Sarah Boseley, health editor
A “toxic” mix of social injustice and bad policies is killing on a grand scale around the world and in the UK, according to a major United Nations report published today.
The gap between rich and poor is such that a child born in the Glasgow suburb of Calton can expect to live 28 years less than one born in Lenzie, eight miles away. Continue reading Social injustice cutting life expectancy, UN report says
The UN’s Millennium Development Goals are achieving some results but we should recognise their limitations Continue reading Steps in the right direction
|Biofuel production is certainly one of the culprits in the current global food crisis. But while the diversion of corn from food to biofuel feedstock has been a factor in food prices shooting up, the more primordial problem has been the conversion of economies that are largely food-self-sufficient into chronic food importers. Here the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the World Trade Organization (WTO) figure as much more important villains.
Walden Bello (2008-08-05)
Whether in Latin America, Asia, or Africa, the story has been the same: the destabilization of peasant producers by a one-two punch of IMF-World Bank structural adjustment programs that gutted government investment in the countryside followed by the massive influx of subsidized U.S. and European Union agricultural imports after the WTO’s Agreement on Agriculture pried open markets.
African agriculture is a case study of how doctrinaire economics serving corporate interests can destroy a whole continent’s productive base. Continue reading The destruction of African agriculture
By Milagros Salazar*
LIMA, Aug 28 (Tierramérica) – More than 180 oil and natural gas fields extend across the western Amazon, shared by five South American countries and threatening biodiversity and indigenous lands, warns a study by U.S.-based organisations.
Peru is the most worrisome case: 72 percent of its jungle territory overlaps with plans for exploiting fossil fuels, says the report “Oil and Gas Projects in the Western Amazon: Threats to Wilderness, Biodiversity and Indigenous Peoples”, published Aug. 13 by the open-access online scientific journal PloS ONE. Continue reading Amazon Increasingly Oily
|As fuel prices rocket, a new world energy order is emerging. It will bring with it a fierce international competition for dwindling stocks of oil, natural gas, coal and uranium, and also an epochal shift in power and wealth from energy-deficit states such as the US, Japan and the newly-industrialising China to energy-surplus states such as Russia, Venezuela and the oil producers of the Middle East. Michael Klare examines the likely consequences of the growing competition for the soon-to-be diminishing supply of energy
Oil at $150 a barrel, up sevenfold in six years. Unleaded touching £1.20 per gallon, diesel at more than £1.30 at even the cheapest UK pumps. Gasoline at $4.50-plus – an undreamt-of height – in the US, with diesel topping $5, forcing many truckers off the road. Home heating oil at prices that many cannot afford. Jet fuel so expensive that the major carriers have cut back on routes and some low-cost airlines have ceased flying altogether. Continue reading The end of the world as we know it
Nelson Mandela, the man credited with ending apartheid in South Africa, has marked his 90th birthday by calling for the rich to do more for the poor.
“If you are poor, you are not likely to live long,” he said at his village house in Eastern Cape province for a birthday interview. Continue reading Mandela celebrates 90th birthday