A year that started with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and is ending with famine in Africa, while still spreading death and misery through an enduring pandemic and a deteriorating climate crisis -- 2022 has been an apocalyptic warning of the frailty of our planet and the woeful shortcomings of humankind.
Drought is one of the ‘most destructive’ natural disasters in terms of the loss of life, arising from impacts, such as wide-scale crop failure, wildfires and water stress.
As our planet continues to heat up, extreme weather has affected many of us. From the west coast of North America across Europe, the Middle East and Asia to Pakistan and New Zealand, wildfires and flash floods have destroyed homes and property and disrupted the daily lives of millions.
This is how the Muslims’ Holy Book - the Quran refers to the most precious element of life.
The current Ukraine-Russia conflict is dominating the global media to the point of overshadowing longer protracted crisis that no longer make headlines, but are still rife. Such is the case with the on-going Sahel crisis, one of the world's most neglected ones, where acute poverty, the dramatic effects of climate change and rising armed conflicts have become the norm for more than a decade. A situation further exacerbated by the on-going COVID-19 pandemic.
Faced with cyclical droughts and low water levels in supply dams, Zimbabwe is turning to boreholes for relief, raising concerns about already precarious groundwater levels across the country.
Gynophobia is defined as an intense and irrational fear of women or hatred of women, it may be characterized as a form of specific phobias, which involves a fear that is centered on a specific trigger or situation, which in the case of gynophobia is women.
The message is clear: three-quarters of the world’s population will be affected by drought by 2050. Does it sound too far in time? Well, your kids might be among the billions of humans living on a desertified planet.
The landmark land tenure decision by parties to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in 2019 offers a blueprint for upcoming climate negotiations in Sharm El Sheikh in November.
Amidst a backdrop of rising food insecurity worldwide and a global food supply chain crisis, many countries are attempting to increase the level of food self-production. One improved input for farming which is receiving renewed attention is improved seed. The two most populous countries in the world, China and India, have recently made ground-breaking moves to improve their competitive position by developing new seeds which will improve their food production and increase resilience to climate change. So far, in 2022, new regulations on using biotechnology (genetic modification and gene editing
) have been put in place by both countries to ultimately allow smallholder farmers to benefit from these new seeds.
With 50% of humanity affected by land degradation, the world must move to a ‘crisis footing’ to conserve, restore and use land resources sustainably, a major UN report has said.
Even as erratic weather and extremely high temperatures increase pest infestation and affect harvests, a combination of traditional methods, integrated pest management through intercropping and multilayering is helping farmers in Ahmednagar and Aurangabad districts of Maharashtra, India.
How would the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu have reacted to the Russian Invasion of Ukraine? Differently than you might think.
The invasion of Ukraine is a mass human tragedy. It is killing Ukrainians, exposing families to violent atrocities, and has driven a refugee crisis of over 4 million people and counting. The war in Ukraine has also reawakened our fear of global war - even nuclear war - and the importance we place on global peace.
India began its journey as an independent nation in 1947 with fresh memory of the Bengal Famine of 1943 which claimed 1.5 to 3 million lives. Against this backdrop, the First Five Year Plan (1951-56) prioritized agriculture which, however, shifted to heavily industrialization in the second Plan.
In an exclusive interview to IPS UN Bureau, journalist Sania Farooqui is in conversation with Bangladeshi lawyer, Rizwana Hasan who was recently awarded the 16th Annual International Women of Courage Awards by the U.S Department of State. Hasan works primarily to protect the environment and defend the dignity and rights of marginalized Bangladeshis. Through landmark legal cases over the past 20 years, Hasan has changed the dynamics of development in Bangladesh to include a people-centered focus on environmental justice.
Once completed in 2030, it could well be considered the world’s eighth wonder, this time natural. It is the African-led Great Green Wall or the largest living structure on the planet – an 8.000 kilometres natural hit stretching across the entire width of the continent.
When years ago warnings were sounded that future wars would be fought not over oil but water, the predictions were dismissed as alarmist.
There are more under-reported consequences of human activities unmatching the rhythm of Mother Nature. Such is the case, among many others, of the growing salinisation and ‘plastification’ of the world's soils.
Now it comes to the scary water crises, as it is estimated that, globally, over two billion people live in countries that experience high water stress.
"When I was a little girl we didn't suffer from water shortages like we do now. Today we are experiencing more droughts, our water sources are drying up and we cannot sit idly by," Kely Quispe, a small farmer from the community of Huasao, located half an hour from Cuzco, the capital of Peru's ancient Inca empire, told IPS.
For three weeks, the Brazilian government concealed the fact that deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest increased by nearly 22 percent last year, accentuating a trend that threatens to derail efforts to curb global warming.