Archive for April 5th, 2017

05/04/2017

Without the Oceans, You Wouldn’t Exist

Human Wrongs Watch

By Frida Bengtsson*

Greenpeace All life on Earth comes from the oceans… and they’re still looking after us today.

Des, Surf Rescue Team at Manly Beach. © Tom Allen/ Greenpeace

Des, surf rescue team at Manly beach, Sydney, Australia, 2016 | Greenpeace

The oceans have protected us from the worst impacts of global warming. Our oceans have trapped 90% of the extra heat caused by greenhouse gas emissions over the last sixty years.

20,000 years ago the world was just over 4°C colder on average than today, and a large part of North America was buried kilometres-deep in ice. Without the oceans absorbing the man-made heat of the past half century, we would have seen the Earth warm by an average of 36°C. Even disaster movies haven’t considered anything this devastating.

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05/04/2017

Climate Change Solutions Can’t Wait for U.S. Leadership

Human Wrongs Watch

By Desmond Brown*

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Apr 4 2017 (IPS) – From tourism-dependent nations like Barbados to those rich with natural resources like Guyana, climate change poses one of the biggest challenges for the countries of the Caribbean.

President of the Caribbean Development Bank Dr. Warren Smith says the bank is giving high priority to addressing the fallout from climate change in the region. Credit: Desmond Brown/IPS

President of the Caribbean Development Bank Dr. Warren Smith says the bank is giving high priority to addressing the fallout from climate change in the region. Credit: Desmond Brown/IPS

Nearly all of these countries are vulnerable to natural events like hurricanes.

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05/04/2017

US Funding Cuts to UN Population Agency Could Have ‘Devastating Effects’ on Vulnerable Women and Girls Health

Human Wrongs Watch

UN Secretary-General António Guterres on 4 April 2017 voiced deep regret at the decision by the United States to cut financial support for the United Nations population agency, stating that the announcement is based on a misinterpretation of the UN agency’s work.

A UNFPA-supported health centre 400 kilometers southwest of Uganda’s capital Kampala, includes a ward where women in their final stages of pregnancy can remain comfortably and avoid arduous travel once labour begins. Photo: UNFPA/Omar Gharzeddine

The Secretary-General “believes that the decision is based on an inaccurate perception of the nature and importance of the work of UNFPA,” the spokesperson said referring to the acronym for the UN Population Fund.

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05/04/2017

Plastic No More… Also in Kenya

Human Wrongs Watch

By Baher Kamal*

ROME, Apr 4 2017 (IPS) Good news: Kenya has just joined the commitment of other 10 countries to address major plastic pollution by decreeing a ban on the use, manufacture and import of all plastic bags, to take effect in six months.

Plastic bags are also a major contributor to the 8 million tonnes of plastic dumped in the sea every year. Credit: UNEP

Plastic bags are also a major contributor to the 8 million tonnes of plastic dumped in the sea every year. Credit: UNEP

The Kenyan decision comes three weeks after the UN declared “war on plastic” through its new UN Clean Seas initiative, launched on at the Economist World Ocean Summit in Bali (February 22-24, 2017).

The initiative’s campaign urges governments to pass plastic reduction policies; industry to minimise plastic packaging and redesign products; and consumers to change their throwaway habits before irreversible damage is done to our seas.

“Kenya is taking decisive action to remove an ugly stain on its outstanding natural beauty,” Erik Solheim, Head of UN Environment Programme (UNEP) commented on the Nairobi government’s decision.

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