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Posts Tagged ‘World Bank’

Economic Shock Could Throw 900 Million People Into Poverty, IMF Study Warns

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on April 6, 2013

By 

Hundreds of millions of people worldwide are on the brink of poverty.

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A recent study by the International Monetary Fund warns that as many as 900 million people could fall back into poverty in the event of an economic shock like the Great Recession. That figure is three times the size of the U.S. population. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Global Coal Boom: What 1,200 New Power Plants Means for the Climate

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 23, 2012

NELSON CHING / BLOOMBERG / GETTY IMAGES

NELSON CHING / BLOOMBERG / GETTY IMAGES

There’s a war on coal in America — or at least that’s what players in the coal industry say. They’re not entirely wrong. Coal prices in the U.S. are falling and coal plants are being retired. Most of that change is being driven by what analysts refer to as “market conditions” — otherwise known as shale gas and fracking, which has driven prices for natural gas down, down, down. That’s encouraged utilities to phase out coal in favor of cleaner natural gas — a transition that has been accelerated by federal environmental regulations that will increasingly limit the sort of air pollution associated with old coal plants.

It’s no surprise, then, that the coal industry pushed hard for Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election — or that coal bosses like Robert Murray, of Ohio-based Murray Energy, fired dozens of employees after the election as the industry went into survival mode. Though perhaps Mr. Murray could have saved some of the $100,000 the company donated to the conservative super PAC American Crossroads for payroll costs.

But if the future of coal is looking dim in the U.S. with cheap natural gas and a Democrat in the White House, it’s as bright as a steel furnace in much of the rest of the world. In 2010 the global coal trade rose by 13.4%, reaching 1.08 billion metric tons. In a new report, the World Resources Institute (WRI) estimates that nearly 1,200 new coal plants are at least in the planning stages worldwide. Though the projects are spread across the globe, more than three-quarters of the new plants are set to be built in India and China. If every one of those plants were to be built and activated, it would add 1.4 million MW of coal-fired electricity capacity to the global grid. Since coal is already the single biggest contributor to man-made global warming, an unchecked global coal-building spree really would be game over for the climate — no matter what happens in the U.S. Read the rest of this entry »

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Global Economy Slowing Down: World Bank

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on January 18, 2012

The global economy is heading for a slowdown, the World Bank said on Wednesday, as the eurozone’s sovereign debt crisis and weak growth in other major economies weigh on growth.

The bank now predicts that global growth will slow to 2.5% in 2012, down from an estimate of 3.6% from June, with a marked difference between developing and high-income countries, which are forecast to grow at 5.4% and 1.4%, respectively. The eurozone is likely to contract by 0.3%.

Commodity prices have begun to fall back and the growth in global trade is slowing – from 12.4% in 2010 to 6.6% in 2011, with a forecast of 4.7% in 2012, according to the World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects report.

Should the debt crisis in Europe get any worse, no country will be safe from the results, the bank said. At the beginning of the financial downturn it was thought that so-called “decoupling” – a lack of economic links between the global South and the industrialised world – might protect developing countries. Read the rest of this entry »

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Build a flood-resilient city

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 29, 2011

One of the few remaining refuges to keep cars dry at the height of 2011 flooding in Bangkok: elevated parkways

Bangkok, 28 November 2011 (IRIN) – Less than a year after Bangkok was chosen as a “role model city” by the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) as part of the UN’s 2010-2015 “Making Cities Resilient” campaign, the worst floods in half a century put that distinction to the test. 

IRIN asked experts what the 3,000 low-lying cities such as Bangkok – which includes its delta neighbours – can do to improve their flood resilience. 

Prioritize

A master plan capturing the city’s development visions, priorities and vulnerability is the first step, said Adri Verwey, an urban flood expert atDeltares a Netherlands-based water management think-tank. 

“Cities need to decide the levels of security that they want and which areas need more protection,” he said. 

In the Netherlands, where 26 percent of land is below sea level, cities with a high density of human and economic capital are designed to withstand a one-in-10,000-years flood, while inland, rural and sparsely populated areas are designed to withstand a-one-in-1,250 years flood. 

Find higher ground

Unbalanced development is the weakest point of urban planning in many Asian countries, but Thailand’s case is more extreme in that it has focused all its energy on the country’s business and political capital, said Anisur Rahman, land use planning specialist at the Bangkok-based Asian Disaster Prevention Center (ADPC).  Read the rest of this entry »

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Palestine: the world’s next nation

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 22, 2011

In four days the UN Security Council will meet, and the world has an opportunity to embrace a new proposal that could turn the tide on decades of failed Israeli-Palestinian peace talks: UN recognition of the state of Palestine.

Over 120 nations from the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Latin America have already endorsed this initiative, but Israel’s right-wing government and the US vehemently oppose it. The UK and other key European countries are still undecided, but a massive public push now could tip them to vote for this momentous opportunity to end 40 years of military occupation.

US-led peace initiatives have failed for decades, while Israel has confined the Palestinians to small areas, confiscated their lands and blocked their independence. This bold new initiative could be the best opportunity to jump start a resolution of the conflict, but Europe and the UK must take the lead. Let’s build a massive global call for the UK and other European leaders to endorse this statehood bid now, and make clear that citizens across the world support this legitimate, non-violent, diplomatic proposal. Sign the petition and send this to everyone:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/independence_for_palestine_uk/?vl

While the roots of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are complex, most people on all sides agree that the best path to peace now is the creation of two states. But repeated peace processes have been undermined by violence on both sides, extensive Israeli settlement-building in the West Bank, and the humanitarian blockade on Gaza. The Israeli occupation has shrunk and fragmented the territory for a Palestinian state and made daily life a crippling ordeal for the Palestinian people. The UN, World Bank and IMF have all recently announced that Palestinians are ready to run an independent state, but say the main constraint to success is the Israeli occupation. Even the US President has called for an end to settlement expansion and a return to the 1967 borders with mutually agreed land-swaps, but Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu has furiously refused to cooperate. Read the rest of this entry »

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Hillary Clinton, World Bank President? Secretary Of State Seeks Position: Sources

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 10, 2011


After IMF, World Bank will also lead by female then? Good luck Hillary Clinton!
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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One Woman’s Mission: Empowering World’s Poorest Girls to Transform World

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 21, 2010

Huffington Post By Jim Luce

New York City's child advocate Jin In training local young women in Nepal.

I first met Jin In off a snowy sidewalk near Bryant Park in New York City this past winter. She just returned from Nepal, energized. There, she was working to empower young women belonging to the lowest caste, a group most locals wouldn’t touch or associate with. However Jin saw them as valuable members of society. In fact, she saw them as the greatest untapped human resource. As we exchanged stories — our visions — I realized we are the same kind of passionate global citizens working for the poor to make the world better.

Jin was born in the East, raised in the West, and goes wherever she is called to empower the world’s poorest girls. She is the Founding Director of 4Girls GLocal Leadership (4GGL) — Inspiring Girls, Transforming the World. Her organization combines global thinking with local action resulting in “glocal” innovation — developing the leadership potential of girls and young women in poor communities around the world. Read the rest of this entry »

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