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Environment, Carbon and Forests

Video: The Forest: Our Home, Our Culture, Our Life

GFIS - Fri, 23/09/2016 - 04:43

Find out how Aboriginal Peoples and the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) are creating places for dialog to help keep our forests for all forever.

Million-acre forest plan designed to make Black Hills more resilient to fire, bugs

GFIS - Fri, 23/09/2016 - 04:35

In roughly two decades, the Black Hills mountain pine beetle infestation has decimated approximately 215,000 acres of pine trees in the Black Hills, leaving drastically changed woodlands in its wake.

Who’s maintaining your sink? 

GFIS - Fri, 23/09/2016 - 04:04

No! I am not talking about your kitchen or bathroom sink, I am talking about your carbon sink.

Bringing Forest and Poverty into Focus in Argentina

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 22:59

The Chaco Eco-region in northern Argentina includes some of the country’s poorest communities, and also suffers from high deforestation rates. This study will describe and quantify how the rural poor in the Chaco Eco-region depend on forest-derived income for their livelihoods, to inform sustainable forest management.

CHALLENGE

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Understanding Forests’ Contribution to Poverty Reduction

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 22:50

While knowledge is increasing about forests as a source of day-to-day subsistence and as a safety net in times of need, much less is known about the extent to which forests can provide a pathway out of poverty. Currently, there is no systematic understanding of how forests may help the chronically poor move to become sometimes poor, and the sometimes poor to become the non-poor.

CHALLENGE
While knowledge is increasing about forests as a source of day-to-day subsistence and as a safety net in times of need, much less is known about the extent to which forests can provide a pathway out of poverty. Currently, there is no systematic understanding of how forests may help the chronically poor move to become sometimes poor, and the sometimes poor to become the non-poor.

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Travel Log: Northeastern University in Belize

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 21:17
Cassandra Johnson is a fourth-year chemical engineering student at Northeastern University from Issaquah, WA. She recently visited our Belize program with a group of engineering students. Read about her experience and how it shaped her understanding of her future career!

Stakeholders move to enhance productivity and efficiency in Kenya’s dairy sector for lower greenhouse gas emissions

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 20:56

As part of the historic UN Paris Climate Agreement of 2015, countries committed to fight climate change by reducing their greenhouse gas emissions from various sectors, including agriculture. Kenya is not being left behind. Stakeholders from the dairy...

The post Stakeholders move to enhance productivity and efficiency in Kenya’s dairy sector for lower greenhouse gas emissions appeared first on Agroforestry World.

UNGA Continues Addressing SDG Priorities, Ratification of Paris Agreement

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 19:47
On its second day, the 71st session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) continued its annual general debate under the theme, ‘The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): a universal push to transform our world,' at UN Headquarters in New York, the US. Countries focused on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change, among other topics, sharing national progress and urging further action on a range of issues from financing to the relationship between peace and development.

Seeing is believing

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 19:29
Fall is perhaps one of the most beautiful times of the year in North America and every year the U.S. Forest Service celebrates with the launch of our Fall Colors Webpage.  The changing myriad of colors on trees from bright reds, brilliant oranges and bold yellows really make for a stunning backdrop to any family [...]

The bear circadian clock doesn't 'sleep' during winter dormancy

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 17:24
Citation:

Heiko Jansen, Tanya Leise, Gordon Stenhouse, Karine Pigeon, Wayne Kasworm, Justin Teisberg, Thomas Radandt, Robert Dallmann, Steven Brown, & Charles Robbins. (2016). The bear circadian clock doesn't 'sleep' during winter dormancy. Frontiers in Zoology. 13:42.

DOI: 10.1186/s12983-016-0173-x

Abstract: Background

Most biological functions are synchronized to the environmental light:dark cycle via a circadian timekeeping system. Bears exhibit shallow torpor combined with metabolic suppression during winter dormancy. We sought to confirm that free-running circadian rhythms of body temperature (Tb) and activity were expressed in torpid grizzly (brown) bears and that they were functionally responsive to environmental light. We also measured activity and ambient light exposures in denning wild bears to determine if rhythms were evident and what the photic conditions of their natural dens were. Lastly, we used cultured skin fibroblasts obtained from captive torpid bears to assess molecular clock operation in peripheral tissues. Circadian parameters were estimated using robust wavelet transforms and maximum entropy spectral analyses.

