Kyoto Protocol/Government Action

June 3, 2009 - Leave a Response

The Kyoto Protocol is a protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC or FCCC), an international environmental treaty produced at the United Nations Conference on treaty is intended to achieve “stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.”[1] The Kyoto Protocol establishes legally binding commitments for the reduction of four greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulphur hexafluoride), and two groups of gases (hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons) produced by “Annex I” (industrialized) nations, as well as general commitments for all member countries. As of January 2009, 183 parties have ratified the protocol,[2] which was initially adopted for use on 11 December 1997 in Kyoto, Japan and which entered into force on 16 February 2005. Under Kyoto, industrialized countries agreed to reduce their collective GHG emissions by 5.2% compared to the year 1990. National limitations range from 8% reductions for the European Union and some others to 7% for the United States, 6% for Japan, and 0% for Russia. The treaty permitted GHG emission increases of 8% for Australia and 10% for Iceland.[3]

Kyoto includes defined “flexible mechanisms” such as Emissions Trading, the Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation to allow Annex I economies to meet their greenhouse gas (GHG) emission limitations by purchasing GHG emission reductions credits from elsewhere, through financial exchanges, projects that reduce emissions in non-Annex I economies, from other Annex I countries, or from Annex I countries with excess allowances. In practice this means that Non-Annex I economies have no GHG emission restrictions, but have financial incentives to develop GHG emission reduction projects to receive “carbon credits” that can then be sold to Annex I buyers, encouraging sustainable development.[4] In addition, the flexible mechanisms allow Annex I nations with efficient, low GHG-emitting industries, and high prevailing environmental standards to purchase carbon credits on the world market instead of reducing greenhouse gas emissions domestically. Annex I entities typically will want to acquire carbon credits as cheaply as possible, while Non-Annex I entities want to maximize the value of carbon credits generated from their domestic Greenhouse Gas Projects.

Among the Annex I signatories, all nations have established Designated National Authorities to manage their greenhouse gas portfolios; countries including Japan, Canada, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain and others are actively promoting government carbon funds, supporting multilateral carbon funds intent on purchasing Carbon Credits from Non-Annex I countries,[citation needed] and are working closely with their major utility, energy, oil & gas and chemicals conglomerates to acquire Greenhouse Gas Certificates as cheaply as possible.[citation needed] Virtually all of the non-Annex I countries have also established Designated National Authorities to manage the Kyoto process, specifically the “CDM process” that determines which GHG Projects they wish to propose for accreditation by the CDM Executive Board.

 

 

 

The objective is the “stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.”[1]

The objective of the Kyoto climate-change conference was to establish a legally binding international agreement, whereby, all the participating nations commit themselves to tackling the issue of global warming and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The target agreed upon at the summit was an average reduction of 5.20n 1990 levels by the year 2012.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has predicted an average global rise in temperature of 1.4°C (2.5°F) to 5.8°C (10.4°F) between 1990 and 2100.[5]

Proponents also note that Kyoto it is a first step[6][7] as requirements to meet the UNFCCC will be modified until the objective is met, as required by UNFCCC Article 4.2(d).[8]

The treaty was negotiated in Kyoto, Japan in December 1997, opened for signature on 16 March 1998, and closed on 15 March 1999. The agreement came into force on 16 February 2005 following ratification by Russia on 18 November 2004. As of 14 January 2009, a total of 183 countries and 1 regional economic integration organization (the EC) have ratified the agreement (representing over 63.7% of emissions from Annex I countries).[2]

According to article 25 of the protocol, it enters into force “on the ninetieth day after the date on which not less than 55 Parties to the Convention, incorporating Parties included in Annex I which accounted in total for at least 55% of the total carbon dioxide emissions for 1990 of the Parties included in Annex I, have deposited their instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession.” Of the two conditions, the “55 parties” clause was reached on 23 May 2002 when Iceland ratified. The ratification by Russia on 18 November 2004 satisfied the “55%” clause and brought the treaty into force, effective 16 February 2005. Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd ratified the Kyoto protocol on 3 December 2007. This came into effect after 90 days (the end of March 2008), as is stated in the guidelines set by the United Nations.

 

Emissions trading

Main article: Emissions trading

Kyoto is a ‘cap and trade’ system that imposes national caps on the emissions of Annex I countries. On average, this cap requires countries to reduce their emissions 5.2% below their 1990 baseline over the 2008 to 2012 period. Although these caps are national-level commitments, in practice most countries will devolve their emissions targets to individual industrial entities, such as a power plant or paper factory. One example of a ‘cap and trade’ system is the ‘EU ETS‘. Other schemes may follow suit in time.

