Climate Change

Take action on air pollution to save lives, and the planet, urges UN chief

In a message to mark World Environment Day, celebrated on Wednesday, UN Secretary-General António Guterres has emphasized the link between worsening levels of air pollution and the climate crisis.

Tuesday’s Daily Brief: Bicycles for the environment, new leader for the UN General Assembly, UN values, Ebola, Syria and Libya

This Tuesday, we cover: Bicycles in China; a new President elected for the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, to start in September; vital food crops destroyed in Syria; migrants and refugees in Libya’s detention centres; Ebola in the Democratic Republic of the Congo surpasses 2,000 cases; and the UN deputy chief in London pushes for UN values.

‘Bicycle Kingdom’ makes a comeback, as China seeks solutions to tackle air pollution crisis

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.

Pedal power makes ‘positive impact on climate’, urges UN on World Bicycle Day

The simple, affordable, and environmentally friendly bicycle is not just a means of transportation, but also “a tool for development”, the United Nations said in a message on Monday commemorating World Bicycle Day.

FROM THE FIELD: Watering the parched farmland of São Tomé and Príncipe

Farmers on the island of São Tomé and Príncipe, off the western coast Africa, are being supported by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) to become more resilient in the face of climate fluctuations which have left the land parched and farmers without an income. 

With a premature death every five seconds, air pollution is violation of human rights, says UN expert

An independent UN expert said on Monday that the failure of governments across the world to ensure clear air, constitutes a “violation of the rights to life, health and well-being, as well as the right to live in a healthy environment.”

From philanthropy to profit: how clean energy is kickstarting sustainable development in East Africa

Until recently, Namacurra district, in the Zambezia province of Mozambique, some 1,500 km from the capital Maputo, did not have any basic services – such as schools, health centres, or even energy – connecting the region to the electricity grid would be extremely time-consuming, and costly. But a new UN-backed clean energy initiative looks set to change the outlook for Namacurra, and, within a matter of months, kickstart sustainable development for the benefit of the thousands of people, relocated to the area following the devastating rains of 2015, and it could herald an improved outlook for other economically disadvantaged parts of Africa.

Mozambique: UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Orlando Bloom meets the child cyclone survivors who’ve lost everything

Visiting storm-ravaged Mozambique, UN Children’s Fund Goodwill Ambassador Orlando Bloom, listened to devastating stories of children who lost everything in Cyclone Idai, while observing on Thursday that UNICEF-built safe spaces have given them “a sense of normality”.

Wednesday’s Daily Brief: #NoTobacco Day, China’s economy, family farming, #ClimateAction

This Wednesday, we cover: the dangers of smoking for World No Tobacco Day; China’s creative economy; sustainability through family farming, floating cities and #ClimateAction.

‘Save Tuvalu; save the world’; UN chief echoes rallying cry from front lines of global climate emergency

Further inaction on climate change is “simply not an option”, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said on Wednesday in an opinion piece where he called for “rapid and deep change in how we do business, generate power, build cities and feed the world.”