Environmental Peacebuilding Update

Issue 70: 13 Sep 2016


Request for Proposals: Yale New Directions in Environmental Law 2017 -- Environment, National Security, and Human Rights
13 September 2016 | New Directions in Environmental Law
The New Directions in Environmental Law Conference is soliciting proposals for sessions at the 2017 conference, to be held at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24-25. Sessions can include panel discussions, breakout sessions, or skills workshops. Read More

Tomorrow’s Peacebuilders Awards 2016: Call for Applications
6 September 2016 | Peace Direct & Alliance for Peacebuilding
Do you know any environmental peacebuildrrs who warrant recognition? Would international recognition and a $10,000 prize help your organisation make a bigger impact? Apply today for the annual Tomorrow’s Peacebuilders awards. Tomorrow’s Peacebuilders are the global awards for local peacebuilding run by Peace Direct. Read More


For more upcoming events on environmental peacebuilding, please visit our online calendar of events.

Climate and National Security Forum 2016

14 September 2016 | Center for Climate and Security, Center for the National Interest, George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, Washington, DC

The Center for Climate and Security, in partnership with the Center for the National Interest and the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, will be hosting the first annual Climate and National Security Forum on September 14 from 8:45am-6:30pm ET. Read More

Conflict-Related Sexual Violence and Conflict Minerals: The Case of the Democratic Republic of Congo

22 September 2016 | The Office of Global Public Health (OGPH), School of Nursing, William Davidson Institute, LS&A Human Rights Program, Global REACH, and the Panzi Foundation USA, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Global Crossroads Lecture: Dr. Denis Mukwege, OB/GYN and Director of the Panzi Hospital in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is world renowned for his fearless work treating survivors of sexual violence and as a human rights advocate in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Read More


In the last two weeks, 22 new publications were added to our online library of materials on environmental peacebuilding. Here is a sampling of the new additions:

Risk, Resilience, and Pastoralist Mobility
Helen Young, Roy Behnke, Hussein Sulieman, Sarah Robinson, with Abdelhafiz Mohamed (Feinstein International Center, 2016)
As livestock becomes increasingly recognized for its significant contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and exports, this report investigates the practice of pastoralism in Sudan. The authors delineate migration patterns, rationales, and market strategies, and offer recommendations for policymakers and service providers interacting with communities that practice pastoralism. Read More

Environmental Conflict Analysis Using an Integrated Grey Clustering and Entropy-Weight Method: A Case Study of a Mining Project in Peru
Alexi Delgado and I. Romero (Environmental Modelling & Software, 2016)
Environmental conflict analysis (henceforth ECA) has become a key factor for the viability of projects and welfare of affected populations. In this study, we propose an approach for ECA using an integrated grey clustering and entropy-weight method (The IGCEW method). The case study considered a mining project in northern Peru. Read More

Enhancing Environmental Quality and Sustainability through Negotiation and Conflict Management: Research into Systems, Dynamics, and Practices
Michael Elliott and Sanda Kaufman (Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, 2016)
In a world of rapid population growth, urbanization, and climate change, sustainability and environmental integrity are increasingly central concerns. The frequent recurrence of conflict within these arenas, coupled to the difficulty in determining their impact on social–ecological systems, challenges governance at all levels of society. Read More

Natural Resource Management and Peacebuilding in Afghanistan
UNEP, 2016
Afghanistan’s precious natural resources – its land, water, forests and mineral deposits – are critical to the country’s prospects for a peaceful and prosperous future. However, the management of natural resources can also influence conflict in Afghanistan. Read More

The Emerald Mines of Afghanistan's Panjshir Valley: A Valuable Asset without Legal Status
Gary Bowersox (Journal of Asian Mining, 2016)
Well-known since ancient times, Afghanistan's emeralds have provided a valuable source of funding for factions in the country's recent political crises. Despite subsequent international assistance, gemologist Gary W Bowersoxexplains, emerald mining continues as a lucrative but informal and underdeveloped sector that is yet to contribute to an equitable, co-operative relationship of benefit to... Read More

