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Zero Discrimination Day

UNAIDS is leading the global effort to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals. It has offices in 70 countries through which it advocates for policy approaches, advises on HIV response, provides up to date data and brings together all stakeholder to ultimately deliver life-saving services for those living with HIV. On Zero Discrimination Day, 1 March, we celebrate the right of everyone to live a full and productive life—and live it with dignity. Zero Discrimination Day highlights how people can become informed about and promote inclusion, compassion, peace and, above all, a movement for change. Zero Discrimination Day is helping to create a global movement of solidarity to end all forms of discrimination. While the focus is on those living with HIV/AIDS, these principles can of course be applied to all those who find them themselves in a minority grouping situation. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

AI in Supporting Biodiversity Conservation

A report by IISD highlights a webinar held by The International Telecommunication Union (ITU)  to explore how artificial intelligence (AI) could help implement a formal framework and guidelines for the detection and attribution of biodiversity change to support effective policymaking. This was the first of what is hoped will be a series that brings together those working in AI with those working in biodiversity to discover how AI can be applied most usefully as a tool to ramp up our ability to address the various biodiversity crises. AI can really accelerate and expand the abilities of existing GIS so that data can be properly mapped to allow comprehensive decisions on biodiversity policy and action to be taken and delivered effectively at all scales and across all stakeholders. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Sustainability round-up - interesting articles from around the web

15-minute cities: how to separate the reality from the conspiracy theory (The Conversation) Data driven strategies for avoiding greenwashing (Eco-business) Drought in Horn of Africa worse than in 2011 famine (Aljazeera) Climate 'spiral' threatens land carbon stores (Science Daily) Benin entrepreneur transforms plant waste into charcoal (Reuters) Carbon Maps helps the food industry reduce their climate impact (TechCrunch) Less plastic or more recycling – nations split ahead of treaty talks (CHN) 5 Ways Fungi Could Change The World, From Cleaning Water to Breaking Down Plastics (greenqueen) Stronger El Niño events may speed up irreversible melting of Antarctic ice, research finds (The Guardian) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Move Our Common Agenda from Ideas to Action

UN Secretary-General António Guterres has said we must start “moving the recommendations in Our Common Agenda from ideas to action – from abstract to concrete.” He has urged Member States to support “turbocharged” efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and make the SDGs “real in the lives of people everywhere.” Guterres highlighted progress since the report’s release 18 months ago, including the “breakthrough on loss and damage,” the recognition of the right to a clean, healthy, and sustainable environment, the Transforming Education Summit, the Global Accelerator on Jobs and Social Protection, and the decision to establish a UN Youth Office. But, he said, we “need to go further and deeper.” But he warned that today’s forms of multilateral governance are not adequate to address the pace and scale of the challenges the world is facing. Emphasizing that “halfway to 2030, w . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

We are greening ourselves to extinction

I really liked this article by Vijay Kolinjivadi in Aljazeera the other week. As the title suggests, there are numerable ways in which, worse than greenwashing, certain activities and decisions are being touted and promoted as ‘green’ but which clearly are not. Or at best are marginally better than current practice but not so much so that they make any significant difference. He highlights recent admissions that the whole carbon offset ‘industry’ is a sham but also points out examples of new ‘green’ industries being not all that green. Governments, the car corporations (of course) and a disappointing number of people who should know better, tout EVs as the new green alternative to combustion engine cars. But the problem is not just combustion engines. It’s our attitude to personal mobility and convenience. Real green solutions to ‘the car problem’ would focus on removing private motor vehicles wherever possible. Not replacing the . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Sustainability round-up - interesting articles from around the web

New land creation on waterfronts increasing (Science Daily) UAE's Jaber says keeping 1.5 Celsius goal 'alive' is top priority for COP28 (Reuters) EU formally bans sale of gas and diesel cars from 2035 (TechCrunch) Study: IPCC asks emerging countries to drop coal faster than rich nations did (CHN) Should You Become An Ultra-Flexitarian? (green queen) ‘Extreme situation’: Antarctic sea ice hits record low (The Guardian) China’s would-be parents and their climate concerns (Eco-business) Can indoor farms help Hong Kong reduce its reliance on imported vegetables? (Eco-business) Global inequality must fall to maintain a safe climate and achieve a decent standard of living for all – it’s a huge challenge (The Conversation) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Major plug-in hybrid cars pollute more than official measures suggest

An article in The Guardian reports that research by Austria’s Graz University of Technology has shown that plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) emit far more CO2 than they claim in their sales brochures. Most emit 20-70% more and the BMW 3 Series was 311% its claims. The article gives some good oversight on how the car industry is essentially failing to deliver on its commitments while all the time making plenty of green claims. It seems to be one of the biggest greenwashers of them all. What the article fails to mention is that EVs of any kind should only be seen as an option of last resort and we need to reduce usage of and reliance on all personal vehicles of this nature. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

International Day of Women and Girls in Science

The UN observance for International Day of Women and Girls in Science was on 11 February. The theme was Innovate. Demonstrate. Elevate. Advance. Sustain. ( I.D.E.A.S.). Incredibly, in 2023, women are typically given smaller research grants than their male colleagues and, while they represent 33.3% of all researchers, only 12% of members of national science academies are women. Despite a shortage of skills in most of the technological fields driving the Fourth Industrial Revolution, women still account for only 28% of engineering graduates and 40% of graduates in computer science and informatics. While there are many nuanced elements to gender equality, the fundamental problem with gender inequality is how it represents a waste of human capital in so many areas. And with tech having an important role to play in a multi-faceted approach to sustainable development, wasting human capital is simply nuts. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading
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