Since we’re talking about blogs, here’s another great one: Agricultural Information News from IAALD, maintained by Peter Ballantyne. IAALD is the International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists. Not specifically about agrobiodiversity, but many of the postings will be very relevant. Here’s an example. Peter links to an article inÂ the People’s Daily Online about how Chinese farmers are signing up to receive sound and text messages on their phones and are also visitingÂ a new web site, all to receive – and also to give out – advice, technical guidance and production information. No reason why that shouldn’t include information about new varieties, threats to genetic diversity, new ways to promote local crops etc., is there?
And here’s another fun blog which the one mentioned in the previous post alerted me to. “The Barcode Blog” is “about short DNA sequences for species identification and discovery.” It’s been going for a couple of years but a quick search revealed only one agriculture-related posting, which had to do with the use of barcoding to identify pests and invasives. But I suspect that will change.
I’ve just come across a blog maintained by Kathryn Garforth, a research fellow with the International Sustainable Biodiversity Law programme of the Centre for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL) who describes herself as “an independent legal researcher and consultant working in the areas of biodiversity, health and intellectual property rights.” Recent postings deal with the Starbucks Ethiopian coffee kerfuffle, biofuels and the Indian Biodiversity Act. Some very thoughtful stuff.
Us plant people went through this over ten years ago, but the animalÂ genetic resources crowd are gearing up for their First International Technical Conference on Animal Genetic Resources, which will be held in Interlaken (Switzerland) in September 2007. FAO is behind it, as it was with plants. As part of the preparations, a workshop was just held, entitled The Future of Animal Genetic Resources: Under Corporate Control or in the Hands of Farmers and Pastoralists? Lots of papers in pdf here.
The UNEP News Centre has a press release and lots of links on theÂ Billion Tree Campaign. This
“encourages the planting of indigenous trees and trees that are appropriate to the local environment, with mixtures of species preferred over other options. The campaign identifies four key areas for planting: degraded natural forests and wilderness areas; farms and rural landscapes; sustainably managed plantations; and urban environments but it can also begin with a single tree in a back garden.”
Wangari Maathai, the Prince of Monaco and ICRAF are involved. Go to the website and make your pledge!