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Knowledge

Water Use and Pollution: In addition, animal agriculture is a major consumer of water, with vast quantities required for the production of feed crops and for the maintenance of livestock. The amount of water used in animal agriculture varies depending on the type of farming, but it is generally much more extensive than the water required for plant-based food production.

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Greater Gender Inclusion and Attention to Contextual Effects of Climate Change Is the Way Forward!

Women’s close association with sustainable livelihoods, especially among the underprivileged sections of society, is well known. Climate change will (unarguably) affect the ability of vulnerable communities to provide for their everyday needs and existence. Women in ecologically critical locations are acutely aware of the threat that climate change poses to livelihood security in their immediate environment even though they may be unable to articulate the same in sophisticated language.

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Climate Change – the Story of This Century

Can you do any media report today without factoring in climate change? Unlikely. Are you covering a fashion show? Talk to the designers and they will tell you about the problems of getting good cloth; first because cotton and silk productions have been hit by climate change and second because higher temperature means threads keep tearing on the loom more often. Covering foreign affairs? You cannot get away from the squabbles over legal and illegal migration and visas, all worsened because more and more people are finding it impossible to earn their livelihoods from agriculture – a direct impact of climate change. Covering a Test match? The international cricket season has shortened in tandem with the shortening winter. Covering the budget? Look at the amount that has gone into renewable energy. Covering a fight between two groups in a village? Chances are high that the fight is over water or crops, both hit by climate change. Doing a feature on folk songs? Find a contemporary folk song that does not talk of climate change impacts, though it is very likely that the phrase climate change will not be used. Report on high blood pressure? You will find the worst cases are along the coast, among people who cannot afford bottled water and have to drink water that is increasingly becoming saline due to rising sea levels, another impact of climate change.

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Unleashing Inclusive Entrepreneurship at Scale

Recognising the challenge of jobless growth and the need to fulfill the aspirations of over 12 million annual entrants into the work force in India, Mr Shrashtant Patara, CEO, Development Alternatives (DA) in this editorial highlights that there is a need to change our approach to job creation at scale. He stresses that we must invest much more intensively in using locally led micro movements of inclusive entrepreneurship.

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Khayega Toh Badhega India! Kya Tapti Dhoop Mein Jalega India?

The 2017-18 Economic Survey had cautioned that climate change might reduce India’s annual agriculture income in the range of 15% to 18% and up to 20%-25% for unirrigated areas. Even now we can see the effects of climate change aggravating our problems as an agro-producer nation.

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South-South Cooperation and its relevance to partnerships

As per the United Nations definition, South-South Cooperation (SSC) is a broad framework of collaboration among countries of the South in the political, economic, social, cultural, environmental and technical domains. Involving two or more developing countries, it can take place on a bilateral, regional, intraregional or interregional basis. Developing countries share knowledge, skills, expertise and resources to meet their development goals through concerted efforts. When South-South Cooperation is supported by traditional donor countries or bilateral and multilateral organisations, it takes the form of Triangular Cooperation . India has a rich history of South-South Cooperation for centuries. The first Indians arrived in South Africa in 1860 to support economic and business interests. Mahatma Gandhi arrived in South Africa in 1893 to assist in a civil lawsuit. Traditionally, for decades, the developed countries have been working closely with neighbouring countries in the region through developmental assistance. However, the approach has changed over the years. We have come a long way from developmental assistance to “developmental partnerships”. These partnerships have been in the field of education, skilling, business, technology transfer and environment, to mention a few. Indian universities are partnering with counterparts in Africa to create capacities of the teachers in imparting the latest scientific education. India is partnering with the research community in helping to break new barriers in the field of medicine, construction, transport etc.