This means that the ultimate buyers of credits are often individual companies that expect their emissions to exceed their quota (their Assigned Allocation Units, AAUs or ‘allowances’ for short). Typically, they will purchase credits directly from another party with excess allowances, from a broker, from a JI/CDM developer, or on an exchange.

National governments, some of whom may not have devolved responsibility for meeting Kyoto obligations to industry, and that have a net deficit of allowances, will buy credits for their own account, mainly from JI/CDM developers. These deals are occasionally done directly through a national fund or agency, as in the case of the Dutch government’s ERUPT programme, or via collective funds such as the World Bank’s Prototype Carbon Fund (PCF). The PCF, for example, represents a consortium of six governments and 17 major utility and energy companies on whose behalf it purchases credits.

Since allowances and carbon credits are tradeable instruments with a transparent price, financial investors can buy them on the spot market for speculation purposes, or link them to futures contracts. A high volume of trading in this secondary market helps price discovery and liquidity, and in this way helps to keep down costs and set a clear price signal in CO2 which helps businesses to plan investments. This market has grown substantially, with banks, brokers, funds, arbitrageurs and private traders now participating in a market valued at about $60 billion in 2007.[11] Emissions Trading PLC, for example, was floated on the London Stock Exchange‘s AIM market in 2005 with the specific remit of investing in emissions instruments.

Although Kyoto created a framework and a set of rules for a global carbon market, there are in practice several distinct schemes or markets in operation today, with varying degrees of linkages among them.

Kyoto enables a group of several Annex I countries to join together to create a market-within-a-market. The EU elected to be treated as such a group, and created the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS). The EU ETS uses EAUs (EU Allowance Units), each equivalent to a Kyoto AAU. The scheme went into operation on 1 January 2005, although a forward market has existed since 2003.

The UK established its own learning-by-doing voluntary scheme, the UK ETS, which ran from 2002 through 2006. This market existed alongside the EU’s scheme, and participants in the UK scheme have the option of applying to opt out of the first phase of the EU ETS, which lasts through 2007[citation needed].

The sources of Kyoto credits are the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Joint Implementation (JI) projects. The CDM allows the creation of new carbon credits by developing emission reduction projects in Non-Annex I countries, while JI allows project-specific credits to be converted from existing credits within Annex I countries. CDM projects produce Certified Emission Reductions (CERs), and JI projects produce Emission Reduction Units (ERUs), each equivalent to one AAU. Kyoto CERs are also accepted for meeting EU ETS obligations, and ERUs will become similarly valid from 2008 for meeting ETS obligations (although individual countries may choose to limit the number and source of CER/JIs they will allow for compliance purposes starting from 2008). CERs/ERUs are overwhelmingly bought from project developers by funds or individual entities, rather than being exchange-traded like allowances.

Since the creation of Kyoto instruments is subject to a lengthy process of registration and certification by the UNFCCC, and the projects themselves require several years to develop, this market is at this point largely a forward market where purchases are made at a discount to their equivalent currency, the EUA, and are almost always subject to certification and delivery (although up-front payments are sometimes made). According to IETA, the market value of CDM/JI credits transacted in 2004 was EUR 245 m; it is estimated that more than EUR 620 m worth of credits were transacted in 2005.

Several non-Kyoto carbon markets are in existence or being planned, and these are likely to grow in importance and numbers in the coming years. These include the New South Wales Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and Western Climate Initiative in the United States and Canada, the Chicago Climate Exchange and the State of California’s recent initiative to reduce emissions.

These initiatives, taken together may create a series of partly-linked markets, rather than a single carbon market. The common theme across most of them is the adoption of market-based mechanisms centered on carbon credits that represent a reduction of CO2 emissions. The fact that some of these initiatives have similar approaches to certifying their credits makes it conceivable that carbon credits in one market may in the long run be tradeable in other schemes. This would broaden the current carbon market far more than the current focus on the CDM/JI and EU ETS domains. An obvious precondition, however, is a realignment of penalties and fines to similar levels,since these create an effective ceiling for each market.

 

[edit]

Revisions

The protocol left several issues open to be decided later by the sixth Conference of Parties (COP). COP6 attempted to resolve these issues at its meeting in the Hague in late 2000, but was unable to reach an agreement due to disputes between the European Union on the one hand (which favoured a tougher agreement) and the United States, Canada, Japan and Australia on the other (which wanted the agreement to be less demanding and more flexible).

