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Climate Smart Agriculture: Clever name, Losing game?

With the impacts of climate change being felt on food systems around the world, and the contribution of agriculture to global emissions also gaining attention, agriculture is one of the issues at the heart of climate change concerns. The concept of ‘Climate Smart Agriculture’ was developed by the FAO and the World Bank. The concept of ‘Climate Smart Agriculture’ was developed by the FAO and the World Bank, claiming that ‘triple wins’ in agriculture could be achieved in mitigation (reducing greenhouse gas emissions), adaptation (supporting crops to grow in changing climate conditions), and increasing crop yields. But there is growing confusion and debate over what the term really means, what it can achieve, what is new about it, and whether it really can benefit food systems in the face of climate change.

Increasingly, civil society and farmer organisations are expressing concerns that the term can be used to green-wash agricultural practices that will harm future food production, such as industrial agriculture practices or soil carbon offsetting.

Read the Action Aid Report

 
Is Globalization making a U-turn?

Not long ago, executives at the Dutch multinational Royal DSM, a globe-girdling maker of nutritional supplements and high-tech materials, used to require a battery of internal studies to decide where to do a deal or locate a new manufacturing plant.

But today, “we won’t even do the study,” Stephan B. Tanda, the managing board member with responsibility for the Americas, told me. “It’s clear it will be the United States.”

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US Wealth Report 2014

Built from the World Wealth Report 2014 and based on our Global HNW Insights Survey with over 1,000 HNWI responses across the U.S., the report sheds light on the ongoing U.S. economic recovery and its impact on the record wealth growth. The report also explores increased trust and confidence levels of U.S. HNWIs.

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Stop corporate takeover of climate summit

Invitation to sign on statement to denounce corporate takeover of Climate Summit

We call upon all fellow social movements, peoples organizations and environmental and climate justice movements to sign on this statement and join us in this call to action.

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Migration's Hall of Mirror

On both sides of the Atlantic, anti-immigrant politics are undermining democracies and damaging lives. Far-right nationalist parties are gaining traction in Europe, while millions of undocumented migrants suffer in the shadows. In the United States, President Barack Obama, concerned about his party’s ability to retain control of the Senate, has decided to put off immigration reform until after the election in November.

Yet that may be the wrong approach. A new public-opinion survey by the German Marshall Fund (GMF) reveals that anti-immigrant sentiment stems largely from misinformation, not entrenched animus.

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Africa's Dividing Farmland A Threat to Food Security

When Kiprui Kibet pictures his future as a maize farmer in the fertile Uasin Gishu county in Kenya’s Rift Valley region, all he sees is the ever-decreasing plot of land that he has to farm on.

“I used to farm on 40 hectares but now I only have 0.8 hectares. My father had 10 sons and we all wanted to own a piece of the farmland. Subdivision … ate into the actual farmland,” Kibet tells IPS. “From 3,200 bags a harvest, now I only produce 20 bags, at times even less.”

Experts say that Africa’s extensive land subdivision is emerging as a significant threat to food security.

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The cost of corruption

“Whenever corruption is allowed to thrive, it inhibits private investment, reduces economic growth, increases the cost of doing business, and can lead to political instability. But in developing countries, corruption is a killer,” a report on the findings, released Wednesday, states.

“When governments are deprived of their own resources to invest in health care, food security or essential infrastructure, it costs lives, and the biggest toll is on children.”

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Global Governance and Policy Space for Development

Unctad's new 'Trade and Development Report has just been published.

The Report highlights that, six years after the onset of the global economic and financial crisis, the world economy has not yet established a new sustainable growth regime. With an expected growth between 2.5 and 3 per cent in 2014, the recovery of global output remains weak. Furthermore, the policies supporting the recovery are frequently inadequate, as they do not address the rise of income inequality, the steady erosion of policy space along with the diminishing economic role of governments and the primacy of the financial sector of the economy, which are the root causes of the crisis of 2008. Putting the world economy on the path of sustainable growth requires strengthening domestic and regional demand, with a reliance on better income distribution rather than new financial bubbles.

 
Human Rights and Gender Equality Vague in Post-2015 Agenda

With the United Nations’ post-2015 development agenda currently under discussion, civil society actors in Europe are calling for a firmer stance on human rights and gender equality, including control of assets by women.

“The SDGs are a unique opportunity for us. The eradication of extreme poverty is within our grasp. But we still face very major challenges. Business as usual is not an option,” Seamus Jeffreson, Director of Concord, the European platform for non-governmental development organisations, told at a meeting in Brussels with the European Parliament Committee on Development on September 3.

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UN votes to enact process bankruptcy treaty and stop vulture funds

The UN General Assembly passed a historic resolution to begin treaty negotiations to enact a global bankruptcy process and stop predatory hedge funds.

The resolution passed by a super-majority vote of 124-11 with 41 abstentions. The US voted no along with 10 other countries.

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Sensational new study on FTT revenues in Germany

The German finance ministry has released a study on the expected revenues of the FTT, written by Copenhagen Economics.

The study has received a very large echo in the German mainstream media today making the headline for instance in the Süddeutsche Zeitung (biggest national daily).

The main message is, that Germany could expect at least 17,5 bn. Euro revenues, which is much more than has been discussed previously.

 

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