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Parched prospects: the emerging water crisis in South Africa

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Publication date: 
Monday, September 15, 2014
Abstract in English: 
South Africa is over-exploiting its freshwater resources and water could be a large constraint on the implementation of the National Development Plan. Using the International Futures forecasting system, this paper models and forecasts water demand and supply until 2035, the period covered by the National Water Resource Strategy 2013. The authors’ research finds that the gap between demand and supply increases and that the solutions proposed by the Department of Water Affairs and Sanitation will not close the gap without additional, aggressive measures. The authors propose such measures for each sector of demand and each source of water supply.
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16
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Foresight Africa: Top Priorities for the Continent in 2016

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Publication date: 
Sunday, January 10, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Africa is at a tipping point in 2016. Despite all the success the continent has achieved in recent years, new and old dangers—economic, political, and security-related—threaten to derail its progress. With sound policymaking, effective leadership, and enough foresight, however—Africa can meet and defeat these challenges as well as the many more to come.

In this year's Foresight Africa, the Africa Growth Initiative and its colleagues discuss six overarching themes that place Africa at this tipping point and give their view on what they perceive to be key areas for intervention to keep Africa on its current rising trajectory. This year's format is different from years past, encompassing viewpoints from high-level policymakers, academics, and practitioners, as well as utilizing visuals to better illustrate the paths behind and now in front of Africa.
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110
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The Global Risks Report 2016

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Publication date: 
Thursday, January 14, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The Global Risks Report 2016 features perspectives from nearly 750 experts on the perceived impact and likelihood of 29 prevalent global risks over a 10-year timeframe. The risks are divided into five categories: economic, environmental, geopolitical, societal and technological.

The report also examines the interconnections among the risks, and through that analysis explores three areas where global risks have the greatest potential to impact society. These are the concept of the “(dis)empowered citizen”, the impact of climate change on food security, and the potential of pandemics to threaten social cohesion.

The report also takes an in-depth look at the how the global security landscape could evolve in the future; sharing the outcomes of a year-long study to examine current trends and possible driving forces for the future of international security.
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103
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Diversifying African Trade: The Road to Progress

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Publication date: 
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Abstract in English: 
Although African trade flows are accelerating at a healthy rate, most African governments have struggled to diversify their economies and to achieve inclusive, sustainable growth. “As Africans, we should be proud of our recent economic growth performance,” noted African Union (AU) Commissioner for Trade and Industry Fatima Haram Acyl in 2014, “but there should be no room for complacency.”
Increased trade could transform the African continent, which is home to thirty-three of the world’s least developed countries (LDCs) and accounted for only 3 percent of global trade in 2014. African nations that have implemented reforms supporting the free movement of goods, capital, and people have reaped a substantial development dividend and are ranked among the fastest growing economies in the world.
This report examines the current state of trade in Africa, identifies obstacles hindering economic diversification and growth, and offers policy recommendations based on these findings. It addresses the economic and geopolitical implications of the global collapse of commodity demand and China’s recent slowdown, as well as how regional trade agreements and regional economic communities (RECs) offer better opportunities for African economies to unlock growth.
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The murky future of global water quality: New global study projects rapid deterioration in water quality

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Publication date: 
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Abstract in English: 
While California’s four-year drought is forcing the most severe mandatory water restrictions in the state’s history, another water crisis is brewing that will affect far more people and a much greater territory – the planet at large.

According to a global study by the International Food Policy Research Institute and Veolia, the world is on a path toward rapidly deteriorating water quality in many countries. The first-of-its-kind study indicates that up to 1 in 3 people will be exposed to a high risk of water pollution in 2050 from increased amounts of nitrogen and phosphorous. Up to 1 in 5 people will be exposed to a high risk of water pollution reflected by increased levels of biochemical oxygen demand (BOD).

Even using the most optimistic socio-economic models, water quality is projected to rapidly deteriorate over the next several decades which, in turn, will increase risks to human health, economic development and thousands of aquatic ecosystems in developed and developing economies alike.
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12
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Investing in African Livestock: business opportunities in 2030-2050

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Publication date: 
Friday, March 1, 2013
Abstract in English: 
This paper depicts the medium to long term development prospects for the African livestock sector by reviewing data on the estimated consumption of animal-sourced foods and anticipated responses by producers for 2005/07, 2030 and 2050. Data and projections are elaborated by the FAO Global Perspective Studies Unit.
Increases in the demand for animal-sourced food are estimated extraordinarily high in Africa over the coming decades. By 2050, the meat market is projected at 34.8 million tonnes and that of milk about 82.6 million tonnes, an increase of 145 and 155 percent respectively over 2005/07 levels. More notably, over this period, Africa’s increase in volume of meat consumed will be on a par with that of the developed world and that of Latin America, with only South Asia and Southeast Asia anticipated to register higher growth. For milk, only South Asia will register stronger gains in market size than Africa. Furthermore, annual growth rates in both meat and milk consumption are projected to be higher in Africa than in other regions, with the exception of meat in South Asia (from a very low base). Within Africa, beef, milk and poultry are anticipated to provide favourable business opportunities for livestock producers, in both volume and value terms. However, market dynamics differ amongst the geographic hubs, including Western and Southern Africa; Northern and Southern Africa; and Central Africa.
Production will not keep pace with consumption. Africa is anticipated to increasingly become a net importer of animal-sourced foods. This represents a missed development opportunity, given the widespread societal benefits that inclusive growth of livestock can generate, particularly in a continent where the majority of rural dwellers depend fully or partly on livestock for their livelihoods. Consequently, investments, and policy and institutional reforms that target African livestock markets are required to ensure that the business opportunities generated by the growing demand for animal-sourced foods translate into widespread benefits for the population.
Formulating effective livestock sector policies and institutional changes require a flow of information on market conditions and on the constraints to market entry. These are rarely readily available and investments in data collection and in data collection systems should be given appropriate priority, as the basis for supportive policies and investment.2050
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14
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The Economic Consequences of Climate Change