In 2001, a continuation of the previous meeting (COP6bis) was held in Bonn where the required decisions were adopted. After some concessions, the supporters of the protocol (led by the European Union) managed to get Japan and Russia in as well by allowing more use of carbon dioxide sinks.

COP7 was held from 29 October 2001 through 9 November 2001 in Marrakech to establish the final details of the protocol.

The first Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (MOP1) was held in Montreal from 28 November to 9 December 2005, along with the 11th conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC (COP11). See United Nations Climate Change Conference.

The 3 December 2007, Australia ratified the protocol during the first day of the COP13 in Bali.

Of the signatories, 36 developed C.G. countries (plus the EU as a party in the European Union)agreed to a 10% emissions increase for Iceland; but, since the EU’s member states each have individual obligations,[12] much larger increases (up to 27%) are allowed for some of the less developed EU countries (see below #Increase in greenhouse gas emission since 1990).[13] Reduction limitations expire in 2013.

 

[edit]

Enforcement

If the Enforcement Branch determines that an Annex I country is not in compliance with its emissions limitation, then that country is required to make up the difference plus an additional 30%. In addition, that country will be suspended from making transfers under an emissions trading program.[14]

Review for presentation: Cause of hunger (reasons n history)

April 7, 2009 - Leave a Response

Martin Plaut. BBC africa analyst quote ‘Africa’s years of wars, coups and civil strife are responsible for more hunger than the natural problems that befall it.’

Critical issues

In essence Africa’s hunger is the product of a series of interrelated factors. Africa is a vast continent, and no one factor can be applied to any particular country. But four issues are critical:

  • Decades of underinvestment in rural areas, which have little political clout.

Africa’s elites respond to political pressure, which is mainly exercised in towns and cities. This is compounded by corruption and mismanagement – what donors call a lack of sound governance.”Poor governance is a major issue in many African countries, and one that has serious repercussions for long-term food security,” says a statement by the International Food Policy Research Institute. Problems such as corruption, collusion and nepotism can significantly inhibit the capacity of governments to promote development efforts.

  • Wars and political conflict, leading to refugees and instability.

In 2004 the chairman of the African Union Commission, Alpha Oumar Konare, reminded an AU summit that the continent had suffered from 186 coups and 26 major wars in the past 50 years. It is estimated that there are more than 16 million refugees and displaced persons in Africa.

Farmers need stability and certainty before they can succeed in producing the food their families and societies need.

  • HIV/Aids depriving families of their most productive labour.

This is particularly a problem in southern Africa, where over 30% of sexually active adults are HIV positive. According to aid agency Oxfam, when a family member becomes infected, food production can fall by up to 60%, as women are not only expected to be carers, but also provide much of the agricultural labour.

  • Unchecked population growth

“Sub-Saharan Africa ‘s population has grown faster than any region over the past 30 years, despite the millions of deaths from the Aids pandemic,” the UN Population Fund says.

A Niger woman husks millet

A decline in soil quality makes land less productive

“Between 1975 and 2005, the population more than doubled, rising from 335 to 751 million, and is currently growing at a rate of 2.2% a year.”

In some parts of Africa land is plentiful, and this is not a problem. But in others it has had severe consequences.

It has forced farming families to subdivide their land time and again, leading to tiny plots or families moving onto unsuitable, overworked land.

In the highlands of Ethiopia and Eritrea some land is now so degraded that there is little prospect that it will ever produce a decent harvest.

This problem is compounded by the state of Africa’s soils.

In sub-Saharan Africa soil quality is classified as degraded in about 72% of arable land and 31% of pasture land.

In addition to natural nutrient deficiencies in the soil, soil fertility is declining by the year through “nutrient mining”, whereby nutrients are removed over the harvest period and lost through leaching, erosion or other means.

Nutrient levels have declined over the past 30 years, says the International Food Policy Research Institute.

Consequences

The result is that a continent that was more than self sufficient in food at independence 50 years ago, is now a massive food importer. The book The African Food Crisis says that in less than 40 years the sub-continent went from being a net exporter of basic food staples to relying on imports and food aid.

In 1966-1970, net exports averaged 1.3 million tons of food a year, it states.

“By the late 1970s Africa imported 4.4 million tonnes of staple foods a year, a figure that had risen to 10 million tonnes by the mid 1980s.”

It said that since independence, agricultural output per capita remained stagnant, and in many places declined.

Some campaigners and academics argue that African farmers will only be able to properly feed their families and societies when Western goods stop flooding their markets.

