A Bittersweet Livelihood: How Cocoa360 plans to improve cocoa farmers’ standard of life

According to the non-profit Oxfam America, cocoa farmers on average make about three percent of the price of a chocolate bar. Farmer Obini says there’s not much left after what he pays for his kids’ school, so he sells vegetables along with home-brewed alcohol to supplement his income during the low production season. With a population of 27 million, 60% of them living in rural areas, Ghana is troubled by health and wealth inequity. As the world's second leading exporter of cocoa, it earns ab...
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Red Alert: China’s Suffocating Smog Problem

Beijing, as well as a vast area from Xian in central to China to Harbin in the frigid north-east are in the midst of a hazardous “red-alert” smog. This is the second alert to be issued in Chin, the first warning was given only a little more than a week ago. Residents in Beijing especially are being advised to omit from going outdoors and are even undergoing restrictions on the use of vehicles, factories and construction work. The health effects are alarming. Long-term exposure to PM2.5—particul...
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Paris to ban traffic when pollution levels peak

Last week, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo rejoiced as France’s Ecology Minister Ségolène Royal agreed to institute cuts to traffic in Paris when pollution levels peak. Royal had previously called for the bans to be introduced after three consecutive days of high pollution levels, but later conceded that the bans, which will allocate alternate driving days for cars based on odd or even registration plate numbers, will be installed “whenever the region and city authorities demand it.” The move wa...
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Weekly Recap – Feb 18th to 25th

What's inside....?
The Blade Runner Can't Run Last week Oscar Pistorius, lauded last year as the first double-amputee athlete to compete in the Olympic games, was accused of murdering his girlfriend. The South African runner pleaded not-guilty in court, claiming that he mistakenly shot his girlfriend - model  Rena Steenkamp, believing there was an intruder in the house. He was subsequently released on bail later that week.   Hacking Chinese Style Last week American security firm, Mandiant, released a repo...
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The Caribbean, Post-Sandy

Hurricane Sandy did more than wash away the Jersey Shore boardwalk and knock out Lower Manhattan’s power. Before landing in the United States, it originated in the Caribbean, and its effects on the area were devastating. Some nations, such as the Dominican Republic, were hit hard, but have been recovering steadily.[1] Others, such as Cuba and Haiti, were not so lucky. 54 people were killed in Haiti due to flooding and landslides, and over 70% of the country’s crops were destroyed, adding further...
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Australia’s Carbon Pricing Scheme

Australia’s Carbon Pricing Scheme One step ahead for Green, Three steps back for Labor By Christine Du Australia introduced its new carbon pricing scheme on 1 July. Under this new law, Australian businesses that annually produce over 25,000 tons of carbon emissions will now need to pay for emission permits. This translates into an AUS$23 charge per every ton of greenhouse gas emitted for about 300 Australian businesses. The country’s mining firms, airline companies, steel makers and energy ...
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