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All-Night Senate Session Focuses on Climate Change

In the last 100 years, senators have held all-night sessions 35 times on everything from the Civil Rights Act to the Iraq War. This week, climate change made the list as number 36. The more than 14-hour session, which began Monday night, was organized by the Climate Action Task Force. Dubbed an avenue to voice concerns over the issue that has…

Report Warns of Sudden Climate Change Impacts

Hard-to-predict sudden changes to Earth’s environment are more worrisome than larger but more gradual impacts of climate change, according a panel of scientists advising the federal government. A 200-page report released Tuesday by the National Academy of Sciences repeatedly warns of potential climate “tipping points” beyond which “major and rapid changes occur.” And some of these changes—happening in years…

U.N. Climate Conference Kicks Off Amid Reminders of Deal Urgency

The 12-day United Nations Climate Change Conference, which aims to forge an agreement to cut climate-altering greenhouse gas emissions, began in Warsaw, Poland, this week. The goal set by the U.N.: limit warming to 2 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels. Representatives from nearly 200 countries are debating an agreement that would take effect by 2020. Major breakthroughs are not expected at…

The Photographic Chain: Five minutes with John Isaac

This post is the latest in Kike Calvo´s series The Photographic Chain, which profiles photographers from around the world he meets during his travels. My dreams is… to be a better human being by evolving each day. Helping myself  from all the lessons I have learned about life during my journey as a photojournalist. To be a…

REDD+ Can Be a Game-Changer in the Battle Against Tropical Deforestation

In a high profile side event to the UN General Assembly next week, UN agencies, NGOs and the private sector will gather at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo to celebrate recent successes in forest protection to combat climate change and call for much greater future investment.

U.N. Agency Says Global Temperatures Hottest Since Meteorological Measurement Began

The United Nations agency charged with understanding weather and climate released new findings indicating the world experienced above average temperatures from 2001 to 2010. In fact, the first decade of the 21st century was the warmest since modern meteorological measurement began in 1850. “Rising concentrations of heat-trapping greenhouse gases are changing our climate, with far-reaching implications for our environment and our…

Where the Millennium Development Goals Fell Short: Valuing Nature

This week in New York City, the 27 members of the high-level panel of eminent persons appointed by the U.N. Secretary General will deliver a report providing recommendations on the post-2015 development agenda. This is a critical opportunity to address the inadequacies of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and to chart a new course for sustainable development.

UN Secretary General Highlights Explorer’s Peace Work

NG Explorer Aziz Abu Sarah responds to having his peace efforts highlighted by Ban Ki Moon at the UN Alliance of Civilizations Conference.

4 Costly Myths About World Heritage

As the 40th anniversary year of the World Heritage Convention draws to a close, many Americans remain oddly estranged from the program that could be proudly labelled “Made in the U.S.A.” That costs jobs.

Do REDD Trees Make Forest Green?

Deforestation, especially of tropical forests, makes up 18 percent of annual global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions — more emissions than the entire global transportation sector. The 2007 Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) emphasized that reducing deforestation would be the most significant and immediate way to begin reducing global levels of…

How the Search for Genghis Khan Helped the United Nations Map Refugees in Somalia

National Geographic has been exploring new worlds for well over a hundred years. In the present century, these new worlds include digital worlds—the next frontier of exploration. Take National Geographic’s recent digital expedition in Mongolia. The “Valley of the Khans Project” represents a new approach to archeology that gives us each the opportunity to be a digital Indiana Jones by searching for the tomb of Genghis Khan using the World Wide Web. The very same technologies can also turn us into digital humanitarians in support of the United Nations (UN). Here’s a story about how National Geographic’s digital expedition in Mongolia inspired the UN during their humanitarian response operations in Somalia.

Climate Change Activists Need To Talk About Population Too

“The environment does not exist as a sphere separate from human actions, ambitions, and needs, and attempts to defend it in isolation from human concerns have given the very word ‘environment’ a connotation of naivety in some political circles.” These words come from the foreword of “Our Common Future: Report of the World Commission on…

Jane Goodall Celebrates International Day of Peace

Jane Goodall realized early on that we won’t be able to take care of animals and the environment until we’re able to take care of each other. In that spirit, the Jane Goodall Institute is asking us all to make a pledge to cultivate peace in our daily lives throughout the year.

UN Calls on Egypt to Safeguard its “Cultural Identity”

The United Nations appealed to Egypt today to protect its cultural heritage, the news agency Reuters reported. “The appeal by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) came as protesters demanding the departure of President Hosni Mubarak mounted the biggest street demonstration since the uprising began a week ago,” Reuters said. “I solemnly…

The Missing Delegate at Cancún: Indigenous Peoples

Forest set-asides are at the heart of the United Nations’ climate negotiations, but a Native American restoration specialist says it will get the wrong people out of the woods. As nearly 200 delegates gather at the Conference of the Parties in Cancun, Mexico, writer Dennis Martinez points out that Indigenous peoples and their advocates have no official…