Shoes

April 7, 2009 - Leave a Response

post1

children-shoes-011

We like clothes that are branded because its a personal satisfaction,  if it’s not original then we don’t fit in a socialite group. whereas kids in africa a pair of thongs, havianas or not they are happy with it. we tend to take things for granted but the simple things in life are free.

Games

April 7, 2009 - Leave a Response

_44290212_01_p1010002

picture-1

Jim Pinkerton’s photograph of children playing in the sand in Botswana is the first in series of shots showing games in Africa. Kids these days do not appreciate what they have, we live in the same world as africa however 1st world countries live in a world where technology is plays an important role in peoples lives.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/in_pictures/7135749.stm

Dirty Water Kills 5,000 Children a Day

April 7, 2009 - Leave a Response

kiberia-children

Children playing in Kibera, Africa’s biggest slum. Photograph: David Levene. There is plenty of water globally but it is not evenly distributed and is difficult to transport. Some countries use more than they have due to irrigation, population growth and so on. But many simply do not handle their water properly. The Middle East is the world’s most “water-stressed” region, with Palestinians, especially in Gaza, suffering the most. Climate change is likely to hit the developing world hardest, reducing the availability of water, lowering agricultural productivity and leaving millions hungry. Changing weather patterns are already causing drought in countries such as Kenya, Mali and Zimbabwe, but wet areas are likely to become wetter still, causing devastating floods and loss of life.

http://www.worldproutassembly.org/archives/2006/11/dirty_water_kil.html

Good Quotes

April 7, 2009 - Leave a Response

I dream of an Africa which is in peace with itself. Nelson Mandela quotes

The darkest thing about Africa has always been our ignorance of it.

George Kimble quotes ( Geographer, b.1912)

quotes ideas from katrina n elvina


Good youtube video

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

the video caled hunger in africa

by elvinapratiwi

Pulitzer winner 1994

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

this pic won pulitzer awards in 1994, Kevin Carter the photographer died 3 months after he shot this. He was so overwhelmed by the situation in Sudan where this picture was taken. He died of suicide because of depression.

by kevin carter

by kevin carter

Africa: Facing the Facts of Hunger (can be a start to our storytelling)

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

Never before has the entire human population been subject to possible malnourishment. Once used solely to depict the underfed, the unparalleled swell of improper nutrition found among those in advanced nations has rearranged the entire problem. Once malnutrition was due solely to world hunger, but now it may be caused by overeating. Where one child under the age of five suffers from starvation, another is overfed, overweight, and overwhelmed with the deficiency of a healthy life-style. Both are more susceptible to disease, physical impairment, and other consequences derived from such an imbalance. Efforts appear to be futile while the numbers shift and rise wit h time. While the global trend of those who suffer from malnourishment has declined from 1970 to 1997, dropping from 203 million to 166 million hungry children, the hunger epidemic is far from being solved (McLaughlin). In Africa alone, the numbers have nearly doubled over the 27 year span, surging from 18 million malnourished children to the recorded 32 million in 1997 (McLaughlin). Meanwhile, many families in countries similar to the United States sit down to family meals around a McDonald’s booth four to maybe five times a week. While the prepackaged and fast food industries work diligently for their cause, consumers suffer outcomes such as obesity and heart disease. Meanwhile, little is being done for those who are hungry while the millions being pumped into increasing calories to the overfed are needed elsewhere. Nearly 500 billion dollars will be invested this year into the U.S. military with America spending one-thirteenth of that amount to address world hunger (Sachs). This one-thirteenth set forth to help the 800 million starving people is in fact a mere .15% of U.S. income (Sachs). Each year, this amount declines and still serves as a pittance of what is continually promised. Some have recognized the need for help in continents like Africa, many sporting the “Make Hunger History” wristbands to spread hunger awareness. On a bigger scale, much more is needed to save the failing countries in Africa, and goals have been set in an attempt to develop the world’s most poverty-stricken continent. Recently, the United Nations launched “The Millennium Project,” specially designed to fight hunger and poverty. Between 1990 and 2015, efforts are expected to cut in half the number of people with an income of merely a dollar a day as well as those who suffer from hunger. Records from 2002 provide new hindsight showing child mortality rates falling to 88 from the previous 103 per every 1000 children, plus a life expectancy boost from 63 to 65 years of age (Elliot). These effects most likely are derived from the extra 8 percent receiving access to water and the additional 15 percent gaining access to better sanitation services (Elliot). Though the outcomes are more than promising, new reports show the progress being made is far from uniform world-wide, causing the United Nations to call for urgent action this past spring. Countries in Africa especially will not meet the goals aimed to overcome poverty and hunger by a large margin unless more efforts are made to help their economy. According to the United Nations poll, Africa has not yet joined on the development band-wagon, and in fact improvements appear to be less likely. In 2015, an estimated 5 million children under the age of five will be dying from hunger related causes, more than present time if the United Nation goals are not met, totaling 29 million over the next decade (“Faces”). When compared to the 2 million if goals are reached, it is obvious efforts must double soon. Every minute, nine children under the age of five surrender their lives to hunger (“Faces”). With the overwhelming facts, it is seemingly impossible to reverse the damage that has been done and many view the problems answerless. With combined efforts, much can be done though, beginning at the root of the problem. Those countries suffering most from hunger are linked in one major way: poverty. Nearly half of the African population survives on less than 65 cents a day (McLaughlin). A bulk of eight million people die each year for the very fact that they are simply too poor to remain living (Sachs). Since recorded history began, advancements are made once the basic necessities have been met. While the majority of the world surges forth, African society is left in the economical dust, forced to put all efforts into merely surviving. From here, a cycle begins. Those who grow poorer grow hungrier, those who grow hungrier fall sicker, those who fall sicker are unable to work and from this point, staying alive is the only priority. When the mass of people become entrapped, the society as a whole collapses and can no longer compete with global trade and investment, making it nearly impossible to lift a country back on her feet.

