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The Ministry of Trade issued a regulation revoking its decision from February to no longer require Indonesian timber companies to obtain export licenses that certify the wood comes from legal sources. BAY ISMOYO / AFP / Getty Images

By Hans Nicholas Jong

The Indonesian government has backed down from a decision to scrap its timber legality verification process for wood export, amid criticism from activists and the prospect of being shut out of the lucrative European market.

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The Ebo Forest in Cameroon, Africa, is a biodiversity hotspot, home to an amazing range of wildlife, including forest elephants, gorillas, drills, chimpanzees, grey parrots and the goliath frog. San Diego Zoo Global

By Lamfu Fabrice Yengong and Sylvie Djacbou Deugoue

Biodiversity loss is a global crisis. In May last year, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) warned that over 1,000,000 species are threatened with extinction worldwide. On May 22, the International Day of Biodiversity, it is important to recall the silent victims of our country's obsession for industrial growth at the expense of our forests.

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Cut timber being loaded for transportation to a manufacturing plant in Gympie, Queensland, Australia on July 17, 2013. Auscape / Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Australia's unprecedented wildfires that raged for months and destroyed millions of acres were likely made worse by industrial logging of native forests, according to a new commentary from five scientists published in Nature Ecology & Evolution.

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A bald eagle in the forest along the shoreline of Takatz Bay on Baranof Island, Tongass National Forest, Alaska on July 13, 2019. Wolfgang Kaehler / LightRocket via Getty Images

A federal judge in Alaska ruled late Wednesday against a Trump administration plan to open 1.8 million acres of America's largest national forest to logging.

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This combination of pictures shows portraits of (L to R up) Suwerika Waiapi, Eriana Aromaii and Sykyry Waiapi; (L to R down) Kurija Waiapi, Ruwana Waiapi and Siurima Waiapi at the Waiapi indigenous reserve in Amapa state, Brazil on Oct.14, 2017. The tiny Waiapi tribe is resisting moves by the Brazilian government to open the region of pristine rainforest known as Renca, National Copper Reserve to international mining companies. APU GOMES / AFP / Getty Images

Brazil's divisive President Jair Bolsonaro has taken another step in his bold plans to develop the Amazon rainforest.

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Pope Francis celebrates an opening Mass for the Amazon synod, in St. Peter's Basilica, at the Vatican, Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019. Massimo Valicchia / NurPhoto / Getty Images

by Justin Catanoso

Pope Francis, in an effort to reignite his influence as a global environmental leader, released an impassioned document Feb. 12 entitled Dear Amazon — a response to the historic Vatican meeting last autumn regarding the fate of the Amazon biome and its indigenous people.

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Illegal logging on Pirititi indigenous Amazon lands on May 8, 2018. quapan / CC BY 2.0

The UK government is looking to take charge of a major crackdown on the illegal and largely unregulated plundering of forests in developing nations. The UK plans to form a coalition of developing countries to combat the practice as part of its duties as host of the UN's COP26 climate summit in November, as The Guardian reported.

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Uncontacted indigenous group in the Brazilian Amazon. © G. Miranda / FUNAI / Survival / Mongabay

By Jan Rocha

President Jair Bolsonaro pressed forward with a "dream" initiative sending a bill to the Brazilian Congress on Wednesday that would open indigenous reserves in the Amazon and elsewhere to development, including commercial mining, oil and gas exploration, cattle ranching and agribusiness, new hydroelectric dam projects, and tourism — projects that have been legally blocked under the country's 1988 Constitution.

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Birds fly over Lake Erie. Residents of Toledo, a city on the shores of heavily polluted Lake Erie in the U.S. state of Ohio, voted to give the lake rights of nature last year. A local farm responded by filing a lawsuit claiming this violated the rights of agribusinesses. Jessica Hetrick / EyeEm / Getty Images

"We see ourselves not as an owner of wild rice but a symbiotic partner and a parallel entity from the Creator," says Frank Bibeau, a lawyer from the Anishinaabe indigenous group in the U.S. and Canada.

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The funeral of Mexican butterfly defender Homero Gómez González, one of two men connected with a monarch sanctuary found dead last week. ENRIQUE CASTRO / AFP via Getty Images

Two men connected to a famous monarch butterfly reserve in Mexico have been found dead within a week of each other, raising concerns for the safety of environmental activists in the country.

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Australian native Koala close up on Raymond Island in the Gippsland Lakes, Victoria. tracielouise / E+ / Getty Images

Australia's iconic koalas cannot catch a break.

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