Senate President Manuel Villar urged other local government units across the country to adopt Albay's strategic action on climate change to cushion the impact of this disastrous global warming phenomenon.
Villar said "the senate is all out in supporting programs that address 'global warming and climate change' similar to the programs that Albay province had initiated and is right now being adopted in other places."
Urging local executives of other provinces and towns to put in place Albay's A2C2 strategy, Villar said the approach would involve the awareness of people on the importance of climate change adaptation, and the disastrous effects of global warming.
Briefing the Senate President and members of the A2C2 movement, Salceda said the approach includes the implementation of programs of Climate Change Adaptation in the curricula of all schools, colleges and universities in Albay, IEC drive on Climate Change, disaster risk mitigation and policy formulation in addressing the potential impact of climate change.
Salceda said that new programs are being initiated currently, such as: the Rapid Earthquake Devise Assessment System (REDAS) with the Phivolcs; Climate Proofing program under the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the formulation of a Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) of the province and in all towns and cities; and the SMART Infoboard where some 15,000 SIM cards were distributed to village officials for fast disaster information services.
The A2C2 Movement is a local network in the province that would guide officials in crafting policies and legislation on global warming.
Kampala is sitting on a sewerage system that has not expanded in over 40 years and now threatens to dangerously pollute Lake Victoria, a key source of the city’s water supply, according to the National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NW&SC).
According to NW&SC, Kampala is one large open sewer that has turned Nakivubo channel – originally intended to help drain rain and flood water out of the city – into a carrier of waste and industrial effluent emissions into the lake.
Only eight per cent of the city has access to the sewerage lines, and a functional sewerage system exists mainly within the old and settled residential areas so when the rest of the city flushes, it does so directly into the lake. Most of Kampala’s residents do not have access to a flush toilet.
A row between aid agencies and Indian authorities has broken out over allegations that flood-stricken areas have received inadequate food supplies and medical equipment to cope with the annual monsoon deluge.
More than 250,000 refugees were in government and relief agency camps in Bihar, northern India, last night, while aid workers reported growing tensions over the lack of emergency supplies. Recent television footage showed people fighting to get places in boats, as soldiers in life jackets attempted to restore order.
The anti-poverty charity ActionAid said "lessons from the past disasters should be kept in mind - a long-term comprehensive response is necessary to deal with relief, recovery and disaster preparedness".
African health and environment ministers have agreed to form an alliance to reduce environmental threats to human health and well-being.
According to the Libreville Declaration, named after the Gabonese capital, where a four-day conference was held, the ministers committed governments in the region to take measures to stimulate the necessary policy, investment and institutional changes so that synergies between health, environment and other fields are maximized.
The text of the declaration received here on Monday was decided after participants concurred that the root causes of environmental degradation can be found in social and economic problems such as poverty, inequality of wealth, the debt burden and unsustainable production and consumption behaviors.
The four East African countries which share waters of River Kagera are in the process of developing a cooperative framework that will allow them to jointly manage the river’s resources. The four countries are Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi and Rwanda.
The cooperative framework is being developed under the Nile Equatorial Lakes Subsidiary Programme which is part of the wider Nile Basin Initiative (NBI).
NBI brings together the 10 countries of Uganda, Tanzania, Sudan, Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Egypt, Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi and Eritrea with the aim of equitably sharing the waters of the Nile for social-economic development in a more sustainable way.
With severe flooding, hundreds dead and hundreds of thousands lacking food and basic provisions, Haiti has been hit badly so far this hurricane season, with four severe storms in less than four weeks.
The Caribbean nation has suffered more than its neighbors, also lashed by major storms, in part because of severe deforestation and extreme poverty.
After Tropical Storm Fay and Hurricane Gustav in August, the poorest country in the Americas was devastated by Tropical Storm Hanna last week, and flooding was compounded Saturday night and Sunday when Hurricane Ike clipped the country's northern peninsula as it raged westward toward Cuba.
Damaged infrastructure and continuing rains left aid organizations struggling to bring emergency assistance to hundreds of thousands of storm victims.
About 600 people died in Haiti's recent storms, according to UN and government figures, and one million were affected. The storms also battered roads and bridges.
But many say the damage could have been reduced by better environmental planning.
Sixty million people are expected to migrate from the desert areas of sub-Saharan Africa to North Africa or Europe by the year 2020, the United Nations body responsible for stemming the spread of deserts warned on Thursday. But when they arrive they may find a drier Mediterranean region than the one that exists today.
