Press on Environment and Wildlife
Singapore sends 1.8 tonnes of ivory back to Africa (July Week #5 (2013))
Singapore seized a shipment of ivory, estimated to be worth 2.5 million Singapore dollars ($1.97 million), in January when it was in transit in Singapore, Xinhua reported.

The tusks were en route to another country from Kenya. They were packed in 65 gunny sacks and falsely declared as waste paper.  

The shipment was the second largest ivory seizure in Singapore since 2002.

Singapore is a signatory to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and all African and Asian elephants are endangered species under the convention.

International trade in ivory has been banned under the convention since 1989.

In Singapore, the maximum penalty for illegal trade of ivory is a fine of 50,000 Singapore dollars (around $39,400) or imprisonment of up to two years.


Zoo Tycoon' links in with real-world conservation (July Week #5 (2013))
Zoo Tycoon" allows players to run their own wildlife reserve, on their own or with friends, and find out more about what animals (and zoo guests) like the best. 

Announced at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in June, and therefore part of Microsoft's grandstand Xbox One push, "Zoo Tycoon" is the next game from Frontier Developments, which created animal cuddling game "Kinectimals"
and the theme park themed "Kinect: Disneyland Adventures."

Up to four players can get stuck in to keeping a shared zoo ticking over, and there'll be special challenges that tie in to real-world conservation, breeding, and rehabilitation efforts.

Lions, butterflies, monkeys, rhinos, lemurs and mother and baby elephants are among the first animals confirmed for inclusion through the game's trailer and images. 

Because it's an Xbox One game, it will be able to make use of the new Kinect sensor's voice and motion recognition.


One-man army in crusade to save Kolkata's kidneys (July Week #5 (2013))
Subal Chandra, who used to own a fishery at Chowbhaga, was the first to start a legal battle against wetland encroachment in late 1990s. Since then, the family has been relentless in their battle against land sharks, with support
from fellow villagers.

The villagers, of course, understood the imminent threat on their livelihood - sewage-fed fish and agro-farms.

The litigations exposed the unholy nexus of politicians and criminals, backed by land sharks.

"My entire family was picked up by the police on the charge of armed robbery in the Kakdwip police station area. But we were let off after the then SDPO of Kadwip, Kallol Ghanai, submitted a report saying that no such dacoity had taken place," says Biswanath.


Ludhiana laps up green app (Issue of the week, July Week #2 (2013))
The ever shrinking green cover in the city has made a smart phone application, 'Suggest a tree spot', very popular among Ludhianvis, who have suggested maximum number of spots where trees could be planted.  

Launched throughout India on environment day, the app has so far recorded 78 suggestions out of which 36 have been made by residents in Ludhiana.

The app allows residents to take pictures of the place where trees could be planted by MC. After receiving the pictures, the app will tag the locations on Google Maps and upload the information along with details of the user.
Suggestions made by city will be compiled and forwarded to local municipal authority, which can use the information during tree plantation drives. Users can also give information on the number of trees that need to be planted.


Local biodiversity to be part of primary syllabus curriculum from primary level (July Week #2 (2013))
The programme seeks to sensitise the students from the early level about the biodiversity assets in their areas so that they will in I future become champions of the initiatives to conserve them, said Prof. Oommen V Oommen, Chairman of the KSBB said.

He said the KSBB has approved panchayat biodiversity registers (PBRs) prepared by nearly 670 panchayats across the state. The proposal is to expose the students to the biodiversity assets available in their areas and these PBRs will form a sort of reference
books for the exercises, Prof Oommen said.

The KSBB and NBA are keen to ensure that biodiversity education is not turned into dull exam-oriented course. Biodiversity will be taught through an across the curriculum'' strategy where its multiple dimensions will be weaved in different subjects including
mathematics and English, apart from science, Prof Oommen said.


US charges 150 accused in online wildlife sales (July Week #2 (2013))
More than 150 people face federal and state charges after authorities disrupted online wildlife trafficking operations involving tiger, leopard and jaguar pelts, elephant ivory and live birds.

Items seized under "Operation Wild Web" include the pelts of endangered big cats such as the Sumatran tiger, leopard and jaguar; live migratory birds such as the California scrub jay; whale teeth; elephant and walrus ivory; and a zebra pelt.  

Working with counterparts in several states, federal officials targeted illegal wildlife sellers who operate through Craigslist, eBay and other Internet marketplaces and classified ads. Wildlife officers in Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia ran similar
operations at the same time.


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