Climate Change

Shining a light on sustainable power: how clean energy is helping to improve camps for displaced people

Hauwa, from Borno State in north-eastern Nigeria, fled her home village of Adamari with her husband and four children in March, when violence struck. Now, she is in the relative safety of a UN-run camp but, with little electricity available at night, lighting is scarce, and darkness can mean danger. However, thanks to a solar-energy initiative from the UN migration agency IOM, that is beginning to change.

Promoting gender equality a ‘crucial contribution’ in effort to restore, protect our planet’s oceans

Women are engaged in all aspects of interaction with our ocean, yet their voices are often missing at the decision-making level, the head of the United Nations cultural agency said on World Oceans Day, emphasizing that “we must ensure diversity and gender inclusiveness at all levels” to set a balanced course for humanity and foster innovative solutions for the ocean.

FROM THE FIELD: Balancing Morocco’s indigenous culture and conservation

The delicate balance between indigenous farming practices and conservation in Morocco is under threat, but according to the UN, local communities in the Western High Atlas Mountains are finding ways to preserve traditions and still make a living from the land. 

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.