Not only is poverty a key cause for the hunger crisis infecting Africa, the outrageous population growth within the past decade has made the job of feeding the masses a difficult one, stretching nearly to the point of no return with a fear that despite advanced agricultural techniques, the fertility of man will far surpass the development of the land. Perhaps another great physical difficulty is the very fact that the inadequate food output does not meet the present population and unless agricultural advances are made, Africa will continually fail to advance elsewhere, which will inevitably cripple the nation and her people and ultimately the world. Many factors other than poverty effect hunger and a large majority of these contribute to the stale agricultural situation. In many countries, misuse of the land alone threatens permanent resource loss. Important examples of misuse include “overgrazing, destruction of vegetation by fire, over cropping, and improper rotational practices” (Moore). All these result in poorer soil, erosion, and worst of all, reduction of available water, a known key factor contributing to the sickness and disease of the African people (Moore). Nearly 29.4 million Africans suffer from the H.I.V./AIDS epidemic alone, a number which provides for almost three fourths of the worlds infected caseload (Bearak). Not only are the people affected, much of the plant and animal life is plagued by disease as well. The problems appear innumerable: when one issue is discussed and is answered with a worldly plan for improvement, another surfaces and may, in fact, contradict all efforts of those trying to help. From deep with in the heart of Africa, the people are beginning to talk, claiming that poverty can be beaten by feeding the masses, sickness can be overcome by appointing better medical care, cleaner water, and sturdier homes, yet the problem not only lies in the characteristics of poverty, but also in the corruption of the country. According to coffee farmer Peter Kanans, “’even if they give our governments aid money, ordinary Africans will not benefit…[it] will only make the corrupt people richer and Africans international beggars for decades to come’” (Wax). What the African people need is not only debt relief and aid to poverty related conditions, but more importantly, better court systems focused on ending corruption, improved banking, and most significant of all: secondary education. The people need more help in educating, not appointing leaders to attempt to revive the country, to but create a passion within her very citizens, which will in turn create the necessary risk-takers and leaders who will rise above and change their country. Africa needs a “fore-fathers and fore-mothers” of her own, with a passion and drive to create better lives for the neglected citizens and victims of ongoing corruption.In the great scheme, where does one begin though? Once again, a cycle begins: starving people cannot be taught, those who are uneducated cannot advance, the less advanced cannot compete in a world making daily advancements, and those who cannot compete simply fall behind even further. Yet, before the countries of Africa can begin standing on their own feet,  others must continue to make the necessary first steps. Aid money and debt relief are beneficial appetizers, but the main course is yet to come. Meanwhile, in advancing countries such as the U.S., many are focusing on main courses of their own. Globally, there are over 1 billion overweight adults with obesity creating an epidemic of its own, affecting nearly 300 million adults around the world (“Obesity”). Nearly 22 million children are overweight, a number that has more than doubled since the 1960’s (“CDC”). While some parts of the world scrounge around for bugs to eat, another part is bombarded with calories and other high -in-fat foods, both situations creating long term malnourishment due to the lack of balance; where one over eats, another does not consume enough, the greatest of two extremes. Like the hungry, those who gorge themselves begin a “battle of the bulge,” and those who grow sicker from overeating invest less energy to the usual daily activities; those who use less energy only grow sicker until a cycle of their own begins. The continual growth of numbers of those overweight states a lot about nations such as the U.S. and “reflect profound changes in society and the behavioral patterns of communities over the recent decades” (“Obesity”). Despite hereditary influencing many cases, “energy balance is determined by calorie intake and physical activity”; therefore, worldwide nutrition transitions are a key belief to the drive of the obesity epidemic (“Obesity”). When compared to the nation’s top competitor, those overweight in China account for only five percent of the country’s population (“Obesity”). The presence of both paradoxical issues may, in fact, work hand in hand. Perhaps a balance could be reached in the $39 billion dollars a year invested in obesity through Medicare and Medicaid to cover sicknesses and disease caused by the daunting health problems in nations like America (“CDC”). Despite the promises of companies such as Coca-Cola and Kraft to cut back on appealing to kids, or McDonald’s efforts to promote salads, America has become a nation of junk food. To face the facts, the government’s recent actions result in a major slap in the face for those who believe America is making healthier commitments. During recent hearings held on childhood obesity and food marketing, the Federal Trade Commission declared their intentions of doing absolutely nothing to stop the rise in junk food advertising to kids (Ruskin). Perhaps worldly powers are contributing a little less than expected.Like the nations fending for themselves under the mediocre efforts of governments, African people have felt separated from efforts as well, some realizing the truth in the necessity of hard labor to save their families. Improving agriculture and food delivery systems are projects moving under way within African countries in attempts to fight hunger and poverty. Due to the fact that most of those struck by poverty live in rural areas, improved means of transportation for food are a dire necessity, along with food input as well as output. Nearly 70% of employment is accounted for through agriculture; not only would improvements save those suffering from hunger, but it would also increase income for many families, allowing many families to educate their children (“Africa”). Education is believed to be a key factor in saving nations. Not only do educated women give birth to less children, making the task of providing for their families less of a hassle, but also a mere 4 years of schooling increase agricultural productivity by 9 percent (“Africa”). According to a small African farmer’s opinion, when women especially “’obtain… levels of education, experience, and farm inputs…they produce significantly higher yields’” (Nduru). Recent research shows that a simple 1% increase in crop production may in fact help 6  The number of deaths are proving significant decline, yet Africa stands alone in her slow increase, and the worldly problem of hunger alone still stands as a basic issue all must face. Not only should the issue of food distribution be addressed, but coinciding problems such as wealth and poverty are being fought both internally and externally as well. Poverty and hunger cannot stand the test of time. Perhaps these very obstacles have an upside, for though issues appear to be multiplying, opportunities for overcoming these obstacles are growing with each given day. Projects to educate, relieve, and encourage the African people are key in the countries’ developments. Meanwhile, on the other end of hunger, much can be done to decrease the bulk numbers in primarily overweight countries. Promoting healthy behaviors is a fine start, and some businesses in America have even began taking the next steps to encourage active lifestyles by installing programs within their companies to encourage workers to reach certain weight goals. Some businesses have even eliminated the use of elevators and escalators or are providing parking areas off work sites to encourage extra walking. In both cases on their grand scale, the drive to better a nation must come from within. Diligence and individual effort, along with worldly encouragement to meet the basic needs, can make the greatest difference in solving the paradoxical issue of those who are over and underfed.

