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Five Big Cats Rescued from Thailand’s Tiger Temple – January 29, 2016

Fate of remaining 142 big cats still uncertain

Thai officials seized five of the 147 captive tigers at the controversial Tiger Temple on Friday and relocated them to wildlife refuges run by the country’s national parks department, according to a report in the Bangkok Post.

entrance to Tiger Temple meditation centerPhoto by Steve WinterThe Tiger Temple's new 'meditation center' is part of a massive new expansion initiative that will include a new temple building and a larger tiger enterprise - housing up to 500 tigers in the project's initial phase.

While the rescue of the first five tigers is welcome news, the fate of the remaining 142 was still unclear as… more

by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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Thai Officials to Rescue 147 Tigers from Monastery After Investigations Reveal Trafficking – January 25, 2016

Death threats haunt founder of conservation group behind the revelation

Halfway through my Skype interview last night with Sybelle Foxcroft — the wildlife biologist who’s the key source behind last week’s horrific National Geographic investigative report about illegal cross-border tiger trafficking from the famed Tiger Temple in Thailand — she’s interrupted by a Thai official. Our connection is rather spotty so I can’t quite hear what the official, who’s off-screen, is telling her, but once he leaves, Foxcroft turns back to me, rather disturbed.

Suddenly, she isn’t feeling all that safe holed up in a remote national park and wildlife refuge in Thailand, without transport, miles from any town. She thinks she should relocate as soon as possible.


by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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Top Environmental Stories of 2015 – December 31, 2015

Climate change, energy, and wlidlife issues in the forefront

It’s that time again, when we reflect on the year that’s passed and draw up a tally of the best and worst of just about everything. For us at the Journal, the tally is, naturally, about the most important environmental stories, stories that are not necessarily headline-grabbers, but are likely to have long-term impacts on the state of our land, water and air.

This year, we sought the collective wisdom of the greater Earth Island community while drawing up our list. I asked the directors of Earth Island’s diverse range of environmental projects — who work on everything from wildlife conservation, social justice, food and agriculture issues, to climate policy —… more

by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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Thousands of Planned Coal Plants, if Built, Could Doom Efforts to Contain Global Warming – December 2, 2015

Meanwhile, climate change continues to wreak havoc in real time

I landed in Calcutta (Kolkata, if you are a stickler for official names) on November 30, the day the world leaders, policy makers, and environmental activists gathered in Paris to figure out how to curb climate change. Officially, it’s wintertime in this city of my birth, but the air on Monday night was anything but chilly. Instead, it was uncomfortably muggy. The only sign of winter was the hazy air — a regular year-end feature in this overcrowded, traffic-choked metropolis in eastern India.

Photo of Chennai FloodsPhoto by McKay Savage The rains in Chennai, India have broken a 100-year-old record. The image… more

by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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US Dolphin Safe Tuna Label is Unfair to Mexico, WTO rules yet again – November 24, 2015

Marine mammal advocates accuse trade body of putting business above dolphin protection

If Mexico and the World Trade Organization have their way, those “dolphin safe” cans of tuna you’ve been buying at the supermarket might actually come stained with dolphin blood.

Last Friday, the global trade body again ruled against the United States in a long-running dispute with Mexico over US “Dolphin Safe” tuna-labeling regulations, saying that the regulations unfairly discriminate against Mexico. The decision by the WTO's appellate body is the latest development in a trade dispute between the two countries that dates back to the establishment of the Dolphin Safe tuna label in 1990.

tuna cansPhoto by The Hamster Factor/FlickrThe dolphin-safe label (the small… more

by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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