November 23, 2015

Big Ideas and Emerging Innovations

REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker

Manure from Millions of Hogs Fuels Natural Gas Project
One recipe for renewable natural gas goes: Place manure from about 2 million hogs in lagoons, cover them with an impermeable material and let it bake until gas from the manure rises. Then, use special equipment to clean the gas of its impurities and ship the finished product out. That’s the vision of one of the largest biogas projects in the US, part of a long-term effort to turn underused agriculture resources into an engine for environmentally friendly farming practices.
 
Improved Web Tool for Better Estimates of Forest Biomass and Carbon Stocks
An updated version of the online tree assessment tool known as GlobAllomeTree will now allow countries to get a clearer picture of the biomass, carbon content, and ecosystem services of trees and forests than previously possible. GlobAllomeTree helps scientists, foresters, private companies and policymakers improve the assessment of forest carbon stocks and prepare greenhouse gas inventories, necessary for mitigation of climate change.
 
New Sense of Community in UN 'Freedom Camp' for African Asylum Seekers
The EU should seriously consider creating a UN-supervised “freedom camp” in Africa. Sending failed asylum seekers to their countries of origin is fraught with insurmountable problems.  If they are given protection and basic services—housing, education, health, water, sanitation, and tools—asylum seekers could use the security and facilities in their “freedom camp” to grow enough food to feed themselves, with surplus sold to other famine-stricken regions of Africa.
 
The Missing LINC in the Newborn Survival Agenda: Prevention
The Public Private Partnership to Prevent Preterm Birth is charged with forging a prevention path in newborn survival to complement the current efforts to treat sick newborns. The partnership aims to demonstrate that preterm birth rates can be significantly reduced by addressing lifestyle, infection, nutrition, and contraception among populations of women where preterm birth rates and deaths are extremely high.
 
Saving the World, Startup-Style
During the past decade, there has been a quiet revolution in the way many scholars think about aid. Rich countries should allow poor ones to determine what needs to happen and then pay money to whoever comes up with an actual solution. Whatever you think of Silicon Valley, the venture-capital philosophy of investing can be an extremely useful model for philanthropy.

About

The Global Food and Agriculture Program aims to inform the development of US policy on global agricultural development and food security by raising awareness and providing resources, information, and policy analysis to the US Administration, Congress, and interested experts and organizations.

The Global Food and Agriculture Program is housed within the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global issues. The Council on Global Affairs convenes leading global voices and conducts independent research to bring clarity and offer solutions to challenges and opportunities across the globe. The Council is committed to engaging the public and raising global awareness of issues that transcend borders and transform how people, business, and governments engage the world.

Support for the Global Food and Agriculture Program is generously provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Blogroll

1,000 Days Blog, 1,000 Days

Africa Can End Poverty, World Bank

Agrilinks Blog

Bread Blog, Bread for the World

Can We Feed the World Blog, Agriculture for Impact

Concern Blogs, Concern Worldwide

Institute Insights, Bread for the World Institute

End Poverty in South Asia, World Bank

Global Development Blog, Center for Global Development

The Global Food Banking Network

Harvest 2050, Global Harvest Initiative

The Hunger and Undernutrition Blog, Humanitas Global Development

International Food Policy Research Institute News, IFPRI

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center Blog, CIMMYT

ONE Blog, ONE Campaign

One Acre Fund Blog, One Acre Fund

Overseas Development Institute Blog, Overseas Development Institute

Oxfam America Blog, Oxfam America

Preventing Postharvest Loss, ADM Institute

Sense & Sustainability Blog, Sense & Sustainability

WFP USA Blog, World Food Program USA

Archive

Commentary - Stretching the Food Aid Dollar by Building Strong Local Markets

Floods, typhoons and droughts. Market fluctuations and inflation. Unhealthy government transitions and local political flare-ups. Disease-ridden crops and tainted water sources. All of these shocks can devastate any country, but for nations combatting poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition, disasters often precipitate acute food security outbreaks that result in suffering and loss of life. 


Commentary - What Would Norm Say?

Given the decade-long relationship I had with him in building the World Food Prize, I am sometimes asked about what the late Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Dr. Norman E. Borlaug might say about a particular topic.


Live Blog - Chicago Council: Agriculture and Health Nexus Panel

“How many enemies can I make on this answer?” Dr. Shapiro boldly called for large agribusinesses like Monsanto, Syngenta, and DuPont to make all their information public and readily available. Dr. Shapiro criticized these companies for not being entirely honest about their goals and motivations.






Commentary - Freezing the Footprint of Food

By the year 2050, our planet will be home to another two billion people. How and where we will we feed everyone has become one of the most pressing conservation issues of the 21st century.



Commentary - Lesson from a Famine: Markets Matter

Ten years after the Ethiopian famine of 2003, when international food aid rushed in to feed 14 million people, another World Food Program (WFP) tent has been erected on an open field.  But this isn’t a scene of food distribution.  It is a scene of food purchase.





Photo of the Week

The Karimi group of Tabalab, Kenya, receives top dress fertilizer, solar lights, maize bags, sukuma seeds, and cassava cuttings at top dress delivery in Teso.


Photo of the Week

Joska Aweko is working with TechnoServe junior business advisor Jane Akot to improve her farming techniques and increase the income she earns from cotton.