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Women In Leadership: A Q&A with President Sahle-Work Zewde

Women Deliver President/CEO Katja Iversen discusses women in leadership and links between sexual and reproductive health and rights and Universal Health Coverage (UHC) to advance gender equality with the first female President of Ethiopia, Sahle-Work Zewde.

GGGI joined Ethiopia Green Legacy Campaign to plant 200 million tree seedlings in a day

In 2019, the Ethiopia government, led by Prime Minster Dr. Abiy Ahmed, launched the ambitious Green Legacy campaign that set a milestone to plant 200 million tree seedlings within 12 hours as integral part of an annual target to plant 4 billion tree seedlings.

The Geneva Centre and the UAE Permanent Mission to the UN in Geneva co-organized a panel debate on the rights of the child on 18 September

A panel debate was organized by the Geneva Centre for Human Rights Advancement and Global Dialogue (The Geneva Centre) and the Permanent Mission of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to the UN in Geneva on the enhancement of access to justice for children in the UAE and the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). It was held on the margins of the 42nd regular session of the Human Rights Council.

Driving the grassroots green economy

Sonika Manandhar, Aeloi Technologies’ co-founder, knows the Kathmandu public transportation system inside out. Her family has been running micros (vans that operate as buses) as a business for over twenty years. She also insists on taking public transportation every day, although most of her peers in the technology industry rather save up and buy a motorbike. “Buses are just safer and more environmentally friendly,” says Sonika. “Unfortunately, all the buses, micros, and tempos stop after 8 pm. Then taxis or motorcycle hailing apps are the only options. I don’t feel safe with either, so I often miss out on networking opportunities or professional meetings over dinner,” she adds.

Plaswood: Plastic waste crunched into pieces becomes ply-plastic

Environment always becomes my first concern. Plastic wastes and deforestations are the major issues that I have involved with. The story behind the business concept occurred when I was running a small construction project to build a room in the apartment which I needed to buy plywood to build that room. At that time, I realized that the plywood is totally made from woodchips. I then got an idea of ply-plastic by crunching the plastic into pieces and transforming them to ply-plastic. 

Before Bangalore city goes dry – Let’s close the loop

Shiva, 38 years, staying in a pent-house facing the Bellandur lake paid a bomb for this view 10 years back. But in 2019, often he wakes up to snow-flaked froth and smog and even shockingly fire over the lake. It has become a regular sight for him to watch water tankers filling the underground sump. 

G5 Sahel Summit: African Development Bank, partners, commit to light up and power the Sahel with the Desert to Power initiative

Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank, has arrived in Ouagadougou, capital of Burkina Faso, ahead of the G5 Sahel Summit, and was received by Burkina Faso’s president, Mark Roch Christian Kaboré.

Three Questions to Wale Shonibare, Acting VP, Power, Energy, Climate & Green Growth

The Desert to Power initiative is an ambitious and innovative partnership-driven initiative of the African Development Bank to transform the Sahel and Sahara region through the deployment of solar technologies, at scale, in eleven countries: Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, and Sudan.

