Indigenous Youth Unite For Rivers

“Rivers like the Klamath and the Xingu are the bloodlines of every human on the planet.”

Eye On The Amazon -  Brasilia, Brazil – After an amazing journey deep into the Amazon we arrived safely in Brasilia with a hopeful feeling of urgency in the struggle to preserve the Amazon and its people. For our group – comprised mostly of indigenous North American youth – meeting our indigenous brothers and sisters, experiencing the Amazon’s unique environment, and witnessing the destruction being caused by the Belo Monte Dam project is powerfully motivating,

We are people who call the Klamath River home. The Yurok, Hoopa, Karuk, and Klamath tribes are the protectors of the Klamath River landscape. The campaign to remove the dams on the Klamath has been a long fight, won through science, protest and defending the inherent rights of indigenous communities. All of us have prioritized protecting the Klamath River in our lives and many of us have been in the struggle since we were little kids. Seeing the Amazon Basin facing these threats has focused us on the fight to save the world’s ecosystems and indigenous cultures. Through this experience, we have all become even more committed to the cause and will be warriors for life!

16-year-old Yurok tribal member Mahlija Florendo stated today, “Rivers like the Klamath, the Xingu, and the Amazon are the bloodlines of every human on the planet. They are our life-givers and they all run with the same blood through all of us. We need to realize that we are all human and we all need to stand up for our rights, for our rivers, and our mother earth. These people from the Xingu are family and all our blood runs red.”

The similarities between the genocide and oppression of indigenous cultures happening now in the Amazon and continuing in the U.S. are frightening. Power, mining and logging companies are wreaking havoc on the Amazon, and their resource extraction operations are disrupting the ecological balance of one of the richest biological hotspots on the planet. They are displacing the lives of people, who have been stewards of their lands since time immemorial , protecting and enhancing their environment.

Our interactions in the Xikrin-Kayapó village of Poti-Krô were profound. These people are facing a monster, the Belo Monte Dam. If the construction of Belo Monte continues we fear for the lives of the Xikrin, Kayapó, Juruna and Arara Tribes. The entire region is being affected, and the environment and inhabitants are being destroyed by this shortsighted venture.

Already we see deforestation, pollution, and mining corporations like the Canadian company Belo Sun moving in. As temporary workers from other regions inundate the area for the short-lived jobs offered by the dam’s construction company Norte Energia, the region’s inhabitants are being pushed out. If the dam is completed these people will be forced to work in mines, log the rainforest, or move to the cities to live in slums. The livelihoods of people who have subsisted from fishing, hunting, farming, and even tourism will be lost through the destruction of the ecology of the Xingu River region. “It’s depressing that the future of these kids depends on this company, which seems to have no idea what it’s like to live and depend on the Xingu River” said Damien Scott, 16-year-old Yurok, Karuk tribe member.” Full Article

Xingu Rising, by Todd Southgate, is a new short film about the struggle to defend the Xingu River and its people from the Belo Monte Dam and the Brazilian government’s development plans for the Amazon. It features images from the Xingu and Rio+20, and statements by Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff showing the immense dichotomy between the government and its people.

Learn more here.

Nicaragua Canal Could Wreak Environmental Ruin

The most likely route of the HKND’s canal is 286 kilometers long and would cut an approximately 90-kilometer swathe across Lake Nicaragua, requiring a major transformation of the lake bed and local rivers. To rival the expanded Panama Canal (slated for completion in 2015) by accommodating ships of up to 400,000 tons, the proposed Nicaraguan waterway will be 27.6 meters deep, and the HKND has claimed that it may be an implausible 520 meters wide.

Scientific American- “Last June, the Nicaraguan government granted a concession to a Hong Kong company to build a canal connecting the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean, through the Caribbean Sea. The HK Nicaragua Canal Development Investment Company (operating as HKND Group) signed a 50-year lease, renewable for another 50 years. It plans to break ground in December after spending this year establishing a route and conducting feasibility studies. Included in the concession are the rights to build and operate industrial centers, airports, a rail system and oil pipelines, as well as land expropriation and the rights to natural resources found along the canal route.

