Global

Limits to Growth: Inconvenient Truth of Our Times

Ahead of the first United Nations environmental summit in Stockholm in 1972, a group of scientists prepared The Limits to Growth report for the Club of Rome. It showed planet Earth’s finite natural resources cannot support ever-growing human consumption.

Lessons from Rome. Weaving Peace Is a Polyphonic Dialogue

Arms are raised, stretched out towards the sky, holding white cards with the word "peace" written in different languages. A girl, a refugee from Syria, reads the Rome’s "Appeal for peace": "With firm conviction, we say: no more war! Let's stop all conflicts […] Let dialogue be resumed to nullify the threat of nuclear weapons.” Pope Francis singed it in front of the people gathered at the Colosseum, holding the word “peace” in their hands, as representatives of the world’s religions did as well. Shortly before, members of those different religions gathered for prayer to invoke peace in their different traditions—a prayer that is “a cry” inside the ancient amphitheater.

COP27: Why Global Action is Needed to Decarbonise Industries Everywhere

Ahead of this year’s COP27 in Egypt, industry and government representatives from 15 developing countries across Asia, Latin America and Africa met in a series of consultations about the challenges and opportunities they face in decarbonizing some of their most energy intensive industries like steel, cement and concrete.

COP27: The Thorny Road to Sharm El Sheikh

The 27th Conference Of Parties (COP27) on Climate Change comes at a time when we are facing unprecedented challenges due to the magnitude and the interconnected nature of our multiple structural crises. The world's average temperature is now at 1,1℃.

Revealed: Rich Countries ‘Miserably’ Fall Below Their Climate Promises, Further Indebt the Poor

Just a few days ahead of the UN Climate Conference (COP27) in Egypt (6-18 November), new revelations show how far rich, industrialised countries –those who contribute most to the growing catastrophes- have been lying over their real contributions to climate finance.

COP 15: It’s Time to Decide on a Future

It is no secret that humankind’s past actions have accelerated the deterioration of ecosystems, negatively impacting our economies, societies, health, and cultures. It is estimated that humans have altered over 97% of ecosystems worldwide, to date. One million species are currently threatened with extinction (IPBES). The writing on the wall is clear. Our planet is in crisis. The sobering reality is that if we continue on our current trajectory, biodiversity and the services it provides will continue to decline, jeopardizing the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and our lives as we know them. The decline in biodiversity is expected to further accelerate unless effective action is taken to address the underlying causes of biodiversity loss. These causes are often justified by societal values, norms and behaviors. Some examples include unsustainable production and consumption patterns, human population dynamics and trends, and technological innovation patterns.

COP27: A Climate Summit Following Empty Promises & Funding Failures

The COP 27 climate summit is taking place amid a rash of political, economic and environmental upheavals, including missed funding and emission targets, increased pollution and climate devastation, rising global inflation, cuts in Western development assistance and the negative after-effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Why Greta Thunberg Is Wrong to Boycott COP27

So, Greta Thunberg won’t be coming to COP27. She’s condemned it as “greenwashing” and cast doubts on the host’s human rights record and lack of access for activists.

Campaign for a Fossil Fuels Non-proliferation Treaty Gathers Steam

When it comes to moral endorsements, having the Vatican’s backing takes some beating. So the international campaign for a legally binding Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty took a huge step forward in July when Cardinal Michael Czerny, the prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, gave it his total support.

Solidarity and Negotiations to End the Ukraine War

On November 1, a statement of solidarity with Russians opposed to the Ukraine War was published. It was signed by more than 1,000 U.S. men and women who had opposed the U.S. invasions of Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Counting the Massive Financial Costs of Illegal Fishing

As a new report lays bare the massive financial costs to developing states of illegal fishing, campaigners are hoping that drawing attention to the practice’s devastating economic effects will help push governments to greater action against the illicit trade.

Early Coal Retirement: How about a Global Auction

Report after report highlights that we can only achieve the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions required by the climate goals of the Paris Agreement if much of the existing coal power generation capacity is retired early.  To this end, one concept that deserves greater consideration is conducting an auction for early retirement of coal power plants worldwide: a global coal retirement auction. This article sets out the broad outlines of how this global auction might operate.

A Beacon of Light in Dark Times: the Dublin Platform for Human Rights Defenders

Before she was murdered in Honduras in 2016, the Lenca Indigenous woman and human rights defender Berta Cáceres poignantly said: “They are afraid of us because we are not afraid of them.”

Oil Exporters Make Markets, Not War

The decision to cut oil production by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies as of Nov. 1 comes in response to the need to face a shrinking market, although it also forms part of the current clash between Russia and the West.

COP27 Climate Summit is an Opportunity to Promote Peace

Peace is precious. The past few months have offered daily reminders of this simple fact. War in Ukraine. Russian and North Korean nuclear threats. Growing tensions over Taiwan. Huge population displacements. Energy crisis. Economic turmoil. Rising global hunger and inequality.

Developing Countries Need Monetary Financing

Developing countries have long been told to avoid borrowing from central banks (CBs) to finance government spending. Many have even legislated against CB financing of fiscal expenditure. Central bank fiscal financing Such laws are supposedly needed to curb inflation – below 5%, if not 2% – to accelerate growth. These arrangements have also constrained a potential CB developmental role and government ability to respond better to crises.

Farm-Kids-Turned-Scientists Give Back on the Climate-Crisis Front Line

Dr Alice Karanja knows from personal experience the tough choices the climate crisis is putting people before in the Global South. Choices such as whether to have a healthy diet or give your children an education. Choices such as whether to go hungry or allow your children to have any schooling at all.

A New Digitalisation Effort in Bangladesh Could Change Community Health Globally

The digital transformation of thousands of community health workers in Bangladesh has dramatically enhanced their work, while enabling the creation and tracking of a healthcare database covering 64 million people. The resulting model holds remarkable promise for the health of the world, especially in the context of evolving pandemics.

A Tale of Cities

For decades, urban practitioners have failed to consider the needs of women in city decision-making and planning. Imagine being a young girl in a bustling metropolis.

Russian Dispute Over Drones Threaten to Escalate World Food Crisis

A war of words between Russia on the one hand, and the US, Britain, France and Germany on the other—specifically on the deployment of drones in Ukraine -- has triggered an unintended consequence: a new world food crisis. The Western powers last week asked the UN to verify whether Iranian drones were being used “illegally” in violation of the 2015 Security Council resolution 2231 which endorsed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on Iran’s disputed nuclear programme.

What Does it take to Build a Culture of Equality & Inclusion at the UN? Reflections from Inside a Change Process

The organisational is personal. Every day since the two of us were asked back in 2020 to co-lead the process of culture transformation at UNAIDS, the United Nations organisation which drives global efforts to end AIDS, we have both felt at our very core how crucial it has been to get it right.

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