In one of its few ambitious gestures, the agreement approved by world leaders at Friday’s conclusion of the Rio+20 conference commits their support to the goal that everyone should have access to modern energy.
Pressure builds on Rio+20 to target energy access for all
UN leaders, business chiefs, NGO activists and celebrities have joined forces in Rio de Janeiro in a concerted endeavour to assist 1.4 billion people around the world with no access to electricity and 2.7 billion with unsafe cooking stoves.
Scientists warn that sustainable development is not enough
The global science profession is calling on nation states to accept new responsibilities for planetary stewardship that are more demanding than envisaged by the landmark UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) coming up in June.
Scientists welcome Anthropocene with less science, more solutions
The world’s leading earth scientists have been summoned to a London conference in a last ditch attempt to influence the outcome of the UN summit on the future of people and the planet in Rio de Janeiro in June.
Uganda tears up UN deforestation script
The decision by President Yoweri Museveni to convert one quarter of Uganda’s Mabira Forest into a sugarcane plantation will bolster those environmentalists who argue that UN plans for protecting the world’s forests are fundamentally flawed.
USAID program charged with seed theft in India
A genetically-modified food project funded by the US Agency for International Development faces legal action for bio-piracy offences. The National Biodiversity Authority of India has published its decision to allow the case to proceed.
Anxious Africa awaits fallout from US downgrade
Recent years of encouraging economic performance in sub-Saharan Africa could unravel in the aftermath of the US credit rating downgrade. A flagging world economy might drag down commodity prices, dismantling the foundation of Africa’s recovery.
Madagascar at mercy of neo-colonial fishing plunder
A UN human rights mission to Madagascar has alleged that European and Asian exploitation of the island’s fishing grounds is comparable to the pillage of African resources by 19th century imperialists.
Vandana Shiva calls for end to Indian seed poker
The Indian scientist and environmental activist, Dr Vandana Shiva, has taunted the world’s major biotechnology companies for adopting crop seed research methods which require no more skills than betting in a lottery.
Prepare for personal carbon rations, says UN report
One of the UN’s most influential annual reports warns that personal energy rationing in richer countries is a necessary component of any coherent global strategy for sustainable development. American citizens might be capped at less than one sixth of their current carbon consumption by 2050.