Fahima Begum rises each morning at dawn and walks two kilometres to a small pond, the nearest source of fresh water. On her way she passes the rusty old hand-pumped tube well that used to supply water to her village in Bangladesh’s arid Barind region until the water table here dropped out of reach.
Staring out at his golden wheat field with satisfaction, 50-year old Alamgir Akbar says with a sigh of relief: "We've had a good crop this season.”
With a combined population of over 1.7 billion, which includes some of the world’s poorest but also a sizeable middle class with a growing spending capacity, South Asia is a policymaker’s nightmare.
Almost 260,000 people, half of them young children, died of hunger during the last famine in Somalia, according to a U.N. report that admits the world body should have done more to prevent the tragedy.
In drought-plagued Antigua, where water and energy top the list of most precious resources, one campaign is encouraging islanders to conserve both of these commodities.
The Beitbridge area in southern Zimbabwe was hit by serious flooding earlier this year. Those affected are still trying to get back on their feet.
Scientists gathered in Geneva for the first High-level Meeting on National Drought Policy (HMNDP) in over 30 years have identified data collection and sharing as some of the main challenges to effective prevention of drought. Clear goals and strong political will are vital to building policies at the national level, they say.
Drought has dramatically increased as a consequence of climate change. Most countries react to it only after it has occurred, but don’t have national policies to prevent it. The high-level meeting on national drought policies in Geneva this week is trying to match scientific knowledge with political awareness.
In a country of 1.2 billion people, the threat of drought takes on epic proportions.
Over a period of two centuries (between 1801 and 2002), India experienced 42 severe droughts, according to the Indian Space Research Organisation. One of these, in 1979, cut food grain production by 20 percent; another, in 1987, damaged 58.6 million hectares of cultivated land, affecting 285 million people.
Killer heat waves, floods and storms are increasingly caused by climate change, new research reveals.
In Africa's Sahel region, agroforestry techniques using traditional plantings known as "fertiliser trees" to increase soil fertility, as well as harvesting and grazing regulations, are offering new solutions to both food and human security.
The volatile politics of the Middle East have long been dominated by the fluctuating fortunes of a single commodity: oil.
Wild elephants are usually the primary attraction in the remote shrub jungles of Udawalawe, about 180 kilometres southeast of Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo. But this Christmas season, the massive Udawalawe dam stole the limelight from the lumbering beasts.
During some parts of the year, a layer of salt can be seen on the ground in eastern Cuba, which makes it difficult, and sometimes impossible, to farm. Since agronomist Orlando Coto saw this with his own eyes, he has been searching for salt-tolerant fruit trees.
Food prices will soar and hundreds of millions will starve without urgent action to make major cuts in fossil fuel emissions. That is what is at stake here on the last day of the U.N. climate talks known as COP 18, scientists and activists say.