lake. With an area of over 110 square kilometers (42.5 square miles), it is a lovely sight. The lake is also a place of feverish activity by child traffickers. (English | French)
By Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Thirty six commandos from Haiti’s Departmental Unit for Maintenance of Order (UDMO), together with presidentially-appointed regional and local government representatives, arrived in La Visite Park, near the city of Jacmel (southeast Haiti) to evict 142 families by force on July 23. The small farmers, who had lived there since 1942, were offered $1,160 for each property. In the battle that ensued, 4-12 people were killed.
By Stephen Leahy, IPS | Envolverde. Threats to coral reefs have gone from worrisome to dire. Bleaching, overfishing, pollution and disease have largely wiped out the fabulous coral communities of the Caribbean, which has lost 80 percent of its corals since the 1970s, say scientists at the 12th International Coral Reef Symposium (ICRS). (English | Spanish | Portuguese)
Interview of Captain Paul Watson with Jerry Cope, OpEd News | Paul Watson was arrested by German authorities on May 14 on charges stemming from a confrontation 10 years ago with shark fin poachers in Costa Rica. At the time the charges were dismissed. Watson has put in a motion to dismiss the case. No decision has been forthcoming from Germany, which does not have an extradition treaty with Costa Rica.
By Fabíola Ortiz, IPS. Brazilian mining giant Vale was named the “Worst Company in the World” by the Public Eye Awards in January 2012. A Report on Vale’s Unsustainability (PDF included) accuses the company of 15 worker deaths between 2010 and 2012, and of massive emissions of greenhouse gases and particulate matter into the atmosphere. The report was drafted by an International Network of People Affected by Vale, including 30 social movements from Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile and Mozambique. (English | Spanish)
By Jean Edner Dorvil in: A Taste of Haiti (Hyppocrene books, NY) | Introduction and recommendations by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Tomtom ak Kalalou Gombo is now considered to be traditional to the town of Jeremie in southern Haiti, but in colonial times this was the everyday dish of the Haitians. It is never eaten alone.
By Staff, Xinhua. In an election with 81% voter turnout, the villagers of Wukan elected former protest leaders Lin Zulian village chief and secretary to the Communist Party of China (CPC), and Yang Semao village deputy chief. Back in December, the residents of this fishing village lost one of their leaders in police custody while they were protesting illegal land grabs and abuse of power.
By Meredith McCarthy, Food & Water Watch. A new international alliance coordinated by The World Bank and called The Global Partnership for Oceans is proposing a global expansion of a program called “catch share” that allocates percentage quota of fish per year to coastal areas and arranges for these quota to be leased, bought, and sold. A recent report (included) on the U.S. use of catch share says it has bankrupted small fishermen and destroyed coastal communities.
By Joachim Dieudonne, Le Nouvelliste | Translated by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Artisanal fishing could be an almost inexhaustible wealth for the fishermen of southeast Haiti, but they feel unappreciated and complain of a lack of refrigeration and credit with which to buy simple devices to attract fish. They also increasingly express a need for devices to collect deep-sea fish.