Former two-time President of Chile, Michelle Bachelet, has been appointed as the seventh United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Bachelet, who held the office of Executive Director of UN Women between 2010 and 2013, is to replace Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, the current commissioner, who took on the role in...
By Annemarie Botzki, Climate Home News In September 2015, Shell’s San Pablo Bay oil pipeline burst near the Californian town of Tracy, contaminating the surrounding soil with 900 barrels of crude. Two months later, in November, Shell was conducting tests to fix the problem when the pipeline spilled again. Pipelines fail: it’s...
Vadim Sadovski / shutterstock Richard Betts, University of Exeter A new scientific paper proposing a scenario of unstoppable climate change has gone viral, thanks to its evocative description of a “Hothouse Earth”. Much of the media coverage suggests that we face an imminent and unavoidable extreme climate catastrophe. But as a...
Human Rights experts associated with the UN Human Rights Council has called on governments across the world to make sure that rights of indigenous people are protected even when they are forced to migrate to new areas. “In many parts of the world, indigenous peoples have become migrants because they...
According to a new report by London-based NGO Global Witness, 207 activists were killed in 2017, the highest total number since the group started tracking violence against “land and environmental defenders” around the world. Previous reports documented 185 murdered activists in 2015 and 200 in 2016. Latin America...
Cobaltite ore. Shutterstock Hywel Jones, Sheffield Hallam University What’s in your stuff? Most of us give no thought to the materials that make modern life possible. Yet technologies such as smart phones, electric vehicles, large screen TVs and green energy generation depend on a range of chemical elements that most people have...
By Neena Bhandari The Australian human rights commission has embarked on a project looking at the social risks and benefits of artificial intelligence (AI) — a technology whose implications experts say are also beginning to emerge in the developing world. Launched with a report published on 24 July, the project...
The Statistical Division of the United Nations and the World Bank has launched a new guide to help countries manage geospatial data that could help in their development needs. The guide, ‘Integrated Geospatial Information Framework’, would help especially low and middle-income countries to create national geospatial information management processes and...
Three-in-five babies, or 78 million, mostly born in low- and middle-income countries are not breastfed in the first hour of life, although it is highly important for the survival and health of newborns, the UN Children’s Fund’s (UNICEF) has said on the eve of the world breastfeeding week. “When it comes to...
By Svea Closser In a rapidly urbanizing sector of Karachi, Pakistan, dry and dusty hills rise up from the city below. Migrants to the area, many of them escaping violence and drone attacks along the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, have built homes in rows on the steep hillsides. In...

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