Reporters on the Frontline of Environment

Tribal Farming Beats Climate Change

Tribal farmer Harish Saraka has rediscovered the key to sustainable farming in this rain-dependent hinterland of eastern Odisha state – mixed cropping.

Thomas Essuman says Ghanaian fisherfolk know that using poison, dynamite and illegal nets to catch fish is doing long-term damage.  Credit: Jessica McDiarmid/IPS

Ghanaian Fisherfolk Blasting Their Way to Finding Fish

Explosives, high-watt light bulbs, monofilament nets, and poison: these are a few methods fisherfolk are using to catch ever-dwindling fish stocks off Ghana’s shores.

Sam Kojo, chief fisherman of a village in western Ghana, says an influx of seaweed has crippled the fishing industry for months. Credit: Jessica McDiarmid/IPS

Western Ghana’s Fisherfolk Starve Amid Algae Infestation

Sam Kojo stands in a thigh-high pile of brown seaweed that blankets a beach in western Ghana. Behind him, a decomposing mound of Sargassum stretches down the shore past the fishing village of Beyin.

Sea Level Rise Threatens Mekong Rice

With Vietnam’s fertile Mekong delta threatened by rising sea levels and salt water ingress, the country’s future as a major rice exporter depends critically on research underway in the Philippines.

Recycling cooperative member Andiswa Konco sorts garbage.  Credit: Kristin Palitza/IPS

The Business of South Africa’s Garbage

Nokwanda Sotyantya sits among heaps of garbage and patiently sorts through it, separating cardboard, plastic, glass, paper and metal, piece by piece. The recycled piles of trash are then weighed and sold to packaging manufacturers in South Africa that reuse the materials to create new products.

Will Climate Refugees Get Promised Aid?

With extreme weather pounding countries across a wide arc in the Asia-Pacific region, questions hover over entitlements for millions of people displaced by climate change, pledged under the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and other sources.

Women in rural Kashmir walk great distances to fetch clean water. Credit: Athar Parvaiz/IPS

Women Pay for Kashmir’s Water Woes

Naseema Akhtar, 38, worries that her daily treks to collect clean water from the mountain springs around her village of Bonpora, in Kashmir’s Kupwara district, are getting longer. She is already doing more than seven km every day.

Climate Change Threatens the Poor in Cities

India, like other Asian countries, has focused its climate change adaptation strategies on rural and urban areas while neglecting the urban fringes, say experts.

Development Deficit Compounds Indian Sundarbans Crisis

Sahara Bibi, a 47-year-old poor Muslim woman living on one of the climate- impacted islands of Eastern India’s fragile Sundarbans archipelago in West Bengal state, was forced to pull her two young sons out of school and send one of them to the Southern state of Kerala to earn a decent income.

The waters of Weligama bay can prove deceptively calm for fishers. Credit: Indika Sriyan/IPS

Gales, Cyclones Follow the Tsunami

The gentle waves of Weligama bay that lap at the small, tight-knit fishing village of Kaparratota, 140 km south of Colombo, can be deceptive.

Papua New Guinean Landslide Survivors Wait in Vain for Justice

Early morning on Jan. 24, in the remote Southern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, a massive landslide destroyed communities living below a quarry used by the country’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, operated by Esso Highlands, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil.

Thai Province Shows the Green Way

As fingers of morning light slip through the mango and banana orchards of his village, Suchin Utanarat heads out in a boat to net a fresh catch from the nearby canals teeming with shrimp.

Spanish Cities Far From Sustainable

Though Vitoria-Gasteiz, capital of the Basque Country, was elected the European Green Capital of 2012 – an award presented by the European Union to promote and reward efforts to mitigate climate change – Spain still has a long way to go to earn the label of ‘sustainable’ for others cities around the country.

Zothe, the school caretaker at Three Crowns Rural School in Lady Frere District oversees the feeding of the bio-digester.  Credit: David Oldfield/IPS

SOUTH AFRICA: Rural School Running on Methane Bio-Gas

Tucked against the rolling hills of South Africa’s Eastern Cape province, a small rural school has been turning its kitchen scraps, and agricultural and human waste into methane gas for cooking, and nutrient-rich fertiliser, and is even recycling its water.

Forest elephants in the Mbeli River, Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park, Congo. Central African countries are developing strategies against climate change. Credit: Thomas Breuer/Wikicommons

CENTRAL AFRICA: Tentative Steps Towards Adaptation

Governments and civil society organisations in Central Africa are slowly developing strategies in response to global warming. But specialists say the steps being taken seem hesitant in the face of emerging realities.

MAURITANIA: Ravaged by Drought – the Number of Malnourished Children Rises

Mariem Mint Ahmedou sits cross-legged on a worn-out carpet in a basic tent built with mud bricks and layers of sewn-together fabric. Her eight-month-old twins, Hussein and Hassan, lie weakly against her body. Both of them have been malnourished since birth, because Beydar, undernourished herself, cannot produce enough breast milk to feed them.

ARGENTINA: Progress in River Clean-Up Praised – With Reservations

For the first time in over 200 years, visible progress is being made in cleaning up the Matanza-Riachuelo River basin, the most highly polluted in Argentina, although improvements remain largely superficial so far.

AFRICA: Miracle Tree is Like a Supermarket

When a food crisis hits the continent, African countries tend to look to the international donor community to mobilise aid. But a fast-growing, drought- resistant tree with extremely nutritious leaves could help poor, arid nations to fight food insecurity and malnutrition on their own.

BALKANS: The Dark Side of Serbia’s Oil Shale Fairy Tale

According to an old Serbian fairy tale, God tells a poor man who enters a gold mine that no matter what he chooses to do inside, he'll be sorry when he leaves. If he takes some gold, he'll be sorry for not taking more; if he doesn't, he'll be sorry for not taking any at all.

INDIA: Indigenous Rights Versus Wildlife Rights? – Part 2

As the amount of protected forest dwindles rapidly in India, indigenous groups and wildlife find themselves living cheek to jowl in an increasingly contested space.

INDIA: Indigenous Rights Versus Wildlife Rights? – Part 1

Tucked away in a dense and ecologically diverse tiger reserve in Southern India, tribes-people and wildlife defenders are locked in a battle of indigenous peoples’ rights versus wildlife rights.

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