Robber fly - Nature photographer Thomas Shahan specializes in amazing portraits of tiny insects. It isn't easy. Shahan says that this Robber Fly (Holcocephala fusca), for instance, is "skittish" and doesn't like its picture taken.

Nature by Numbers (Video)

"The Greater Akashic System" – July 15, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) (Subjects: Lightworkers, Intent, To meet God, Past lives, Universe/Galaxy, Earth, Pleiadians, Souls Reincarnate, Invention: Measure Quantum state in 3D, Recalibrates, Multi-Dimensional/Divine, Akashic System to change to new system, Before religion changed the system, DNA, Old system react to Karma, New system react to intent now for next life, Animals (around humans) reincarnate again, This Animal want to come back to the same human, Akashic Inheritance, Reincarnate as Family, Other Planets, Global Unity … etc.)

Question: Dear Kryon: I live in Spain. I am sorry if I will ask you a question you might have already answered, but the translations of your books are very slow and I might not have gathered all information you have already given. I am quite concerned about abandoned animals. It seems that many people buy animals for their children and as soon as they grow, they set them out somewhere. Recently I had the occasion to see a small kitten in the middle of the street. I did not immediately react, since I could have stopped and taken it, without getting out of the car. So, I went on and at the first occasion I could turn, I went back to see if I could take the kitten, but it was to late, somebody had already killed it. This happened some month ago, but I still feel very sorry for that kitten. I just would like to know, what kind of entity are these animals and how does this fit in our world. Are these entities which choose this kind of life, like we do choose our kind of Human life? I see so many abandoned animals and every time I see one, my heart aches... I would like to know more about them.

Answer: Dear one, indeed the answer has been given, but let us give it again so you all understand. Animals are here on earth for three (3) reasons.

(1) The balance of biological life. . . the circle of energy that is needed for you to exist in what you call "nature."

(2) To be harvested. Yes, it's true. Many exist for your sustenance, and this is appropriate. It is a harmony between Human and animal, and always has. Remember the buffalo that willingly came into the indigenous tribes to be sacrificed when called? These are stories that you should examine again. The inappropriateness of today's culture is how these precious creatures are treated. Did you know that if there was an honoring ceremony at their death, they would nourish you better? Did you know that there is ceremony that could benefit all of humanity in this way. Perhaps it's time you saw it.

(3) To be loved and to love. For many cultures, animals serve as surrogate children, loved and taken care of. It gives Humans a chance to show compassion when they need it, and to have unconditional love when they need it. This is extremely important to many, and provides balance and centering for many.

Do animals know all this? At a basic level, they do. Not in the way you "know," but in a cellular awareness they understand that they are here in service to planet earth. If you honor them in all three instances, then balance will be the result. Your feelings about their treatment is important. Temper your reactions with the spiritual logic of their appropriateness and their service to humanity. Honor them in all three cases.

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle
American zoologist played by Sigourney Weaver in the film Gorillas in the Mist would have been 82 on Thursday (16 January 2014)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Wilmar to Cut Off Palm Suppliers Caught Burning in Indonesia

Jakarta Globe, Michelle Yun, Ranjeetha Pakiam and Eko Listiyorini,  July 1, 2013

A car drives past fire from burning trees planted for palm oil, during haze at
 Bangko Pusako district in Rokan Hilir, Riau on June 24, 2013. (Reuters:

Singapore/Jakarta/Kuala Lumpur. Wilmar International, the world’s largest palm oil trader, plans to cut ties with Indonesian suppliers that clear land with illegal fires after blazes engulfed Singapore in a record haze.

Wilmar, which bans burning on its own plantations, relies on third parties for more than 90 percent of the crude palm oil for its refineries. Sime Darby, the biggest publicly traded palm oil producer, also prohibits burning at its own plantations and relies on other sources for supplies, buying as much as half the commodity for its plants from others.

Palm oil refiners are being pushed to enforce their no burning policies to suppliers after hundreds of illegal blazes raged last month in Indonesia, the world’s top producer of the commodity. Unilever, buyer of 3 percent of the world’s palm oil, said the haze is a reminder of the need to accelerate sustainability efforts.

“We need the money to speak,” said Scott Poynton, founder of The Forest Trust, which worked with Nestle SA and Golden Agri-Resources on sustainability policies.

