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Tiny Beam Fund;
Keywords: GHG emissions. Industrial-scale food animal production. Extensive animal agriculture systems. Highlights of this report or guidance memo: *Scientific literature on greenhouse gas emissions of various forms of animal agriculture systems are synthesized. *Explains the complexities of models used to generate estimates of GHGs in these scientific literature, and the reasons why they are not very robust and they contain errors that often go unreported. *Points out that high-quality measurements that do exist consistently demonstrate that industrial animal agriculture's emissions are actually higher than typically estimated. Therefore the claim held by many experts and policy-makers that intensifying animal agriculture significantly limits global GHG emissions is unjustified. *Cautions about not jumping to the conclusion that extensive, pastoral systems is the perfect answer.
Tiny Beam Fund;
HIGHLIGHTS: *This report or Guidance Memo is aimed at supporting cage-free egg production operations in China. It provides information regarding international best practices in relation to farm productivity and animal welfare in the context of the Chinese egg industry. *Collaborating and in consultation with local Chinese producers and animal welfare experts, and based on her surveys of cage-free farms in China, the author of this Guidance Memo offers practical information for key housing and management issues, including: Disease management; egg production; the provision of an appropriate environment; maintaining normal hen behaviors and avoiding mortality; humane killing on farm. *There is an emphasis on the importance in understanding, training and investment in key management aspects, particularly the prevention and control of severe feather pecking and infectious diseases in order to maintain a healthy flock and operate a successful and profitable production business. *This report shows compellingly that improving cage-free layer hen welfare in China is quite feasible and such improvement is hugely beneficial for producers and layer hens. Higher welfare cage-free systems are indeed increasing in China even though the vast majority of eggs in China are still produced in facilities with cages. *A Chinese translation of this Guidance Memo is available in late 2020.
Tiny Beam Fund;
HIGHLIGHTS: *Shines a bright light on several fundamental cultural drivers of meat consumption in Argentina: 1) Powerful belief system in favor of eating meat. 2) Deep stigmatization of veganism. 3) Pervasive narratives and behavior justifying meat-eating that most people consider as "common sense" and which are sustained by institutions (e.g. healthcare, legal, education systems). *Suggests a range of practical measures to tackle challenges faced by those seeking to reduce and end consumption of animal-based food in that country (e.g. influence school curricula and train teachers, professionalize the vegan activist community).
Tiny Beam Fund;
*Animal farming has intensified in Bulgaria and Romania (both are middle-income countries) in recent years. Many more animals are now reared in large farms that use intensive production practices, while the number of small farms have dwindled.*This report/Guidance Memo charts the significant shift toward intensification, and explains why its key driver is the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). CAP payments and subsidies and their unequal distribution to recipients have triggered deep structural changes in the animal agriculture sector in the EU, chief of which is the livestock industry taking advantage of the favorable climate and generous handouts to intensify production.*At the same time EU animal welfare regulations are not robustly enforced and not comprehensive enough to protect all farm animals. Consumers in the EU, however, are strongly in favor of better treatment of farm animals.
Tiny Beam Fund;
KEYWORDS: Beef and dairy production systems. GHG emissions. Literature review. Science-based communication. HIGHLIGHTS: *Provides user-friendly explanation of basic concepts and terminology as well as summaries of current scientific thinking related to GHG emissions of different beef and dairy production systems around the world. The aim is to give those concerned about the negative impacts of industrial animal agriculture a clear understanding of these complex and confusing issues, and to supply them with a solid foundation on which to build their case against industrializing cattle production in low- and middle-income countries. For example, it explains the difference between "intensification" and "industrialization", and why understanding the difference is critically important. *Provides key points that are useful in countering certain prevalent claims in favor of industrialization. (One such claim is that industrialization is essential in order to reduce GHG emission because non-industrial systems generate too much greenhouse gases and do not produce enough meat and dairy to meet global demands). For example, it points out that: Animals from smallholder systems – especially those in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) – often perform many more functions than cattle on industrial farms, and this complicates the way in which emissions are divided between ("allocated to") multiple products from a farm. And farms in LMICs that have low climate footprints already exist, and it is quite possible to bring more on board.
The 'Building Resilience in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands of Northern Kenya' project was implemented in Turkana County, in Northern Kenya, between July 2012 and April 2015. The project was designed to build the resilience of project participants to a number of shocks and stresses: droughts - which threaten the area annually - floods and outbreaks of human and animal diseases on the one hand, and anthropocentric risks on the other hand, such as fire, livestock theft, and conflicts. The project worked at different levels to try and reduce households' vulnerability to these risks, through Community-Managed Disaster Risk Reduction (CMDRR) and integration of community-level plans and committees into the work of the county government. This Effectiveness Review used a quasi-experimental evaluation design to assess the impact of the project activities, at the household- and community-level. The results provide evidence that the project had had a positive impact on households' resilience capacities. This report is part of Oxfam's Effectiveness Review series.
World Wildlife Fund (WWF);
Among the six-infrastructure themes that this assessment focused on, roads seem to have the highest amount of impact on the snow leopard habitat. Experts' ranking ranged from 61% for road to 12.4% for settlement. Impact due to high density road infrastructure on snow leopard habitat ranges from 5,725km2 to 17,775km2. Prediction maps show an area (greater than 90 percentile) measuring between 525km2 and 625km2 as high impact zone in snow leopard habitat, affected by infrastructural development. The study concluded that the current cumulative effect of infrastructural development on snow leopard habitat is low. However, future impact scenario shows an increase of 50% impact area, most of which within or traversing through the core snow leopard habitats. Therefore, it is likely that snow leopard habitats would be subjected to a high degree of fragmentation, deterioration and human disturbances in the future.
