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Reporter’s Notebook: Voices from the Mekong and Tonlé Sap Lake

Voices and stories from around Tonle Sap Lake and communities affected by the Lower Sesan II dam.

Hundreds of mayors, governors, CEOs and others pledge U.S. commitment to Paris climate agreement

Mike Bloomberg, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change, submitted yesterday an unprecedented statement of unity from hundreds of U.S. mayors, governors, state attorneys general, CEOs and others to achieve and eventually exceed America’s commitment to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. In a letter to addressed jointly to U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres and the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa, Bloomberg presented this declaration, called “We Are Still In.”

National Geographic Photo Ark Spotlight: The Vulnerable Yellow-spotted Amazon River Turtle

Native to rivers and lakes in the Amazon and Orinoco river systems in South America, the yellow-spotted river turtle (Podocnemis unifilis) is facing a high risk of extinction in the wild, and is therefore assessed as Vulnerable on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service lists the species as Endangered wherever found, in terms of the U.S. Endangered Species Act.

Port Launay: The Last Mangroves of the Seychelles

When French settlers first arrived in the remote islands of the Seychelles, thick mangrove forests fringed the western shore of Mahe, the largest of the islands in the archipelago. Inside the green coastal forests, giant crocodiles roamed through the tangled branches, as well as many species of fish, crab and birds. The woodlands were a…

Why Kill a Program that Saves Water, Energy, and Money – and that Business Likes?

This week the Alliance for Water Efficiency (AWE), a non-profit organization based in Chicago, Illinois, sent a letter to US EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt that makes an unassailable case for continuing a program called WaterSense. As most of us know, Mr. Pruitt is on a quest to reduce the regulation of air, land, and water,…

Hawiian Coastal Plastic Cleanup by Young People

Optimism versus pessimism, how do we find balance between the two when confronting the environmental challenges of today? The older generation has many opportunities to help young people to be optimistic about the future — by encouraging them to take action.  The sea offers us inspiration to act (it is la mere in French, our…

The Wild President: New Film Celebrates Jimmy Carter’s River Legacy

President Jimmy Carter’s connection to rivers and his leadership in river protection is celebrated in the new film “The Wild President.” The film tells the story of Carter’s first descent down the Chattooga River’s Bull Sluice Rapid. Carter was instrumental in protecting the Chattooga as a Wild and Scenic River, and helped conserve rivers across Georgia and…

The Value of Bhutan’s Rivers

For Bhutanese, the relationship we have with our rivers is complex. Generally, we are taught to both fear and respect the river. Superstition and parental wisdom guide us away from rivers. We appreciate and revere them from afar. We would not dare pollute or defile them. But now we are appreciating that rural livelihoods and sustainable tourism can be built on keeping Bhutan’s rivers wild and free.

Global Wetlands Youth Photo Contest 2017: Winner and Highly Commended Finalists

“Wetlands that help us cope with extreme weather events” was the theme of the Wetlands Youth Photo contest, organized by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands from 2 February to 2 March 2017. Due to climate change, extreme weather events such as storms, floods and droughts are on the increase. When well-managed, healthy wetlands absorb and…

National Geographic Photo Ark Spotlight: Wallace’s Flying Frog

The very cute Wallace’s flying frog (Rhacophorus nigropalmatus) flits from one tree to another in the rain forest of Southeast Asia, seemingly able to fly. But in reality, the colorful amphibian is more of a glider than a flyer, ably assisted in its ability to travel a decent distance through the air by large webbed feet that act as sails before the wind.

Latest Okavango Wilderness Project Expedition About to Kick Off

When they put the sticker on the Land Cruiser, you know things are about to get good.

Searching for Water in the World’s Biggest Refugee Crisis

The story behind a short documentary on the lives of South Sudanese refugees in Uganda. Can Africa’s greatest river provide relief to the world’s biggest refugee crisis? I went to northern Uganda to find out, and encountered a story of desperation and perseverance that opened my eyes and broke my heart. I’ll never look at a glass of water…

Birding Among the Skyscrapers at Mai Po Nature Reserve

With over 7 million people living in the space of 1000 square miles, one would think there’s not a whole lot of space left in Hong Kong for wildlife. And yet, the afternoon I arrived at the Mai Po Nature Reserve, about an hour northwest of the concrete morass of Hong Kong island, all I…

Farmers, Brewers, and Conservationists Partner to Keep a River Flowing

  By Sandra Postel and Todd Reeve The fact that a pint of beer requires a whopping 37 gallons (140 liters) of water to produce can turn a favorite beverage into a guilty pleasure. But what if, instead, each hoppy sip helped add flow to a depleted river? If all goes according to plan that…

The Time I Helped a Sloth to Cross the Road

This story is part of Paul Steyn’s #aroundtheworldin30days journey.  During his stay in Manzanillo, Paul was hosted by Korrigan Lodge. Follow him as he travels the globe with Ramsar and Star Alliance, in quest to appreciate water and wetlands on our changing planet. More about the trip here.    It was my first day on…