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AfricaFocus Bulletin: Latest six bulletins
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September 22, 2014 Africa: Climate Action & Economic Growth
It is still conventional wisdom to pit action to curb climate change against economic growth. But the evidence is rapidly accumulating that this is a false dilemma, buttressed by vested interests in the fossil fuel industry and a simplistic concept of economic growth. According to a report just released by the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate, falling prices for renewable energy and careful analysis of both costs and benefits of low-carbon vs. high-carbon investment strategies point to a clear conclusion: saving the planet and saving the economy go hand in hand.
September 16, 2014 Africa: Tracing the Oil Money
From 2011 to 2013, the governments of [ten oil-producing African countries] sold over 2.3 billion barrels of oil. These sales, worth more than $250 billion, equal a staggering 56 percent of their combined government revenues. But, reveals a new report from Swiss and international nongovernmental organizations, there is little transparency about these sales, a quarter of which were made to littleknown Swiss trading companies.
September 10, 2014 West Africa: Ebola Response Scale-Up Urgent, Uncertain
"The best way to help Africa stem the tide of the current Ebola epidemic is by rapidly investing in and deploying basic infectious control measures like gowns, gloves, water, and sterilization tools, coupled with health worker and community health trainings in how to properly use them." - Adam C. Levine, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, Brown Medical School
August 18, 2014 Africa: From Kerosene to Solar
The largest marketer of solar lamps in Africa, which recently passed the one million mark in lamps sold, has set an ambitious target for the industry. ""Our mission is to eradicate the kerosene lamp from Africa by the end of this decade," proclaims Solar Aid. Although achieving this goal would require the pico-solar market to emulate mobile phone industry's exponential growth path, it may not be as utopian as it sounds. According to market research company Navigant Research, "Off-grid solar lighting for base of the pyramid (BOP) markets, the leading solar PV consumer product segment, is transitioning from a humanitarian aspiration to big business."
August 11, 2014 Africa: Investment for Whom?
"While governance remains an issue for many African countries, structural deficiencies in the U.S. financial system are just as responsible for driving the outflow of illicit capital. ... The burden for curtailing these illicit flows must be shared equally by policymakers in the U.S. and in Africa for this partnership to be effective." - Global Financial Integrity
July 31, 2014 Africa/Global: Talking Points on Common Issues
As African leaders and corporate CEOs gather to meet with President Obama and U.S. government officials, a wide variety of civil society activists will also be meeting in Washington, some in officially recognized side events, others in alternative venues. Many more will be issuing statements and communicating their views, some appropriating the twitter hashtag #AfricaSummit used by U.S. government officials, thus inserting their views as well into that hashtag stream.