If companies “made a no-deforestation commitment that says to these communities, ‘you can’t burn because we won’t buy your oil,’ that’s money directly speaking to the people,” he said.

Palm oil is the world’s most-used edible oil. It’s in Unilever’s margarine, ice cream and soap. The London- and Rotterdam-based company made a commitment to buy sustainable palm oil and wants all its supplies to be from certified, traceable sources by 2020.

Burning banned

“What the industry has realized is that they can’t be simple bystanders in an ecosystem that gives them life in the first place,” Unilever Chief Executive Officer Paul Polman said June 27 in Jakarta.

While Indonesia and Malaysia ban burning to clear or manage acreage, 17 timber concession and 10 palm oil plantations had land affected by fires in Indonesia, according to June 24 data from the non-government World Resources Institute, or WRI.

Indonesia is investigating a number of companies suspected to be involved in illegal fires and will announce those names once the probe is completed, Environment Minister Balthasar Kambuaya said last week.

Wilmar deals with some of the companies identified by WRI on the assurance they don’t burn, the company said in an e-mailed response to Bloomberg News.

Buying policy

“Should they be found to be involved in burning to clear land for cultivation, we will stop doing business with them,” Wilmar said. The company’s buying policy states suppliers must comply with all local and national laws and regulations.

Indonesia’s disaster management agency said June 28 that in general people start fires on peatlands to fertilize the soil ahead of planting crops.

Kuala Lumpur-based Sime Darby said in a June 28 statement it had found fires on land at one of its units, though the blazes were in an area where local communities plant crops such as corn and sugar and not in areas planted by the company.

The company buys from palm oil growers in Indonesia that participate in plans run by the company and that adhere to a strict zero-burn policy. Part of its efforts to promote no burning is to continuously educate third-party suppliers on the benefits of complying with RSPO principles, Sime Darby said in a separate e-mail.

Fire and haze are common during Indonesia’s July-to-September dry season because local villages and farmers have long favored cheaper, slash-and-burn land clearing, according to Wilmar. Using machinery to clear costs more than $250 a hectare, while fires cost almost nothing, it said.

Sustainability efforts

Wilmar, based in Singapore, as well as Sime Darby, Golden Agri and Cargill all prohibit burning at their own plantations. That’s in line with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil criteria which include a commitment to avoid clearing land with fires. The RSPO was formed in 2004 to promote sustainability in an industry that’s been dogged by concerns about deforestation, pollution and the environment.

“It is inconceivable that any listed plantation companies is willing to risk open burning to clear their land, not after years of battling the non-government organizations on issues pertaining to deforestation, orangutans and native land rights,” Malayan Banking said in a June 24 report.

No big plantation group would be involved today with deforestation, Wilmar said. Many of the problems are caused by small farmers, which makes it difficult to control, it said.

Malaysia had 183,774 small palm growers as of May, while Indonesia has more than 2 million. The Indonesia Palm Oil Farmers Association has a “zero burning” policy for its members, and other crop farmers may be responsible for the blazes, said Secretary General Asmar Arsjad.

Investor concern

For some investors, concerns about deforestation remains. Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, the world’s largest with assets of $737 billion, sold investments in 23 palm producers including Wilmar, Golden Agri and Kuala Lumpur Kepong, in the first quarter of 2012 citing concern about deforestation, according to its annual report released in March.

Golden Agri, the second-biggest palm plantations operator, is “absolutely” against burning and “would also encourage best management practices to all stakeholders,” the company said in an e-mail.

It buys less than 10 percent of its fresh fruit bunches from outside suppliers. Cargill gets 95 percent of its third-party crude palm oil in Indonesia from RSPO members.

“Those suppliers have signed on to the RSPO criteria which includes a commitment to not to use burning for land clearing,” Cargill said by e-mail.

“It is one of the reasons why we target RSPO member for our third-party out supply.”

The number of Wilmar’s suppliers that are RSPO certified is still small, though steadily increasing, it said.

While the haze has lessened in Singapore, it will return, according to The Forest Trust’s Poynton.

“Singapore will choke again because globalization demands it,” he said from Geneva.

“These fires are happening to clear the way to grow a commodity for the global supply chain.”

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