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Pathways for Inclusive Entrepreneurship: A Post-Pandemic Outlook

Among the many cries of ‘build back better’, one wonders who the face of this post-pandemic future in India is. As we design a post-pandemic economic recovery, are we considering the undeniable ‘duality’ of an economic system – disproportionately ignoring the needs of many while responding, almost exclusively, to the aspirations of a few? Nearly 81 percent of India’s population is employed in the invisible informal sector that includes socially disadvantaged groups1 and women. Every year over 12 million young adults enter the workforce, with only about 5.5 million of them finding meaningful employment2. Growing even faster are the aspirations of women and youth – which are being ignored – reminding us of much innovation in job creation that caters to local aspirations for a decent livelihood. This is where the significance of micro, small and medium enterprises cannot be ignored. MSMEs account for almost 30 percent of the overall GDP and are responsible for creating four out of five new jobs3. Within MSMEs, it is the local and grassroots enterprise unleashing aspirations that offer tremendous potential and opportunity for job creation. Let us break down the challenge itself and look at some hard numbers. To improve the livelihood conditions of just 10 percent of the 40 million people stuck in low-paying, undignified rural informal sector jobs annually, an additional 4 million women and men will need to be employed in high-value-adding, opportunity-based local businesses. If each enterprise employs an average of three persons, over 1.3 million new businesses would have to be set up every year across 675 rural districts, that is, roughly 2,000 per district.

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The Doughnut is a Double Circle: Solutions for People and Nature

It is now very clear that we are certain to go into a 1.5-degree-plus world within this decade with likelihood to have a 2-degree-plus world by 2100, and that too only if we act now, because beyond that, human civilisation as we know it would have irretrievably changed. Action now will require the immediate capping of global emissions despite the need to enhance energy and material consumption in the global south. Major drivers of the rising emissions in Asia and Africa are buildings and infrastructure. Soaring demand and rapid urbanisation of these regions have a multiple whammy on people and nature. Large-scale negative impacts on ecosystem services due to massive extraction of ores, sands, stone-aggregates and soils for building material are compounded by greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the production and manufacture of materials for buildings, roads, bridges etc., and the livelihood losses for communities impacted by the mining and ecosystem loss.

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Decent Jobs for Youth & Generation Unlimited Launch New Knowledge Facility, YouthForesight

Geneva/New York, 4 May 2021 – The Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth (DJY) and Generation Unlimited (GenU) unveiled today YouthForesight (https://www.youthforesight.org), a brand-new knowledge platform that features leading-edge tools, data, and evidence for smarter and effective interventions for youth. Hosted by GenU and DJY, the platform will be a one-stop-shop for development practitioners, policymakers, researchers and young people themselves to learn and share about youth education, skilling, employment, entrepreneurship and engagement through curated tools, data and resources. Through a simple sign-up feature, YouthForesight allows partners to share knowledge resources, gain visibility, and tap into a network of stakeholders dedicated to creating positive change for young people. Kevin Frey, Chief Executive Officer of Generation Unlimited said: “Under the common vision to improve the livelihood situation and future prospects of young people around the world, GenU is delighted to partner with Decent Jobs for Youth to launch, YouthForesight, a comprehensive knowledge facility which draws from partners’ collective experience and expertise aiming to strengthen evidence-based interventions for youth-related initiatives. We look forward to partners’ continued engagement on this facility through resource sharing and participation in knowledge exchange events.”

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Plastics: Polluter can become Protector with Circular Economy Solutions

For comparison (Figure 2), in 2016, India’s per capita plastic waste generation at 19.88 kg per year was one-fifth of that of the United States at 105.30 kg per year. While India’s plastic waste problem may not be as huge as that of the economically rich world, it is definitely growing with increasing income of the societies and their tendency to become more wasteful. The COVID-19 pandemic has only added to per capita plastic waste due to the unprecedentedrise in demand and supply for plastic-based PPEs and medical equipment as well as packaging materials for online shopping and takeaway services. While plastic pollution is a burning issue India and the world are grappling with alike, it is worth noting that plastic is a unique material that is cheap, versatile, lightweight and resistant, and offers much functionality. It also provides environmental benefits by playing a critical role in maintaining food quality, safety and reducing food waste. It has also proven its worth in protecting the world during the COVID-19 pandemic through PPEs and medical equipment. The trade-offs between plastics and substitutes (or complete bans) are therefore complex and could create negative knock-on impacts on the environment.

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