Category Archives: News

A lot has happened since countries met in Paris in 2015 and agreed on an accord to combat climate change. So far, more than 140 countries have ratified or otherwise joined the Paris Agreement, representing more than 80 percent of global emissions. Several major economies, including Canada, Germany and Mexico, have also developed long-term plans to decarbonize their economies.

As countries implement their targets and policies and develop more detailed pathways to reduce their emissions, it’s important to fully understand our global emissions picture and how it has changed over time. WRI recently updated its CAIT Climate Data Explorer on the world’s top greenhouse gas-emitting countries with the latest global data available (2013). Here’s an interactive chart to explore it by country and by economic sector, showing how the top emitters have changed in recent years.

Originally published on the WRI website.


The World Food Programme has designed an interactive website that will allow users to explore different scenarios of global greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation to climate change, and how this could change the geography of food insecurity in developing and least developed countries. By altering the levels of future global greenhouse gas emissions and/or the levels of adaptation, you can see how vulnerability to food insecurity changes over time, and compare and contrast these different future scenarios with each other and the present day.

Click here to view the website

Deforestation is a global problem, more so in the developing and the underdeveloped world, thanks to ineffective laws and corrupt administrations in some parts of the world. But help is at hand. Now, when a new road appears in the dense forests of Peru, or a patch of forest is felled Malaysia, anyone with an Internet connection can be alerted of the loss.

A Landsat-based alert system, developed by the World Resources Institute as part of its Global Forest Watch network, gives near-weekly alerts for changes smaller in size than a football field. The tool uses imagery from Landsat 7 and 8 to monitor forests across the world every eight days. That revisit time, or data cadence, together with Landsat’s 30 meter spatial resolution, allows land managers to know when small incursions into forests are being made — in time to respond before further damage is done.

Originally published on the Geospatial Website .

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The facts are startling. More than 2 billion people (CDC, 2015) worldwide suffer from micronutrient deficiency – 795 million (FAO, 2015) of whom are undernourished. The challenge to nutritiously and securely feed the growing population is further exacerbated by climate change which has led to extreme weather patterns and decreasing crop yields. With more than 10% of the world’s population living on less than US$1.90 per day (World Bank, 2016), the imperative to transform food systems in a way that simultaneously improves lives, livelihoods and the condition of natural resources is clear.

Climate change presents a formidable challenge as one of the biggest constraints to improving food systems, food security and poverty alleviation around the world, especially for the world’s most vulnerable people. The impacts of climate change and poverty are closely interconnected (Bager, CCAFS) as climate change impacts land availability, rainfall, and disease. With poor people disproportionately dependent on rainfed agriculture for their livelihoods, these communities are thus especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The increasing frequency and intensity of climatic shocks impinges on their ability to sell an agricultural surplus, meaning less reinvestment in their farms and other livelihood activities, and less ability to purchase a nourishing diet.

The breakthrough Paris Climate Agreement of 2015, while far from perfect, represented an historic and ambitious new phase for climate action, and opened a door for the agricultural sector to take a leading role.

“We recognize that the agricultural sector has a key role to play in increasing resilience to climate shocks. Food security, food production, human rights, gender, ecosystems and biodiversity were all explicitly recognized in the Paris agreement and these are issues at the core of our work,” according to Elwyn Grainger-Jones, Executive Director of the CGIAR System Organization.

Across Africa, Asia and Latin America, CGIAR and its partners are developing climate-smart technologies to help farmers adapt to climate change as well as mitigate agriculture’s contribution to climate change.  The CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) brings together the expertise in agricultural, environmental and social sciences to identify and address this nexus between agriculture and climate change. Innovations such as drought tolerant crops, agricultural insurance schemes and management practices for reducing greenhouse gas emissions are just a few of the technologies being developed by CGIAR.

Originally published on the CGIAR website.

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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.

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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.

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