By Anastasia Moloney BOGOTA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Indigenous people in Panama are using drones as a new weapon to monitor deforestation on their lands as thousands of hectares disappear every year in one of the world's most biodiverse rainforests, the United Nations said. More than half of Panama is covered with tropical rainforest, home to various indigenous groups who rely on the forests to survive. "The main objective of monitoring with drones is to identify changes in specific points of the forest cover," the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said in a statement on Wednesday. "The monitoring is carried out in areas under deforestation and degradation pressure, which are only observable with high resolution spatial images." Indigenous people make up nearly 13 percent of Panama's population of 4 million, with about 200,000 living on autonomous tribal lands, known as comarcas. "These tools enable us to better know the forests' characteristics and resources we have in our territories," Eliseo Quintero, a leader of the Ngabe-Buglé tribe, said in a statement. Panama's indigenous groups first started using drones to monitor their ancestral lands last year, the FAO said. The current FAO drone project began in February and is being carried out through the U.N.'s Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation Programme (UN-REDD), in partnership with Panama's environment ministry and the non-governmental Rainforest Foundation. The project focuses on seven ethnic tribes in Panama. Up to three representatives of each tribe, including women, are trained to use drones, download and interpret images, produce detailed maps and collect data. The project's first drone flight was last month, the FAO said. Drones can be used year-round and can also help indigenous groups to monitor forest fires, crop harvests and water sources, it said. Giving indigenous groups tools like drones to help them protect their forests is also one way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions caused by deforestation, the FAO said. For Panama's indigenous groups, like others in the world, forests are a key source of water and food. Panama loses about 20,000 hectares each year to deforestation, according to the National Association for the Conservation of Nature (ANCON), a Panamanian non-profit. Across Latin America and the Caribbean nearly 2 million hectares of rainforest disappear every year, largely due to illegal logging, the FAO says. Since the 1980s Panama has introduced legislation to protect indigenous rights and land, including a 2008 law that gives indigenous communities living outside the comarcas the right to request official recognition of their lands. Still, the report said swathes of indigenous lands have been lost, taken over by hydroelectric dam projects, private mining companies and cattle ranchers, and destroyed by illegal loggers who cut down precious timber such as redwood and mahogany. (Reporting by Anastasia Moloney, editing by Alisa Tang. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, corruption and climate change. Visit http://news.trust.org)
The scientific reason why some Americans don't want Brittney Griner to come home from Russian prison
Plenty of Americans don't support the US government's efforts to bring Brittney Griner home. A hostage taking and recovery expert tells Insider why.
Did he really mean to say this out loud?
- Business Insider
The FBI was tipped off by an informer close to Trump who guided agents to where documents were kept, reports say
Officials told Newsweek and The Wall Street Journal that this person told investigators about the documents.
Footage of Japanese kickboxer Rukiya “Demolition Man” Anpo recently went viral for showing him beating up uninvited fighters who interrupted a training session – or did they really? A video of the fight shows a group of "street fighters" seemingly barging into the gym where Anpo, 26, and fellow Japanese kickboxer Kosei Yamada, 29, were training. Several social media posts claimed that the "street fighters" challenged them to a fight.
- The Daily Beast
Fox NewsFox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy flipped the script on Thursday morning, pushing back on House Minority Whip Steve Scalise’s wild suggestion that FBI agents went “rogue” in executing a court-approved search warrant at former President Donald Trump’s residence.Doocy further took issue with the immediate “rush to judgment” made by Scalise and other conservatives, asking if they could at least “wait a week” before determining that the FBI is “crazy.”Fox News has engaged in a full-scale mel
- The Daily Beast
LEXEY DANICHEV/Sputnik Host Photo Agency/AFP via Getty ImagesLatvia’s parliament has moved to designate Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism over Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine—and the Kremlin does not appear to be taking it well. Russia is committing a “genocide against the Ukrainian people,” Latvian MPs said in a statement Thursday, according to AFP. Russia “uses suffering and intimidation as tools in its attempts to weaken the morale of the Ukrainian people and armed forc
Michael Cohen says Trump likely feels 'trapped' after the FBI's raid and is worried that whoever tipped off the feds has more dirt on him
"When the feds raid, usually what comes after that is an indictment and incarceration, and nobody knows that better than I," Cohen said.
Two decades after their extraordinary separation surgery, Josie Hull and Teresa Cajas are leading lives that few imagined possible
Kevin Federline releases videos of Britney Spears appearing to argue with her sons after the singer opened up on their 'harsh' decision to see her less
On Wednesday, Spears shared another Instagram post saying her children wouldn't spend time with her when they visited.
CNN's Pamela Brown quizzed Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) on his past outrage over Hillary Clinton's handling of classified information.
Former longtime KTVU anchor and reporter Leslie Griffith has died. Viewers news may remember her as she spent more than two decades anchoring the 10 p.m. news alongside veteran anchor Dennis Richmond.
- FTW Outdoors
Footage shows a man leaping over a lookout railing and falling backward upon landing, then sliding to a stop at the edge of a cliff.
- Business Insider
Trumpworld is roiling with finger-pointing and suspicion over a possible informant in Mar-a-Lago: report
Some in Trump's orbit have, per Rolling Stone, been trying to contact him to warn him not to speak to certain people.
- Los Angeles Times Opinion
Readers respond to the ongoing investigation of former President Trump.
- NBC Sports BayArea
Kyle Shanahan is not happy with the NFL's rule that prevents him from wearing certain styles of hats, including the famous "Shanahat."
Pundits at the right-wing network seemed to be much more passionate about correctly handling classified information in 2016.
Donald Trump's endless attacks on the FBI's Mar-a-Lago raid is pressuring Merrick Garland to break the DOJ's 'no comment' norm until there's an indictment — if that ever happens
Former President Donald Trump has seized on the Justice Department's silence about the Mar-a-Lago raid to attack the search as politically-motivated.
I'm an American who's lived in South Korea for 9 years. Here are 9 things I don't miss about the US.
When I moved to Asia, I left behind pricey doctor appointments, tipping rules, and in-unit laundry. Almost 10 years later, I still don't miss them.
Olivia Newton-John’s Niece Just Revealed the Last Words She Said Before Her Death—Here’s if She Was ‘Afraid of Dying’
The final moments between Olivia Newton-John and her family are emotional.
Former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort says an inmate named 'Ralph' invited him to the 'Italian table' in prison and became his 'mentor'
Manafort ate his meals with "real characters" in prison, he wrote in his memoir. Were they Goodfellas? He didn't say that, exactly. But they were "all nice people."