Qatar – the tiny desert nation known for sinking millions into futuristic follies like artificial clouds and underwater TV studios – has come down to earth with a plan to grow up to 70 percent of its own vegetables by 2023. Currently under 16 percent of their veggies are locally grown. “Cutting edge technology” will[.....]
A team of Syrian scientists at the International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Areas (ICARDA) braved the terrors of civil war to protect a critical piece of global heritage, meticulously transporting plant genetic material from a seed bank in Aleppo to the Svalbard Seed Vault in Norway. Their actions to protect the region’s ancient farming[.....]
World population is projected to reach 9 billion by 2050. Rising incomes in emerging economies lead to greater demand for meat-rich diets. As the world grows hungrier for animal protein, insects could be the new way to feed livestock, and us. Using insects to feed the animals providing tomorrow’s meat – does anything about this[.....]
WASHINGTON — Inhabitants of the oil-exporting sheikhdoms and emirates of the Persian Gulf wolf down an average 3,700 calories a day —leading to the highest rates of obesity on Earth — even as at least 805 million people, one-ninth of the world’s population, go hungry. Such huge disparities will ultimately lead to widespread unrest, warns[.....]
Most Gulf countries import up to 90 percent of their food, which neither bodes well for food security no climate change – since the food that is brought in from Europe and elsewhere has a lot of what are called “food miles.” True to their name, Forward Thinking Architecture proposes a solar-powered hydroponic food belt as[.....]
The fighting in Gaza has forced farmers and herders to abandon their lands and has paralysed fishing activities, bringing local food production to a halt and severely affecting livelihoods, the United Nation’s FAO warned last week.
Food insecurity is daunting, particularly in cities. And while industrial vertical farming offers a solution, the absence of chickens and may and other signs of farm life casts suspicion on this method of tech-based food production. Plantagon aims to bridge that divide with a solution that can be implemented on just about any building, anywhere.
Organic farming is widely thought to be the healthy choice – not only nutritionally but because organic farmers are required (in general) to keep their crops chemical- and pesticide-free. But in poverty-stricken Gaza, people are more frequently buying conventionally-grown foods.
For some, being a farmer is suicidal. Water and land are scarce, small farmers struggle to compete with the likes of Monsanto, and there are a host of environmental problems to contend with as well. In this context, it’s almost unthinkable that this bright young man dreams of following his father’s footsteps – as a farmer in Iran.
Egypt plans to lease 25,000 hectares of agricultural land to Arab investors. Agriculture minister Ayman Abu Hadid made the announcement in Tunis recently. Egypt is hoping that sustainable farmers will apply.
Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates have all ranked among the world’s top 10 fattest nations with ballooning obesity rates and an explosion of associated diseases. But there’s an upside to oversize:
During the last six years, the words energy security, water security, and food security could be found a lot in the Arab media. Since most of the Arab media is controlled by the Arab regimes, the appearance of these items shows that the environmental awareness of the Arab regimes has been on the rise.
Water scarcity combined with desertification makes for a scary combination in the Middle East, but The Sahara Forest Project (SFP) is pioneering a promising solution: greenhouses that use saltwater to grow food in the middle of the desert.
Greenpeace raises the alarm about the presence of GM crops in Egypt despite an announcement by the Egyptian government that GM seeds had been discarded Back in 2012, the Ministry of Agriculture in Egypt made the bold statement that no Genetically Modified (GM) crops were to be planted in Egypt. Although this may have been[.....]
According to a recent report, 81% of Egyptians don’t have enough to cover their monthly food bill A recent government survey has revealed an increasing number of Egyptians are struggling to clothe and feed themselves whilst keeping a roof over their heads. The report by the Egyptian Food Observatory found that of the 1680 households[.....]
Quinoa is a healthy superfood filling up kitchen cupboards of ethical and vegetarian eaters, but quinoa comes at a high price for those in Peru and Bolivia, If you’re a vegan or vegetarian or someone who is just trying to eat a little more consciously, you know that shopping can be something of a nightmare.[.....]
Taking irrigated water from the Nile, the Toshka pumping station in upper Egypt was supposed to help combat encroaching desert Political tension in Egypt in the aftermath of the revolution which began nearly two years ago, has hit tourism, led to high food prices, and caused an economic slowdown which is raising food security concerns.[.....]
It’s strange that a farmer’s market should make news, but when it’s in Qatar, one of the driest and least food secure nations on earth, a farmer’s market is a big deal. So much so that local professional photographer Mohammed Ismail stopped by for a shoot. Located 30 kilometers outside of the capital Doha, where[.....]
It’s real-life Hunger Games, and the Middle East is among the busiest land-grabbers. In the last decade, nearly half a billion acres of land – eight times the area of Great Britain – were sold or leased in transnational deals, according to a 2012 report published by the Land Matrix project, a coalition of research[.....]
Even a small swarm of locusts can eat the food of 35,000 people! The United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is alerting North Africa to prepare people and food producers about a damaging swarm of locusts expected to move in over the coming weeks. The UN organization is alerting North Africa’s Algeria, Libya, Mauritania and[.....]
Egypt’s first ever seed bombing event will highlight the importance of preserving Egyptian seeds and promoting local biodiversity Environmental groups across Egypt have come together to launch a unique event that involves two things you wouldn’t normally put together: seeds and bombing. Campaigners from Nawaya, Nabta, Greenpeace Egypt and 350.org have been busy training activists[.....]
According to the latest findings by global risk-analyser Maplecroft, Arab Spring countries are at greater risk of rising food prices in the coming year It’s no secret that the high price of basic food staples were a contributing factor to the revolts which began in Tunisia and Egypt and sparked the ‘Arab Spring’. The protesters[.....]
