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It's World Water Day: 5 shocking facts about water scarcity that will make you cry a river

It's World Water Day: 5 shocking facts about water scarcity that will make you cry a river | Africa | Scoop.it
“ If you're reading this, you probably have clean water that runs out of your tap with the twist of a handle. But for almost 800 million people, it's not nearly so simple, and water scarcity is a very real, and very deadly, reality for them.”
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Africa faces water crisis despite discovery of huge aquifers

Africa faces water crisis despite discovery of huge aquifers | Africa | Scoop.it
Nairobi, Kenya (UPI) Oct 23, 2013 - The recent discovery of two vast aquifers in northern Kenya and Namibia has given weight to scientists' claims the African continent is sitting on immense underground reservoirs of water.

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UNITED KINGDOM: Stirling researchers support sustainable aquaculture project in Malawi

UNITED KINGDOM: Stirling researchers support sustainable aquaculture project in Malawi | Africa | Scoop.it

Aquaculture researchers from the University of Stirling are part of a major project which has received £337,000 to develop small-scale commercial aquaculture in Malawi.

 

Aquaculture Enterprise Malawi (AEM) is one of 15 projects just announced by the First Minister Alex Salmond to receive support from the Scottish Government’s International Development Fund through the Malawi 2013 funding round.

 

The three-year project brings together the Scotland Malawi Business Group with researchers from the University’s Institute of Aquaculture and the Microloan Foundation.

 

Together, they will work with private sector partners and existing fish farmers to develop the technical aspects of fish production, market chain communication and networking, focusing on fish farmers located in close proximity to Blantyre, Malawi’s business capital.

 

George Finlayson of the Scotland Malawi Business Group, a former British High Commissioner to Malawi, said: “This funding has the potential to make a significant contribution to improving nutrition and food security in and around major urban areas of Malawi.

 

“The demand for fish in both rural and urban areas is booming, but largely unmet. We look forward to bringing a business, microfinance and markets-based approach to producing more fish, whilst also developing the communication and networking skills of key entrepreneurial fish farmers.”

AEM aims to create and foster a supportive business environment through which a network of smaller scale fish farmers can operate as commercial stand-alone businesses, increasing the supply of farmed fish to markets and other outlets in and around urban areas in Malawi.

 

This project builds on the highly successful Sustainable Aquaculture Research Networks in Sub Saharan Africa (SARNISSA) project, initiated by Stirling’s Institute of Aquaculture. It established an online network of more than 2,300 people involved in African aquaculture, from fish farmers, commercial suppliers and researchers to policy makers.

 

William Leschen, a researcher at the Institute of Aquaculture, said: “This is an exciting opportunity to bringing a more joined-up commercial, business and markets chain approach for small-scale entrepreneurial fish farmers in Malawi.

 

The Institute of Aquaculture is looking forward to playing its part in this project, offering our expertise and knowledge in aquaculture, which is now the fastest growing food production sector globally.”

 

The project funding announcement marks the bicentenary of Scottish missionary and explorer Dr David Livingstone, during the visit to Scotland by Her Excellency, Dr Joyce Banda, the President of the Republic of Malawi.

 

Background

 

- Scottish Government announcement: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Releases/2013/03/Malawiaid17032013

 

- Institute of Aquaculture: http://www.aqua.stir.ac.uk/

 

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Airtel, Microsoft and British Council to provide internet for schools

Airtel, Microsoft and British Council have entered a partnership that will see Airtel offer free 5 Gigabyte high speed internet to 120 selected schools in sub Saharan Africa.


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In pictures: Tanzania’s child gold miners

In pictures: Tanzania’s child gold miners | Africa | Scoop.it
Children as young as eight-years-old are working in Tanzanian small-scale gold mines, with grave risks to their health and even their lives, Human Rights Watch said in a report.

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Energy Efficiency and African Growth | The Energy Collective

Energy Efficiency and African Growth | The Energy Collective | Africa | Scoop.it

Historically people associate the sound of Africa as the roar of the lion; but in reality, it’s been the roar of the diesel generator. Herds of these archaic beasts are on the prowl. Their habitat includes cities, towns, factories, mines, businesses and big farms – anywhere where power is required and isn’t available or reliable.

 

When I started in the development arena and specifically in the renewable energy space nearly 15 years ago, energy issues simply didn’t feature. Conservationists and environmentalists alerted us to the dangers of deforestation and climate change and to the importance of preservation of African habitats. Electricity grids only served largely urban areas and commercial enterprises while modern energy options (outside of South African townships) were unavailable to the poor. There were few alternatives to firewood, charcoal, kerosene or candles – what I call the four fuels of poverty.

