Oceans and climate change

How a small island state is taking the lead in ocean and island conservation


Much attention has been focused on the impacts of climate change on water, forests and society as a whole. But what about our oceans?  For decades, oceans have been fundamentally threatened by the effects of climate change, absorbing carbon dioxide dumped into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels. Rising sea-levels, acidification and changes in temperatures continue to threaten coastal and marine ecosystems, as they will seriously alter coastal development and marine activities. [Read more →]

September 15, 2014   Comments Off on Oceans and climate change

Climate Change and food security: How Belo Horizonte is killing two birds with one stone


There are 842 million undernourished people in the world today who do not have access to sufficient quantities of healthy food. The impacts of climate change threaten to significantly increase the number of people at risk of hunger and malnutrition over the next decades. The effect of a changing climate on food production is intuitive: Warming temperatures, floods, droughts and pestilence are already devastating harvests in many parts of the world. Volatile and unreliable food production leads to famine, migration and war. Modern agriculture’s impact on the climate is obvious as well: Production and distribution of food within a globalized economy account for high CO2 emissions because of energy intensive farming systems and long transportation routes. [Read more →]

September 13, 2014   Comments Off on Climate Change and food security: How Belo Horizonte is killing two birds with one stone

Should new cities be built on greenfields?

Quick poll: Do you feel that new cities should be built on “greenfields” (i.e. previously undeveloped land)?

Entering Lilongwe / Credit: algreen

Entering Lilongwe / Credit: algreen

  • Yes of course
  • Absolutely not
  • It depends
  • I have no idea

I live in the city of Lilongwe, Malawi. Malawi has four cities of which two (Blantyre and Lilongwe) are the biggest. Lilongwe is the capital city and Blantyre is the commercial city.

The City of Lilongwe has a population of about 674,448 with an annual growth rate of 4.3 percent, while the City of Blantyre has a population of 661,144 with an annual growth rate of 2.8.

Both the Lilongwe and Blantyre City Councils are responsible for all planning and development control functions in their respective cities through the Planning and Development Departments.

The land use plans, policy and related legal documents provide guidance and strategies in the development and management of the cities in addressing the rapid urbanization and development challenges.

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August 13, 2013   Comments Off on Should new cities be built on greenfields?