Plans are now well advanced to plant a lot of trees in the border counties of Ireland to commence during National Tree Week March 1-8. Forest Friends are donating 500 oak trees and the Tree Council of Ireland 300 trees.

We welcome any other offers of trees. We are in contact with local authorities local communities and others to make this a special year for the Peace forest. 

Help in the form of land for planting, trees, transportation, ideas are all welcome.   

For more information email info@forestfriends.ie or jjhaughton@gmail.com

The replacement of broad leaf species like oak with conifers has increased warming

Posted by admin on 02/06/16, 08:03:14

The assumption that planting new forests helps limit climate change has been challenged by a new study.

Researchers found that in Europe, trees grown since 1750 have actually increased global warming.

The scientists believe that replacing broadleaved species with conifers is a key reason for the negative climate impact.

Conifers like pines and spruce are generally darker and absorb more heat than species such as oak and birch.

The authors believe the work has implications for current efforts to limit rising temperatures through mass tree planting.

Read more over at The BBC

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40 Year low for UK Butterflies

Posted by admin on 12/17/15, 15:55:13

FFI Butterfly

It’s not been a good four decades for the UK’s butterflies.

Those are the findings from the latest State of the UK’s Butterflies report to be published. The report, compiled by Butterfly Conservation and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, comes out every five years, but the latest edition also covers the period from 1976 to 2015.

And it reveals that over three-quarters of the UK’s resident and migrant butterfly species have declined in number and occurrence over the last 40 years, with some once common and widespread species now in severe trouble, joining some rarer species.

The reasons for the decline are not well understood but could include habitat loss, climate change and pesticide use. Scotland fared better than England, showing no long-term trends.

However, the report also shows signs of hope as a number of our most endangered butterflies are recovering thanks to conservation efforts, and that both common and rare migrant species have been arriving in larger numbers.

You can read the full story over on the BBC web site -> http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20151214-forty-year-low-for-uk-butterflies

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Pesticides Turn Bumblebees Into Poor Pollinators

Posted by admin on 11/23/15, 06:05:10

Pesticides Turn Bumblebees Into Poor Pollinators

Bees collecting pollen

Neonicotinoid pesticides have been blamed for declines in bee populations worldwide. The chemicals don’t kill bees, instead neonicotinoids impair the insects’ abilities to learn, navigate, forage for nectar, and reproduce, according to studies published over the past several years.

Now, researchers report that bees exposed to the pesticides also become less effective pollinators for crops (Nature 2015, DOI: 10.1038/nature16167).

You can read the full article over at "Chemical and Engineering News"



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World forest status map

Posted by admin on 11/14/15, 06:18:05

The map below is from the ArcGIS site and shows the dramatic decrease of forested areas world wide - as tracked by the World Research Institute "Global Forest Watch" project. The estimate almost 50% of the world's forested area has disappeared. You can view this map and more at 




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Majority of EU nations seek opt-out from growing GM crops

Posted by admin on 10/06/15, 05:38:04


BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Nineteen EU member states have requested opt-outs for all or part of their territory from cultivation of a Monsanto genetically-modified crop, which is authorized to be grown in the European Union, the European Commission said on Sunday.

Under a law signed in March, individual countries can seek exclusion from any approval request for genetically modified cultivation across the 28-nation EU.

The law was introduced to end years of stalemate as genetically modified crops divide opinion in Europe.

Although widely grown in the Americas and Asia, public opposition is strong in Europe and environmentalists have raised concerns about the impact on biodiversity.

Commission spokesman Enrico Brivio on Sunday confirmed in an emailed statement the Commission had received 19 opt-out requests following the expiry of a deadline on Saturday.

The requests are for opt-outs from the approval of Monsanto's GM maize MON 810, the only crop commercially cultivated in the European Union, or for pending applications, of which there are eight so far, the Commission said.

The requests have been or are being communicated to the companies, which have a month to react.

Under the new law, the European Commission is responsible for approvals, but requests to be excluded also have to be submitted to the company making the application.

In response to the first exclusion requests in August from Latvia and Greece, Monsanto said it was abiding by them, even though it regarded them as unscientific.

The new EU law has critics from both sides.

The industry has said it breaks rules on free movement, while environment campaigners say it is a weak compromise open to court challenges from biotech companies.

The Commission spokesman said the number of requests proved that the new law provides "a necessary legal framework to a complex issue".

The 19 requests are from Austria, Belgium for the Wallonia region, Britain for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany (except for research), Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland and Slovenia.

(Reporting by Barbara Lewis; editing by Susan Thomas)

via https://ca.news.yahoo.com/majority-eu-nations-seek-opt-growing-gm-crops-150657955--sector.html


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