 

 

by: Kakay.

african hunger, what cause it?

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

http://revcom.us/a/015/niger-colonialism-hunger.htm

click on the link above, =)

by elvinapratiwi

Did you know?

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

Geographical

Africa, second-largest of the Earth’s seven continents – covering about 30,330,000 sq km (11,699,000 sq mi), which makes up about 22 per cent of the world’s total land area.

Largest Country 
Sudan, Republic of, republic in north-eastern Africa, the largest country of the African continent. Sudan has a total area of 2,505,800 sq km (967,490 sq mi). 

Smallest Country 
The smallest African country is The Seychelles covering an area of 453 sq km but Gambia is the smallest of the mainland African states, covering an area of 11,300 sq km (4,363 sq mi). 

Largest City
Egypt’s capital city, Cairo, is the largest city in Africa with an estimated 9.2 million population

Highest Point
Mount Kilimanjaro – Uhuru Point – (5895m/19,340 ft) in Tanzania 

Lowest Point
the lowest is Lake ‘Asal (153 m/502 ft below sea level) in Djibouti 

Northernmost tip 
is Cape Blanc (Ra’s al Abyad;) in Tunisia 

Southernmost tip 
is Cape Agulhas in South Africa 

Largest Lake 
Lake Victoria is the largest lake in Africa and the is the world’s second-largest freshwater lake – covering an area of 69,490 sq km (26,830 sq mi) and lies 1,130 m (3,720 ft) above sea level. Its greatest known depth is 82 m (270 ft). 

