Here's the Deal
Unlikely Allies Rally Around the Mitigation Hierarchy
There's been a flurry of recent policy and guidance related to no net loss of habitat and mitigation instruments for public lands in the US, and more is expected to be on the way. In response, environmental groups, energy interests and regulators have formed a tenuous â€“ and unusual â€“ alliance that's pushing hard for following the mitigation hierarchy.
The Casper Star Tribune has the story.
PEER keeps an Eye Out for Bad Mitigation
An environmental watchdog group, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) was successful in suing a company for poor implementation of wetland mitigation requirements at a site nearly 20 miles outside Nashville. The group monitors several environmental issues in the US, with activity currently foucsed in Tennessee.
Read it at the Chattanoogan.
Endangered Animals move in Next Door to Canberra's New Suburbs
The government of the Australian Capital Territory has allocated $5M AUD ($3.7M USD) and a total of 120 hectares to offset the creation of new suburbs and to protect several endangered species. Two new nature preserves will also aim to preserve local indigenous culture.
ABC has the story.
Sharing is Caring in India
India's Environment Minister awarded Gram Mooligai (Village Herbs) Company Limited (GMCL), a firm based in the central part of the country, this year's biodiversity award for the company's benefit sharing activities, paying up to 2% of its sales to Madhya Pradesh's State Biodiversity Board. GMCL says its work employing local communities to sustainably harvest herbs incentivizes forest conservation.
Learn more here.
Funbio Reports on Results for Brazilian Biodiversity
Funbio, the Brazilian Biodiversity Fund (Funbio), published its annual report showcasing the progress it made in 2015. Since 1996, the fund has executed just shy of $580M USD in contracts supporting 310 Protected Areas spanning 68M hectares. Part of Funbio's purview is to manage environmental compensation funds through its Legal Obligations Unit, which has delivered $98M BRL ($28M USD) to date and $12M BRL ($3.5M USD) in 2015 alone.
Get the facts here.
Diversified Natural Resources Company adds Biodiversity Conservation to its Portfolio
This month a diversified natural resources company in India, Vedanta Limited, announced commitments to biodiversity conservation, utilizing the UN Environment Programme's Integrated Biodiversity Assessment Tool to screen for related risk and seeking to align with a minimum no net loss of biodiversity achieved while striving for a net gain.
Vedanta Resources has details.
Norway First Country to Commit to Zero Deforestation
Norway announced plans late last month that would make it the first-ever country to commit to zero deforestation in its procurement of products contributing to forest loss, such as timber, palm, and soy. The country's Standing Committee on Energy and Environment also called on Norway's soverign wealth fund, the Government Pension Fund Global, to pursue biodiversity conservation and develop a specific biodiversity policy.
Louisiana Banks on Advanced Mitigation for Small Oil Spills
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed a bill this month authorizing the creation of an oil spill mitigation banking program to be administered by the state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority. Private investors will generate coastal wetland credits that can be used by oil companies to mitigate for small oil spills.
The Advocate has coverage.
Natural Capital Financing Facility Draws Anti-Offsetting Ire in Europe
Some citizens of the European Union are taking aim at the new EU Natural Capital Financing Facility, expressing concern that its interest in generating a financial return trumps goals to protect the environment. The European Commission and the European Investment Bank run the initiative together under the conviction that financial and biodiversity gains can be achieved in conjunction.
Read the whole story here.
New Plan for Gulf Coast Mitigation: Efficient Shortcut or Cutting Corners?
A Louisiana Congressman is pushing to make development speedier and mitigation cheaper in the Gulf Coast with a plan that bypasses Clean Water Act rules and removes some of the Army Corps of Engineers' authority over wetland restoration. The bill is currently making its way through the legislature.
NOLA has the story.
Oil & Gas Cry Confusion over New Mitigation Requirements
Some developers operating in Alaska are voicing their frustration over mitigation requirements, claiming uncertainty in the procedures and excessive high costs. More specifically, they claim the Presidential memorandum, issued in November, lacks clarity and may force developers to comply with multiple agencies' mitigation requirements at once.
Petroleum News has coverage.
EDF searches for Premium Monarch Butterfly Real Estate
For the first time, the Environmental Defense Fund tested its monarch butterfly habitat quantification tool, which appraises habitat quantity and quality. EDF is using the tool to manage the conservation activities that it's carrying out with ranchers and farmers for the emerging Monarch Butterfly Habitat Exchange.
Learn more here.
Saving the Largest Forest on Earth
This month, WWF published its Living Amazon report where it reminds the world of the stresses that unsustainable economic activities put on the ecosystem. WWF continues its call for an integrated Amazon-wide approach to managing the great forest that bridges sustainable development and conservation.
Read the findings here.