2018/07/26: almost 4.5 million people die each year from health problems caused by inhaling indoor smoke generated by burning solid fuel. Worldwide, 38 percent of the population – 2.7 billion people – cook with wood collected unsustainably from forest and farm landscapes.
In sub-Saharan Africa, the backbreaking process of gathering firewood by hand – often by women and girls – and carrying it home provides the main source of fuel for cooking and heating.
Although liquid fuels, solar energy and hydropower could offer possible alternatives, high costs, infrastructure shortcomings and local habits make sustainable use of wood fuel, including firewood and charcoal, a more viable option in the region.
As a result, researchers at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and the Wangari Maathai Institute (WMI) in Nairobi, Royal Institute of Technology, Lund University, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, Center for International Forestry Research are trying to find healthier, more efficient energy conversion technologies that emit less pollution and simultaneously produce biochar (biomass charcoal) for soil amendment to improve plant growth and health.
Not only is it strenuous work to gather wood, it detracts women from other pursuits such as agriculture or operating small businesses to generate income,” said Njenga. “Women spend about one working day per week in collecting firewood from forests. This implies that women are essentially living on a 20 percent pay cut as their productive days in a week are normally five as they spend Saturdays attending to domestic chores.”
2018/08/28: if the majority of [the poorest!] people already lives in cities, but the United Nations, World Bank, European Union and the likes are still told that most poor people still live in rural settings, a lot of development money will be spent in the wrong place, period.
2015/12/02: circular economy will boost the EU's competitiveness by protecting businesses against scarcity of resources and volatile prices, helping to create new business opportunities and innovative, more efficient ways of producing and consuming.
It will create local jobs at all skills levels and opportunities for social integration and cohesion. At the same time, it will save energy and help avoid the irreversible damages caused by using up resources at a rate that exceeds the Earth's capacity to renew them in terms of climate and biodiversity, air, soil and water pollution.
Action on the circular economy therefore ties in closely with key EU priorities
We need to invest in finding sustainable and scalable alternatives to plastic. Even marine plastic is in large part a fishing issue: 46% of the Great Pacific garbage patch is composed of discarded nets,
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Customers say they want brands to be more environmentally conscious - but eco-friendly marketing campaigns fall flat.
Open source sustainability has been nothing short of an oxymoron. Engineers around the world pour their sweat and frankly, their hearts into these passion projects that undergird all software in the modern internet economy. In exchange, they ask for nothing in return except for recognition and help
Da oltre 70 anni i Paesi francofoni africani usano il franco CFA, moneta imposta a suo tempo dagli ex colonizzatori. Sulla base di alcune regole applicate al cambio e alle operazioni finanziarie tale moneta avvantaggia l'economia francese - commerci e multinazionali - più che quelle africane. Una delle regole è che il 50% delle riserve di cambio dei Paesi della zona franco devono essere depositate su un conto della Banca di Francia, a Parigi, conto che si stima ammontare a 10 miliardi di euro. A nulla finora sono valse proteste e critiche. L'attivismo anti-CFA è soprattutto quello di economisti e intellettuali africani, mentre la maggior parte dei capi di Stato rimane in bilico su posizioni di comodo.
Fablabs, makerspaces, emerging global knowledge commons... These are but some of the outcomes of a growing movement that champions globally-sourced designs for local economic activity. Its core idea is simple: local ownership of the means to produce basic manufactures and services can change our economic paradigm, making our cities self-sufficient and help the planet.
The current state of worldwide urban development is depressing. We are not moving towards environmentally sustainable design and reduced consumption quickly enough. There have been dire warnings about
How far do you have to go to get water? If you simply have to walk into the bathroom or kitchen, you're one of the luckiest people in the world. In developing countries, getting water involves walking an average of three miles round trip, carrying a jug weighing about 40 pounds on the way back.
Jamadda, l'ecovillaggio in Giamaica nato dal sogno di un'italiana, è diventato una delle più rilevanti avanguardie del cambiamento di tutta l'isola.
'The Real Circular Economy' studies how relocalising production with not-for-profit business models helps build resilient and prosperous societies
2016/12/21: Professor Maurie Cohen emphasizes that advancing toward a post-consumer future is a very challenging venture whose outcome is by no means clear.
Showerloop is a water filtration and purification system that recycles shower water in real time allowing you to shower with hot water for a long time but only use 10 liters of water per shower (normal shower = ~6-10l/min) and a fraction of the energy (around one tenth) compared to a normal shower. The device can be installed inside or outside of a shower stall or bathtub.
Reading the previous post you may have thought: Okay, so perma-circularity is about circularity and permanence -- about recycling, reusing, re-manufacturing, repairing, and reducing -- but what does it consist in? Isn't it some sort of neo-primitivist pipe dream? Do we really need to reduce? Why have zero or near-zero growth? Surely engineers nowadays are