Ministers Call for Coalition to scale up land restoration massively worldwide

1. On the road to the Climate Action Summit, the Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of India and President of COP14, His Excellency Mr. Prakash Javedkar, and the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, Her Excellency Ms. Amina J. Mohammed, hosted a high-level luncheon on land and climate on 9 September 2019, on the margins of the UNCCD Fourteenth Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP14). The event was co-facilitated by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). 2. During the meeting, participants underscored that land resources are the basis for human health, livelihoods, food security, and for our economic, cultural and spiritual well-being. Some 25 per cent of the world’s land is degraded (IPCC, 2019), affecting the lives of 3.2 billion people, particularly smallholder farmers, those in rural communities and the world’s poorest populations (IPBES, 2018). Women in particular are on the daily frontline struggle to salvage the large area of agricultural land already affected by land degradation. And the stewardship of indigenous peoples is essential to safeguard the world’s remaining biodiversity. All vulnerable groups who depend on sustainable land management and who can contribute to land restoration need our support. 3. Participants welcomed the IPCC’s special report on Climate Change and Land which constitutes the first comprehensive study of the entire land-climate system. As such, they agreed that it is a fundamental contribution to global negotiations on climate change, biodiversity and sustainable land management, and calls for synergies between the Rio Conventions. The report provides a sound basis for ambitious actions contributing to climate change adaptation and mitigation, biodiversity conservation as well as to combat land degradation and enhance food security. 4. Participants stressed that restoring degraded lands and achieving land degradation neutrality (SDG 15.3) provided an integrated solution to increase ecosystems and populations resilience as well as to enhance the capacity of our land for carbon sequestration. Land use must therefore be an integral part of the climate solution, rather than a cause of GHG emissions. This will strengthen biodiversity conservation, increase livelihoods and human security. It will also curb emissions from degrading lands and help close the projected emissions gap between Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and the Paris Agreement objectives. Most importantly, land degradation neutrality will improve the living conditions of affected populations and the health and productivity of their ecosystems. 5. Participants agreed that land restoration will deliver co-benefits to many Sustainable Development Goals and that the three Rio Conventions can actively work together to support restoration activities as an important contribution to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 6. Participants agreed that the critical role of land restoration for climate mitigation and adaptation must be visible. The Climate Action Summit will send a strong political signal for more public funding and private investments to enable land restoration for impact at the scale needed, through gender-responsive, transformative projects and programmes that seek to generate and sustain fundamental and sustainable positive change. Every 1 USD invested in land restoration is expected to generate up to 10 USD in returns for society through more efficient agricultural practices, integrated water management, and vital ecosystem functions (GPFLR, 2018). 7. Participants indicated that time had come to turn the vicious circle between land and climate into a virtuous one by reinforcing the positive elements of the relationship, helping to manage emissions on the one hand and adapting to climate impacts on the other. Participants therefore called for more concerted policy action, more investments, and more capacity to scale up land restoration to achieve land degradation neutrality. They expect the Nature-Based Solutions Coalition to propose concrete and ambitious actions at the Summit. 8. Participants supported the global effort to achieve land degradation neutrality through ambitious initiatives such as the Bonn Challenge target of having at least 350 million hectares of degraded land under active restoration by 2030 and the Great Green Wall for the Sahara and Sahel Initiative. Participants also welcomed the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030 (UN General Assembly resolution 73/284) as a unique opportunity to galvanize political will, increased investments, and action on the ground for land restoration at massive scale across the world. 9. Participants called for the UN Climate Action Summit to be the starting point for the establishment of a coalition of countries, to accelerate massive scaling up of land restoration activities worldwide, and to act as the building block of the UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration (2021–2030). A coalition of active countries could federate and accelerate the achievement of existing ecosystem restoration goals of all into the UN Decade – a decade of action and impact on the ground for the planet, for the people and for prosperity. 10. Participants included Armenia, Austria, Bolivia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Haiti, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Morocco, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Peru, Republic of Korea, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, South Africa, Tajikistan, The United Kingdom, the European Union as well as CBD, GCF, GEF, FAO, IPBES, IPCC, UNCCD, UNDP, UNEP, UNFCCC, UNRC India and the World Bank. For further information, please contact:
    • Ms. Wagaki Wischnewski, wwischnewski@unccd.int, Cell: +91 74284 94332/+49-173-268-7593 • Mr. Tim Christophersen, tim.christophersen@un.org, Cell : +254706044045

The Geneva Centre to organize on 18 September a panel debate on the rights of the child

(Geneva Centre) - A panel debate will be organized by the Geneva Centre for Human Rights Advancement and Global Dialogue and the Permanent Mission of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to the UN in Geneva on the enhancement of access to justice for children in the UAE and the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

World leaders call for global action to restore degraded land

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called on the international community to set up a global water action agenda as the central theme to achieve land degradation neutrality. He announced that India will restore an additional 5 million hectares of degraded land by 2030, raising the land to be restored in India to 26 million hectares.

Uniting for Zero Leprosy in Manila

World Health Organization’s (WHO) Goodwill Ambassador for Leprosy Elimination and recipient of the 2019 Order of the Rising Sun as well as the 2018 Gandhi Peace Prize, Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, is in the Philippines to call on academics, medical stakeholders and those affected by the disease to unite towards “Zero Leprosy”. 

Domestic violence: Still a formidable challenge

After a week’s absence, Nazma entered the house with a lacklustre expression spread across her normally cheerful demeanour, with the slack of her sari pulled low over her face. When questioned in regards to her absence, while hesitant at first, she later revealed that she had been repeatedly threatened, forced to have sexual intercourse, and consequently suffered a miscarriage.

Microbes are paving the way to sustainable wastewater treatment

One morning Namitha awoke to a frantic call, “He can’t breathe. When he inhales, his ribs ache”, said Panchi. Panchi was one of the young mothers of the community that she was volunteering with and is just one among the thousands who use polluted water from the Yamuna River for her daily needs. Her son never fully recovered just like many other villagers who have been struck with epidemics of bone deformities, fluoride poisoning and water-borne diseases due to the rising water pollution in India.

African Risk Capacity and Africa CDC Sign Partnership Agreement to Strengthen Disease Outbreak Preparedness

The African Risk Capacity (ARC) and the Africa Centre for Disease Control (Africa CDC) have signed a Partnership Agreement to establish a collaborative framework to help African Union Member States strengthen preparedness and emergency response against infectious diseases, of epidemic nature.

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