The Nicaraguan government says that the $40-billion project will boost economic growth in the country — the second-poorest nation in the Americas — from 4.5% in 2013 to 14.6% in 2016. No economic or environmental feasibility studies have yet been revealed to the public. Nicaragua has not solicited its own environmental impact assessment and will rely instead on a study commissioned by the HKND. The company has no obligation to reveal the results to the Nicaraguan public.

In our view, this canal could create an environmental disaster in Nicaragua and beyond. The excavation of hundreds of kilometers from coast to coast, traversing Lake Nicaragua, the largest drinking-water reservoir in the region, will destroy around 400,000 hectares of rainforests and wetlands.

The accompanying development could imperil surrounding ecosystems. Some 240 kilometers north of the most likely route of the canal lies the Bosawas Biosphere Reserve — 2 million hectares of tropical forest that is the last refuge of many disappearing species (see ‘Nicaragua carve-up‘). Less than 115 kilometers to the south is the Indio Maiz Biological Reserve, with more than 318,000 hectares of tropical dry forest. Worse still, the probable canal route cuts through the northern sector of the Cerro Silva Natural Reserve.

The project threatens multiple autonomous indigenous communities such as the Rama, Garifuna, Mayangna, Miskitu and Ulwa, and some of the most fragile, pristine and scientifically important marine, terrestrial and lacustrine ecosystems in Central America.

Nicaragua’s Indio Maiz and Bosawas biosphere reserves — key links in this corridor — sandwich possible canal routes. Hundreds of thousands of hectares of the forests and wetlands would be cleared for the canal, destroying the habitats and food sources of already endangered species such as the Baird’s tapir (Tapirus bairdii), the spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi), the harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja) and the jaguar (Panthera onca), a creature of mystical importance to Mesoamerican cultures.

International action
The contract for an interoceanic canal in Nicaragua represents a classic example of the challenges faced by a developing country in balancing economic growth and environmental protection. More sustainable ways to raise revenue and employment from Lake Nicaragua could include expanded irrigation, tourism and aquaculture. The population of Nicaragua is expected to grow by 37% by 2050, so water shortages and pressure on natural resources are already set to increase, limiting sustainable growth and public welfare. In preparation for a future of climate change, food insecurity and biodiversity loss, Nicaragua must establish long-term measures for the protection of its environment, not sacrifice itself to speculators.

A loose coalition of more than 30 concerned groups filed legal complaints with the government of Nicaragua in the second half of last year. These included three communities — the Miskitu and Ulwa indigenous peoples and the Rama–Kriol territorial government in the South Atlantic Autonomous Region — arguing that the canal concession violates their land rights and legal autonomy (see go.nature.com/ttshoc). These legal petitions were overridden by the National Assembly in December.

Swift and decisive international action is called for. The Nicaraguan Academy of Sciences (of which one of us, J.A.H.-P., is president) is coordinating efforts with the InterAmerican Network of Academies of Sciences to carry out an independent impact assessment. We need more conservation groups and social organizations to lend their expertise and funds if we are to prevent the tragic devastation of indigenous communities along with terrestrial, marine and freshwater biodiversity and resources in Central America.”

Full Article & Breakdown of Specific Environmental Concerns Here - Scientific American

The Breathing Lands

The Elders of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug First Nation say the water flows through their blood and their bodies are built of the trout that swim in these clean rivers and lakes. Taking care of their watershed is a relationship at the core of who they are as an Indigenous Nation, it is a responsibility handed down to them from the Creator through the teachings of their Elders.

Also known as Big Trout Lake First Nation or KI for short, is a First Nations community in Northwestern Ontario.

Source -“The Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) people have governed and cared for their Indigenous Homeland — Kitchenuhmaykoosib Aaki — since time before memory, passing on their way of life from one generation to the next. Human remains found in Wapekeka have been carbon dated from over 7,000 years ago. Similar remains found within the KI village were dated to be over 5,000 years old — evidence that Indigenous peoples have occupied these exact village sites for over 350 generations.

But things are changing rapidly in KI and the elders are struggling to prepare the youth to meet these challenges. KI is located at a relatively high latitude, which means they are likely to experience the impacts of global climate change early and more severely than most other places. The close connection of the KI people to the land and climate means that the disrupted weather patterns and increasing incidents of extreme weather will hit particularly hard on the people of KI.

