Stories written by Julio Godoy
Julio Godoy, born in Guatemala and based in Berlin, covers European affairs, especially those related to corruption, environmental and scientific issues. Julio has more than 30 years of experience, and has won international recognition for his work, including the Hellman-Hammett human rights award, the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Investigative Reporting Online by the U.S. Society of Professional Journalists, and the Online Journalism Award for Enterprise Journalism by the Online News Association and the U.S.C. Annenberg School for Communication, as co-author of the investigative reports “Making a Killing: The Business of War” and “The Water Barons: The Privatisation of Water Services”.

EU: Family Ties with Rich Cousin Germany Turn Bittersweet

In terms of economics, the European Union (EU) includes one country - Germany - that is both friend and foe to the 27-member community, and their relationship has turned markedly bittersweet on the road to recovery after the global economic crisis.

Great Green Wall to Stop Sahel Desertification

Imagine a green wall - 15 kilometres wide, and up to 8,000 kilometres long - a living green wall of trees and bushes, full of birds and other animals. Imagine it just south of the Sahara, from Djibouti in the Horn of Africa in the east, all the way across the continent to Dakar, Senegal, in the west.

Men's heavier reliance on cars is reflected in traffic jams like this one near Aachen, Germany.  Credit: Immanuel Giel/Public domain

CLIMATE CHANGE: In Europe, Pollution Is a Masculine Noun

Many aspects of gender inequality are well known and well documented. But there seems to be little awareness that male behaviour leads to greater emissions of climate-changing gases.

Men's heavy reliance on cars cause traffic jams like this one near Aachen, Germany - Immanuel Giel/Public domain

Pollution Is a Masculine Noun

Poor eating habits and inefficient use of transportation mean men are responsible for more emissions of climate-changing carbon dioxide than women are.

CORRUPTION: Egyptians Can Claim Mubarak’s Stolen Billions

For decades, European bank accounts and trusts and the real estate market were havens for dictators seeking safe places to deposit billions of dollars they were stealing from their countries of origin.

Global Crisis Strengthens WSF’s Legitimacy

European non-governmental organisations combating neo-liberal globalisation find their position vindicated by the ongoing socio-economic and environmental crisis upsetting the world.

Bankers Bash on, Regardless

The World Economic Forum became a platform this year for bankers to seek to re-assert their traditional power. And once again, it became a forum - in contrast and even opposition to the World Social Forum due to begin in Senegalese capital Dakar next week – where the damaging effects of globalisation and the environmental consequences of unrestrained growth were pushed aside.

AFRICA: France Plays Suspicious Role in Countries in Crisis

The three African states in which political crises have recently erupted – Côte d’Ivoire, Niger and Tunisia – all feature a strong French economic presence as well as close military and political ties to the former European colonial power, with France at times playing a protective role towards elites accused of abuses.

CLIMATE CHANGE: Driving Straight Into Catastrophe

Despite repeated warnings by environmental and climate experts that reduction of fossil fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions is fundamental to forestalling global warming, disaster appears imminent. According to the latest statistics, unprecedented climate change has Earth hurtling down a path of catastrophic proportions.

BIODIVERSITY: A Year for Limited Optimism

Nearly 12 months ago, when the U.N. heralded 2010 as the ‘International Year of Biodiversity’, unrealistic goals seemed to indicate failure for the ambitious initiative. But now that the year is drawing to a close, some experts also see the year’s progress as encouraging, and a reason for optimism.

WIKILEAKS: Africa Offers Easy Uranium

Wikileaks cables have revealed a disturbing development in the African uranium mining industry: abysmal safety and security standards in the mines, nuclear research centres, and border customs are enabling international companies to exploit the mines and smuggle dangerous radioactive material across continents.

Lake Constance - what is happening deep down is not so beautiful. Credit: Institut für Seenforschung Langenargen

BIODIVERSITY: Dying Beneath the Calm Waters

At first glance, Lake Constance, trapped between Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, looks as peaceful as ever. But under the lake's apparently placid waters, a dramatic change is taking place - one that threatens to obliterate much of local biodiversity.

EU Plans to get Smart With Energy

The electricity grid in Europe is in desperate need of an IQ boost.

German Govt ‘Crying Wolf’ on Terrorist Attacks

Government officials in Germany are being accused of manipulating threats of terrorism to induce public hysteria, even while warning against such reactions. The self-contradictory approach has prompted German citizens to call the terror warnings "farcical" and "negligent."

Cataloguing Biodiversity Presents a Challenge

An international agreement reached in the Japanese city of Nagoya constitutes a great step forward towards protecting biodiversity from decimation, but also represents an enormous legislative and administrative task, environment experts say.

Fresh Warnings Against EU Bio-Fuels Policy

Massive increase in carbon emissions will worsen climate change if the European Union does not urgently revise its energy policy, experts warn.

EUROPE-ENVIRONMENT: Hot Air Rises at Talks and in Towns

The European Union (EU) is failing to fulfil its environmental commitments in practically all areas, from protecting biodiversity to improving air quality in the cities, according to official studies released this month.

Jean-Michel Severino: The demographic dividend encourages development in Africa. Credit: Agence Française de Développement

ECONOMY: “Sub-Saharan Africa Is Speeding Towards Affluence”

Africa is heading towards a bright economic future, according to a new book co-authored by the former director of the French state agency for economic cooperation and released recently in Paris.

Dry, cracked soil in Chiapas, Mexico Credit: Mauricio Ramos/IPS

CLIMATE CHANGE: Cancun Conference Holds Out Little Hope in Face of Extreme Weather

Unusually warm temperatures and more frequent and intense droughts and hurricanes... you have seen the headlines. As options dwindle for negotiating a global pact to fight climate change, the United Nations is pointing to today's "extreme conditions."

Dry, cracked soil in Chiapas, Mexico - Mauricio Ramos/IPS

Extreme Weather Focuses Attention on Cancún Climate Conference

The world's climate is undergoing serious disturbances as talks aimed at a global pact to fight global warming have been cast adrift, warn experts

Joan Carling, Dennis Mairena and Victoria Tauli Corpuz Credit: Julio Godoy/IPS

CLIMATE CHANGE: Native People Demand Autonomy Over Territory

In the view of governments, international bodies and some sectors of civil society participating in negotiations towards new global rules on cutting greenhouse gas emissions, the REDD programme is the last chance to save tropical rainforests.

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