Earth Matters Around the Web

800px-Oasis_de_Tergit_(10)A water well in the Adrar region of Mauritania – photo via Wikimedia Commons

There is no doubt that issues of water will be defining in the near future. In the face of climate change and growing demands on limited resources, how can we be responsible and still support economic growth? Rapidly growing African countries are often leading these discussions, as was seen this week in news stories from around the internet:

  • In opening remarks at this week’s thematic debate on Sustainable Development and Climate Change: Practical Solutions in the Energy-Water Nexus, U.N. General Assembly President Vuk Jeremic called for thoughtful responses to the worldwide paramount charges of sustainable growth with equitable economic development.
  • The Democratic Republic of Congo is moving forward with plans for the construction of the Grand Inga on the Congo River, which would, when completed, be the largest hydroelectric plant in the world. The plant is expected to provide a massive source of renewable energy for the growing country and much of the rest of southern Africa.
  • Women in Mauritania, with the help of the Mauritanian Red Crescent Society and International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), have responded to drought conditions by working to promote and nurture more drought-resistant crops and work toward nationwide food security.

Learn more about the U.N.’s recent calls for environmental sustainability coupled with worldwide economic development in the wake of Rio+20, the conference that sparked this week’s thematic debate on Practical Solutions in the Energy-Water Nexus.


Earth Matters Around the Web

ImageA grey whale surfaces in its more typical habitat in the Pacific – photo via Wikimedia Commons

All sorts of creatures made headlines this week – as pests, as environmental portents, and even as protein:

  • Billions of locusts have descended on Madagascar, prompting the need for swift action for the island’s agriculture and a discussion about how to be better prepared in the future. Learn more – and watch the amazing video – here.
  • A grey whale sparked surprise and excitement when spotted off the coast of Namibia, the first one ever recorded south the equator. But is the sighting evidence of the much-hunted whale’s resurgence, or a result of climate change in our oceans?
  • A report released this week by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization had some unusual advice: Eat more bugs. The findings suggest that numerous, adaptable, and surprisingly nutrient-filled insects could help solve food insecurity. Learn more in the report below and here – along with some tasty suggestions!