Deepest Lake
Lake Tanganyika is the deepest lake in Africa reaching at its greatest depth is 1,436 m (4,710 ft), making it the second deepest freshwater lake in the world after Lake Baikal. 

Longest River
The River Nile drains north-eastern Africa, and, at 6,650 km (4,132 miles), is the longest river in Africa and in the world. It is formed from the Blue Nile, which originates at Lake Tana in Ethiopia, and the White Nile, which originates at Lake Victoria. 

The Great Africa Rift Valley
The Rift Valley extends more than 4,830 km (3,000 mi) from Syria in south-western Asia to Mozambique in south-eastern Africa. 

The width of the valley ranges from a few miles to more than 160 km (100 mi). In eastern Africa, the valley splits into two branches: the Eastern Rift and the Western Rift

The fault in which the Rift sits is still moving: the western side of the rift is pulling away from the eastern ridge at about 6 mm per year, while in the south it is moving together at a rate of 2 mm per year.

Lake Malawi
Lake Malawi contains the largest number of fish species of any lake in the world, probably over 500 from ten families. Particularly noteworthy are the Cichlidae, of which all but five of over 400 species are endemic to Lake Malawi. The lake contains 30% of all known cichlid species. Of particular interest is the ‘mbuna’ rock fish. 

Namib Desert
The Namib is the world’s oldest desert, and the only desert in Africa inhabited by elephant, rhino, giraffe and lion

Namibia – Fish River Canyon
The Fish River canyon is the second largest canyon in the world.

The Sahara Desert
The Sahara Desert alone is expanding southwards at an average of 0.8 km (½ mile) a month.

Health

Malaria
90% of all malaria cases are in sub-Saharan Africa 
3,000 children under the age of five die each day from malaria in Africa
1-5% of GDP in Africa covers costs of malaria control and lost labour days

Did you know, that Africa would have been an estimated US $100 billion better off in 1999 if malaria had been eliminated years ago? 

Aids
17 million people in sub-Saharan Africa have died of AIDS 

At least 25 million people in Africa are HIV-positive. 

12 million children who have lost their parents to AIDS face a precarious future. 

Hospitals
The world’s biggest hospital is in Soweto.

Misc

Diamonds
The world’s largest diamond was the Cullinan, found in South Africa in 1905. It weighed 3,106.75 carats uncut. It was cut into the Great Star of Africa, weighing 530.2 carats, the Lesser Star of Africa, which weighs 317.40 carats, and 104 other diamonds of nearly flawless colour and clarity. They now form part of the British crown jewels. 

Windmills
Did you know there are about 280 000 windmills on farms across South Africa, second in number only to Australia? 

Most Populated Country
With a population of more than 113 million, Nigeria is easily the most populated country in Africa and the 10th most populous country in the world.

Myths of African Hunger

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

Good article, here is a link to it: 

http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/30/157.html 

So far, what i learn from the history in hunger in africa are because of the;

1. the mismanagement in the goverment. 

there are corruption and nepotism.  the officials are to greedy, they dont care for the country people’s wellfare

2.  A shortage of a appropriate technology to develop the land

3. Policies that undermined food crops

4. most countries in africa are trap in trade traps

5. Foreign aids failed to help eliminate to hunger, on the contrary they are more likely to perpetuate the hunger crisis

Africa’s hunger – a systemic crisis

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

BBC Africa analyst 

 

More than half of Africa is now in need of urgent food assistance.The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is warning that 27 sub-Saharan countries now need help. 

But what appear as isolated disasters brought about by drought or conflict in countries like Somalia, Malawi, Niger, Kenya and Zimbabwe are – in reality – systemic problems.

It is African agriculture itself that is in crisis, and according to the International Food Policy Research Institute, this has left 200 million people malnourished.

It is particularly striking that the FAO highlights political problems such as civil strife, refugee movements and returnees in 15 of the 27 countries it declares in need of urgent assistance. By comparison drought is only cited in 12 out of 27 countries.

The implication is clear – Africa’s years of wars, coups and civil strife are responsible for more hunger than the natural problems that befall it.

Critical issues

In essence Africa’s hunger is the product of a series of interrelated factors. Africa is a vast continent, and no one factor can be applied to any particular country. But four issues are critical:

 

  • Decades of underinvestment in rural areas, which have little political clout.

