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Thai Officials Reject Controversial Tiger Temple’s Application for a Zoo Permit – March 2, 2016

Big cats held at the temple will be rescued at the rate of five individuals a month

Efforts to rescue the tigers held captive in Thailand’s infamous Tiger Temple may not be moving as fast as most wildlife activists would like, but there may be hope for the big cats yet. In the past month, five more of the 147 tigers held at the monastery in Thailand’s Kanchanaburi province have been relocated to wildlife refuges run by the country’s national parks department, bringing the total number of tigers rescued since January up to 10.

tourists play with tigers in a mud pitPhoto by Sharon GuynupThe temple's wildly successful operation is based around claims that the first tigers to arrive at the temple… more

by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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Fight Senate Bill Seeking Voluntary GMO Labeling, Say Right to Know Advocates – February 23, 2016

Draft legislation an attempt to block Vermont’s mandatory labeling law that goes into effect on July 1

Big Ag’s effort to withhold information about the kind of food we put on our table continues. Now there’s a new bill in the Senate that seeks to preempt state or other local laws that would require mandatory labeling of genetically modified foods.

Photo of GMO Labeling ProtestPhoto by CT Senate DemocratsA new bill in the Senate would preempt state or other local laws requiring mandatory labeling of genetically modified foods, including a Vermont labeling law that goes into effect in July.

Introduced last week by Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman, Sen. Pat Roberts, the draft legislation would amend the Agricultural Marketing… more

by: Maureen Nandini Mitra

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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.

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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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