India Paves the Way with Plastic — But will it work?

The OECD estimates that upwards of 40% of municipal waste in India is simply not collected. Over the years, scientists and regional and municipal governments in the country have been collaborating on how to reduce the amount of non-biodegradable waste that blankets the country. This project is modeled after smaller-scale road paving initiatives that occurred in New Delhi and Bangalore …

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Turning Sewage into Car Fuel: Biogas Buses in India

The Delhi government is currently working to set up a biogas plant inside Kesopur Sewage Treatment Plant (STP), with the end goal of producing enough compressed biogas (CBG) to fuel 120 of the city’s buses daily. India’s Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has collaborated with the Swedish government on this project. After the renovation of the plant, the …

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More Crop per Drop: India’s Micro-Nutrient Solution

Rain-fed agriculture accounts for over 80% of the world’s farm area and generates about 60% of the world’s staple food supply. It also supports the livelihoods of about 80% of the world’s population. Related to this, 95% of the world’s poor live in the Global South and the bulk of those people rely on subsistence agriculture for survival. Climate change …

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Aqua-Agriculture: Sustainable Futures for Coastal Populations

For many people living throughout the Global South, the only way to earn an income is through traditional activities. Coastal communities often rely on fishing as one of the only sources of income, but when fish populations begin to dwindle, new sources of income are needed. People living in the town of Mandapam, on the Gulf of Mannar in the …

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Tackling Reforestation Challenges at the Root

Desertification is the process by which soil degrades through losing water or its ability to hold water, which turns it into dust and sand. This process has been occurring throughout the world at different paces and for different reasons. Poor farming practices and over use of land is a common cause of desertification. Another is the deforestation of large swathes …

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Conditional Cash Transfers: The Ups and Downs

As a companion piece to the post that covered GiveDirectly’s method of giving unconditional funds to beneficiaries, here is an example from a World Bank study on when it might be appropriate to engage in conditional cash transfers (CCT). The issue here is female school attendance. It is generally a very good thing to see more girls in school for …

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Innovating on Innovations: BRAC Puts New Ideas on the Map

“The reality is that a scarcity of resources has pushed the development sector of South Asia to a point where innovation is not a buzzword, it is essential.” BRAC, the world’s largest NGO focused largely in South Asia, has initiated a project to map and connect innovators at all levels from across India, Bangladesh, and soon, Pakistan.  The Social Innovation …

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Clean stoves aim to reduce indoor polution

  Over four million deaths every year are attributed to indoor and outdoor pollution from cooking fires and inefficient stoves. Prakti is a research and design organization working to produce cleaner stoves that can operate on local fuels without the associated pollution.   Their stoves are low maintenance, versatile, and reduce air pollution up to 90% compared to traditional methods. Added …

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A Clean Water Enterprise in Rural India

A lack of infrastructure in rural communities means that villages and towns are often left without clean drinking water. For low-income households this means drinking water that will potentially make them ill, leading to medical bills or a loss of income. Sarvajal is tackling this issue head-on in rural communities in India. They began by offering clean water through locally-owned …

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