Food and Agriculture

Solar Power and Biogas Empower Women Farmers in Brazil

A bakery, fruit pulp processing and water pumped from springs are empowering women farmers in Goiás, a central-eastern state of Brazil. New renewable energy sources are driving the process.

Conflict’s Long Shadow Has a Name: It’s Hunger

Scarce food and drinking water. Limited and inconsistent healthcare. Rapidly deteriorating mental health. With conflict on the rise globally, this is the grim reality for millions around the world.

Food Security and Food Safety in Africa Must Go Hand in Hand

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has restricted international exports and sent food costs soaring – particularly for vulnerable populations still experiencing shocks from the pandemic and who can least afford to pay more to feed their families. Two years on, global food supply chains are still just as susceptible to serious disruptions caused by war, disease, and climate change. Those inevitable disruptions are leaving those on the African continent particularly vulnerable.

Women Affected by ‘Gender-Biased’ Climate Change Deserve Justice

While research into the unequal impacts of climate change on women is growing, more is needed to enable them to realize their rights to climate justice. Researchers argue that women and girls have unequal access to food, water, health, education, and even income, thanks to climate change. This makes them more vulnerable.


Senegal’s Democracy Passes Crucial Test

The fact that Senegal’s election took place on 24 March was in itself a triumph for civil society. That an opposition candidate, campaigning on an anti-establishment and anti-corruption agenda, emerged from jail to become the continent’s youngest leader offered fresh hope for democracy.

Social Protection, a Key Solution for Directing Climate Finance To Poor Small-Scale Farmers

Climate change is exacerbating inequalities between and within countries, disproportionately affecting poor households in rural areas. In fact, we know that more than half of the resources of the poor – a large part of whom are small-scale farmers - are lost due to climatic hazards. This has negative impacts on the incomes of these people and their ability to meet their essential needs, including food.

No Turning a Blind Eye to Protection of Dominican Republic’s Natural Resources, Says Environment Minister

In 2020, general elections were held in the Dominican Republic. This took place while the COVID pandemic was becoming an increasingly serious threat, causing severe social and economic disruption. The elections were two months late as a result of the initial chaos COVID caused. The governing Dominican Liberation Party’s 16-year rule ended after the Modern Revolutionary Party’s candidate, Luis Abinader, received a majority of the votes. Elections are now scheduled for May 19 this year and IPS took the opportunity to ask Miguel Ceara Hatton, the country’s Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, how he perceived the past four years' efforts to mitigate a global crisis that now threatens us all, namely climate change and environmental degradation.

Can Preserving Goa’s Khazans Address Climate Threats?

Growing up in a khazan ecosystem, the traditional agricultural practice followed in the south-western Indian state of Goa, Elsa Fernandes would love sitting in a koddo, a woven bamboo structure for storing paddy. Her family members would pour paddy around her and with the growing pile, she would rise to the top and then jump down with joy.

India’s Farmers Could Use Better Monsoon Forecasts

Agriculture in India need not 'gamble' with the monsoons if accurate weather and climate forecasts are proactively made available to farmers, according to the results of a new experimental study conducted by the University of Chicago.

Food Security Issues in Asia

Asia has about 60% of the World’s population but only about a third of the world’s arable land. This region additionally has some of the most economically active countries with increasing urbanisation and a growing middle class. Asia is also home to some of the most affected countries by climate change. For these and other reasons, food security in Asia affects global food security through many inter-links. A new book, “Food Security Issues in Asia”, edited by Paul Teng and with multiple authors, explicates many of the key issues continuing to cause food insecurity in Asia as well as discourses on exciting developments. Through its twenty-seven chapters, the book, published by World Scientific Publishers Singapore was launched on 27 March 2024 in Singapore by Ambassador Ong Keng Yong, former ASEAN Secretary General.

