Time for Bhutan and the World to Give ‘Happiness’ a Second Look

Jan 29th, 2015 | By

If there is one thing that could describe the tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan in international development terms, it would most likely be the introduction of a unique metric to measure development progress: the “gross national happiness” index. But more than 40 years after the index was introduced by the country’s former king, Jigme Wangchuck,

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Climate Change Could Impact the Poor Much More Than Previously Thought

Jan 26th, 2015 | By

It’s widely accepted that climate change will have bigger negative impacts on poorer countries than wealthy ones. However, a new economic modeling study finds that the economic impacts on these poorer countries could be much larger than previous estimates. As a result, they suggest that we should be aiming to limit global warming to near,

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Water Crises Seen as a Top Threat in Next Decade

Jan 21st, 2015 | By

Pressure on fresh water resources may be the main global threat in the next decade, but the world is failing to mitigate the risk and avoid a crisis, according to a survey of leaders from business, government, universities, international organisations and NGOs by non-profit foundation the World Economic Forum (WEF). Published in its Global Risks

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Drought-hit Sao Paulo May ‘Get Water From Mud’: TRFN

Dec 1st, 2014 | By

(Thomson Reuters Foundation) – São Paulo, Brazil’s drought-hit megacity of 20 million, has about two months of guaranteed water supply remaining as it taps into the second of three emergency reserves, officials say. The city began using its second so-called “technical reserve” 10 days ago to prevent a water crisis after reservoirs reached critically low

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Climate Change Centre to Help Farmers Adapt to New Challenges

Nov 13th, 2014 | By

Dawn: The University of Agriculture Peshawar has recently established the Climate Change Centre to conduct studies and research on climate change and cope with the challenges posed by changing weather patterns. “Climate change is defining human development challenges of our time because the earth’s climate is changing and its manifestation is changes in weather systems,

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Climate Renews Famine Risk to Africa’s Sahel

Oct 21st, 2014 | By

Climate News Network: The Sahel, the arid belt of land that stretches from the Atlantic to the Red Sea and separates the Sahara desert from the African savanna, is no stranger to drought and famine. Now scientists in Sweden say the Sahel faces another humanitarian crisis even than in the recent past − with the changing

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Forest Users Learning to Cope With Climate Stress on Water

Sep 15th, 2014 | By

Republica: In June this year, thousands of farmers, especially in Nepal´s western region, were wrestling with rain deficit, constantly gazing toward the sky devoid of monsoon clouds. In some areas badly affected by the weak monsoon, farmers were seen irrigating their parched crop fields with water supplied through pipes.But, in Hapur village of Dang district, the

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No REDD+ Program Is an Island: Integrating Gender Into Forest Conservation Efforts

Jun 26th, 2014 | By

Since 2005, the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation program (REDD+) has functioned as a mechanism to financially incentivize the preservation of forestlands in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But beyond its original use, some organizations have also started exploring ways it can help with other development initiatives, like women’s empowerment. Last month, the International Union

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Japan to Help Improve Bhutan’s ‘Happiness’ Index

Jun 24th, 2014 | By

The tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan is known throughout the world for its unusual approach to development, which includes measuring progress through the Gross National Happiness index. But beyond the “happiness,” the country is still mired in extreme poverty and chronic unemployment. About a quarter of the population lives below the poverty line and around

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How Will Climate Change Affect Livelihoods in South Asia?

May 26th, 2014 | By

IANS: How does a warming environment affect rainfall, cropping patterns, livelihoods? What could be the alternatives that people whose livelihoods are hit by the effects of climate change do to cope? An initiative by Britain and Canada seeks to study and tackle the effects of climate change in South Asia, in tandem with TERI and Jadavpur

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Climate Change in Pakistan: Innovation in the Absence of Government Support

May 22nd, 2014 | By
A farmer uses a donkey to transport newly harvested wheat grains at a field in Attcak, in Punjab

The Guardian: “There is nothing left here. We don’t have electricity, we don’t have gas, we have an acute shortage of water, so what is left for us?” This is how a woman in Lahore, Pakistan, expressed her frustration to researchers for Climate Asia, the largest study in Asia on people’s perceptions of changes in climate. Pakistan stood

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Environment & Next Green Revolution

May 18th, 2014 | By

PAKISTAN will have to cater for its population growth to meet the challenges of food security in the light of the serious environmental changes that are coming through. Sind has never had hailstorms and the kinds of rains that it has had. Pakistan may well need and evergreen revolution. The future of agriculture will depend on innovative policies

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How Nepali Villagers are Dealing With Climate Change