KI’s territory is also rich in minerals and precious metals, which has attracted various mining and exploration companies who have attempted to operate on KI lands without the Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) of the community. The elders feel that passing on their traditional knowledge to the younger generations is vital to providing them with the tools to adapt to the ongoing social and environmental changes they see happening around them…” 

World Bank Hands Inga 3 Dam Over to Private Sector

IR –  “International Rivers has learned that the World Bank has abruptly decided to develop the Inga 3 Dam in the Democratic Republic of Congo as a private investment through the International Finance Corporation, rather than as a public sector project. The Bank withdrew a US$73 million IDA grant for the project, which was scheduled for approval by its board of directors on February 11. The move will compound the problems of the World Bank’s biggest ever hydro-power project, and ensure the project will serve the interests of mining corporations rather than the DRC population.

According to internal sources, the IFC will support a private investment in the Inga 3 Dam by Chinese companies in a deal that was brokered by the administrator of USAID. International Rivers decries the World Bank’s decision for the following reasons:

  • The International Finance Corporation has a poor social and environmental track record. In recent months, the Corporation was admonished by its own ombudsperson for serious abuses in the Tata Mundra thermal power plant in India and the Dinant palm oil project in Honduras. The IFC does not have the safeguard policies or the expertise to ensure proper social and environmental impact assessments for this huge project. Handing the Inga 3 Dam over to the private sector will lead to further environmental shortcuts and compromises in the project.
  • The Inga 3 Dam would generate electricity for mining companies and the South Africa market, not for the more than 90% of the DRC population with no access to electricity. Expanding energy access for the Congolese population is a development priority, but is not of commercial interest to investors.  Handing the project over to a private investor will make it even less likely the country’s poor people would benefit from the project.
  • The IFC deal was arranged behind closed doors without any accountability to the DRC parliament, the World Bank’s board of directors, or civil society. It was reportedly brokered in a personal initiative by USAID administrator Rajiv Shah, just weeks after the US Congress instructed the US government to oppose supporting large hydropower projectssuch as Inga 3 through international financial institutions. Non-transparent deals such as the Inga 3 Dam are the best recipe for deepening corruption in the DRC. They will not strengthen the public accountability that is necessary for social and economic development.

Working with civil society partners in the DRC, International Rivers will continue to oppose destructive megaprojects such as the Inga 3 Dam, and will promote clean local energy solutions that are more effective at reducing poverty and protecting the environment.

Media contacts: Peter Bosshard, Policy Director, International Rivers, peter@internationalrivers.org@PeterBosshard

Learn More on International Rivers

Satirical Film Targets ‘Development’ For Tribes

Davi Kopenawa of the Yanomami tribe in Brazil, said, “It’s not that the Yanomami do not want progress, or other things that white people have. They want to be able to choose and not have change thrust upon them, whether they want it or not.”

Survival International- “A new film launched today by Survival International, the global movement for tribal peoples’ rights, takes a satirical look at how tribes are often destroyed in the name of ‘development’.

The 2-minute animation ‘There You Go!’ shows how ‘development’ can rob self-sufficient tribal people of their land, livelihood and pride, and turn them into beggars.

In the short film, based on a comic book by author Oren Ginzburg, development experts claim they want to bring ‘sustainable development’ to an imaginary forest-dwelling tribe – who end up destitute, in a slum…

…‘There You Go!’ is based on real examples of imposing ‘development’ on tribal peoples. Ethiopia, for example, is forcibly resettling 200,000 tribal people in the Lower Omo Valley in the name of giving them ‘a modern life’.

One Mursi man told Survival, “We are waiting to die. We are crying. When the government collects people into one village there will be no place for crops and my children will be hungry and have no food.”

Learn More On Survival International, There You Go!

Villagers Say Homes Destroyed by Olympics

Sochi’s Olympic make-over comes after years of construction work in and around the city. Many residents in the region say they’re paying the price for the Games.

Excerpts, NBC- “Atop a small mountain ridge just outside Sochi, 73-year-old Nadezhda Kuharenko’s small house stands in the middle of a vegetable garden.

“It’s like paradise here,” she said looking across the valley lined by green trees, snow-covered mountains in the horizon.