 

Energy poverty, or energy injustice, at that time was simply known as life. Everyday challenges largely went unnoticed from women walking long distances to collect firewood, inhaling wood smoke from cooking or kerosene fumes from roughhewn tin lamps. Respiratory illnesses, children ingesting kerosene believing it to be clean water, and burns and deaths from fires weren’t on health radar screens in any scale. Productivity went down when the sun did. Few development organizations factored energy poverty into ensuring the efficacy of their programs.

 

It didn’t take me much time to realize that as long as the poor were dependent on non-renewable energy sources, they couldn’t raise themselves out of poverty. When you’re spending between 10-40% of meager incomes on inefficient and harmful fuels you just can’t get ahead.

 

This is changing fast.

 

Click headline to read more--


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Rescooped by Billy Evans from Economic Development News from across Africa.
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» Is Agribusiness the Key to Africa’s Growth? » Global Development: Views from the Center

» Is Agribusiness the Key to Africa’s Growth? » Global Development: Views from the Center | Africa | Scoop.it
This post is joint with Casey Friedman. Today, the World Bank launched a new report, “Growing Africa: Unlocking the Potential of Agribusiness.”  The report argues that agriculture and agribusiness should be at the top of the development and...

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Mauro M.'s curator insight, March 13, 2013 7:46 AM

El crecimiento de Africa: de la mano de los agronegocios

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newspaper map - newspapers from around the world = great resource

newspaper map - newspapers from around the world = great resource | Africa | Scoop.it
Newspaper Map | ✰ find and translate all newspapers in the world ✰...

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9 questions about South Sudan you were too embarrassed to ask

9 questions about South Sudan you were too embarrassed to ask | Africa | Scoop.it
"South Sudan's crisis began just two weeks ago, on Dec. 15, and it already has observers warning that it could lead to civil war. Fighting has killed an estimated 1,000 people and sent 121,600 fleeing from their homes. International peacekeepers are preparing for the worst; some have been killed and a number of them, including four U.S. troops, have been injured. What's happening in South Sudan is complicated and can be difficult to follow; understanding how it got to be this way can be even tougher. Here, then, are the most basic answers to your most basic questions. First, a disclaimer: This is not an exhaustive or definitive account of South Sudan and its history -- just some background, written so that anyone can understand it."
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The FP Survey: Africa Rising? | ForeignPolicy.com

The FP Survey: Africa Rising? | ForeignPolicy.com | Africa | Scoop.it

The data heralding Africa's latest "rise" have been widely documented: GDP growth has been well above that of advanced economies knocked flat by the global financial crisis; foreign direct investment has increased by a factor of six over the past decade; and some 40 percent of Africans now live in cities, up from 28 percent in 1980. Yet the current hype feels oddly familiar, given a similar sense of optimism that swelled more than a decade ago.

 

Today, those sanguine predictions may look naive when 10 of the 15 countries atop the Failed States Index are African, not to mention that the poverty rate in sub-Saharan Africa is still higher than anywhere else in the world. Is Africa really "rising" this time, as so many pundits have pronounced? Here's what more than 60 experts think.

 

Click headline to read more and view chart full screen--

 


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Wi-Fi is an answer for Africa

Wi-Fi is an answer for Africa | Africa | Scoop.it
Across Africa demands are changing, access models are changing and consumers are blurring the lines between corporate and personal spaces – becoming more

 

With more than 650 million mobile users in Africa and with 50% of Internet connections being exclusively channelled through mobile devices, Africa is the second biggest mobile market in the world and the fastest growing.

With this growth, the expectation of increased capacity and coverage by users is exploding, but as more traffic, devices and concurrent connections hit mobile networks, the cost for transporting these bits rises. As a result, these trends are driving a new networks strategy that reduces OPEX and CAPEX, using Wi-Fi to offload non-essential traffic from cellular networks as well as scaling coverage and capacity quickly, using smaller cell sizes.

“As a result we are seeing a lot more free Wi-Fi, larger hotspots and Wi-Fi solutions being used in different verticals such as education – and most importantly, interest from service providers as to the viability of Wi-Fi as an alternative means for their users to access data,” says Michael Fletcher, sales director for Ruckus Wireless sub-Saharan Africa. “In fact, Wi-Fi represents one of the most expedient and cost-effective ways to increase both capacity and coverage of cellular networks, with a tight focus on where traffic is heaviest.”

