Talking Points on Climate Change and the Environment
Watch eloquent short video by Archbishop Desmond Tutu
"The destruction of the earth’s environment
is the human rights challenge of our time."
Global warming and environmental damage from the
fossil-fuel industry already affect all of us, although responsibility
lies primarily with the rich industrialized countries and the newly
industrializing powers. Africa is the most vulnerable continent,
but extreme weather and sea-level rise have hit New Orleans and
New Jersey as well as Lagos.
When industries make decisions based on short-term profits,
encouraged by government subsidies to established industries, they
systematically discount damages from "externalities." Visible
results include the devastation of oil-producing areas in the
Niger Delta and of coal-producing areas, whether in South Africa or West Virginia.
The longer-term consequences in rising temperatures and more
extreme weather will be even more devastating.
Action to combat climate change depends in part on decisions made in international
conferences, where the primary obstacles to action are
the rich countries and the newly industrializing powers. But
efforts at many other levels are also of decisive importance.
Fossil-fuel divestment campaigns, as they grow and multiply,
can affect investment choices. So can technological innovation.
Notably, clean energy can already be more cost-effective than large-scale fossil fuel plants
in supplying distributed energy access to Africa.
install off-grid solar panels in Kirambo, Rwanda.
May 13, 2016 Mozambique: Debt Crisis & the Panama Papers
The paragraph that originally appeared here, citing AIM, and the
cited article from AIM, reposted by AfricaFocus on
May 13, 2016, have been removed from this AfricaFocus web archive on this
page pursuant to a request from AIM, as a result of complaints to AIM
on behalf of Privinvest by its public relations firm Woodstock
Leasor Limited and its legal representative Michael Simkins LLP, both in London. For more details on the AIM
retraction, see below.
May 5, 2016 Uganda: Accountability and Child Soldiers
"After two decades spent fighting in the bush, Dominic Ongwen, a
senior commander in the notorious Lord's Resistance Army (LRA),
faces trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) on seventy
counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity. ... the first time
that a former child soldier will be prosecuted at the ICC and the
first time that an accused faces charges for the same crimes
perpetrated against him. As such, the Ongwen trial raises myriad
questions and poses difficult dilemmas regarding the prosecution of
child soldiers." - Justice in Conflict symposium
April 27, 2016 Nigeria: Shapes of Violence, 2
"It has been two years since the world's deadliest terrorist
organization – Boko Haram – abducted 271 girls from their high
school in the town of Chibok – a tragedy that would shine much
needed international attention on conflict in northeastern Nigeria.
Sadly, the Chibok girls are only one part of a much larger story of
violence against women and girls in the northeast. ... the needs of
all those whom the Chibok girls symbolize – thousands upon thousands
who have suffered gender-based violence at Boko Haram's hands – are
being unaddressed." - Refugees International
April 27, 2016 Nigeria: Shapes of Violence, 1
The realities of violence, whether in Nigeria, other African
countries, or indeed in rich countries such as the United States as
well, are often far more complicated than the stereotypes that often
prevail among those observing them from a distance. Thus, violence
in Nigeria is often simplistically characterized as "religious
conflict" between Muslims and Christians. A new collection of
empirical studies released this year by Nigeria Watch, based in
Ibadan, Nigeria, provides a more complex perspective, documenting,
for instance, that intra-Muslim conflict is more common that
conflicts between Muslims and Christians, and that much of the
conflict involving both Muslims and Christians is based on secular
rather than religious motives.
by date | by place | by topic
April 11, 2016
Africa/Global: Panama Papers Tip of Iceberg
Apr 5, 2016
USA/Global: When Elephants Fight
March 23, 2016
Namibia: Meeting Expectations?
March 16, 2016
Africa: Tolerance and Intolerance in Perspective
March 9, 2016
Africa/Global: Making Choices on Climate Future
February 29, 2016
USA/Africa: Rising Opposition to Tax Evasion
February 16, 2016
Africa: Ghosts at the African Union Summit
February 1, 2016
Africa/Global: Accounting Tricks with Coca-Cola
January 25, 2016
Africa: Charting the Digital Gender Gap
January 19, 2016
Africa: Stealth Assault on African Seeds
December 10, 2015
Africa/Global: Beyond the Paris Climate Talks
December 1, 2015
Africa/Global: Changing "the Media"
November 19, 2015
Africa: Boosting ICTs
November 11, 2015
Africa/Global: Follow the Money
November 5, 2015
Europe/Africa: Dialogue Unlikely at Migration Summit
October 28, 2015
South Sudan: Hard-Hitting Report from African Union