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Fighting illegal logging in Peru: The Full Story

Last week, the United States announced it will block timber imports from Peruvian exporter Inversiones La Oroza for up to three years, due to massive amounts of illegal wood in one of their shipments. This historic action follows a verification conducted last year under the Forest Annex of the US-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement, which found that the vast majority of a previous Inversiones La Oroza shipment was illegal. Earlier this year, US authorities destroyed a shipment from this company for violations of the U.S. Lacey Act, which prohibits trade in illegally harvested timber.

However, La Oroza is not an isolated case. Illegal logging is systemic and widespread in Peru, as EIA has documented repeatedly since its initial release of the ground-breaking report “The Laundering Machine” in 2012. The destruction of the Amazon through this organized crime is devastating to the forests and the communities who depend upon them.

Over the years, Peru has taken important steps to increase transparency in the forest sector and to make its timber traceable. But for every step forward, powerful timber lobbies have been pushing back. Today Peru is at a cross roads: Will it finally clean up its illegal logging sector and establish real transparency and traceability for harvested trees, or will the cover-up continue and the entrenched interests of a corrupt industry prevail?

In the latest edition of the Magazine Wired, Reporter Richard Conniff tells the full story of timber barons, investigators, enforcement efforts and the improbable voyage of stolen timber from the Peruvian Amazon to the US port of Houston and other international destinations.

Read full story here.

photo credit: Ian Allen/WIRED

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Recent Press Releases

Condenando El Bosque
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Un nuevo informe de investigación de Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), Condenando el Bosque, revela el modus operandi utilizado por traficantes para comercializar madera con permisos comprados en el mercado negro, incluyendo especies protegidas como el cedro; y detalla cómo intermediarios aprovechan vacíos legales para lavar madera y escapar cualquier responsabilidad legal, dejando que los titulares de los permisos de aprovechamiento paguen las consecuencias.
California Green Lights Incentive Program to Reduce HFCs
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This week California’s legislature approved a 2019-2020 budget providing $1 million to create an incentive program for reducing emissions of fluorinated greenhouse gases, including hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). Established by the California Cooling Act (SB1013) passed last year, the program will incentivize adoption of climate-friendly refrigerant technologies, with a mandate to also consider other co-benefits such as energy efficiency and opportunities for increasing recovery, reclamation, and destruction of refrigerants at end-of-life.

Recent Videos

Raw Intelligence: TBNI
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The managers of the company Transport Bois Négoce International (TBNI) know how to make big money off of logging the Congo Basin forest while keeping their profit hidden from Gabonese authorities. Yet their methods remain a secret no more, as company officials described in detail to EIA investigators the tricks of their trade.
Intelligence Brute: TBNI
06/12/2019
Les dirigeants de la société Transport Bois Négoce International (TBNI) savent comment gagner beaucoup d’argent en exploitant les forêts du Bassin du Congo, tout en gardant leurs bénéfices bien cachés aux yeux des autorités gabonaises. Mais leurs méthodes ne sont plus un secret, car l’un des responsables de la société a décrit en détail ces manigances aux enquêteurs sous-couverts d'EIA.
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