Marking its 10th anniversary, the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), took up the theme of the social dimensions of the drying up of formerly fertile lands - migration and poverty.
Since 1990, the UN said, about six million hectares of productive land have been lost every year around the world as the land becomes degraded and less fertile.
The World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought is commemorated each year on June 17. It is part of a UN led international campaign to increase awareness of land degradation.
A shift from poverty-driven deforestation to industry-driven deforestation in the tropics may offer new opportunities for forest conservation, argues a new paper published in the journal Trends in Ecology & Evolution.
Citing research showing a transition in the forces driving tropical forest destruction, Rhett A, Butler of mongabay.com, a tropical forest web site, and William F. Laurance of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama suggest that the "industrialization" of deforestation provides environmental lobby groups with identifiable targets that may be more responsive to pressure on environmental concerns than tens of millions of impoverished rural farmers.
"Rather than being dominated by rural farmers, tropical deforestation now is substantially driven by major industries—especially large-scale farming, mining, and logging," Laurance said. "Although this trend is pretty scary, it's also much easier to target a handful of globalized corporations than many millions of poor farmers living on the frontier."
The dry lands of the world are slowly increasing their size. Already they constitute some 40 per cent of the land area of the planet. On their meager soils live 1 billion people - a sixth of the world's population. Most comprise some of the poorest and most poverty stricken souls on earth.
The dry lands are increasing for a variety of reasons. The earth is warming up, patterns of rainfall are changing, but mostly the desertification process is one that is man made. Poverty contributes to an abuse of the environment as pastures are overgrazed or forested lands cleared only to result in a thin soil covering being washed out in floods or blown away in the wind. It is happening all the time and the process is increasing.
Mindful of this, the United Nations General Assembly adopted, in 1994, a Convention to Combat Desertification, designed to raise awareness of the problems. This was to be combined with a special 'desertification' day, which is marked each year on 17 June, the anniversary of the date the Convention was adopted.
The chief of the United Nations meteorological agency today called for weather forecasts to play a greater role in planning for economic development and poverty reduction because of the impact climate change has on water resources.
Michel Jarraud, the Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), told the World Water Congress that the agricultural, energy, tourism and health sectors are among those most affected by the impact of climate change due to drought, deterioration in water quality, increased run-off and an increase in the salinization of ground water as a result of rising sea levels.
“Mainstreaming climate change in decision-making processes will therefore be central to all development and poverty alleviation efforts,” he said at the meeting, held in Montpellier, France.
Climate change will bring storms and drought to central Viet Nam, devastating the livelihoods of fishermen and farmers in the region, according to a report released this week by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE).
MoNRE’s Vu Van Tuan, who headed the report team, said the two worst hit provinces were likely to be Ninh Thuan and Khanh Hoa, where 35 per cent of residents had lifted themselves from poverty in the last decade and 19 per cent had fallen below the poverty line. Another 4 per cent of the households said they had moved in and out of poverty in the last decade, while 40 per cent said their financial circumstances had remained unchanged.
With the apparent effects of global warming already being felt among Pacific island nations, Australia and New Zealand are being urged to do more to prepare for ‘climate change refugees’.
"In Tuvalu and Kiribas we’re already starting to see the effects of king tides and storm surges on the coastline, but in particular, on people’s crops," says Damien Lawson, national climate justice coordinator from Friends of the Earth Australia.
"People on the islands are not going to just be affected when the sea rises up and covers their land. They’re already affected by sea water encroaching through the ground water and having a big effect on their capacity to grow crops," he says.
For the first time, the United Nations Millennium Development Goals is monitoring the world's plants and animals using the Red List Index developed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, IUCN. Based on the comprehensive IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the index shows trends in the overall extinction risk for sets of species at global, regional and national levels.
Until now, the seventh Millennium Development Goal, to ensure environmental sustainability, has not included any mention of biodiversity or the need to save species as a critical contribution to human development.
But with the launch of the latest Annual Report on progress towards the Millennium Development Goals, in advance of the High-level Event on the Millennium Development Goals at UN Headquarters in New York on September 25, the goal now includes the aim to "significantly reduce the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010" as one of its targets.
A global fertiliser crisis caused by high oil prices and the US rush to biofuel crops is reducing the harvests of the world's poorest farmers and could lead to millions more people going hungry, according to the UN and global food analysts.