But her paradise is crumbling. Ever since construction for the Olympics began in 2009, huge trucks with heavy equipment have rumbled past her house in the village of Akhshtyr, leading to cracks in her home’s walls and a leaky roof.

Kuharenko is holding on, patching the roof with plastic foil and the walls with cardboard to keep the rain and wind out. But it’s barely working; her furniture has been ruined. Her pension of 6,800 rubles (about $200 a month) is not enough to fix her house.

“You can’t save anything from this pension, it’s not even enough for new clothing, barely enough for food,” she said. “And food has gotten more expensive since the Olympics have been announced.”

“I got nothing from the Olympics, just a crumbling house and health problems,” Kuharenko said.

Hers is not an isolated case. Villagers said that nearly all their houses have cracks as heavy trucks — as many as 250 per day — rumbled through the main street.

And they say they have been cut off from the neighboring village across the valley by the newly built Olympic road and railway.

Environmental activist Olga Noskovets, a member of “Green Russia,” an ecological faction of Russia’s Yabloko Party, said that the affected community members have a difficult time receiving help from authorities.

“In my experience, [authorities] do their best to gain time and complicate the process, which includes gathering costly and time-consuming expert reports to prove the damage,” she said.

Irina Vorovchkova even sued Olympstroi, the Russian state corporation overseeing all construction projects for Sochi 2014, over damages to her house.

She lost — and claimed the local courts are biased toward the Olympics.

“You don’t want to mess with the Olympic Committee,” she said. “The government doesn’t care, Putin just wants things to be his way. We are waiting, maybe after the Olympics we get some compensation.”

Full Story

Related: Sochi Workers Faced Rampant Abuses Building Olympic Sites

Sochi Whistleblower Flees Russia Amid Death Threats

Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance

NFB“On a July day in 1990, a confrontation propelled Native issues in Kanehsatake and the village of Oka, Quebec, into the international spotlight. Director Alanis Obomsawin spent 78 nerve-wracking days and nights filming the armed stand-off between the Mohawks, the Quebec police and the Canadian army. This powerful documentary takes you right into the action of an age-old Aboriginal struggle. The result is a portrait of the people behind the barricades…”

Wiki- “The Oka Crisis was a land dispute between a group of Mohawk people and the town of Oka, Quebec, Canada which began on July 11, 1990 and lasted until September 26, 1990. One person died as a result. The dispute was the first well-publicized violent conflict between First Nations and the Canadian government in the late 20th century. 

The crisis developed from a local dispute between the town of Oka and the Mohawk community of Kanesatake. The town of Oka was developing plans to expand agolf course and residential development onto land which had traditionally been used by the Mohawk. It included pineland and a burial ground, marked by standing tombstones of their ancestors. The Mohawks had filed a land claim for the sacred grove and burial ground near Kanesatake, but their claim had been rejected in 1986.

Historical background

In 1717, the governor of New France granted the lands encompassing the cemetery and the pines to the Society of the Priests of Saint Sulpice or Sulpician Fathers Seminary, a Roman Catholic order based in Paris. The Mohawk claimed that the original grant included about nine square miles reserved exclusively for their use. Although the Sulpician Seminary was supposed to hold the land in trust for them, the seminary expanded this agreement to grant itself sole ownership rights.[citation needed]

In 1868, one year after Confederation, the chief of the Oka Mohawk people, Joseph Onasakenrat, wrote a letter to the seminary condemning it for illegally holding the land and demanding its return.[citation needed] The petition produced no results for the Mohawks. In 1869 Onasakenrat attacked the seminary with a small armed force, after giving the missionaries eight days to hand over the land. Local authorities ended this stand-off with force.

In 1936, the seminary sold the remaining territory for development and vacated the area, under protest by the local Mohawk community. At the time they still kept cattle on the common land.

In 1961, the city built a private nine-hole golf course, the Club de golf d’Oka, on a portion of the land. The Mohawk filed suit against its construction but, by the time the case was heard, much of the land had already been cleared. Construction also began on a parking lot and golf greens adjacent to the Mohawk cemetery.

In 1977, the band filed an official land claim with the federal Office of Native Claims regarding the land. The claim was accepted for filing, and funds were provided for additional research of the claim. Nine years later, the claim was rejected, on the grounds of failing to meet key legal criteria.

