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SDG round-up

Sustainability (or lack of) in the news: How biodiversity loss is jeopardizing the drugs of the future (with links) (The Guardian) Battle over emissions from shipping (The Guardian) Innovative environment approaches – trees on twitter (The Conversation) Yet another argument against GDP as a valid benchmark (The Conversation) Last chance for coral (IISD) Voices critical of COP26 (XR) UN chief calls crisis for fragile states (UN) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Clean environment now a human right

On 8th October, the UN passed 4 new and important resolutions. They address the right to development, the rights of indigenous peoples, the rights implications of the pandemic and for the first time: the Human Right to a Safe, Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment. The Human Rights Council thus recognizes the right to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment and encourages States to adopt policies for the enjoyment of the right to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment as appropriate, including with respect to biodiversity and ecosystems, and invites the General Assembly to consider the matter. You can read the resolution document here. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Car free Berlin?

An interesting article from The Guardian which is a good illustration of how climate/environmental problems are “wicked problems”. Most of us would agree that EVs are a good step away from combustion engines burning fossil fuels. Many of us would also be able to then say that renewable electricity to charge those vehicles is the next important step. But what about all the other problems around private cars for personal mobility? Resource use for manufacturing. The lack of circularity in car design. The air pollution from tyre wear. Congestion and the impacts of time loss. And so on. Hence the call by campaign group Berlin Autofrei to ban cars altogether from central Berlin. With many people enjoying lower traffic levels in the pandemic, this may get more support than before and certainly has many merits as amore radical yet doable approach to all the problems that come with personal car use. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

SDG round-up

Sustainability (or lack of) in the news: Debt issues around climate policies (The Guardian) CEO of Mars talks supply chain transformation (The Guardian) Global urban population exposure to extreme heat (PNAS) Are hydropanels the way of the future in water stressed areas? (Source) Report on historical responsibility for carbon emissions (Carbon Brief) Global Citizens Assembly to attend COP26 (GA) Persistent problem of fast fashion (Vogue Business)   . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

International Day of Rural Women 2021

Friday Oct 15 is International Day of Rural Women 2021 and is themed Building rural women’s resilience in the wake of COVID-19. As the UN page states, women have borne the brunt of pandemic impacts and been at the forefront of pandemic recovery. And rural women have often carried an even greater burden, especially in marginalized remote areas. In our SDG context, clearly addressing the needs of rural women falls under SDGs 5 and 10, bu, as with all our SDG consideration we must remember the interconnectivity. Helping rural women will also have a positive impact on SDGs 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, and 15. Rural women are a cornerstone of sustainable development. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Eco-anxiety on the rise

This excellent article in The Guardian highlights the rising sense of eco-anxiety being felt around the world, especially among the young. There is a paradoxical need to highlight all the environmental, social and economic problems the world is facing so that solutions can be sought and implemented which will at the same time focus our minds on the existential crisis we may be facing. Similarly, we have made great progress in recognizing and understanding mental health issues but face exacerbating poor mental health outcomes with all our reporting and awareness. But we have to face up to the fact that this is the only option for survival and take optimism from that. If we can see efforts being made to solve the problems we face then we can join in those efforts and be positive about the future. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

SDG round-up

Sustainability (or lack of) in the news: Good report from Energy Transitions Commission on action to try and revive Paris targets. (ETC) High fashion starting to become role models?? (The Guardian) Problems with educating public and improving perceptions (RTHK) Why is action on plastic taking so long? Example of conservative government (RTHK) Biophysical Boundaries Transgressed versus Social Thresholds Achieved by Nation (Leeds University) Critical thoughts on carbon footprints (Undark) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Planting a vision

The secret to rewilding success is about people, not trees. So says this article in The Guardian. We are getting to better understand that effective solutions to environmental issues need to recognize competing interests and seek to overcome/negate conflict before it becomes entrenched. We cannot simply demand that people prioritize the environment over their livelihoods and we need to remember that people’s ideas and attitudes to the countryside are deeply embedded and have been reinforced by lifetimes of imagery, language and common usage. The article covers the story of the Affric Highlands Scheme in Scotland and its ambitious aim to rewild 200,000 hectares with a key philosophy of “rewilding the people who live in it”…… . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading
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