Retrieved from: nytimes.com
“Environment ministers from the eight countries whose territory includes part of the Amazon River basin — Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname and Venezuela — signed an agreement in Lima on March 21 to protect Amazon forest, its biodiversity and the land rights of indigenous peoples living there.
“The Amazon covers 6 percent of the world’s surface, but it is home to more than half of its tropical forests and 20 percent of fresh water reserves. With an area of 7.4 million square kilometers (2.8 million square miles), it comprises 40 percent of South America’s land area.
“Indiscriminate logging and the expansion of the ranching, agriculture, mining and hydrocarbon operations are some of its largest threats.”
Read More: eurasiareview.com
Niger Delta. Photo retrieved from: www.unitedijawstates.com
“The floods in what geographers call the inner Niger delta nurture abundant fish for the Bozo people, who lay their nets in every waterway and across the lakes. As the waters recede, they leave wet soils in which the Bambara people plant millet and rice, and they expose vast aquatic pastures of bourgou (or hippo grass) that sustain cattle and goats brought by nomadic Fulani herders from as far away as Mauritania and Burkina Faso. This inland delta is Africa’s second-largest floodplain and one of its most unique wetlands. Seen from space, it is an immense smudge of green and blue on the edge of the Sahara.
But this rare and magnificently productive ecosystem is now facing an unprecedented threat, as a Libyan-backed enterprise has begun construction of a project inside Mali that will divert large amounts of Niger River water for extensive irrigation upstream.
This is all part of a grand plan by Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi to make his desert nation self-sufficient in food through long-term deals with nearby countries to grow food for Libya. Mali’s president has agreed to the scheme, which numerous experts say will enhance Libyan food security at the expense of Malian food security by sucking dry the river that feeds the inland delta, diminishing the seasonal floods that support rich biodiversity — and thriving agriculture and fisheries vital to a million of Mali’s poorest citizens — on the edge of the Sahara desert.”
Read more: AlterNet