In March 1989, the Club de golf d’Oka announced plans to expand the golf course by an additional 9 holes. Protests by Mohawks and others, as well as concern from the Quebec Minister of the Environment, led to negotiations and a postponement of the project by the municipality in August.

The Crisis

On July 11, the mayor asked the Sûreté du Québec (SQ), Quebec’s provincial police force, to intervene with the Mohawk protest. He claimed there had been criminal activity at the barricade. The Mohawk people, in accordance with the Constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy, asked the women, the caretakers of the land and “progenitors of the nation”, whether or not the arsenal which the warriors had amassed should remain. The women of the Mohawk Nation decided that the weapons should only be used if the SQ fired on the barricade and to use them as defensively as possible.

At the peak of the crisis, the Mercier Bridge and Routes 132, 138 and 207 were all blocked, creating substantial disruption to traffic and anger as the crisis dragged on. A group of Châteauguay residents started building an unauthorized, unplanned four-lane[citation needed]highway around the Kahnawake reserve. After the crisis, the highway was completed and is now part of Quebec Autoroute 30.

The federal Crown-in-Council agreed to spend $5.3 million to purchase the section of the pines where the golf course expansion was to take place, to prevent any further development. This proposal left the Mohawks outraged, as the problems that led to the situation had not been addressed. Stewardship of the land had simply moved from one government to another, and not to the Mohawk.

When it became apparent that the Sûreté du Québec had not contained this escalating situation, the government brought in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), who were also unable to contain the mobs and chaos associated with the blocked traffic; ten RCMP constables were hospitalized on August 14.

On August 8, Quebec premier Robert Bourassa announced at a press conference that he had, as per Section 275 of the National Defence Act, requisited military support in “aid of the civil power”. Prime Minister Brian Mulroney was reluctant to have the federal government and, in particular, the Canadian Army, so involved. Under the act, however, the Solicitor General of Quebec, under direction from the Premier of Quebec, had the right to requisition the armed forces to maintain law and order as a provincial responsibility; this move had precedent in Canada, including two decades earlier during the October Crisis.

Resolution

On August 29, at the Mercier Bridge blockade, the Mohawks negotiated an end to their protest with Lieutenant-Colonel Robin Gagnon, the ‘Van Doo’ commander responsible for monitoring the blockades along the south shore of the St. Lawrence River west of Montreal. This action further resulted in the resolution of the original siege on the Kahnawake reserve.

Mohawks at Oka, however, felt betrayed at the loss of their most effective bargaining chip in the Mercier Bridge: once traffic began flowing again, the Quebec government rejected further negotiations pursuant to their original dispute concerning the Oka golf course expansion. September 25 witnessed the final engagement of the crisis: a Mohawk warrior walked around the perimeter of the blockade area with a long stick, setting off flares that had been originally installed by the Canadian Forces to alert them to individuals fleeing the area. The army turned a water hose on this man, but it lacked enough pressure to disperse the crowd surrounding him. This crowd taunted the soldiers and began throwing water balloons at them, but the incident did not escalate further. The following day the Mohawks laid down their arms, dismantled their guns and threw them in a fire, ceremonially burning tobacco and returning to the reserve. Many, however, were detained by the Canadian Forces and arrested by the SQ.

The Oka Crisis lasted 78 days, and gunfire early in the crisis killed SQ Corporal Marcel Lemay. The golf course expansion which had originally triggered the crisis was cancelled by the mayor of Oka. The Oka Crisis galvanized, throughout Canada, a subsequent process of developing an First Nations Policing Policy to try to prevent future such events.” More On Wiki

North Carolina – Duke Energy Plant Reports Coal-Ash Spill

Charlotte Observer “Duke Energy said Monday that 50,000 to 82,000 tons of coal ash and up to 27 million gallons of water were released from a pond at its retired power plant in Eden into the Dan River, and were still flowing.

Duke said a 48-inch stormwater pipe beneath the unlined ash pond broke Sunday afternoon. Water and ash from the 27-acre pond drained into the pipe.

