October Environmental Updates

Dear Readers, The leaves are turning, the weather is getting...less humid, and:

- The Story of Stuff released its ninth film - the Story of Solutions. The film represents a full circle from the organization's first release in 2007, which identified the problems of our waste-happy lifestyle.

- Federal authorities from the Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, in coordination with US Fish and Wildlife and Department of Justice, executed search warrants on Thursday for the offices of Lumber Liquidators in connection with an investigation into possible violations of the Lacey Act. The Lacey Act is a century old law amended in 2008 to ban the trade of illegal timber and wood products, which Overbrook-grantee the Environmental Investigations Agency (EIA) works to uphold.

- In 2001, Nature & Culture International (NCI) conducted its first ecosystem assessment, focusing on the endangered and highly biodiverse ecosystem, the Tumbesian dry forest of southwest Ecuador. The results of that assessment were the identification of 10 priority areas, 8of which were unprotected. Since then, NCI has, one by one, worked to acquire or protect these areas, and now in 2013 7 out of the 10 are protected. This conservation good news recently was taken a step further: the government of Ecuador decided in early 2013 to make the entire Tumbesian ecosystem a Biosphere reserve of about 1.2 million acres. NCI has been working intensively to help the government make this proposal to UNESCO, which was completed this month.

We are very proud of our grantees' accomplishments, and look forward to posting more!