Results

Captive grizzly bears housed in constant darkness during winter dormancy expressed circadian rhythms of activity and Tb. The rhythm period of juvenile bears was significantly shorter than that of adult bears. However, the period of activity rhythms in adult captive bears was virtually identical to that of adult wild denning bears as was the strength of the activity rhythms. Similar to what has been found in other mammals, a single light exposure during the bear’s active period delayed subsequent activity onsets whereas these were advanced when light was applied during the bear’s inactive period. Lastly, in vitro studies confirmed the expression of molecular circadian rhythms with a period comparable to the bear’s own behavioral rhythms.

Conclusions

Based on these findings we conclude that the circadian system is functional in torpid bears and their peripheral tissues even when housed in constant darkness, is responsive to phase-shifting effects of light, and therefore, is a normal facet of torpid bear physiology.

 

Access the full article (open access) here.

Related Content: Assessing den selection and den characteristics of grizzly bearsDrivers of hibernation: linking food and weather to denning behaviour of grizzly bearsDen selection by grizzly bears on a managed landscape

Norway’s support for the aviation sector’s plans to burn the planet

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 17:12
In September 2015, a meeting took place in New York between Per Pharo and Marte Sendstad of Norway’s International Climate and Forest Initiative and Nigel Purvis from the Washington DC-based consulting firm, Climate Advisers. During the meeting, they talked about the aviation industry’s plans to offset its emissions, in order to avoid taking meaningful action on climate […]

Housing Market Data a Mixed Bag as Peak Season Comes to a Close

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 16:52

The housing market held relatively steady as the summer months drew to a close. While August’s housing starts data was somewhat of a disappointment, other sector indices demonstrated more volatility. The market for new homes surged in recent months while existing home sales have demonstrated a slower, more stable performance despite uncertainty surrounding the upcoming elections and fears that any slight economic slowdown might curb market momentum. 

Save China’s wild bees to safeguard global food supply: New study calls for more trees and fewer chemicals on China’s farms

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 15:56

China has so far avoided the massive losses of bees seen in the West, but the country’s diverse range of native bees face their own set of growing threats. The authors of a new study, titled “Is China’s...

The post Save China’s wild bees to safeguard global food supply: New study calls for more trees and fewer chemicals on China’s farms appeared first on Agroforestry World.

RWANDA / EL SALVADOR FOREST LANDSCAPE RESTORATION WORKSHOPS

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 14:26
IUFRO-SPDC Workshops in Rwanda and El Salvador have provided opportunities for knowledge-sharing on Forest Landscape Restoration Implementation.

Here Today or Here to Stay?

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 14:00
Some disturbances come and go, leaving forests no worse for the wear. Hailstorms, insect defoliations, and light prescribed fires, for example, commonly occur early in the growing season, but, because of the timing and nature of these disturbances, trees and…Read more ›

Hydrophobic Deep Eutectic Solvents promise to play key role in making paper industry more sustainable

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 13:11

PhD research carried out as part of the PROVIDES project has recently resulted in promising new sustainable hydrophobic Deep Eutectic Solvents (DESs). These hydrophobic DESs could successfully replace chemical solvents in the paper recycling process in order to remove transition metal ions such as iron and manganese from paper pulp.

Coordinated by ISPT, the industry-driven PROVIDES project focuses on developing environmentally friendly alternatives to chemical solvents in the European pulp and paper industry. It is financially supported by 20 industrial partners.

Deep Eutectic Solvents (DESs) are nature-based, renewable, biodegradable, low-volatile and cost-effective. When used for producing high-quality cellulose fibers in paper-making applications, they are extremely energy efficient, particularly because they do not require high temperatures. They offer a groundbreaking new method for the pulping of many different lignocellulosic materials for producing chemical pulp, pure lignin and other chemicals.

Read the full press release by ISPT here

DES was the winning project of the Two Team Project, a CEPI project thanks to which the industry identified eight breakthrough technologies that would help decarbonise papermaking. Read more about it here.

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Green public procurement made easy for Italian authorities

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 11:10
PEFC Italy has launched a new operational guide to green public procurement (GPP) to enable public and private players alike to support sustainable forest management. The manual, which is the first in Italy to be made after the entry into force of the new Procurement Code (Legislative Decree...

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World Rhino Day takes place on eve of critical wildlife trade conference

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 08:45
Johannesburg, South Africa, 22nd September 2016—as the world marks World Rhino Day, delegates from more than 180 countries are arriving in South Africa for a critical wildlife trade meeting where the international efforts to address record poaching levels of Africa’s rhinos will be one of many issues under close scrutiny.

IUFRO News Vol. 45, Double Issue 8/9, September 2016

GFIS - Thu, 22/09/2016 - 08:27
IUFRO scientists met to exchange latest findings on biological invasions, forests pests in northern regions, vegetation for slope stability, forest landscape restoration, and more...

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by Dr. Radut