A cryogenic seed bank for preservation of endangered plant species

By training, Harold Koopowitz is a neurobiologist, someone who studies the brains and nervous systems of animals. As a child, he collected wildflowers in his native South Africa, and he continued his hobby when he moved to the United States to pursue his profession. When he learned about the high rates of endangerment and extinction faces by plants, he decided to devote some of his scientific ingenuity to their protection. Today, Koopowitz directs the arboretum at the University of California at Irvine. One component of the arboretum’s activities is a cryogenic seed bank.

A special “dike with doors” prevents flooding and simultaneously preserves the ecology of the Eastern Scheldt Delta.

One-third of the modern Netherlands lies below sea level. Much of this low-lying land abuts the North Sea, a body of water that supports Holland’s great shipping and fishing industries but also represents, in times of storms of high seas, a threat to the lives and livelihoods of the Dutch people.

It was a combination of political will and technological ingenuity that eventually created a way for the Dutch people to meet the needs both of safety and of the environment.

The Bonaire National Marine Park

The Bonaire Marine Park is considered by many to be one of the world's most successful marine protected areas (MPAs). Bryant et al (1998) estimate that there are at least 400 MPAs including coral reefs in more than 65 countries and territories. However, many MPAs exist only as "paper parks" where legislation is not enforced, resources are lacking and management plans are not properly carried out.

The Galapagos Conservation Fund (GCF)

"Our intention in developing the Galapagos Conservation Fund was to show that through partnerships and cooperation, tourism could be a significant force for conservation. We fundamentally believe that dialogue and cooperation between the tourism industry, local resource managers, and supporting non-profit organizations can result in programs and projects that benefit the destinations, the businesses, and the experience of the visitors."

Insurance scheme for resolving conflict between livestock farmers and endangered Snow Leopards.

Snow Leopards prey on the livestock of local farmers who retaliate by killing the predators. From an economic perspective, the local farmers perceive the Snow Leopards’ actions as a risk to their livelihoods and they act to eliminate that risk. In this situation the local farmers perceive the Snow Leopard as having no economic value, or worse, as having a negative value since it threatens their livelihoods.

Eco-tourism in Poland Helps Organic Farming

More than a million small Polish farms (less than 7 hectares) are threatened by the coming entry of Poland to the European Union, which favors large conventional farms and methods which are harmful to health and the environment, the traditional landscape and biodiversity, and which would uproot small farmers and create further unemployment, migration to unhealthy, overcrowded cities, and destruction of the rural culture and way of life.

The Somogy Provincial Association for Nature Conservation

“Somogy” Provincial Association for Nature Conservation (Somogy PANC) was founded in 1980. In the beginning it was pursuing classic nature conservation activities. It was successfully brought into being through the acquisition and nature-friendly management of the lands that were of key conservation importance in the Somogy region of Hungary and the establishment of sustainable livelihood projects.

The primary aims of Somogy PANC were conservation of nature in a strict sense, and more specifically the protection of some species such as the European otter and the white-tailed eagle.

WOLF Forest Protection Movement Helps Save Slovak Forests

The WOLF Forest Protection Movement is an environmental non-profit non-government organization (NGO) working to preserve natural forests and their wildlife in Slovakia and the whole of Central and Eastern Europe. It was established in 1993 as a Slovak movement of friends of forests. The organization was founded by members of the SZOPK (Slovak Union of Nature and Landscape Preservers) group. WOLF, lead by Juraj Lukac, has worked in the forests of the Saris region in eastern Slovakia since 1980. The experience of this group became a basis for the practical activities of the WOLF Forest Protection Movement.  

Photovoltaics for Household and Community Use

The Government of Zimbabwe views electricity as a critical factor in increasing literacy, slow rural-urban migration, and improving the overall quality of life for the country’s rural population of nearly 8 million people who are without access to grid-supplied electricity. Should Zimbabwe resort to its vast reserves of coal for electrical power generation (estimated at 30 billion tons, of which 2 billion tons are exploitable), serious global environmental problems would result. However, small-scale solar electric generation technology is now reliable, inexpensive, and available form a variety of manufacturers worldwide. This technology holds great promise as an alternative to power generation systems that burn fossil fuels and produce greenhouse gases linked to climate change.

Rural Energy Development Programme (REDP)

The Rural Energy Development Programme (REDP) made community mobilization its precondition for Sustainable Rural Energy Systems Development. The question of sustainability has been a major issue of the rural development efforts in the past decade. Based on experience, the development process without active participation of local people and use of local resources is unattainable.

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