Category Archives: News

Nearly two dozen of the world’s most successful business leaders, entrepreneurs, and venture capitalists will invest up to $1 billion in a fund led by Microsoft-co-founder Bill Gates that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to almost zero by financing emerging clean energy technology.

The Breakthrough Energy Ventures Fund includes John Doerr, chairman of venture firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Alibaba founder Jack Ma, Khosla Ventures founder Vinod Khosla, Laura and John Arnold Foundation co-chair and former energy hedge fund manager John Arnold, Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, and SAP co-founder Hasso Plattner.

“I am honored to work along with these investors to build on the powerful foundation of public investment in basic research,” BEV chairman Bill Gates said in a statement Sunday night. “Our goal is to build companies that will help deliver the next generation of reliable, affordable, and emissions-free energy to the world.”

Originally published on the FORTUNE website.

Click here for the full story

Originally published on the WRI website. As India’s summer intensifies, many states are already in the midst of a drought—and the hottest days have yet to arrive. At the same time, water-intensive agriculture, rapid urban expansion, increases in industrial activity and growing energy production are driving the country’s water demand upward. More than half of India is now considered severely water stressed.

Part of the problem is that India still manages its water as an infinite resource on a linear model of withdrawal, consumption and disposal. But a more efficient management model is to look at water from a “circular economy” perspective. Water’s usability doesn’t need to end once it washes down the drain. Rather, we can see industrial and domestic wastewater as a valuable resource from which usable water, nutrients and even renewable energy can be extracted.

Click here for the full story

Originally published on the WRI website. It’s no secret that the world’s need for energy is increasing—but what many don’t realize is that a promising potential energy source is being flushed down our toilets every day. Increasingly, this wastewater—as well as other organic waste from sources like gardens and kitchens—is being used to heat homes, provide electricity, and even power cars.

This year’s World Water Day focuses on the problems and possibilities posed by wastewater. Wastewater is water contaminated with human, agricultural, or industrial wastes. While typically seen as a nuisance, the organic matter contained in wastewater from our sewage systems (commonly known as “sludge”) can become a valuable resource with sludge-to-energy systems.

Click here to learn more

A video on Sustainable Land Management in Africa looks at the use of parkland agroforestry as part of effective and sustainable integrated farming.

TAGS
COUNTRIES

A video on the series on Sustainable Land Management in Africa looks at the interactions between farmers and pastoralists in Mali, for the benefit of the environment and sustainability of scarce resources. Click here to watch the video

TAGS
COUNTRIES

 

Over the last decade World Vision and partners have been working very hard to introduce Farmer Manager Natural Regeneration (FMNR) wherever a receptive ear can be found. Uptake generally follows the following pattern: First there is disbelief that this low cost, simple technique can be beneficial. Deep-seated paradigms such as “trees are bad for crops, trees grow too slowly and indigenous trees have no value” are challenged and so there is some push-back.

An enlightened few decide to pilot FMNR on a small scale. Within a short period, positive changes are self-evident; the landscape looks greener and now, with trees, is more pleasing to the eye. By thinning and pruning thorn tree thickets, light is allowed through to stimulate grass growth, and the trees themselves produce fodder. Improved habitat for natural predators results in fewer insect pests. Soil fertility increases. With lower temperatures and higher soil moisture holding capacity, when drought does occur, it has less impact.

As a result of these benefits, farmers are reporting more productive farmland, higher incomes, school fees are paid on time and without stress. Children are spending more time in school and, along with their mothers, are spending less time foraging for firewood. Hope for a bright future is being restored. Confidence is growing and farmers are investing more in agriculture, because it pays to do so and because the impact of drought and flood are reduced, there are less risks – allowing for new bee hives, improved seed, fruit trees, hay making and storage facilities. Incomes increase in line with these investments.

Click here for the full story