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Civil Society Participation Key to Success at UN Climate Talks

At this month’s virtual climate negotiations several United Nations officials and governments highlighted the importance of civil society participation in climate action. Yet at the summit’s plenary session, time ran out before civil society…
Residents and environmental activists on Lamu island, Kenya, protest the proposed Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia (LAPSSET) project on March 1, 2012.  © 2012 Reuters/Joseph Okanga
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Government to Pay US$12 Million in Compensation for Smelter Pollution

In a victory for environmental health, last week, a Kenyan Court awarded $1.3 billion Ksh (USD12 million) to residents of Owino Uhuru, a suburb of Mombasa, for damages related to pollution from a nearby lead smelter that recycled lead-acid batteries.…
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Activists Opposing these Plans have Faced Threats and Harassment

Environmental activists in Kenya scored a unique victory last week. On June 26, the National Environmental Tribunal revoked a license issued to Amu Power Company to establish a controversial coal-fired power plant in Lamu. …
Environmental activists and petitioners listen to a tribunal ruling over the construction of a coal-fired power plant, at the supreme court building in Nairobi, Kenya
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Government Program Should Focus on Most Vulnerable

Last week, Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo announced a moratorium on the issuance of permits for new development of state forests into oil palm plantations until 2021. The timing of the moratorium created a buzz at the launch…
Indonesia's President-elect Joko Widodo (C) speaks with journalists at city hall in Jakarta, August 12, 2014.
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Pollution Protester Denies Hoisting Hammer-and-Sickle Banners

Indonesian prosecutors are seeking a seven-year prison sentence for an environmental activist for allegedly raising pro-communist banners while peacefully protesting pollution linked to a local gold mine. Prosecutors in Banyuwangi, East…
201801asia_indonesia_goldmine An illegal miner leaves a cave after mining for gold in the mountain of Tumpang Pitu in Banyuwangi, East Java November 21, 2009.
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UN Pollution Meeting Should Embrace Child Rights in its Resolutions

Bhopal, Chernobyl, and Minamata – these environmental disasters shocked the world. Yet, pollution results not only from catastrophic accidents but also from years of silent exposure. Children’s developing bodies are particularly…
“My name is Amina and I am twenty years old. I grew up here in the town of Bagega. I had six children. Three have died. Each time one died, I was so distraught and I was very traumatized.” Amina, Bagega, Zamfara state, Nigeria, 2011.
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Court Rules Jakarta’s Water Privatization Failed the Poor

In a landmark ruling, Indonesia’s Supreme Court this week ordered the government to restore public water services to residents in Jakarta after finding private companies “failed to protect” their right to water. The court ordered…
Inadequate water supply service caused by privatization of Jakarta’s water supply has forced residents of low-income areas to buy expensive drinking water from street vendors and bathe in polluted public wells.
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Today, on Earth Day, six grassroots environmental activists awarded this year’s prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize will be honored during a ceremony in Washington, DC. One of the six Goldman Prize recipients is Kenya’s Phyllis Omido, who stood up to…
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The Indonesian government announced a new threat to the state: the Hollywood actor Harrison Ford, famous for swashbuckling roles in “Indiana Jones” and “Star Wars.” Ford, an avid environmentalist, traveled to Indonesia to film part of a television series…