Writings By Jason Gray

What’s New?

Joint action needed to protect vulnerable populations against COVID19 in Tropical Forest regions

One of the privileges of the last decade of my career working on climate change and government partnerships has been to participate in an incredibly innovative partnership called the Governors’ Climate and Forests Task Force. This subnational collaboration of 38 states and provinces from 10 countries works to protect tropical forests, reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and promote realistic pathways to forest-maintaining rural development.

As with many of us, GCF Task Force states and provinces, indigenous peoples, and local communities are facing devastating impacts from COVID-19, in particular in rural areas and indigenous territories. Many of the GCF Task Force states and provinces are taking leadership initiatives on the front lines of this pandemic, including seeking support from the Secretary General of the United Nations.

The GCF Task Force as a partnership is echoing this urgent request for support, including seeking to help identify medical equipment (ventilators, masks, rapid tests), logistical and telemedicine support, and early warning systems for rural areas. The GCF Task Force Secretariat, based at the University of Colorado Boulder, is also able to direct financial support to COVID-19 efforts on the ground in many of the states and provinces.

As we confront a changed world and its impacts on our families and our communities, the power of partnerships is more important than ever for our climate and forests, our public health and economy, and our humanity. I urge everyone to explore the incredible partnerships within the GCF Task Force, to read the UN letter referenced above, and to support in any way you can.

Find out more about the GCF Task Force here.

For those interested in donating support for COVID-19 response efforts in tropical members of the GCF Task Force, you can do so here.

Update: You can also directly support COVID-19 relief efforts of COICA (Coordinating Body of Indigenous Peoples of the Amazon Basin), a critical partner of the GCF Task Force and a guiding force for indigenous leadership in the Amazon Basin, here https://www.amazonemergencyfund.org

GCF Task Force Picture

Gabon Book Stocking Stuffer

For your forest-loving, travel-seeking, elephant glimpsing adventurer friends and family, here’s a terrific stocking stuff: my book about the forests, people, and biodiversity of Gabon.  Video review available here.  Book available at Amazon.

Excellent News for Conservation Efforts in Gabon!

This news is outstanding recognition of the long-standing conservation and climate leadership in Gabon.  Diboti Gabon and Norway for the climate support!

 

Gabon could earn up to $150 million for forest conservation

Book Review: Fall Back Down When I Die by Joe Wilkins

Much as his poetic writing evokes the “hard snow glister[ing] beneath the sun,” Joe Wilkins’ masterful debut novel, Fall Back Down When I Die, is as ragged, raw, and sharp-edged as the Bull Mountains of eastern Montana.  Like the northern sun exposing bleached bones in a drought-dried coulee, this book exposes people of firmly held convictions and tough-as-leather circumstances, juxtaposed as can be, for the reader to ponder, absorb, grin along or cry with, and shake a fist at.  An overwhelming sense of place, poetic, tragic, lovely.  Goddamn… this book is a must read.

Book review: Slain Wood by William Boyd

Expertly weaving together a meticulously studied analysis of industrial processes, ecological processes, economics, labor, race, geography, politics, law, and emerging science and environmental awareness, William Boyd’s treatise on the pulp and paper industry in the South of the United States provides an understandable, comprehensive history of the dynamics at play in shaping and reshaping land and region.  Slain Wood paints a compelling picture of the complex array of factors that resulted in this continuing industrial force of the South.  Boyd’s methods and writing highlight the need for incorporating multiple areas of study and research – we must look through economic, ecological, social, and political lenses to see the full picture, understand problems, and develop more lasting solutions.  For students of history, of environmental externalities, of methodological research, and for anyone looking to learn as they read, I highly recommend this book.

Video Book Review!

Super excited about the video book review on Glimpses through the Forest from San Francisco Book Review.  Check it out here.  Will also be posting it to my website.

Glimpses through the Forest as college reading

In browsing through the interwebs, I was excited to discover (randomly) that Glimpses through the Forest has made it into the reading list of an honors English course titled Exploring Cultural Contact Zones: Analyzing Cross-Cultural Conflict, Dialogue and Exchange at Texas Christian University.  I would love to hear from students and teachers about their thoughts on the book, as well as the overall class.  Thank you!

Proud of California’s Governor Brown!

I’m proud to work for Gov. Brown’s administration.  Onward in the fight against climate change!

Excellent video – Voices of Acre

The Earth Innovation Institute (EII) has developed a great video of efforts in Acre, Brazil to protect its forests and the climate through joint efforts of indigenous communities, the state government, cooperatives, and the potential of involving California in amplifying these efforts.  See this short film here.  A related film on sustainable supply chains is worth a watch too.

Annotated Bibliography of Peace Corps Writers’ Books in the Library of Congress

I came across a very cool bibliography of Peace Corps books requested back in 2011 by Congressman John Garamendi (RPCV, Ethiopia 1966-68) of records in the U.S. Library of Congress.  The bibliography focuses on Peace Corps Writers’ books, of which Glimpses through the Forest is one.  Looking forward to reading others on the list that I haven’t read yet.

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