Apr 27th, 2014 | By

Republica: When he was a little boy, Ram Bahadur Gurung, a resident of Dharampani VDC-1 of Tanahun district, would have to walk downhill for an hour to fetch just a vessel of water. One day, while climbing up the hill carrying a vessel full of water, he accidently stumbled upon a stone; and fell to the

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Climate Change Dwindles Women’s Livelihood in Sindh

Apr 7th, 2014 | By

Climate change is shrinking women’s livelihood resources and affecting their health in rural Sindh. Due to climate change implications, sowing of cotton crop and forest cover have decreased to a larger level in Sindh province, causing heavy loss to the income of women who used to generate it from picking up cotton crop and selling

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Climate Change to Leave India Hot and Hungry

Apr 4th, 2014 | By
604 (1)

The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report not only provides new evidence but also sounds an alarm over the impact climate change is having on compounding hunger and significantly disrupting food grain production. Apart from leaving the world hungry and hot, the changing climate will also offset gains against poverty and hunger, especially

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Climate-hit Fisheries ‘Can Still Meet Demand in 2050’

Mar 31st, 2014 | By

Sci Dev Net: Fish catches will need to increase by only 3.4 per cent to meet global dietary demand in 2050, according to a study predicting how climate change will affect marine ecosystems. The authors warn that achieving this will require the wider implementation of sustainable harvesting, such as technological developments to reduce dependence on wild stock for farmed fish feed,

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War for Water in Kithulgala

Mar 17th, 2014 | By

Kithulgala is Sri Lanka’s premier white-water rafting location but a hydro-power project threatens the future of this tourist attraction. The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) is building the Broadland Hydropower Project on the Kelani River as a run-of-river (ROR) type power plant. ROR plants need little or no water storage but under this project the Maskeli

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Dozens of Pakistani Children Die in Drought-stricken Region

Mar 12th, 2014 | By

(Reuters) – Dozens of children have died of malnutrition and other causes in Pakistan’s southern region this year, prompting Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to travel to the drought-stricken area to allocate $10 million in emergency aid. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) said 18 children under the age of five

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Conservation Cooperation a ‘Matter of Survival’ for Arabs

Mar 7th, 2014 | By

Sci Dev Net: The Arab region’s best chance of facing the challenges of food insecurity, water scarcity and natural disasters lies in collaborating on environmental preservation, a study says. The study, published in The Lancet (20 January), argues that current academic discussions about health, population and development in the Arab region fail to convey the true level of urgency. Rather than speaking about security

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The Disappearing Rivers of Bangladesh

Feb 3rd, 2014 | By

Sci Dev Net: Bangladesh is a land of rivers, but changing climate has caused a third of the country’s more than 300 large rivers to disappear. The rivers are drying out as a result of barriers built upstream to divert water and protect people from floods that have become more frequent as the weather becomes more erratic.

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Malawian Farmers Say Adapt To Climate Change Or Die

Jan 1st, 2014 | By

Rain is so important in Malawi’s agriculture-based economy that there are names for different kinds of it, from the brief bursts of early fall to heavier downpours called mvula yodzalira, literally “planting rain.” For generations, rainfall patterns here in the southeast part of Africa have been predictable, reliable. But not now. In the village of Jasi,

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Amazon Forest Loss Threatens Five States

Dec 29th, 2013 | By

Climate News Network: The continued destruction of the Amazon to exploit its resources for mining, agriculture and hydro-power is threatening the future of the South American continent, according to a report by campaigning groups using the latest scientific data. Five countries – Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru – share the Amazon, and for all of

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Help The People, Save The Trees

Dec 4th, 2013 | By

IRIN News: Several issues around the UN mechanism that aims to curtail greenhouse gases by preventing forest loss were resolved in Warsaw at the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and the meeting is being described by many as the “Forest COP”. The decisions were mostly on how

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‘Happy’ But Poor? Measuring Development in Bhutan

Dec 3rd, 2013 | By

The tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, home to quaint Buddhist temples set in an untouched landscape, is somewhat of an oddity when it comes to measuring economic progress. Instead of using its GDP, the country produces its own index measuring people’s happiness. According to the government, the Gross National Happiness is a “more holistic approach” to development

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International Poverty Conference Begins

Dec 3rd, 2013 | By

Republica: President Dr Ram Baran Yadav on Sunday stressed the need for regional cooperation to address the issues of poverty and vulnerability in the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH) region. Inaugurating the International Conference on Addressing Poverty and Vulnerability in the HKH region, jointly organized by the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and the National

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Climate Change: Severe Food, Water Shortage On The Horizon

