Environment

Environment
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Sri Lanka’s worst drought in 40 years will leave lasting impact

Sri Lanka is in the midst of its worst drought in decades. Rain shortages since October have created a humanitarian and economic crisis that is now affecting more than 1.2 million people. More than 900,000 people are in “urgent need of food assistance,” while 80,000 of them may need “urgent life-saving support,” according to a March 7 draft assessment acquired by IRIN.

Environment
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Investors pour $25 million into better water and sanitation in Latin America

Investors are pouring $25 million into an initiative to improve access to water and sanitation in some of the poorest countries of Latin America. The initial investment was announced over the weekend by the FEMSA Foundation, Coca-Cola Latin America, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the One Drop Foundation – an organization founded by the creator of Cirque du Soleil, Guy Laliberté.

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Pollution kills 1.7 million young children every year, says WHO

More than a quarter of the deaths of young children every year are preventable by reducing pollution, World Health Organization (WHO) officials said on Monday. According to two new reports, 1.7 million children under 5 years old die every year from environmental risks, including “indoor and outdoor air pollution, second-hand smoke, unsafe water, lack of sanitation and inadequate hygiene.”

Environment
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Quality seeds are available, but not for world’s poorest farmers

Experts met at a conference this week to address the urgent need to make quality seeds more accessible and affordable for poor farmers across the developing world. The conference, hosted by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in Washington, D.C., was the first to bring together donors, USAID, major private sector seed companies, agriculture experts, NGOs, university and other actors to directly address the problem.

Environment
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China to reallocate 500,000 coal, steel jobs as Trump promises revival

In his first speech to Congress last night, President Donald Trump reiterated his promise to roll back environmental regulations that, in his words, “threaten the future and livelihood of our great coal miners.” But across the Pacific, Trump’s great economic rival and largest coal producer in the world, China, announced a move in the opposite direction.

Environment
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Severe winter ‘dzud’ continues to ravage Mongolia

An extreme weather phenomenon in Mongolia that is expected to occur only about once a decade is now threatening the lives and livelihoods of herders for the second winter in a row. The a severe winter following a summer drought – called dzud – has created “an unfolding humanitarian crisis,” according the latest U.N. update, with more than 157,000 people affected across 17 out of 21 provinces.

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Tanzanian startup turns urban waste into ‘plastic lumber’

A young Tanzanian entrepreneur is turning the country’s mounting plastic waste into “lumber” to help meet demand for housing in its growing cities, in an effort to reduce depletion of forests. Christian Mwijage decided he could tackle those problems in one go – by turning discarded plastic bottles into building materials that can be used instead of wood.

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