A recent seizure at Johannesburg’s international airport of a large consignment of rhino horns confirmed worst fears – illegal trafficking of wildlife and the plundering of treasured species is back with a vengeance after a Covid-19 lockdown lull.
Gilbert Bor manages a small farm in the western highlands of Kenya. Landscapes are hilly, village roads lined with pine trees, his cows mostly of the Friesian breed. He is up at 6:00am daily to lead his animals through the woods into the valley below.
Bassey Etim Ironbar is a rare example of an Olympian that transformed from an athlete to a volunteer who does menial jobs like sweeping the streets and clearing debris from open sewers.
In southeast Mexico, work on the Yucatan Solar Park, owned by the Chinese company Jinko Solar, has been halted since 2020 for lack of proper consultation with indigenous communities, after affected local residents filed an injunction against the project.
Work, education, entertainment, or simply better connectivity all draw people to cities. By the end of this century around 85% of the world population are predicted to live in cities.
Hopes for an inclusive global economic recovery are fast fading. As rich countries have done little to ensure poor countries’ access to vaccines and fiscal resources, North-South “fault lines
” will certainly widen.
Enhancing relief, recovery, transformation
While the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised
rich countries’ recovery prospects upward, the United Nations (UN) notes formidable challenges, especially for developing countries, due to the pandemic.
It had been four long months since the meeting in Alaska between Chinese and American officials, their first interaction since President Joe Biden assumed office in January this year. That was when the Chinese Foreign policy top mandarins Yang Jiechi (Director, Central Foreign Affairs Commission) and Wang Yi (State Councillor and Foreign Minister) bitterly locked horns with the American top diplomats, Antony Blinken (Secretary of State) and Jake Sullivan (National Security Advisor) in Anchorage in intensely chilly circumstances. Bilateral relations remained pretty much frozen since. Both sides might have come around to the belief that a resumption of some level of contact was overdue. Not so much to bring about a thaw; rather, simply to test the water.
After more than 20 years
of negotiations, the World Trade Organization (WTO) has moved a step closer to an agreement on ending harmful fishing subsidies. The deal would set new rules for the global fishing industry and limit government funding that contributes to unsustainable fishing and the depletion of global fish stocks.
Muslims are the largest minority community
in India, and yet, they are highly underrepresented both in public and private institutions. According to a study
conducted by the Economic Times Intelligence Group in 2015, Muslims constituted approximately 2.7 percent of mid to senior executives in the private sector. As of April 2018, only 1.33 percent
of officers in the central government, holding the rank of joint secretary and above, were found to be Muslims.
Kenya is constructing a railway line that connects the coastal port of Mombasa and the interior of the country. It is expected to terminate at Malaba, a town on the border with Uganda, and link up with other railways that are being built in East Africa. It’s locally known as the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR).
Honorine Meda is 23. Cycling through her hometown of Dissin, in Burkina Faso’s verdant southwest, she smiles, waves and stops to chat with one of the girls she counsels.
After almost two decades, Golden Rice was approved last week by the Philippines authorities for use as food. This together with the approval of the bioengineered Bt eggplant represents a landmark victory of science over misinformation; it will provide consumers with improved nutrition (Golden Rice) and safer food (Bt eggplant).
Low-income countries have been hard hit by the pandemic. Their large financing needs are only likely to grow as they deal with the crisis and its economic aftermath.
Back-to-back droughts followed by plagues of locusts have pushed over a million people in southern Madagascar to the brink of starvation in recent months. In the worst famine in half a century, villagers have sold their possessions and are eating the locusts, raw cactus fruits, and wild leaves to survive.
Undoubtedly, the world needs to reform existing food systems to better serve humanity and sustainable development. But the United Nations World Food Systems Summit (UNFSS
) must be consistent with UN-led multilateralism.
For the first time ever, the World Economic Forum (WEF), a partnership of some of the world’s most powerful corporations, is partnering the UN in launching the Summit, now scheduled for September, with its ‘Pre-Summit’ beginning today.
Rwanda is trying to reduce post-harvest loss by relying on new technologies to increase the amount of food available for consumption and help smallholder farmers confront some challenges caused by the overproduction of staple crops.
Despite facing the world’s worst pandemic of the last century, rich countries in the World Trade Organization (WTO) have blocked efforts to enable more affordable access to the means to fight the pandemic.
The UK government’s decision to reduce its Official Development Assistance (ODA) budget from 0.7% of gross national income (GNI) to 0.5% -- a cut of around £4 billion this year -- was confirmed last week by a majority of 35 votes in a House of Commons vote.
That a country like El Salvador, poor and with many social needs, would embark on an effort to attract so-called bitcoin mining, which demands a huge amount of energy and does not generate large numbers of jobs, is an extravagance that many find hard to digest.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Eastern Caribbean island nation, famed for its beautiful landscapes, pristine white-sand beaches and temperate climate, attracted around a million tourists each year.
A regular visitor to the islands of the Caribbean has become a dreaded nuisance over the past ten years. The sargassum seaweed that typically washes ashore now arrives each year in overwhelming, extraordinary amounts for reasons that are not entirely clear.