Archive for ‘Uncategorized’


The Implacable Desertification of Planet Earth

Human Wrongs Watch

By Baher Kamal*

Yet another under-reported human-made disaster: the relentless desertification of Planet Earth that may make uninhabitable some regions like the Middle East, endanger food security, aggravate climate crisis, and force more and more millions of people to flee.


Unsplash/Photo by Brad Helmink@booradley1234

But before listing the main causes and consequences of this mounting threat, you should know that, according to the UN, desertification does not refer to the expansion of deserts, but rather the degradation of land in arid, semi-arid and dry sub-humid areas, primarily as a result of human activities and climatic variations.

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“As Voices for the Planet Grow Louder, We Must Get the Job Done”

By Inger Andersen, Executive Director, UN Environment*

There is something in the air. I am not talking about pollution or greenhouse gas emissions. I am talking about the change humanity needs to address these and other environmental challenges, which have placed our planet and societies in imminent peril.


Inger Andersen

We can all sense this change: in our workplaces and schools, in our cities and communities, in the boardroom and in the media, in parliaments and city councils, in laboratories and business incubators.

People from all corners of the world are demanding a fundamental redesign of how we – as individuals and as a society – interact with the planet.

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World Elder Abuse Awareness Day – Key Facts

Human Wrongs Watch

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Carbon Offsets Are Not Our Get-Out-of-Jail Free Card

10 June 2019 (UN Environment)*The era of carbon offsets is drawing to a close. Buying carbon credits in exchange for a clean conscience while you carry on flying, buying diesel cars and powering your home with fossil fuels is no longer acceptable or widely accepted.


carbon offsets 1 Latvian pine forest, Wikipedia

Photo by Wikipedia (from UN Environment).

Carbon credits are increasingly coming under fire for essentially allowing some to continue on their polluting ways while the rest of us are left scrambling to contain the climate crisis.

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Around 115 Million Boys and Men Were Married as Children, 23 Million of Them Before the Age of 15; ‘We Can End this Violation’ – UNICEF

6 June 2019 — An estimated 115 million boys and men around the world were married as children, 23 million of them before the age of 15, according to the first-ever analysis on child grooms, launched on Friday by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).*

UNICEF/Kiran Panday | Adolescents in Gujara Municipality of Rautahat District in Nepal perform a skit on child marriage as part of UNFPA-UNICEF Global Programme on Ending Child Marriage.
Using data from 82 countries, the in-depth study brings the overall number estimated child marriages to 765 million, UNICEF revealed. “Marriage steals childhood”, said Executive Director Henrietta Fore.

World Bank Downgrades Global Growth Forecasts, Poorest Countries Hardest Hit

The World Bank has lowered its expectations of global economic growth for this year in a new report. It says that, although the picture for poorer countries is expected to stabilize in 2020, economic momentum remains weak.

World Bank/Rob Beechey | Dar es Salaam Port, Tanzania.
The risks to emerging and developing economies include rising trade barriers, slow investment, and economic slowdowns in richer countries.

Glaciers Are Melting and Air Pollution Is the Cause

Human Wrongs Watch

4 June 2019 (UN Environment)*Deep inside the layers of ice sitting atop the Andes Mountains in Peru is evidence of the earliest human-caused air pollution. Within the core of the 1,200-year-old Quelccaya Ice Cap, scientists have found traces of lead and mercury, the chemicals used after the Spanish occupation, in the silver mines of Potosi, Bolivia.



 Photo by Willian Justen de Vasconcellos/Unsplash



‘Bicycle Kingdom’ Makes a Comeback, as China Seeks Solutions to Tackle Air Pollution Crisis

Human Wrongs Watch

3 June 2019 — Cars have replaced bicycles as the primary means of transport in many Chinese cities but, with air pollution a major problem for the country, the bike is making a comeback, thanks to digital technology, and some 21st Century thinking.

Yimin Feng | Youth riding share bikes along the UNESCO World Heritage Site West Lake in Hangzhou, China.

In Bangladesh, Women’s Right to Clean Air Starts in the Kitchen

22 May 2019 (UN Environment)*  — When the sun’s first rays hit the green paddy fields in Ghagotpada in northern Bangladesh, fifty-year-old Mafruha is already hard at work in her kitchen. In this impoverished village, her home is a haven, always teeming with other women. While they mingle, Mafruha is whipping up delicacies for her visitors.


Photo by UN Environment/ Prashanthi Subramaniam

Travelling to Ghagotpada, one cannot miss the jarring sight of numerous brick kilns dotting the horizon. As the kilns noisily churn out harmful gases, polluting the air around them, the cramped kitchens of Ghagotpada fill up with smoke. The country is confronting a dire air pollution problem, with air quality index rankings pegging Dhaka as the third most polluted city in the world.

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What Lies Behind the Race toward War with Iran?

Human Wrongs Watch

By William R. Polk – TRANSCEND Media Service*

Despite appearances of random, off-the-cuff decisions, rendered on tweets and without, or even in opposition to, the advice of foreign policy specialists, I am going to posit a rationale behind the warlike actions and pronouncements of Messrs. Trump, Bolton and Pompeo.


William R. Polk

To do so, I will try to put all the scattered and sometimes conflicting pieces together. I begin by acknowledging the issue that has attracted most attention. That is the nuclear danger. While it figures in all the media accounts, I put it aside for two reasons:

First, Iran has no nuclear weapons as every reasonably well-informed person in government and among the general population knows.

To acquire them in the foreseeable future, Iran would have to buy them from an existing nuclear power. Nuclear capable powers have not been known to put their weapons on the market.

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