“I’m More Optimistic than Before Regarding the Goal of Ending Hunger in Latin America”

"I'm more optimistic than before" about the goal of ending hunger included in the 2030 agenda for Latin America and the Caribbean, said FAO regional representative Mario Lubetkin in an interview with IPS.

Why Farmers in India and Pakistan Are Shifting to Natural or Regenerative Farming

Nine years ago, farmer Sultan Ahmed Bhatti gave up tilling the soil and using most fertilizers and pesticides on his farm in Doober Bhattian, Pakistan. His brothers at first derided him. But soon, his first experiment with growing wheat on raised beds was a runaway success. “We produced more wheat than what we grew on ploughed, flat land,” he said.

Revival of Hope: How a Remote Indian Village Overcame Water Scarcity

The people of Patqapara Village, a hamlet in India's West Bengal State, were until recently reeling under absolute distress due to water scarcity. The lack of irrigation facilities in this far-flung and inaccessible hamlet had resulted in a steady decline in agricultural activities. With a population of around 7,000, as per government estimates, the village primarily depends on agriculture for its livelihood. However, in recent years, drastic changes in weather patterns, including unseasonal rainfall, delayed monsoons, and soaring temperatures above normal levels, led to the drying up of irrigation canals and wells in the village. This left the local population in chaos, as their cultivable fields were bereft of any irrigation facilities.

Child Malnutrition in Peru Driven Up by Poverty and Food Insecurity

Quechua farmer Felipa Noamesa, who lives in the southern Peruvian department of Cuzco, prepares a cream of fava bean soup for breakfast every morning with bread and vegetable soup with noodles. Her children are grown up, so her priority is that her five-year-old granddaughter does not suffer from anemia or malnutrition, two problems she frequently sees in her community.

Governments Worldwide Prioritize School Feeding for Its Multiple Benefits

Before COVID-19 hit, in January 2020, 388 million children worldwide were being fed every day at school. Soon after lockdowns began, that number plummeted to 18 million, but just two years later, in 2022, it had recovered, and more — school feeding had reached 420 million children.

Conservation Efforts by Ethnic Communities in Bangladesh Bolster Water Security

Just a few years ago, Sudarshana Chakma (35), a resident of the remote Digholchari Debarmatha village under Bilaichari upazila in the Rangamati Hill District, had to traverse a long hilly path to fetch water for her household because there were no local water sources. "Unchecked deforestation and degradation of village common forests (VCFs) led to the drying up of all-natural water sources in our village. We struggled to collect drinking and household water," Chakma explained to IPS. 

Fall-out from Ecuador’s Crises Highlights Need to Invest in Grassroots Resilience

Shocking and ongoing levels of violence in Ecuador since the New Year followed by flooding caused by El Niño landed a double blow for those in the country who live day to day and are most vulnerable to instability.

Beekeeping Offers Opportunity to Zimbabwean Farming Communities

Honeybees quickly react with a sharp and loud buzz sound as beekeeper Tanyaradzwa Kanangira opens one of the wooden horizontal Kenyan top bar hives near a stream in a thick forest in Chimanimani, 412 kilometres from Zimbabwe’s capital, Harare. The 26-year-old puffs some smoke, a safety measure, as he holds and inspects a honeycomb built from hexagons by the honey bees.

The Ups and Downs of Control of Transgenic Crops in Mexico

Mexico has taken important steps to protect native corn, even standing up to its largest trading partner, the United States, to do so. But the lack of a comprehensive legal framework in its policy towards genetically modified crops allows authorizations for other transgenic crops.

Brazil’s Biofuel Potential Set to Expand Thanks to Sustainable Aviation Fuel

Brazil is counting on biofuels to assert itself as an energy powerhouse in the near future, as a decisive supplier of low-carbon jet fuel, a requirement of the climate crisis. The electrification of automobiles has tended to curb the strong ethanol and biodiesel agribusiness developed in the country since the 1970s. But demand for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) now offers the possibility of significant new expansion for many decades to come.

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