Thursday, June 19, 2008

France Pledges $20 mil. To Protect Madagascar Biodiversity

In what's being referred to a "debt-for-nature swap", France contributed $20 million to protect Madagascar's unique biodiversity. This according to a report at ScienceDaily.

Madagascar is in the midst of raising $50 million to triple its protected lands. But that's difficult in a country where 70 percent of the population lives below the poverty line.

The isolated island-nation is home to a very unique ecosystem. Ninety-eight percent of the countries mammals, 92 percent of the reptiles and 80 percent of the plants can not be found anyplace else on Earth.

The French money comes at a critical time. A recent report,
also at ScienceDaily, shows global warming is forcing reptiles to migrate to higher elevations. If the trend continues, some of these species will begin dying off around mid-century.

Image of baobab trees, which only grown in Madagascar, by Bernard Gagnon)

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.