Natural Resources

To Restore Forests, First Start With a Seed

In 2011, when Rwanda committed to restoring 2 million hectares of land in a global effort to restore 150 million hectares of degraded and deforested areas by 2020 — it seemed like a big ask. 

Pandemic Lays Bare Africa’s Deficits, but Youth Will Grow the Future

Africa’s frailties have been brutally exposed by the coronavirus pandemic. The virus has reached nearly every country on this continent of 1.3 billion people and the World Health Organization warns there could be 10 million cases within six months. Ten countries have no ventilators at all.

Haunting Forest Spirits – is Mother Nature Striking Back?

Epidemic diseases are not random events that afflict societies capriciously and without warning, on the contrary, every society produces its own specific vulnerabilities. To study them is to understand the importance of a society's structure, its standard of living, and its political priorities. […] Epidemics are a mirror, they show who we really are: Our ethics, beliefs, and socio-economic relationships.                                                                                                                                                           Frank Snowden 1

COVID-19 and Hope for a Compassionate Future

The Coronavirus, COVID-19, makes its deadly round across the world. People fall sick and die, communities and entire nations end up in its deadly grip and try to cope with it. Everything is changing, and changing fast and we all have to deal with it together, even if many of us are being physically apart. Humans are social beings. Our mental and physical capacities are created around that fact and crave for support and compassion.

Green Counter-Revolution in Africa?

In 2006, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation jointly launched the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). The African Green Revolution Forum claims AGRA is the “world’s most important and impactful forum for African agriculture”.

Reimagining Farming Post-Covid Pandemic

Together with medical services and transportation, farming and food production have been correctly identified as ‘essential services’ by all countries under lockdown. The Covid-19 pandemic has not yet made a dent in the food supply and so far, there are no reports of shortage of essential food and agricultural goods. All cities and towns are actively coordinating with government agencies, farms, businesses and transport companies to maintain the supply chain and ensure full availability of food for the population,

Harness Youth to Change World’s Future

Vanessa Nakate of Uganda may have been cropped out of a photograph taken at the World Economic Forum, but she along with Swedish activist Greta Thunberg have made the climate crisis centre stage.

Women & Climate: Planting a Global Forest in a Connected World

In January of this year, Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, shocked much of the world when they announced they would be stepping down from their roles as senior royals.

An Ambitious Year for Climate Action Is a Big Year for Women’s Empowerment

This year, the Paris Agreement’s effectiveness as a global response to the climate crisis is being tested as governments are preparing to submit more ambitious national targets for mitigation and adaptation.

Preserving World’s Biodiversity: Negotiations Convene at FAO Headquarters

“The world out there is watching and waiting for results,” Elizabeth Maruma Mrema warns while talking to IPS regarding the preservation of biodiversity of our planet.

Pulses for a Sustainable Future

Reducing poverty and inequalities, eliminating hunger and all forms of malnutrition and achieve food security for all – these are some of the most important objectives of the Sustainable Development Goals. Still, the rate of poverty and inequalities is increasing and over 820 million people are going hungry. In addition, 2 billion people in the world are food insecure with great risk of malnutrition and poor health. This alarming situation is further aggravated by current trends such as the rate of population growth, impacts of climate change, loss of biodiversity, soil degradation and many others. Transition to more sustainable food systems can provide adequate solutions to all these challenges. Pulses could play an important role in this transition, having nutritional and health benefits, low environmental footprint, and positive socio-economic impacts as well. What is required to promote and support the production and consumption of more pulses? This question is particularly relevant now, since 10 February is the World Pulses Day.

World Drains Away Valuable Energy, Nutrients & Water in Fast-Growing Wastewater Streams

Vast amounts of valuable energy, agricultural nutrients, and water could be recovered from the world’s fast-growing volume of municipal wastewater.

Venezuela: Violent Abuses in Illegal Gold Mines

Residents of Venezuela’s southern Bolívar state are suffering amputations and other horrific abuses at the hands of armed groups, including Venezuelan groups called “syndicates” in the area and Colombian armed groups operating in the region, both of which exercise control over gold mines, Human Rights Watch said Tuesday, February 4.

Oil-rich Gulf Turns to Renewable Energy

The increased frequency of climate-induced weather extremes and public opinion pressure are forcing even major fossil fuel exporting countries in West Asia to make a big push towards renewable energy.

Blue Innovation in the Commonwealth

With 95 per cent of the ocean still unexplored by humans, we are only just beginning to understand its profound influence on life on earth, including its effect on global climate and ecosystems.

BIOGAS: Cow Dung Holds the Key to Nepal’s Green Economy

Nepal’s future may not be in hydropower, as most assume, but actually in the dung heap. A new industrial-scale biogas plant near Pokhara has proved that livestock and farm waste producing flammable methane gas can replace imported LPG and chemical fertiliser.

Let’s Give Trade a Chance

Imagine going through the day without consuming or using some product, service, data, technology, personal contact, or payment which has not – at least in some part – crossed one or more national borders before reaching you.

Not all Trade is Good – the Case of Plastics Waste

Currently, approximately 300 million tons of oil-based plastic waste are produced every year. A significant amount of plastic waste ends up in the oceans, having a detrimental effect on marine ecosystems and coastal communities. Most of this waste originates from the Asia-Pacific region.

Plastic: The Largest Predator in Our Oceans

Plastic pollution is currently the largest global threat to marine life. Each year, 10-20 million tonnes of plastic ends up in our oceans, killing approximately 100,000 marine mammals and over a million seabirds.

Lithium and Clean Energy in Argentina: Development or Mirage?

The intense white brightness of the salt flats interrupts the arid monotony of the Puna in northwest Argentina, resembling postcards from the moon. Beneath its surface are concealed the world's largest reserves of lithium, the key mineral in the transition to clean energy, the mining of which has triggered controversy.

Fostering Sustainable Urbanization and Rural-Urban Linkages

As urbanization continues apace, coupled with rapid population growth and rural to urban migration, the challenges for inclusive rural transformation continue, and the importance of fostering improved rural-urban linkages for better food systems becomes increasingly important.. According to the UN, by 2050 some 66% of the world’s population of 9 billion is expected to live in urban areas. Such rapid urbanization is increasingly shaping the rural space and rural livelihoods (through markets, demand for agricultural goods and labour, migration, and through the provision of services to rural areas). It is therefore critical for the increasing emphasis on urban development to take into account the importance of rural development.

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