A nice infographic for International Day of Forests:
The International Day of Forests, celebrated by the United Nations for the first time today, March 21, highlights the vital importance of forests in our lives and the need to defend the world’s forests from pressures on several fronts.
Read FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva’s blog post on the day to learn more about the importance of forests and trees to all life on earth and about the threats facing them.
“On the first International Day of Forests we can make a start by planting a tree and giving back to forests just a little of what we have taken. In planting a tree we plant our future. In giving to forests we give to ourselves and to our children.”
Or watch this somewhat eerie video:
The University of California, through its Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, will convene some of the world’s leading experts April 9 at the Global Food Systems Forum to address how to sustainably feed 8 billion people by 2025.
The daylong forum, which will bring together farmers, researchers, policymakers, economists, environmentalists and other experts, will feature two moderated panels and keynote addresses by Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and president of the Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice, and Wes Jackson, founder and president of The Land Institute.
Michael Specter, global issues writer for The New Yorker magazine, will moderate the first panel, which will focus on the geopolitical, ethical, economic, environmental and technical challenges facing food systems from a global perspective. Award-winning author and journalist Mark Arax will moderate the second panel, which will address the implications, responsibilities and innovative opportunities from a California perspective.
The panelists will include a mix of UC and non-UC experts and thought leaders. View a list of speakers at http://food2025.ucanr.edu/Speakers.
To learn more about the UC Global Food Systems Forum and to register to watch the live webcast, visit http://food2025.ucanr.edu.
If you’re like me, a trip to the supermarket fish counter often leaves you fishing for answers: What is this fish? Where does it come from? Is it endangered?
Now, thanks to AppliFish – a new mobile application developed by the fisheries and biodiversity knowledge platform i-Marine, with support from FAO, answers to these questions and more are available at the touch of a button, anytime, anywhere.
Human consumption of fish products has doubled in the last half century, and around 30 percent of the world’s marine fish stocks assessed in 2009 were overexploited, according to FAO’s State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture 2012.
“With AppliFish, consumers can choose fish that’s not endangered, helping ensure that there will be enough for future generations,” says FAO’s Marc Taconet, Senior Fishery Information Officer and chair of the iMarine board. “Consumers can also use the application to learn more about species, capture levels and habitats, as well as the level of threats faced by these species.”
AppliFish offers basic information on over 550 marine species, such as a common names and sizes, distribution maps, as well as maps featuring expected changes in species distribution caused by climate change.
Simple actions by consumers and food retailers can dramatically cut the 1.3 billion tonnes of food lost or wasted each year. Think.Eat.Save. – a new campaign launched today by FAO and the United Nations Environment Programme – aims to cut food waste worldwide and help shape a sustainable future.
Wasted food also means wasted energy, land, water and lost opportunities to improve lives. Learn more about ways to reduce your foodprint.
In Syria’s neighbouring countries, food vouchers help refugees keep hunger at bay. After decades of excessive logging and reduced water flow, Mount Kenya is becoming green again. And a new plant breeding technique helps farmers in the high Andes of Peru.
Today is International Mountain Day. Did you know that mountains are extremely vulnerable to climate change? Find out more in this animated video:
Oxfam will host a virtual roundtable conversation about the future of agriculture December 10-21.
Over 20 thought leaders on agriculture from around the world, including FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva, have written short essays that will be posted over the next two weeks. Roger Thurow, Senior Fellow at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, will provide a mid-event analysis and final summary remarks.
Two new essays will be posted daily, and readers are encouraged to respond to the experts’ ideas and share their own. All essays and comments will inform an Oxfam discussion paper to be published in 2013 and feed into Oxfam’s long-term project, research, and advocacy planning.
With the world’s population projected to top 9 billion by 2050, we need to look at ways not only to increase food production, but to make better use of the food we produce by reducing loss and waste.
Around 1.3 billion tonnes of food – roughly one third of the food produced for human consumption every year - is lost or wasted, according to a study released last year by FAO and the Swedish Institute for Food and Biotechnology. A recent report from the Natural Resources Defense Council puts food waste in the United States at 40 percent – more than 20 pounds of food per person every month going uneaten.
In developing countries, most food losses occur during post-harvest, processing, transportion and storage, while in industrialized countries food waste happens at the end of the chain, in retail and consumption, when food that is still perfectly edible is thrown away.
Reducing food waste and loss could increase food availability without increasing production and with less impact on the environment.
Agriculture is by far the biggest user of water resources – accounting for 70 percent of all water withdrawals worldwide. So it’s no surprise that global water experts convening the week in Stockholm for World Water Week called for prompt action to curb food waste worldwide.
Taste the Waste of Water, a new film launched today in Stockholm by German filmmaker Valentin Thurn, highlights the issue of food and water waste. Watch the trailer: