Illegal logging in Mongolia
 

Imagine my surprise to get a phone call one day from the Senior Biodiversity Specialist at the World Bank asking me if I'd be interested in doing some cartoons for a report about illegal logging in Mongolia. An out-of-work cartoonist does not turn up such opportunities, and I set to work. This entailed viewing a large number of Mongolian internet sites to get  an idea of what the people and landscapes look like.

Texts were edited in English and Cyrillic. The cartoon sequence below illustrates some of the favourite teqhniques used by furtive loggers in the pine forests of Mongolia.

1. First, a small diversion to distract the attention of park guards so that the truck full of illegal loggers can pass unnoticed...
2. The loggers then partially saw through selected tree trunks.
3. The partial cuts go unnoticed, or in any case cause nothing more than puzzlement to any guards who may happen along.
4. Later that night, the loggers furtively return and quickly finish the job by felling and carting away the already weakened logs.
5. Some of the timber is left until winter, when one of the loggers may return to draw the attention of the authorities, thus cleverly pre-empting any suspicion.
6. A variant of this deception is to first "diguise" the selected trees as victims of a forest fire by supericially burning their bases...
7. ..to then ask permission to use the "burned" wood, which -  unknown to the guards...
8. ....is still sound timber beneath the outer bark.