International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW);
Perhaps the most widely accepted framework for community development and human well-being today is the United Nations' 2030 agenda, more commonly known as the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Agreed to by all 193 member states of the UN, the goals outline international priorities to achieve sustainable human development. As the preeminent guidance on human development, these goals inform the policies of governments, non-governmental organizations, and the UN system. While the SDGs are certainly more comprehensive than purely economic measures of progress such as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), they place limited emphasis on the value of the natural world. Despite this, animals and their habitats are interwoven in the fate of human development. All species, big and small, imperiled and ubiquitous, have an important role to play in building a healthy, prosperous, and sustainable future for humans. This report will examine these connections and the value of animal welfare and habitat conservation in achieving each sustainable development goal. As we will see, effective animal welfare and conservation can contribute significantly to the achievement of these goals, and promoting animal welfare provides an important avenue to improve both human and animal lives. IFAW seeks to enhance awareness of the connections between animal welfare, conservation, and human development to inspire greater collaboration through which to achieve a shared goal of improving conditions for all species and the planet.
Center for Biological Diversity;
Mexico is one of the world's most biologically rich nations, with diverse landscapes that are home to a treasure trove of wildlife, including plant and animal species found nowhere else. Sadly, in Mexico and around the world, species are becoming extinct because of human activities at rates never seen before.In this report we highlight the threats facing Mexico's 10 most iconic endangered species to help illustrate thebroader risks confronting the country's imperiled plants and animals. These 10 species -- which in most cases are protected only on paper -- were chosen to reflect Mexico's diversity of wildlife and ecosystems and the wide range of threats to the country's biodiversity. New awareness of these unique animals and plants is critical to inspiring a nationwide demand to protect these critical components of Mexico's natural heritage.
Center for Biological Diversity;
While the decline of European honeybees in the United States and beyond has been well publicized in recent years, the more than 4,000 species of native bees in North America and Hawaii have been much less documented. Although these native bees are not as well known as honeybees, they play a vital role in functioning ecosystems and also provide more than $3 billion dollars in fruit-pollination services each year just in the United States.For this first-of-its-kind analysis, the Center for Biological Diversity conducted a systematic review of the status of all 4,337 North American and Hawaiian native bees.For this report we assembled a list of all valid native bee species and their current conservation status as established by state, federal or independent researchers. We then conducted a comprehensive review of all literature on those species as well as records documenting their occurrence. From that research we identified those bees with sufficient data to assess their status, including current and historical range, behavioral observations and studies, arriving at the first comprehensive analysis of the status of North American and Hawaiian native bees.We also highlight five native solitary bee species that are seriously imperiled. These remarkable, underappreciated pollinators offer a snapshot of the threats driving the alarming declines in many native bee species — declines that must be reversed to save these irreplaceable native bees and the health of the ecosystems that depend on them.
Frontiers in Marine Science;
Understanding the horizontal and vertical habitat of olive ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea), a threatened species, is critical for determining regions for protection and relevant gear modifications that may effectively reduce bycatch, the largest threat to this species. Satellite transmitters were used to determine the movement and dive behavior of 21 female olive ridley turtles tagged in Pongara National Park, Gabon during the 2012, 2013, and 2015 nesting seasons. A switching state-space model was used to filter the tracking data and categorize the internesting and post-nesting movements. Gridded utilization distribution (UD) home range analysis of tracking data revealed that the entire core habitat occurred in the Komo Estuary during the internesting period. Within the Komo Estuary, 58% of this core UD occurred in shipping lanes. Dive data from the 2015 tagging season revealed that during the internesting period, turtles spent the majority of their time resting on the estuary seabed. Approximately 20% of all dive time was spent on the bottom and all maximum dive depths corresponded to the depth of the seabed, indicating that bottom set gear during the internesting period may pose the greatest potential for fisheries interactions. National parks currently protect many of the nesting sites and the Gabon Bleu initiative has formally designated 10 new marine parks and a network of community and industrial fishing zones; this data was a layer used in determining the park and zone boundaries. Shared use of the estuary by fisheries, shipping, and olive ridley turtles creates a need for management measures to reduce interactions. Thus, the results from this study can further provide detailed information that can be used to support the development of evidence-based management plans.
Endangered Species Research;
Penguins are the most threatened group of seabirds after albatrosses. Although penguins are regularly captured in fishing gear, the threat to penguins as a group has not yet been assessed. We reviewed both published and grey literature to identify the fishing gear types that penguins are most frequently recorded in, the most impacted species and, for these susceptible species, the relative importance of bycatch compared to other threats. While quantitative estimates of overall bycatch levels are difficult to obtain, this review highlights that, of the world's 18 species of penguins, 14 have been recorded as bycatch in fishing gear and that gillnets, and to a lesser extent trawls, are the gear types that pose the greatest threats to penguins. Bycatch is currently of greatest concern for yellow-eyed Megadyptes antipodes(Endangered), Humboldt Spheniscus humboldti (Vulnerable) and Magellanic Spheniscus magellanicus penguins (Near Threatened). Penguins face many threats; reducing bycatch mortality in fishing gear will greatly enhance the resilience of penguin populations to threats from habitat loss and climate change that are more difficult to address in the short term. Additional data are required to quantify the true extent of penguin bycatch, particularly for the most susceptible species. In the meantime, it is crucially important to manage the fisheries operating within known penguin foraging areas to reduce the risks to this already threatened group of seabirds.