Dec 3rd, 2013 | By

The Express Tribune: Pakistan needs to gear up to avoid the negative impact of climate change on crop production, water availability and food security. This was stated by Dr Mohsin Iqbal, head of the agriculture and coordination section at the Global Change Impact Studies Centre (GCISC), who added that recent projections have confirmed that wheat

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Mandarin Production Sours

Nov 30th, 2013 | By

Kuensel News: For the last three years, mandarin business has been declining in Gomdhar, Wangphu, Orong and Samdrupcholing dungkhag in Samdrupjongkhar. Mandarin is the main cash crop to farmers of Gomdhar, Wangphu, Orong and gewogs in Samdrupcholing dungkhag, including Martshala.  The dependence on mandarin for livelihood, however, has become inconsistent, with its production plummeting by

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Polluted Ganges River Threatens People’s Livelihoods

Nov 23rd, 2013 | By

The Ganges is India’s holiest river, considered a source of spiritual purification for devout Hindus. But today the river is among the world’s most polluted, struggling under the pressures of modern India. On the banks of the Ganges River in the Indian city of Varanasi, a man in his thirties is washing clothes by rhythmically

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Climate Change Setting New Farming Patterns

Nov 16th, 2013 | By

As a corollary, the country’s status as an agro-based economy has become extremely vulnerable to unpredictable changes in weather and their consequences. These changes include hotter summers, early cold spell, irregular monsoons, unexpected or untimely rainfall and growing frequency and intensity of floods. Since 2010, monsoon rains and floods have been more ferocious than before,

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$10 Billion For Climate Resilience?

Sep 13th, 2013 | By

Trust: The World Meteorological Organization branded 2001-2010 as “a decade of climate extremes”. Over that decade, the yearly average number of severe storms with ‘names’ was 25 percent more than the average of 1981-2010. This surely indicates a severe decade ahead of us. The United Nations’ Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction (GAR) 2013

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Focus On Migration: Slow Down Himalayan Construction

Sep 9th, 2013 | By

Last month, India launched a satellite [1], INSAT 3D, that aims to improve early warnings of extreme weather events — such as the devastating floods and landslides that hit the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand in June — and aid search and rescue. Such a satellite could help mitigate future disasters. But along with technological improvements,

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Early Recovery By UNDP-What It Means To Uttarakhand

Jul 29th, 2013 | By

The UNDP  United Nations Development Programme, says that early recovery is a multidimensional process of recovery that begins in a humanitarian setting.  It is an integrated and coordinated approach, using humanitarian mechanisms, to gradually turn the dividends of humanitarian action into sustainable crisis recovery, resilience building and development opportunities. When a crisis strikes, UNDP works

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Climate-Smart Agriculture Sourcebook

Jun 11th, 2013 | By

FAO: There has been a rapid uptake of the term Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) by the international community, national entities and local institutions, in the past years. However, implementing this approach is challenging, partly due to a lack of tools and experience. Climate-smart interventions are highly location-specific and knowledge-intensive. Considerable efforts are required to develop the

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Sustainable Tourism Strategy In Carpathians

Jun 3rd, 2013 | By
Carpathian mountains

MP: The development of a strategy focusing on sustainable tourism development is under way in the countries of the Carpathian Mountains – the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Ukraine. Consultations are planned with representatives from governments, tourism agencies and NGOs along with a series of stakeholder meetings and national consultations and 14

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Himalayan Dam-Building Threatens Endemic Species

May 16th, 2013 | By
Dams in Himalaya

Indian Himalayan basins are earmarked for widespread dam building, but aggregate effects of these dams on terrestrial ecosystems are unknown. We mapped distribution of 292 dams (under construction and proposed) and projected effects of these dams on terrestrial ecosystems under different scenarios of land-cover loss. We analyzed land-cover data of the Himalayan valleys, where dams

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Nepal: Minister Urges For Change In Agro Evaluation System

Apr 22nd, 2013 | By
Nepal agriculture

Himalayan Times: Minister for Agriculture Development Tek Bahadur Thapa Gharti has directed ministry officials to evaluate the performance of projects based on the benefits that the projects have provided to people. Impact on livelihoods should be the base for evaluating the projects, he said during a performance review meeting of the Agriculture Ministry. “The traditional

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Climate Change Adaptation And Development Case Studies

Apr 22nd, 2013 | By

C4D: Climate change is increasingly intersecting with the challenges faced by people seeking to emerge from poverty, and changing the way Canadian development organizations – and their partners in the global south – must design their programs to ensure resiliency and continued sustainability. Climate change not only permeates the entire development process, it threatens many

