December 2016

Africa needs to tap into Poo/Pee Power


No matter how nice you try to turn it, the business of raw sewage is not ‘cool’ –  but this could be the solution to the electricity menace in Africa. Roughly 645 million people on the continent do not have access to electricity, a key component in pushing Africa’s development agenda ahead.

Country Focus: Mauritius Redeems itself


On a recent trip to Mauritius, I was impressed by one golden thread that wound its way through all my interactions with the people, places, and products in the country – redemption.  Maurinet reports that “the first Europeans to have visited Mauritius were the Portuguese at the beginning of the sixteenth century (most probably in 1510). The Dutch who settled on the island in 1598 named it Mauritius after Prince Maurice of Nassau. 

What’s your attitude towards food waste?


A report (Gustavsson J, Cederberg C, Sonesson U, van Otterdijk R and Meybeck A (2011) FAO, Rome) examined food waste in the industrialised world and the developing world. The findings from the report were that, per capita, much more food is wasted in the industrialised world than in developing countries. Per capita food waste in

Gro Brundtland: the godmother of global sustainability


She was the first to coin the phrase ‘sustainable development’, some thirty years ago. Ever since, Gro Harlem Brundtland has been instrumental in keeping green issues on the global political agenda, which eventually led to last year’s historical Paris Agreement. 

Stories from Africa: Nigeria’s Gerald Chukwuma, a recycling artist


Gerald Chukwuma hawked his artworks on the streets of Nigeria’s southern oil rich city of Port Harcourt to cover his university fees. He shuttled between the Nsukka Art School at the University of Nigeria and the 300km distant city, hawking to pay his tuition as a student. “I had to hawk,” he said. “And I took arts because that was what I knew how to do. So, I hawked my art works on the streets trying to make one or two sales. I would stand on the road and ask people: Can you buy?”