“We’ve had some temporary solutions that have intermittently worked at times during the day, but we are still working on a short-term solution and the long-term repair,” spokeswoman Erin Culbert said shortly after 9 p.m. Monday.

The pond has a liquid capacity of 155 million gallons when full, according to a recent inspection report, but was at a lower level because the Dan River power plant’s coal-fired units were retired in 2012. It’s not known how much ash was in the basin, but Culbert said most of it appears to still be in the pond.

Duke said it notified local emergency managers and the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, which last year sued Duke over its ash handling, on Sunday afternoon. The first public notice of the spill came from Duke at 4:03 p.m. Monday.

Environmental groups that have filed lawsuits in an effort to force Duke and other utilities to remove ash stored near waterways quickly pointed out the lapse in time before public notification.

The Dan River plant is about 130 miles northeast of Charlotte near the Virginia line.”

Full Story on Charlotte Observer

Waterkeeper NYC Feb 4, 2014 – “Eden, NC — Another huge coal ash spill has polluted a river and currently threatens public drinking water supplies. Late Monday afternoon on February 3, 2014 Duke Energy reported that it spilled between 50,000 to 82,000 tons of coal ash into the Dan River near Eden, North Carolina. As of late Tuesday, coal ash still appeared to be spilling into the river, as seen in the video above.

Coal ash is the waste left after burning coal in a power plant. Containing heavy metals and other toxic compounds such as arsenic, boron, chromium, selenium, mercury and lead, coal ash is a serious threat to aquatic ecosystems and local drinking water. To put the volume in perspective, the spill is the equivalent of 413 to 677 rail cars of toxic pollution poured into a public drinking water source.”

Fighting for Biodiversity in the Central African Republic

Dialogue Worldwide – Political instability in the Central African Republic affects the region’s wildlife as well. Following a coup, the Dzanga-Sangha reserve can no longer be properly run. That’s opened the door to rampant illegal poaching. 

The rainforest of the Central African Republic is home to rare wild elephants, marsh antelopes and lowland gorillas which are protected by international organizations. But the country is one of the most politically instable places in the world. Following a coup, poachers and armed militias stormed the base of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in the Dzanga-Sangha reserve earlier this year. The station was destroyed and around 30 elephants were killed. Until today, environmental activists and conservationists are unable to return to the park because the situation remains dangerous and chaotic.

It’s not just the local population that is suffering as a result, but also the region’s elephants, antelopes and gorillas. Poaching remains a highly lucrative business in the region as well as in the protected reserves in the neighboring states of Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Poor equipment, corruption and weak political will have complicated efforts to halt species loss in the DRC. However, there’s no dearth of funds to help protect biodiversity in the region. The International Climate Initiative (IKI), Germany’s government-owned KfW bank and other organizations have set aside millions to protect deforestation, illegal poaching and the exploitation of natural resources.

 

Teaming up to protect the Congo Basin

DW- “The Congo Basin has been called the “Green Heart of Africa,” a place where wildlife roams free among a vast and varied landscape of forests, savannas and swamps. Stretching across six countries, the basin boasts rare species like the bongo antelope and lowland and mountain gorillas, and it’s also one of the largest water and carbon storage reservoirs in Central Africa. But the region is also rich in valuable resources, from minerals to tropical timber, and the changing climate has put the entire basin at risk. Now, three countries – Cameroon, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of the Congo – have come together to save the precious region from ruin. The International Climate Initiative and Germany’s development bank are providing the funds and support to help them do so.”

Syrian Children Study While Bombs Fall Nearby

RT – “Russia’s foreign minister has urged the US to maintain contacts with all sides in the Syrian conflict, except for jihadist groups. Sergey Lavrov, speaking after talks in Moscow with Syria’s opposition leaders, also welcomed the rebels’ willingness to take part in the Geneva negotiations, set to resume next week. But while politicians push for a breakthrough – time is running out for people living in the warzone…”

Click to learn more. School Days: A lifeline for Syria’s young minds.

