Stories written by Fabíola Ortiz
Fabíola Ortiz is a Brazilian journalist and reports for IPS from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil about human rights, politics, international topics, health, gender and social issues.
With a stable economy and a peaceful political climate, Morocco – which has always been a transit country for migrants -- is becoming a potential new destination for settlement. The elusive dream for most of those who cross the Sahara, though, is still Europe.
With climate change posing growing threats to smallholder farmers, experts working around the issues of agriculture and food security say it is more critical than ever to implement locally appropriate solutions to help them adapt to changing rainfall patterns.
The world has been too slow in responding to climate events such as El Niño and La Niña, and those who are the “least responsible are the ones suffering most”, Mary Robinson, the special envoy on El Niño and Climate, told IPS at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Marrakech (COP22).
Over almost five decades of Israeli occupation, the number of Palestinian refugees has grown with every generation, saturating basic services in the 19 camps that are home to about 200,000 people in the West Bank run by the United Nations.
Investing in new entrepreneurs who bring a holistic approach to food sustainability is one way that the food movement can overcome mounting global challenges from environmental degradation to food waste.
Private voluntary nature reserves in Latin America should be seen as allies in policies on the environment, climate change mitigation and the preservation of biological diversity in rainforests, say experts.
Latin America’s largest economy, Brazil, has succeeded in lifting 36 million people out of extreme poverty over the past 12 years. But it has still a long way to go towards promoting inclusive and sustainable growth.
The cost of inaction is high when it comes to climate change and, so far, countries’ commitments to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are not enough, says Michel Jarraud, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).
The Atlantic ocean is Brazil’s last frontier to the east. But the full extent of its biodiversity is still unknown, and scientific research and conservation measures are lagging compared to the pace of exploitation of resources such as oil.
Activists and local residents have brought legal action aimed at blocking the construction of a nearly 50 sq km port terminal in the Northeast Brazilian state of Bahia because of the huge environmental and social impacts it will have.
In Brazil, one of the countries with the highest concentration of land ownership in the world, some 200,000 peasant farmers still have no plot of their own to farm – a problem that the first administration of President Dilma Rousseff did little to resolve.
“We ran as if we were ants fleeing out of the nest. I moved to three different cities in Syria to try to be away from the conflict, but there was no safe place left in my country so we decided to move out.”
In this town in Peru’s highlands over 3,000 metres above sea level, in the mountains surrounding the Sacred Valley of the Incas, the Quechua Indians who have lived here since time immemorial are worried about threats to their potato crops from alterations in rainfall patterns and temperatures.
The magnitude of the climate changes brought about by global warming and the alterations in rainfall patterns are modifying the geography of food production in the tropics, warned participants at the climate summit in the Peruvian capital.
When the advances made towards curbing global warming are analysed in the first 12 days of December in Lima, during the 20th climate conference, Latin America will present some achievements, as well as the many challenges it faces in “decarbonising development”.
With the expansion of the canal, Panama hopes to see its share of global maritime trade rise threefold. And many Panamanians hope the mega-engineering project will reduce social inequalities in a country where development is moving ahead at two different speeds.
Panama is the first Latin American country to have adopted a national strategy to combat what is known as hidden hunger, with a plan aimed at eliminating micronutrient deficiencies among the most vulnerable segments of the population by means of biofortification of food crops.
Problems in access to quality drinking water, supply shortages and inadequate sanitation are challenges facing development and the fight against poverty in Latin America. A new regional centre based in Brazil will monitor water to improve its management.