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Upland Agriculture And The Environment

Apr 4th, 2013 | By

BioOne: This comprehensive textbook on upland management in the British Isles combines a critical understanding of upland agriculture and related environmental issues with an assessment of the political decisions that have affected these regions over the past 50 years. Lois Mansfield, an agricultural geographer, has delivered this well, in a detailed and well-illustrated textbook suitable for

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Innovation As Expression Of Adaptation To Change In Himalayan Farming

Apr 4th, 2013 | By

BioOne: Recent studies of future food production in South Asia generally agree that the conditions for production will radically change in the years to come, in particular due to climate change and market variations. However, because we do not know how conditions will be modified and what adaptations will be required by farmers, the article

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Developing Nations To Pioneer System To Track Climate Adaptation

Mar 26th, 2013 | By
A school boat in Bangladesh – an innovative response to rising sea levels? IIED is helping develop new systems for tracking efforts to adapt to climate change. Photo: G.M.B. Akash/PANOS

IIED: New systems for tracking the social impacts of efforts to adapt to climate change could soon be in place in Africa and South Asia. Working with policy and research partners in these regions, the International Institute for Environment and Development (with partners Adaptify and Garama 3C Ltd) has designed a framework and tools that

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Inequality Climate Change Threaten Historic Gains: HDR 2013

Mar 21st, 2013 | By

UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Helen Clark today launched UNDP’s 2013 Human Development Report, which charts the unprecedented rise of developing countries to create a new “global middle class.” “The development landscape is very different today from when the first Human Development Report was launched 23 years ago,” Helen Clark said, releasing UNDP’s 22nd flagship

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Mountain Perspective Framework In Post Rio+20 Scenarios: A Discussion Paper

Mar 18th, 2013 | By
Mountain mix farming Dr. Karki

Dr. Madhav Karki discusses about sustainable mountain development- SMD agenda that was adopted during 1992 Rio Earth summit, and how the socio-economic and environmental issues were taken by countries in the Hindu Kush Himalayan- HKH region during last 20 years in terms of achieving the goals as envisioned in SMD document. He argues that mountain

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Himalaya: Mountains Of Life

Mar 15th, 2013 | By

PR Web: University of Massachusetts Boston professor and leading conservation biologist Kamal Bawa and conservation photographer Sandesh Kadur announce the release of their book Himalaya: Mountains of Life. Five years in the making, the book focuses on the Eastern Himalaya—the first time the region’s threatened biodiversity and cultures have been documented together by a preeminent

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Major Shifts In Crops Ecosystems: Mekong Climate Study

Mar 11th, 2013 | By

MARCC: Results from a landmark climate study for the Mekong region will be released at a press conference here Mar. 29, forecasting dramatic changes in growing conditions and yields for major crops like rice, maize, coffee, and rubber, and impacting fisheries and livestock productivity. “Our study is producing very shocking results. We’ve found that this

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India Needs Micro Level Data For Climate Action

Mar 11th, 2013 | By

SciDev.Net: India needs micro-level scientific assessment at the state, district and village levels for effective planning and implementation of measures to combat climate change, a national workshop has highlighted. The workshop on  climate-resilient development, organised last month (13 February), discussed integrating climate change into development programmes in semi-arid regions like Bundelkhand in central India. Participants

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Framing Sustainable Development Goals With Mountain Perspectives: Post Rio+20 Actions

Mar 7th, 2013 | By
Rio-CHI-The future of mountains

Dr. Madhav Karki writes about the commitments made by the member countries during Rio+20 summit on various sustainable development goals (SDGs) on low carbon green economy principles and good governance practices, in socio-economic and environmental perspectives. He argues that post Rio+20 actions should be more cohesive, participatory, multi-disciplinary and simple in approach, so that they

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Climate Change Is Far From Abstract As Frost Kills Off Local Farmers’ Crops

Mar 6th, 2013 | By
Nepal women

IRISH Times: They look like rice terraces, neat steps of land carved all the way up the steep hillsides, the mighty snow-capped Himalayan mountain range in the distance. But go closer and it’s not rice but potatoes that are growing in this lush valley about an hour’s journey north of Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital. “We used

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Mongolia Named As Global Host of World Environment Day 2013

Feb 28th, 2013 | By
Herdsmen drive cattle through Western Monglia. The government suspended mining licenses to protect the traditional nomadic lifestyle. Credit: Shutterstock -

WED celebrations began in 1972 and have grown to become the one of the main vehicles through which the UN stimulates worldwide awareness of the environment and encourages political attention and action. Mongolia, which is prioritizing a Green Economy shift across its big economic sectors such as mining and promoting environmental awareness among  youth, is

