Friday, August 13, 2010

Newtown residents rally to defend homes

On August 14, over 400 people marched in protest against plans to demolish residences in the heritage-listed Pines Estate Heritage Conservation Area in Newtown.
 
Angry local residents and supporters marched from Redfern to Leamington Avenue, which was decked out in red balloons and reverberated with the sound of the MC Hammer song “Can’t Touch This”.

RailCorp is currently considering a proposal to compulsorily resume and demolish all the houses on Leamington Avenue, and more on Holdsworth and Pine Streets, as part of a plan to build a railway tunnel to relieve extra traffic expected on the western rail line.

As well as destroying heritage homes built in 1887, the plan would see the destruction of the iconic "Three Proud People" mural depicting the “black power salute” at the Mexico 1968 Olympics, painted on the side of 39 Pine Street.

Marrickville Deputy Mayor and Greens candidate for the seat of Marrickville in next year’s State election, Fiona Byrne addressed the crowd, saying the planned changes were unnecessary, and wouldn’t work anyway. Instead she argued that trains speeds and timetables should be improved. 

Trains are currently slower than they were in the 1940s, she added.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ekuador beläßt Erdöl im Boden

Yasuni Nationalpark
Am 3. August 2010 hat die ekuadorianische Regierung ein richtungsweisendes Dokument unterzeichnet, um Ölbohrungen in den ökologisch einzigartigen Gebieten Ishpingo-Tambococha-Tiputini des Yasuni Nationalparks (Yasuni-ITT) zu verhindern.

Das Abkommen, unterzeichnet von der Regierung des linken Präsidenten Rafael Correa und dem United Nations Development Program (UNDP), garantiert, dass die geschätzten 900 Millionen Barrel Erdöl, die unter der noch unberührten Amazonas-Region liegen, nicht angerührt werden, so wenig wie der Wald darüber.

Im Austausch erhält Ekuador 3.6 Mrd. $ als Kompensation für die Einnahmen, die es ansonsten durch das Öl gehabt hätte – etwa die Hälfte des geschätzten Wertes.

Der Yasuni Nationalpark ist einer der artenreichsten Plätze der Welt und besteht aus 982 000 ha Regenwald am Fuße der Anden. Er enthält mehr Baumarten auf einem Hektar als es in den ganzen USA und Kanada zusammen gibt.

Er beherbergt mindestens 28 höchst gefährdete Säugetiere, wie Jaguar, Weißstirnklammeraffe, Riesenotter und Rundschwanzseekühe sowie hunderte Arten, die es sonst nirgends auf der Erde gibt.

Yasuni ist auch die Urheimat der Huaorani und zwei weiterer indigener Völker, die in freiwilliger Isolation leben, die Tagaeri und die Taromenane.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Ecuador signs historic deal to "leave the oil in the soil"


On August 3, the Ecuadorian government signed a landmark deal to prevent drilling for oil in the ecologically unique Ishpingo-Tambococha-Tiputini areas of the Yasuni National Park (Yasuni-ITT).
 
The agreement, signed by the government of left-wing president Rafael Correa and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), guarantees that the estimated 900 million barrels of oil that lie beneath the pristine Amazonian region will remain untouched, as will the forest above.

In exchange, Ecuador will receive US $3.6 billion as compensation for the revenue it would otherwise have made from the oil – about half its estimated value.

The Yasuni National Park is an area of world-significant biological diversity, covering 982,000 hectares in the Amazonian rainforest and Andean foothills. It is considered one of the most biodiverse sites on Earth, containing more tree species in one hectare than in the entire United States and Canada combined.

It shelters at least 28 highly endangered vertebrates including jaguars, the white-bellied spider monkey, the giant otter and the Amazonian manatee, and hundreds of species found nowhere else on Earth.

Yasuni is also the ancestral territory of the Huaorani people, as well as two other indigenous tribes who live in voluntary isolation, the Tagaeri and the Taromenane.