Rainforest in Gunung Leuser National Park, Sumatra, Indonesia. (Photo by R. Butler)
INTERNATIONAL RAINFOREST CONSERVATION ORGANIZATIONS
By Rhett Butler
| Last updated July 11, 2012
Today international conservation organizations serve as environmental consultants for governments and large corporations interested
in reducing pollution, setting aside protected areas, and conserving biodiversity. Organizations like the International
Conservation Union (IUCN), The Forest Trust, the Rainforest Alliance, Conservation International (CI), the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), the Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) act as mediators between various development interests,
policy makers, local peoples, scientists, and activist groups in promoting conservation. These organizations initiate
and support a broad range of conservation-related activities, from arranging international conferences to establishing
community-based conservation projects to maintaining parks and reserves. Keeping attuned to economic realities,
they work to integrate the latest scientific findings into preservation efforts.
Articles on conservation organizations >>
Activist groups, like the Rainforest Action Network (RAN),
Amazon Watch, and Greenpeace are publicists and sponsors of rainforest preservation. They are watchdogs of projects that impact the rainforest, and they spread the the word to other organizations, peoples, and governments. They initiate campaigns against large corporations and governments responsible for deforestation and encourage consumers
to boycott their products. Pressure against these companies from environmental organizations, coupled with boycotts,
will often sway the firm to adopt more ecologically sound methods or abandon plans to clear forest lands for production.
While critics argue that successful boycotts in the North only lead to trade diversion to markets that remain open,
their campaigns draw public attention to deforestation and increase industry's sensitivity to rainforest issues.
Articles on activist groups and campaigns >>
Outside of governments and the general public, substantial amounts of funding for rainforest conservation funding come from private foundations usually started by wealthy individuals. For example, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation is perhaps the largest private funder of conservation in the Amazon rainforest.
Articles on rainforest funders >>
- Does pressure from activist groups work?
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(09/05/2014) Mapping the world's tropical forests with a fleet of airplanes outfitted with advanced LiDAR could rapidly and accurately assess global forest carbon stocks for a fraction of the cost of a typical Earth observation satellite mission — and far less than field-based sampling — argues a new paper published in Carbon Balance and Management.
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(09/03/2014) The Field Museum has honored Rhett A. Butler, the founder of mongabay.com, with this year's prestigious Parker/Gentry Award. The award is giving annually to an 'individual, team or organization whose efforts have had a significant impact on preserving the world's rich natural heritage and whose actions can serve as a model to others,' according to the museum.
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(08/28/2014) Want to save the world's most imperiled biodiversity hotspot? You just need a down payment of $198 million. While that may sound like a lot, it's actually less than it cost to make the film, Titanic. A new study published today in Science finds that paying private landowners to protect the Atlantic Forest would cost Brazil just 6.5 percent of what it currently spends ever year on agricultural subsidies.
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