According to scientists from Canada and the Netherlands, the world is depleting underground water reserves faster than they can be replenished In the Middle East, water shortages are a widely accepted reality which many countries are trying to fight head on. Worldwide, however, the issue is not so pressing with environmental issues such as energy[.....]
World food prices soared over 6 percent in July according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization. Prices are continuing to rise, and food security is already a constant threat in the West Bank and Gaza. The Applied Research Institute in Jerusalem estimates that over half the households in Gaza are food insecure, and[.....]
According to the Worldwatch Institute’s latest report on land grab, the oil-rich Gulf nations are big buyers of foreign land Since 2000, an estimated 70.2 million hectares of agricultural land worldwide has been sold or leased by private or public investors. Most of that land grab took place between 2008 and 2010 and most of[.....]
Jordanian Nadia Lawton, a permaculture teacher tells Green Prophet why she believes permaculture could be the region’s silver green bullet. “Permaculture made total common sense to me,” insists Nadia Lawton, “it also fitted with my life ethics a a Muslim.” While the first part of Nadia’s statement may not be considered unique, her remark about[.....]
We speak to Muslim green campaigner Sofiah Jamil about the environmental threats facing Southeast Asia and why climate justice alone isn’t enough Sofiah Jamil is a Singapore-based campaigner who has been working hard to help Muslims living in Southeast Asia connect their faith with environmental issues. As well as setting up ‘Project ME: Muslims +[.....]
Qatar is hoping to boost its food security by setting up 1,400 agricultural farms covering an area of 45,000 hectares Following the recent news that the United Arab Emirates is slowly embracing organic farming, are more signs that the Gulf States are slowly recognising the importance of food sustainability. Qatar has announced plans to establish[.....]
Lack of space in urban environments often means that farming opportunities are limited, but a technique of farming indoors and upwards may resolve this problem Over a week ago, I had the opportunity to attend an event featuring Dickson Despommier, the grandfather of vertical farming. As Green Prophet editor Karin explains in an interview with[.....]
Egypt is losing an estimated 11,736 hectres of agricultural land every year according to UN sources From food contaminated with human waste in Cairo due to water shortages to concerns that the country could be on the brink of famine, Egypt is facing its fair share of food problems. Now, there are reports that desertification[.....]
Humanitarian crises erupt in Libya, Yemen and Syria as the populations revolt against their oppressive leaders From the very start, the price of food has played an important role in the emerging Arab Spring which has swept across Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Jordan, Yemen, Syria and Libya. As food prices rose so did the anger in[.....]
According to a report by the International Water Association, the low price of water is the main factor preventing water conservation in rural Jordan These days it seems that the only way to change people’s attitudes is to hit them where it hurts them most- their bank balance. Unless it makes economic sense, it’s pretty[.....]
Following the food riots that rocked the Middle East, Algeria is bolstering its agricultural self-sufficiency through irrigation projects and tax breaks for local producers Food security is a tricky topic to grasp because food doesn’t just rely on the water and sun it needs to grow but also on the price of oil, the right[.....]
Is biofuel from the Jatropha tree- which Jordan is experimenting with- really as green and sustainable as we think? In a recent article, I debated whether we should encourage the Middle East to embrace biofuels as a real and sustainable alternative to the region’s current dependence on gas and oil. It followed an announcement from[.....]
To coincide with World Water Day, we take a look at a wastewater project planned for Palestine’s green city The Arab region is believed to be one of the driest in the world– 70% of the land is dry and rainfall is sparse and the effects of climate change will only exacerbate the situation. As today[.....]
What do you know about Iraq’s environmental issues? Well, if you’re anything like me surprisingly little considering its pivotal place in the Middle East I think this post was born at the moment I realised I knew so little about Iraq and it environmental concerns. I get to write a lot on all sorts of[.....]
Bahrain, which saw deadly protest this month, is eager to control the price of food according to Wikileaks Rising food prices have been at the centre of the recent riots to hit the Arab world and so it comes as no surprise that many Arab nations are working hard to avoid similar food price rises.[.....]
Protests in the Arab world, which were in part influenced by rising food prices, may be adding pressure to global food prices When the protest in Tunisia kicked off in early 2010, we at Green Prophet highlighted the link between the unrest and rising food prices that meant that many citizens were angry because they[.....]
As the popular Tunisian revolt which ousted the President Ben Ali dies down, the continuing rise of food prices is becoming a real concern for the region’s governments The reasons behind the downfall of the Tunisian president Ben Ali are complex but the high food prices, which brought the average person to the streets in[.....]
Jordanians have taken to the streets of the capital Amman to vent their anger at the government’s inability to stem rising food prices We’ve already reported on the riots in Tunisia and Algeria sparked by high food prices, and now Jordan joins the list. Thousands of people have taken to the streets in protest against[.....]
It’s no secret that the Gulf states are heavily dependent on foreign farmlands for their food and no more so than the United Arab Emirates which imports 80% of its food products. Most foods you see stocked in the UAE’s supermarkets will have been brought in from elsewhere ready to sell directly to the consumer[.....]
Lacking sufficient water to grow enough wheat for its burgeoning population, Egypt (above pic of Suez Canal farm) looks to other Nile Basin countries for land and water. During the heat of this year’s scorching summer, Russia’s wheat supply took a serious hit and the country scaled back its exports. One of their main wheat[.....]
As populations surge and climate change destroys existing crops, seed and gene banks prepare us for potential food-shortage emergencies. As we learned when fires raging through Russia destroyed wheat crops, countries all along the food chain, including Egypt, feel the pinch, though climate change is not all that puts at risk Israel’s tomato, cucumber, and[.....]