Ultimately for the mobile network operators (MNOs), Wi-Fi is a far more cost-effective way to provide access to customers and on the reverse, for customers, it is a better experience and a more cost-effective solution, too – especially if their 3G networks are congested. What’s more, many rural towns have no broadband at all, and as such Wi-Fi provides an alternative to bring broadband to rural areas for much less than what they would pay for 3G.


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WiFiNovation's curator insight, August 20, 2013 6:19 AM

Pervasive Wi-Fi will have massive implications for Africa,” says Fletcher. “Imagine the possibilities of ‘always on’ connectivity– which is not only positive from a consumer point of view, but certainly it opens up enormous business potential as well. What’s more, with MNOs’ buy-in not only are we likely to see more pervasive free Wi-Fi in public spaces but users will have a better experience as well.”

Julia Chandler's curator insight, August 20, 2013 7:15 AM

one of the answers, maybe

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Building Blocks for Africa's Economy - U.S. News & World Report

Building Blocks for Africa's Economy - U.S. News & World Report | Africa | Scoop.it
U.S. News & World Report
Building Blocks for Africa's Economy
U.S. News & World Report
A major obstacle for development in Africa is the lack of any true regionalization.

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Column: An Agenda to Boost Africa's Economy - NYTimes.com

An agenda to boost #African #Economy by @eliot_p. http://t.co/ppH5AawbIH. @pkukubo @JendayiFrazer

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Allegra Toran's curator insight, February 9, 2015 6:28 PM

Who: 

 

What: the U.S. an NGOs are trying to find out how to catch the wave of interest in Africa.

 

Where: Africa

 

When: 2013

 

Why: 

• Invest in Africa's equity and commodity markets:

Despite Africa's investment potential and others' interest in its economic growth, it's still hard to invest in an unstable continent. Of its 30 stock markets only a few offer real results due to its "antique market". As a result, for institutional investors who need to take large positions or who have fiduciary requirements for daily liquidity, Africa remains almost entirely off-limits. This leads to a major barrier for foreign direct investment. 


• Disrupt Dodd-Frank:

Two obscure sections of the Dodd-Frank Act, 1502 and 1504, concern conflict minerals and transparency in Africa. Section 1502 has been a source of disagreement since: NGOs, academics and the private sector. According to estimates in a Tulane University study, the cost of implementing the DF-1502 is close to $8 billion. Even with good intentions, the two sections impose challenges for investors on the continent.


3. Africa's rising savers:

The biggest fallacy in Africa's growth is that its future depends on the rising African consumer. And even if Africa's consumers are rising, if its markets remain fragmented its overall affect on foreign investment will be limited. More important is the role of Africa's rising savers. American investors should be looking at the institutions that manage these funds and either look to partner with, or raise from them, since most of the same wells in the U.S. will be dry. Sub-Saharan Africa's six biggest pension funds are growing at rapid rates. As African economies' dependency ratios even out and asset allocation regulations ease, vast opportunities will open up in domestic private investment markets.

 

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How Africa's new tech cities could change the continent's IT landscape | ZDNet

How Africa's new tech cities could change the continent's IT landscape | ZDNet | Africa | Scoop.it
Skills, regulation and how they're able to specialise are among the key factors that will determine whether Africa’s new tech cities prosper or falter, according to analysts.

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Daily Front Page from over 800 newspapers from around the world

Daily Front Page from over 800 newspapers from around the world | Africa | Scoop.it

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AIDS, TB and Malaria in Africa

AIDS, TB and Malaria in Africa | Africa | Scoop.it
Despite the gains, more Africans still die from Malaria even as the spotlight remains firmly fixed on HIV/AIDS.

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Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 1, 2014 10:41 AM

This infographic shows how pervasive disease is in Africa. Though HIV gets a lot of attention, malaria and tuberculosis are just as prevalent as HIV/AIDS. The attention given to HIV/AIDS is reflected in the amount of aid sent to Africa, with a significant amount more being spent to halt the spread of HIV. These efforts are not entirely in vain as there have been decreases for all three diseases, but the funding necessary to make serious progress not on its way.

 

Though there is an even greater need to fight malaria, more international aid for HIV/AIDS is likely because most of the countries sending aid are not as familiar with malaria and HIV/AIDS has become sensationalized.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 3:52 PM

Disease is a global problem. Not having enough resources to keep diseases such as malaria out of Africa is unfortunate. People are dying every day and in efforts to save these people, it still can't be done. In the past, AIDS was the main disease that killed people in Africa. More recently, malaria is working its way through humans and killing them more than AIDS.

TavistockCollegeGeog's curator insight, July 4, 2014 7:41 AM

Fantastic infographic on health risks in Africa. Particular focus on infectious diseases.