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Mountains: Key To A Global Green Economy

Feb 27th, 2013 | By
Mountain Day Logo

International Mountain Day 2013, Proposed theme: Mountains – Key to a Global Green Economy The United Nations General Assembly has designated 11 December, from 2003 onwards, as “International Mountain Day”. FAO is the U.N. Organization mandated to lead the observance of International Mountain Day each year. In the follow-up to Rio +20 we would like

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Climate Change Poses Threats To Agrarian Countries

Feb 25th, 2013 | By

Thenews: Global climate change is posing serious threats to agrarian countries despite the facts that majority of them are not the major contributor in global warming. However, they are facing decline in agricultural productivity and water resources.  Speakers, during presentations in a seminar to the Agricultural Journalists Association (AJA), said the climate change cannot be

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Social Innovation: Organic Farming, Climate Change and Bhutan

Feb 25th, 2013 | By

Justmean: Over the next 50 years, we will need to face global food and farming realities. We will need to meet the challenges of providing better nutrition for more people in spite of rapid environmental change while cutting back our overuse of natural resources, ecosystems and the climate. All this calls for social innovation in

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Climate change preparedness could leave the poor out in the rain

Feb 25th, 2013 | By
Scientists say warming temperatures boost the likelihood of extreme weather events such as hurricanes [EPA]

MNSBC: When the next Hurricane Sandy hits New York City, Wall Street will be prepared. According to a Monday report in The New York Times, the landlords for some of the city’s ritziest office spaces have shelled out millions of dollars to upgrade electrical systems, install floodgates, and generally make their buildings resilient to what have become

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Weather Changes Frustrate Nepal’s Farmers

Feb 21st, 2013 | By

ClimateNewsNetwork: One of the Climate News Network’s editors, Kieran Cooke, was among a group of journalists recently investigating the impact of climate change in Nepal and the Himalayas. He reports on some of the problems facing farmers in the region. KATHMANDU, 15 February – Life has been good in the past few years for Saraswati

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Year Of Quinoa’ With Focus On World Nutrition

Feb 21st, 2013 | By

UN News Centre: Top officials from the United Nations and the Andean community of Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru today launched the ‘International Year of Quinoa’ to raise awareness of the nutritional, economic, environmental and cultural value of a food that has been traditionally cultivated for thousands of years. “I hope this International Year will

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India’s climate change laws

Feb 21st, 2013 | By

RTCC: The latest Globe Climate Legislation Study was published in January 2013, focusing on 33 countries from Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. For the first time climate policymakers have a clear idea of how countries around the world are attempting to control their greenhouse gas emissions. We have selected the highlights from Globe’s analysis

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Greening Rural Development In India

Feb 14th, 2013 | By
UNDP-Greening Rural Development India

UNDP: Poverty reduction and economic growth can be sustained only if natural resources are managed on a sustainable basis. Greening rural development can stimulate rural economies, create jobs and help maintain critical ecosystem services and strengthen and strengthen climate resilience of the rural poor. Conversely, environmental challenges can limit the attainment of development goals. The

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A Nepalese Perspective On Climate Change

Feb 13th, 2013 | By
Namche Bazaar, Nepal Source: Wikipedia

RTCC: Nepal nestles beneath one of the greatest wonders of the world – the Himalayas – and this gives Nepalese a unique perspective on the effects of climate change. As the world warms our vast glaciers will melt, causing torrents of flood water to cascade through our country. We are sandwiched between China and India,

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Disasters In Mountains: Increasing Catastrophes In Indian Himalayas (Video)

Feb 12th, 2013 | By

CHI: In recent disasters in Indian Himalayan region we lost many human lives, livestock population, agriculture land, livelihood opportunities and huge infrastructure overnight.  The most affected states due to these calamities in India are Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Assam, Sikkim and part of West Bengal. The flood in Kosi and Indus basins in Nepal and Pakistan

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Nepal Climate Public Expenditure And Institutional Review

Feb 4th, 2013 | By
Nepal Expenditure on CC

Book: This paper examines the public financingof climate change actions in Nepal, including the role played by communities, civil society, the private sector and international support. The objective of the study has been to develop an appropriate methodology and then conduct an exploratory Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review (CPEIR), at both the national and

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Feeding Its People, India Also Confronts Huge Climate Change Challenge

Feb 1st, 2013 | By

Daily Climate: India has made giant strides in increasing rice production, both to feed its own people and for export. But the price has been massive water consumption, and rising greenhouse gas emissions. India has to find a new model of development if the twin challenges of job creation and climate change are to be

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