Optimism that soaring food commodity prices could lift millions of developing country farmers out of poverty and lead to more food being grown have been dashed, says the UN. This is because small farmers either consume their own crop or have no access to global markets to take advantage of the higher food prices.
The global rich are eating the poor's fish: new report shows tropical fish catch gravely under-estimatedPosted on: 8 February 2010 - 12:37pm
After a week of bad news regarding marine life — it was reported that half of U.S. coral reefs are in fair to poor condition and one-third of all coral species are threatened globally — there is still more: a study of twenty tropical islands showed that recreational and subsistence fishing has gone almost completely unreported from 1950 to 2004.
Caution needs to be exercised in developing African food production to avoid long-term social and environmental harm, according to an ecologist credited with averting mass hunger on the continent.
Hans Herren, president of the U.S.-based Millennium Institute, says that some of the prescriptions offered for extricating Africa from its current crisis over high food prices may ultimately cause more damage than good.
Best known for developing a system of biological protection against the mealybug insect that threatened to destroy cassava production in Africa during the 1980s, Herren took issue with recommendations made by Jeffrey Sachs, the prominent economist who is one of the top advisers to the United Nations on the fight against poverty.
Whereas Sachs has been advocating that fertilisers should be provided in bulk to African farmers, Herren noted the liberal use of chemical fertilisers can cause widespread pollution.
Amid the serpentine creeks and rivers; in the ramshackle wooden huts perched on stilts above the oozing mud; among the muddy puddles where children gather to collect drinking water, there is little hint of the vast oil wealth on which the entire Niger Delta is sitting.
Nigeria might be the world's eighth-biggest oil exporter, but these villagers remain mired in poverty. Getting to the nearest clinic means a day navigating the waterways; in the absence of proper schools, children idle their days away among the swamps.
The people of the Delta do not get to see even the most meagre crumbs from a table that is ever more bountiful as oil prices reach record highs. What they get instead is the pollution.
Global economic development will be pulled along in the coming decades by Asian countries, mainly the People's Republic of China (PRC), India, East Asia, and ASEAN members. These countries have large populations, ample natural resources, and easy access to trade and investment.
They also adhere to market economic systems that have various degrees of government intervention. The model of development pursued thus far is rather conventional, with an emphasis on natural resource exploitation, industrial development, and exports. This model’s impacts on the environment are also predictable. Forests are depleted, soil is eroding, water and urban air are heavily polluted, and the environment is deteriorating. But economic development must continue for Asian countries to overcome widespread poverty.
The data are in and there is little doubt that human activity influences climate change. Now, development institutions must take the lead in finding ways to address the problem, says Rajendra Pachauri, Chair of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The panel issues regular reports to provide decision makers and others interested in climate change with an objective source of information about the subject. In December, the panel, chaired by Pachauri since 2002, shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former US Vice President Al Gore. Development Asia interviewed Pachauri about the impact of climate change on Asia, the effect that the popularity of the issue is having on his work, and the role of development institutions in addressing the problem.
Although Bhutan is still clean and intact, a growing population and the increasing development activities are putting the pressure on the fragile Himalayan environment.
The majority of Bhutanese live in rural areas and rely on natural resources to earn income in sectors such as agriculture, fishing, and forestry. Natural resources also provide food and shelter for the poor.
Therefore, environment conditions account for a significant portion of health risks to poor people, who are more vulnerable to natural disasters, effects of climate change, and environment shocks that damage livelihood and undermine food security. Improving environmental management reduces vulnerability.
Food trade liberalization in developing countries can hurt attempts to alleviate poverty and damage the environment, according to a report from a United Nations and World Bank sponsored group issued on Tuesday.
"Opening national markets to international competition can offer economic benefits but can lead to long term negative effects on poverty alleviation, food security and the environment without basic national institutions and infrastructure being place," the report said.
A Peruvian project that converts tons of solid waste into work opportunities nationwide won the first prize in a world contest called “Innovative Environment Project” organized by Australia’s Global Development Network Foundation.
Peru's project beat over 700 institutions dedicated to ecological work.
The winner of the “Most Innovative Development Project 2007" was Peru’s institution, “Ciudad Saludable” (Healthy City) with the project: "Management of Solid Waste" which is currently being established in 40 cities throughout the country.
