Changing business as usual: How sustainable investment promotes sustainable land use

Sustainable investments make good business sense. Investing in sustainable production reduces the risk of supply chain disruptions. Incorporating environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into investment decisions contributes to improved corporate financial performance and risk-adjusted returns on medium to long term.

 

  • Pioneering companies and financial institutions are taking a lead in sustainable agriculture and forestry investment, yet progress has been slow and...
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Evidence, urbanisation and ecosystems services in Asia

Land use change underpins urbanisation, the growth of peri-urban areas, and degradation of surrounding ecosystems. Across all countries, concern is increasing about urban expansion into hazardous areas including wetlands, floodplains, coasts and slopes. This conversion is worsening ecosystem-related risks that are in turn being exacerbated by the effects of climate change. Throughout the region, the poor and vulnerable are affected the worst as they rarely possess the means to protect their...

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Towards the New Urban Agenda: Where are “people” in delivering inclusive, safe, resilient cities?

New visions for how cities will look in the future are increasingly criticized by NGOs and other civil society organizations for not focusing on the rights of urban citizens, particularly those increasingly “left behind”.

Many ACCCRN members and partners are therefore focused on a “New Urban Agenda” to be agreed by the Habitat III cities conference in October 2016.

The agenda is ambitious, calling for fair and inclusive urbanization. Yet even though it is being developed...

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Inclusive governance and urban resilience: Challenges at the nexus of urbanization and climate change

The developing world is urbanizing rapidly. However, this urban growth is leading to increased inequity and vulnerability, particularly for the marginalized poor. Climate change further compounds these problems.

Asia showcases these challenges and highlights warnings to be heeded elsewhere.

Urbanization is causing unprecedented and rapid change of ecological landscapes, social values and economic relations. Cities, in particular smaller cities with populations under 500,000, are...

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Inclusive resilience features at Asia-Pacific Urban Forum

The sixth Asia-Pacific Urban Forum (APUF-6) took place on Oct. 19-21 in Jakarta. This meeting, organized every four to five years through the UN, was hosted by the government of Indonesia and brought together policymakers and practitioners to discuss emerging and critical urban development issues.

This year'€™s forum took place at a pivotal moment, following the recent adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) '€” an inter-governmentally agreed set of targets that will...

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Climate change lacks ‘the immediacy of now’ in conflict zones – experts

Barren barley and wheat fields stretch across the dry landscape of northern Afghanistan, the result of persistent drought and flash flooding that has left thousands of people facing food shortages and loss of work.

Climate change is a core culprit of such extreme weather, according to longtime humanitarian worker and biologist Jim Jarvie. He believes sustainable, less resource-intensive solutions are needed to help farmers adapt.

But he has not always had much luck conveying the message to...

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Climate change resilience under stress

An advisory released this August by the US National Weather Service warned this year’s El Niño could be among the strongest ever recorded, lasting well into the first few months of 2016.

Facing an El Niño of this scale, urbanised regions risk exposure to pollution from lit forests and plantations, droughts and overexploitation of freshwaterresources, environmental degradation and heat waves. All of these will undoubtedly have costs that disproportionately fall upon the poor and most...

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Lessons for Africa from urban climate change resilience building in Indonesia

Cities in Asia are at risk from climate change, amplifying current hazards and introducing sea-level rise. Various efforts mitigating these challenges are framed in the context of building resilience. A challenge is that effort is directed at technical solutions, failing to recognize governance gaps that slow or prevent ‘mainstreaming’ resilience into government functions. Experience from Indonesia's malleable governance frameworks demonstrates that resilience-building measures need to...

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Cities Must Plan for Climate Disasters: 5 Considerations for Sendai

On an ordinary morning in January 1995, the city of Kobe, Japan shook for less than a minute. By the time the tremors subsided, one of the most powerful earthquakes in recent history had already destroyed bridges, expressways and buildings, and within several hours, claimed over 6,400 lives. The quake’s magnitude and the fact that it occurred in close proximity to a highly populous urban center were a deadly combination.

Twenty years later, the international community is meeting in...

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Connecting people to build inclusive urban climate change resilience

Asia is experiencing unprecedented urbanization — more than 750 million people live in urban areas, exceeding the combined population of the U.S. and EU. More than 50 percent of Asia’s population is expected to be urban by 2026.

The growth of secondary and tertiary cities causes rapid change in land use, cost and social structures. Climate change further complicates this transformation, making many of these fast-growing cities more vulnerable to both sudden shocks such as coastal...

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