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The World Land Trust eBulletin Issue 24, December 2004

Please send your comments on the eBulletin to Helena on

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In this issue:
Rainforest Acres Prove Popular Christmas Gift
A Winter Festival for Conservation?
Green Tips for the Christmas Holidays
WLT News in Brief

Rainforest Acres Prove Popular Christmas Gift

WLT staff work flat-out to process rainforest gift acre donations.

The World Land Trust has been inundated by public support in the run up to Christmas, our gift acres having been recommended in two UK broadsheet newspapers: the Guardian and the Daily Telegraph. Although the WLT only has a small staff, to keep its administrative overheads low, they are working flat-out to get all Christmas Gift 'Acres' in the post.

"That eminent conservationists such as Sir David Attenborough support the projects gives the general public confidence that the Trust is well run, and with Bill Oddie recently filming in one of WLT's reserves, supporters can feel involved when they watch his film."

John Burton, CEO World Land Trust

The public response this year has been truly astounding. According to John Burton, WLT's CEO, "At one time I was the only person available to answer the phone – all other staff were rushed off their feet getting gift certificates in the post in time for Christmas".

When asked why the WLT was so successful this year John responded: "I think it is a combination of the fact that there is a general increase in awareness of the importance of tropical forests in combating global warming, plus the fact that the World land Trust has an excellent track record of delivering high class conservation projects. That eminent conservationists such as Sir David Attenborough support the projects gives the general public confidence that the Trust is well run, and with Bill Oddie recently filming in one of WLT's reserves, supporters can feel involved when they watch his film (to be shown on January 30th)."

The World Land Trust will be launching new initiatives for Valentine's Day early in the New Year, and we urge supporters to check the WLT website in the New Year for news of these ideas.

A Winter Festival for Conservation?

John Burton ponders the significance of a non-religious mid-winter festival

Guanaco
Christmas – a time to celebrate your commitment to conservation.

What is Christmas? The simple answer, I suppose, is that it is a mid-winter festival that has incorporated a whole range of myths from a wide range of religions and belief systems. Although the Christian myths are now central to the festival, most parts of the celebrations can actually be traced to other beliefs.

For non-religious Christmas celebrators, the rational view would be that it is a festival more or less in the middle of the northern winter, and a time to look back on the old year, and forward to the New Year. A rationalist can therefore take most of the elements of the old traditions and accept them as part of this celebration. Feasting, lighting fires, decorating with greenery – all have a rational explanation, as part of the history of a mid-winter festival.

The conservationist can use the same celebration to demonstrate a commitment to conservation of wildlife and sustainable development. Tree 'worship' can form a central focus, garnished with traditional holly, ivy and mistletoe, but decorated with reusable objects, or objects made from discarded materials. Food grown organically, and locally sourced provides the basis of a splendid feast and renewable energy is provided by a yule log fire, and bees' wax candles. And for some luxuries, fair-traded organic chocolates and oranges.

John

John Burton publishes a weekly web log, Green Issues, with musings on everything from Birdwatching to the Wind farm debate. His views are personal and do not necessarily reflect those of the WLT. John would like WLT's supporters to get involved and welcomes feedback and comments on his posts, so please have a read and make your views heard.

Read John Burton's Green Issues web log
http://www.worldlandtrust.org/news/blog.htm

Green Tips for the Christmas Holidays

No doubt you have bought (or made) eco-friendly Christmas presents this year, but greening your Christmas celebrations doesn't end there. According to Waste Watch, up to 1 billion Christmas cards could end up in bins across the UK this year, and it is estimated that 83 square km of wrapping paper will end up in UK rubbish bins over Christmas – this is enough to cover an area larger than Guernsey.

There are lots of different things that can be done to make your Christmas greener. Rather than creating a long list here, we thought we would give you some links to a number of web resources providing information on how to make your Christmas more environmentally friendly. - And when you have followed these tips, why not make a donation to WLT to carbon balance the extra energy you spent over Christmas?

Cutting down on Christmas waste
http://www.wasteonline.org.uk/resources/InformationSheets/ChristmasRecycling.htm

Which is better for the environment: real or fake Christmas trees?
http://www.grist.org/advice/ask/2004/12/08/umbra-tree/

A Recycled Christmas - Make Earth Friendly Gift Wraps
http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art25408.asp

18 Earth-Friendly Holiday Tips
http://www.eco-artware.com/eco-news/green-holiday.shtml

Carbon Balance your Christmas with WLT
http://www.carbonbalanced.org

WLT News in Brief

Last minute Christmas Gifts...

For the bird lovers among your friends and family, two new books may be just the thing to give them this Christmas: Bird in the Bush by Stephen Moss and How to be a Bad Birdwatcher by Simon Barnes. Both books are reviewed on the WLT website.

Read the reviews of Bird in the Bush and How to be a Bad Birdwatcher
http://www.worldlandtrust.org/reviews/bird-in-the-bush.htm

...and cards

If you didn't remember to send your Christmas cards on time, don't worry. Send an ecard from WLT's website and - assuming your recipients check their emails frequently - the cards are almost guaranteed to arrive before Christmas.

Send a free WLT ecard here
http://www.worldlandtrust.org/Christmas/ecard.htm



Seasons Greetings from all the World Land Trust staff

The World Land Trust is a UK based conservation charity no.1001291 concerned with the protection of threatened habitats world wide.
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