Efforts to map the way to a post-Kyoto climate treaty have sailed into rough water this week. But amid the turbulence, a key climate initiative is gathering momentum.
Dubbed REDD, it would reward nations for keeping chain saws out of threatened tropical forests, serving as a powerful magnet that could pull several developing countries with significant emissions into a new global-warming pact.
Deforestation accounts for roughly 20 percent of the greenhouse gases that human activities pump into the atmosphere. This means "REDD is going to be a critical element of a global deal" on climate for 2013 and beyond, says Andrew Deutz, senior policy adviser for the Nature Conservancy.
The United National Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) conference now underway in Bali allows Indonesia to show the world that it's part of the solution to global warming. But whatever it says in TV spots or at the high level meetings this week, Indonesia is a major, growing part of the problem. Largely thanks to the rapid cutting and burning of its forests, Indonesia is now the world's third largest emitter of greenhouse gases. But among the international organizations in attendance, facts like that appear to count for far less than good manners and a well-turned phrase.
The compromise most likely to emerge in the coming years will involve offsetting measures for developing countries rather than emissions limits. Forests are an asset that Indonesia can use for offsets, and a proposal known as REDD - Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation - will bring payments in exchange for preserving "the lungs of the earth".
Well-managed marine conservation can significantly help reduce poverty and enhance the quality of life for local communities, according to a new study.
The study, Nature's Investment Bank, which was released by The Nature Conservancy in Manado, North Sulawesi, on Thursday, was based on more than 1,100 interviews within poor communities in four countries, including Indonesia, from November 2006 to May this year.
Healthy ecosystems that provide people with essential natural goods and services often overlap with regions rich in biological diversity, underscoring that conserving one also protects the other, according to a new study.
Titled Global Conservation of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, the report confirms the value of making biological diversity a priority for conservation efforts. It shows that more than 70 percent of the world’s highest priority areas for biodiversity conservation also contain significant value in ecosystem services such as fresh water, food, carbon storage, storm buffers and other natural resources that sustain human life and support social and economic development.
Scientists from Conservation International (CI), the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont, and the Global Environment Facility found that the value of ecosystem services in the 7 percent of the planet of greatest biodiversity conservation priority was more than double the global average. Overall, the annual value of the world’s ecosystem services is estimated at $33 trillion, or greater than the gross national product of all nations combined.
Differences between developing countries looked set to grow and fracture the united front they have thus far presented at the United Nations climate change conference at Bali. The differences among the 77 developing countries, the so-called G-77, came up over the inclusion of changes in land use and avoided deforestation in the clean development mechanism.
Mint had reported on 5 December that developing nations were demanding funds for avoiding deforestation. Their demand is that developed nations compensate them for protecting and conserving every hectare of forests, which contain emission of CO2 (trees use CO2 to synthesize their food).
The argument in favor of this is that the same forests can be cut down for timber or to make space for agricultural or industrial activities. Countries such as Brazil and Indonesia, which have significant forest cover, are pushing for this.
Carbon emissions from developing countries will result in a climate crisis within a generation, according to new research. Within 20 years they will be producing more CO2 than the rich industrialised countries based mainly in the northern hemisphere.
And even if the 'North' - Europe, North America, the former Soviet Union (FSU) Japan, Australia and New Zealand - eliminated all its emissions immediately it wouldn't be enough to stop severe climate change.
The 'South' - Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, the Caribbean and the Pacific islands - faced an environmental disaster.
The latest World Development Report says greater investment in agriculture in transforming economies, most of which are in Asia, is vital to the welfare of 600 million rural poor people living in those countries.
Titled ‘Agriculture for Development’, the report warns that the international goal of halving extreme poverty and hunger by 2015 will not be reached unless neglect and underinvestment in the agricultural and rural sectors over the past 20 years is reversed.
“Rural poverty accounts for an extraordinary 82 percent of total poverty in transforming countries,” said Robert B. Zoellick, World Bank Group President. “A greater focus on agriculture is essential when considering population pressures, declining farm sizes, water scarcity and environmental contamination, and the need to develop lagging high poverty areas.”
The former United Nations secretary-general, Kofi Annan, brought about a remarkable consensus among world leaders to establish the Millennium Development Goals and for the world to meet these by 2015. But, as Annan's successor, Ban Ki-moon, told about 80 heads of state and government in September, it is now clear that climate change threatens the achievement of these goals, so vital to the wellbeing of human society and the elimination of widespread poverty.