This island east of the African continent is famous for its biodiversity. With its red tree core, rosewood fetches around 1,000 US dollars per cubic metre on the world market. It is used for luxury furniture. This valuable wood grows in the island’s impenetrable jungle and is cut illegally by a mafia and brought out of the country. Clovis Razafimalala is Chairman of the environmental organisation Lampogno Maraoantsetra Alliance and says: “The forest is my life.” At home, he draws attention to smuggling again and again. Timber that has been felled is tied to the sides of boats that take it to the coast, from where it disappears, usually headed for China. Razafimalala has paid for his activities with a charge and a prison term.

However, environmental campaigner Razafimalala is not seeking to have Madagascar give up exporting rosewood. He wants the people of Madagascar to co-operate with the government in setting sustainable logging quotas.