Published: Monday 15 August 2005

Ministers of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), China, Japan and South Korea, who met recently in Cambodia for their annual talks, failed to fix any concrete energy targets, while generally agreeing to boost cooperation. They merely acknowledged that energy efficiency and conservation were "critical" to security and climate change control.

Indians of the Huaorani tribe and other indigenous groups and environmentalists held a strong protest on July 12, 2005, in Ecuador, demanding the suspension of oil drilling in an oil block in the Yasuni National Park. Brazil's state oil firm Petrobras is in charge of the operations. The national park is a UNESCO biosphere reserve housing 90 species of frogs and toads and over 500 varieties of birds.

A US court recently reversed an order banning the import of live Canadian cattle into the country. The ruling implied that the import of at least some Canadian cattle would begin with immediate effect. Earlier, the US Agriculture Department had filed an appeal against a March 2005 ruling by a federal court in Montana that suspended a government move to allow the import of Canadian cattle less than 30 months old.

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