The Mountain of Mystery

New Atlantis Full Documentaries – “South of Venezuela is a region dominated by large rock formations in the Precambrian era surrounded by the largest virgin forest in the world. Guayanes Massif, whose majestic tepuis (mountain pemone language) have always been feared and revered by the natives of the area. This chapter takes a tour of these giants intense geological and untamed nature around them, while making contact with some of the tribes that inhabit the Orinoco basin.
Separating the tepuis fly over the Amazon basin of the Orinoco to reach the largest of these, the Auyan Tepuy. The flat surface of the summit is 700 square kilometers and boasts the highest waterfall in the world. This impressive waterfall of nearly a mile high, called Angel Falls is considered taboo by the Indians as gods who inhabit it should not be seen.

The tour of this enigmatic region, one of the least explored of Venezuela, we will live with native tribes as Sanema. Know their traditional lifestyles and follow them into the forest, which was admitted to hunt. We will witness the rituals by which, through the use of powerful hallucinogens, are introduced to the gods who dwell this amazing region dominated by the tepuis.”

Mountain Of Mystery Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

 

Soldiers Burn Down Cambodian Homes for Chinese Company

Cambodia1

TruthLoader – “Soldiers representing the Chinese company Tianjin Union Development Group have forcefully evicted 29 families in the Koh Kong province of Cambodia and burned down their homes and crops. In 2008 the Tianjin Union Development Group was granted 36,000 hectares of land by the Cambodian government in order to construct a multi-billion-dollar tourism zone in the previously protected Botum Sakor National Park, complete with hotels, casino, golf course, seaport and highway.

What development means in Cambodia — “The Playground”

“We’ve heard of China’s buying sprees. That it’s plowed billions of dollars into some of the poorest nations in the world. But the story we don’t know is what this money means for the people there. In Cambodia, the cost has been devastating. More than 700,000 people have lost their homes — others their lives — while China buys the former killing fields for resorts, hotels, and exclusive residences. And as this country of genocide descends into another era of chaos and violence, some whisper it’s the second coming of Pol Pot.

But one woman has fought back. In this fast-paced narrative, Terrence McCoy follows Vanny Tep’s quest to save Cambodia from China’s money. Leading a small, fiery group of women, Vanny has sparked a grassroots movement from one of the most daunting slums in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. Her battles are against the Cambodian government, Chinese companies, and a male-dominated society. Powerful and profound, “The Playground” takes us across Cambodia to discover the true meaning of a global Chinatown.”

END:CIV – What Would You Fight For?

Based in part on Endgame, the best-selling book by Derrick Jensen, END:CIV asks: “If your homeland was invaded by aliens who cut down the forests, poisoned the water and air, and contaminated the food supply, would you resist?”

“A fierce critique of systematic violence and industrial civilization, End:Civ is not intended for garden-variety environmentalists. If you are anywhere below, say, an 8 on that sliding scale of pissed off, then this film is going to scare you…which means you should watch it.”

-Eugene Weekly

1aquote-derrick-jensen“There are very sober people talking about the possible death of entire oceans. The end of fish. If that’s not worth fighting for, what is?” Activist and author Derrick Jensen asserts that industrial civilization is murdering the planet and it must be stopped. We need to decolonize our hearts and minds. As soon as our allegiance is to the real world and not industrial capitalism, things become more clear. His books include A Language Older Than Words, The Culture of Make Believe, What We Leave Behind and Endgame.”

END:CIV- “The causes underlying the collapse of civilizations are usually traced to overuse of resources. As we write this, the world is reeling from economic chaos, peak oil, climate change, environmental degradation, and political turmoil. Every day, the headlines re-hash stories of scandal and betrayal of the public trust. We don?t have to make outraged demands for the end of the current global system – it seems to be coming apart already. 

But acts of courage, compassion and altruism abound, even in the most damaged places. By documenting the resilience of the people hit hardest by war and repression, and the heroism of those coming forward to confront the crisis head-on, END:CIV illuminates a way out of this all-consuming madness and into a saner future.

Backed by Jensen’s narrative, the film calls on us to act as if we truly love this land. The film trips along at a brisk pace, using music, archival footage, motion graphics, animation, slapstick and satire to deconstruct the global economic system, even as it implodes around us. END:CIV illustrates first-person stories of sacrifice and heroism with intense, emotionally-charged images that match Jensen’s poetic and intuitive approach. Scenes shot in the back country provide interludes of breathtaking natural beauty alongside clearcut evidence of horrific but commonplace destruction.”