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Publication date: 
Tuesday, November 3, 2015
Abstract in English: 
This report provides a new detailed quantitative assessment of the consequences of climate change on economic growth through to 2060 and beyond. It focuses on how climate change affects different drivers of growth, including labour productivity and capital supply, in different sectors across the world. The sectoral and regional analysis shows that while the impacts of climate change spread across all sectors and all regions, the largest negative consequences are projected to be found in the health and agricultural sectors, with damages especially strong in Africa and Asia.
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141
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APEC Low-Carbon Model Town Development Model and Toolkit Study

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Publication date: 
Friday, October 16, 2015
Abstract in English: 
The low-carbon cities in the APEC region differentiate from each other in terms ways and focuses of development due to their distinctive natural conditions, economic development, industrial structure and cultural tradition. Drawing from the experiences from all the member economies, this report offers suggestions for the development models and toolkit of low-carbon cities.
The concept of Low Carbon City originates in Low Carbon Economy, which was put forward in the context of coping with the global climate change and advocating less greenhouse gases emission during human production and living activities. In 2003, the government of United Kingdom published its "Energy White Paper" entitled "Our Energy Future: Creating a Low Carbon Economy", in which the concept of Low Carbon Economy was first put forward. The White Paper pointed out that Low Carbon Economy means to achieve more economic output by less natural resources consumption and environmental pollution, in order to create approaches and opportunities for a higher living standard and better living conditions, and to provide new business opportunities and more job opportunities for the development, application and output of advanced technologies. Low Carbon Economy gives consideration to both "Low Carbon" and "Economy", of which Low Carbon is a model that humans respond to the climate change to realize sustainable economic and social development. Low Carbon means we must reduce or even stop depending on carbon-based fuel to the greatest extent and realize energy utilization transition and economic transition in the pursuit of economic development; Economy, means we need to maintain a stable and sustainable economic development on the basis and in the course of energy utilization transition, however this concept should not exclude the maximum of development, output, and long-term economic growth.
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78
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North American Environmental Outlook to 2030

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, November 1, 2010
Abstract in English: 
This report summarizes recent research concerning the major forces and underlying trends that are likely to shape the environment of North America in 2030. The intention of this report is not to present a prediction of the future. Rather, it is to consider the possibilities that the future might hold in light of the environmental and social stresses facing North America and the world at this time.

The report has been produced in response to a request by the Council of the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC). It complements the CEC’s 2008 report, The North American Mosaic (CEC 2008), which focused on recent environmental trends and divided issues by subject or medium—air and atmosphere, biodiversity and ecosystems, pollutants, and water. This allows for the telling of a coherent story for each issue, but can hide the interconnections among issues. This report takes a more systems approach, following a Driver-Pressure-State-Impact-Response model. Thus, it follows more directly from the discussion paper prepared for the June 2008 conference, North America 2030: An Environmental Outlook, hosted by the CEC’s Joint Public Advisory Committee (Stratos Inc. and IISD 2008), upon which it expands. Together, these and other initiatives are intended to assist the CEC in the consideration and development of its work program by highlighting possible areas for cooperative action to support environmental mitigation, adaptation and innovation strategies across all three countries.

Several factors restrict the scope of this report. First, as a review, it is necessarily limited to available work to-date. Second, because it takes a North American perspective, the choice was to focus primarily, although not exclusively, on cases where consistent and comparable information is available for Canada, Mexico, and the United States. This precluded using some country-specific data, which provide greater within-country detail and may differ from similar data presented in international data sets. Third, there are numerous aspects of the environment for which historic data are available, but for which there has been no effort to make forward-looking projections. Fourth, each of these restrictions is exacerbated by the desire to include quantitative information as much as possible. Finally, most studies, including those explored here, have tended not to consider in detail the possibility of dramatic, albeit imaginable, surprises that would alter their projections significantly.
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84
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Kenya’s Vision 2030: An Audit From An Income And Gender Inequalities Perspective

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Sunday, November 1, 2015
Abstract in English: 
This report constitutes an attempt to audit Kenya’s Vision 2030 from both an income inequalities and a gender inequalities perspective, and to assess the ability of the Vision to respond to both of these persistent development challenges. Historically, Kenya has been one of the most unequal societies in the world. The launch of Vision 2030 thus provided a key opportunity to suggest ways of better conceptualizing and addressing these inequalities for the good of development in the country. The rationale for this audit was grounded in what is now a well-acknowledged fact, that both income and gender inequalities hinder development. They have been found to negatively affect development efforts and present a challenge to the sustainability of development gains at individual, household and country level. The objectives of the audit are to contribute to enhancing development planning and resource allocation towards greater equity and equality. The audit is intended to help build understandings of government actors engaged in development planning and resource allocation, as well as their partners in civil society and the private sector, on the impacts of inequalities on development performance generally and specifically.
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160
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