Africa’s elites respond to political pressure, which is mainly exercised in towns and cities. This is compounded by corruption and mismanagement – what donors call a lack of sound governance.

 

HAVE YOUR SAY 
“ With good governance, most African countries could be net exporters of agricultural produce ” 
Darren, Lobatse, Botswana 

“Poor governance is a major issue in many African countries, and one that has serious repercussions for long-term food security,” says a statement by the International Food Policy Research Institute.

“Problems such as corruption, collusion and nepotism can significantly inhibit the capacity of governments to promote development efforts.”

 

  • Wars and political conflict, leading to refugees and instability. 

In 2004 the chairman of the African Union Commission, Alpha Oumar Konare, reminded an AU summit that the continent had suffered from 186 coups and 26 major wars in the past 50 years. It is estimated that there are more than 16 million refugees and displaced persons in Africa.Farmers need stability and certainty before they can succeed in producing the food their families and societies need.

 

  • HIV/Aids depriving families of their most productive labour. 

This is particularly a problem in southern Africa, where over 30% of sexually active adults are HIV positive. According to aid agency Oxfam, when a family member becomes infected, food production can fall by up to 60%, as women are not only expected to be carers, but also provide much of the agricultural labour. 

  • Unchecked population growth 

“Sub-Saharan Africa ‘s population has grown faster than any region over the past 30 years, despite the millions of deaths from the Aids pandemic,” the UN Population Fund says. 

“Between 1975 and 2005, the population more than doubled, rising from 335 to 751 million, and is currently growing at a rate of 2.2% a year.”In some parts of Africa land is plentiful, and this is not a problem. But in others it has had severe consequences. 

It has forced farming families to subdivide their land time and again, leading to tiny plots or families moving onto unsuitable, overworked land.

In the highlands of Ethiopia and Eritrea some land is now so degraded that there is little prospect that it will ever produce a decent harvest.

This problem is compounded by the state of Africa’s soils.

In sub-Saharan Africa soil quality is classified as degraded in about 72% of arable land and 31% of pasture land.

In addition to natural nutrient deficiencies in the soil, soil fertility is declining by the year through “nutrient mining”, whereby nutrients are removed over the harvest period and lost through leaching, erosion or other means.

Nutrient levels have declined over the past 30 years, says the International Food Policy Research Institute.

Consequences

 

The result is that a continent that was more than self sufficient in food at independence 50 years ago, is now a massive food importer. The book The African Food Crisis says that in less than 40 years the sub-continent went from being a net exporter of basic food staples to relying on imports and food aid.

In 1966-1970, net exports averaged 1.3 million tons of food a year, it states.

 

“By the late 1970s Africa imported 4.4 million tonnes of staple foods a year, a figure that had risen to 10 million tonnes by the mid 1980s.”

It said that since independence, agricultural output per capita remained stagnant, and in many places declined.

Some campaigners and academics argue that African farmers will only be able to properly feed their families and societies when Western goods stop flooding their markets.

Causes of hunger in Africa

March 25, 2009 - One Response

There is perhaps no greater tragedy in the world today than the fact that there are millions of starving people in the world. What is even more startling is that according to the Red Cross, over thirty million people in Africa alone are starving. Why, you may ask, is starvation so rampant in Africa? The answer is complex as there are many unique reasons this crisis is so heavily concentrated in Africa.

African farmers also do not have access to the equipment and technology that would enable them to grow crops. In some cases, there is a lack of seed and pesticides. These pesticides might not only increase the yield of the crops, but it could also make the labor of the farmers much easier. When these items are available, they are priced so high and taxed so that most farmers in Africa cannot afford them. The majority of African farmers have to chop weeds using a hoe or even their hands which severely limits the yield not to mention the fact that it keeps farmers from being able to complete other important tasks related to growing food.

Finally, the poor health of the majority of Africans plays a large role in keeping the inhabitants hungry. Due to the fact that there are many Africans who suffer from deadly diseases such as HIV/AIDS and malaria among others, there is a decreasing labor force available to grow crops. Add to this the lack of education on the part of many Africans and it is easy to see why there is a never ending cycle of poverty and hunger.

Until these problems are attacked and solved, it remains a sad fact that many Africans including many children will go to bed hungry. For those who battling serious illnesses other than starvation, it is quite possible that they will not wake to see another day.

Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture (the history of agriculture)

March 25, 2009 - Leave a Response

Hi guys,

 there’s a link for history/ background on the lack of food in africa. the article is quite long so i just post the link  =)!

http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/30/119.html