Capacity Building & Education

Event: Ninth World Urban Forum [viewed]

The ninth World Urban Forum (WUF9), convened by the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), will bring together thousands of stakeholders to share practices and knowledge on how cities are built, planned and managed. WUF9 participants will include representatives of: national, regional and local governments; non-governmental organizations; community-based organizations; research institutions and academies; the private sector; development finance institutions; foundations; the media; and UN organizations and other international agencies. The WUF's key objectives include: advocating for and raising awareness on sustainable urban development; advancing knowledge on sustainable urbanization through debates, and exchange of experiences and best practices; and coordinating and cooperating within and between different constituencies towards advancing and implementing the Habitat Agenda. WUF is the biggest major international event to address human settlements, including rapid urbanization and its impact on cities, communities, economies, climate change and policies. It meets every two years, and participation has increased to around 22,000 attendees from all over the world. WUF9 will be the first Forum to meet after the post-2015 development agenda process and the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development – Habitat III in 2016.  

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Event: 7th International i-Rec Conference and Student Competition [viewed]

The 7th International i-Rec Conference and Student Competition, focusing on the theme of 'Reconstruction and Recovery in Urban Contexts,' will take place from 6-8 July at University College London (UCL), UK. The conference will seek to enhance understanding of how urban contexts shape disaster recovery, and how reconstruction and recovery activities can enhance the functioning of cities. Comprised of keynote presentations, individual paper presentations and thematic round table sessions, the event is designed to bring together researchers and practitioners with the aim of moving forward, and bringing to the attention of decision makers, issues relevant for post-disaster organization and action.  

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Al Gore Receives ZFEP Lifetime Achievement Award [viewed]

Zayed Future19 January 2015: Former US Vice President Al Gore has received the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award by the Zayed Future Energy Prize (ZFEP) for his “personal and political commitment to raise international awareness about the dangers of climate change, while reinforcing optimism that the global community can and will successfully tackle the challenge.” His Highness General Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, presented Gore with the award during a ceremony held during Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2015.

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Guest Article #125: Promoting Climate Resilience in the Greater Mekong Subregion: The Role of the GMS Core Environment Program [viewed]

The Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) comprises Cambodia, the Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), Myanmar, Thailand, Viet Nam, and the Yunnan and Guangxi Provinces of the People's Republic of China. Connected by the Mekong River, the subregion covers 2.6 million square kilometers and has a combined population of about 332 million. The GMS has been one of the fastest growing regions in the world, with gross domestic product (GDP) growth averaging over 9.5% annually between 2000 and 2009.

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Pope Francis, Holy See Advocate Action on Climate Change [viewed]

vatican-flag20 January 2015: The Holy See has published online the message of Pope Francis to the high-level segment of the Lima Climate Change Conference. In the statement, dated 27 November 2014, the Pope stresses the critical importance of the December 2014 negotiations and their impact on humanity, especially the poor and future generations. Referring to the work of the parties to the UNFCCC, he calls for this "ethical and moral responsibility" to be approached with an "open and generous spirit."

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Thailand Submits NAMA [viewed]

Thailand Flag19 January 2015: A communication from the Government of Thailand on its Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) explains that the country will voluntarily attempt to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the energy and transportation sectors by 7-20% below business-as-usual (BAU) levels by 2020.

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WCRP Launches Polar Challenge [viewed]

WCRPlogo16 January 2015: The World Climate Research Program (WCRP) is launching a Polar Challenge to reward the first team able to send an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) for a 2,000 kilometer mission under the Arctic or Antarctic sea-ice. The challenge will address under-ice navigation, endurance and environmental monitoring. It aims to stimulate the development of a monitoring tool for the Polar regions and expand scientific research capabilities and climate services.

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African Youth Commit to DRR [viewed]

UNISDR14 January 2015: African youth leaders are taking action to ensure their communities are better informed and prepared to reduce disaster risks. Seven youth leaders participated in a disaster risk reduction (DRR) educational voyage and training programme aboard the passenger ship of the Japan-based NGO Peace Boat, which sailed from the port of Maputo, Mozambique, to Cape Town, South Africa.

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Celebrities Sign onto action/2015 Campaign, Urge Action on Climate and Poverty [viewed]

action-201515 January 2015: In a joint open letter, 31 celebrities have lent their voices to the action/2015 campaign, which calls on local and world leaders to take urgent action to alleviate poverty and mitigate climate change. The letter names 2015 as the most important year in global decision-making since the start of the new millennium, citing the UN summit on the post-2015 development agenda, and UN climate change conference, in September and December 2015, respectively.

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CCAFS, CTA Demonstrate Value of Climate-Smart Agriculture in Africa [viewed]

CGIAR CCAFS15 January 2015: The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) and CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) released a book highlighting climate-smart agricultural practices across Africa, based on eight case studies. The book intends to increase awareness of, and support for, agricultural approaches that improve livelihoods and enhance food security while contributing to climate change mitigation.

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