Conflict, Pollution, and Climate Challenges for War-Torn Syria
Wim Zwijnenburg (Heinrich Böll Stiftung, 2016)
The Middle Eastern and Northern African (MENA) region, faced with tumultuous changes in the last five years, shows a picture of shrinking spaces for civil society activism. In contrast, ecological activism is growing and connecting the fight for climate justice to other demands for community and indigenous rights, gender equality,... Read More

Forest Heroes of Cambodia [Video]
Allan Michaud (Danmission and the University of Copenhagen, 2016)
The Prey Lang Community Network (PLCN) have been fighting illegal logging and land clearance across Prey Lang forest for almost 2 decades. One of their biggest problems has been to provide evidence of the numerous illegal activities occurring on a daily basis across Prey Lang. Read More

Climate. Energy. Security.
Gerhard Wahlers (Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, 2016)
The fight against climate change is not merely a question of ecological necessity but a question of economic reason. It is a question of generational equity, a question of compassion and a question of humanity and its future. Read More

Institutional Change in a Conflict Setting: Afghanistan’s Environment Law
McKenzie F. Johnson (European Journal of International Relations, 2016)
This article examines the development of Afghanistan’s Environment Law to explore the politics of institutional change in a conflict-affected context. Environment was catapulted to prominence in 2002 when it was included in the agenda for reconstruction under the new transitional government. Read More


13 jobs were posted in the last two weeks. Here is a sampling of the new additions. Please visit our jobs page to view these positions and other job opportunities.

DRC: WASH Advisor
6 September 2016 | International Rescue Committee
The WASH Advisor will coordinate, provide guidance and technical support for the implementation of facility-level and community-level WASH interventions as part of a comprehensive health service package. S/he will be responsible for the design of quality WASH interventions, and for coordinating these interventions with all other components of the IHP... Read More

Turkey: Deputy Head of Programmes
13 September 2016 | GOAL
GOAL has been working in Syria since 2012, responding to the acute needs of conflict affected communities. GOAL is working in Idlib and Aleppo Governorates, in close coordination with local partners, delivering food, non-food, shelter, nutrition, WASH and cash based programming to those most in need. Read More

Yemen: WASH/Shelter Assistant- Sa'ada
13 September 2016 | Norwegian Refugee Council
The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) is a non-governmental, humanitarian organization with 60 years of experience in helping to create a safer and more dignified life for refugees and internally displaced people. NRC advocates for the rights of displaced populations and offers assistance within the shelter, education, emergency food security, legal... Read More

Afghanistan: Communication Specialist for AEITI Secretariat (Deadline: 2016-09-17)
6 September 2016 | Ministry of Mines and Petroleum, Afghanistan
The Communication Specialist would manage the communications team; and would remain responsible in developing, managing, co-coordinating, networking, implementing, monitoring, reporting and advocating the AEITI communication strategy associated products and activities on on-going basis with public audiences, with the objective of promoting awareness, understanding and support of the AEITI secretariat and... Read More

Syria: Food Security Project Manager (Deadline: 2016-09-17)
13 September 2016 | Norwegian Refugee Council
The purpose of the Food Security (FS) Project Manager position is to manage and provide technical guidance in the Agricultural livelihoods components of NRC’s programmes in Syria, including the EU livelihoods consortium project. The incumbent will develop partnerships, and complementarities of Food Security interventions with other NRC Core Competency teams... Read More

Uganda: Regional Coordinator GWP Eastern Africa (Deadline: 2016-10-03)
13 September 2016 | Nile Basin Initiative
Global water partnership East Africa (GWPEA) a Regional Water Partnership (RWP) within the GWP Network is hosted by the Nile Basin Initiative Secretariat (Nile-SEC) in Entebbe, Uganda. GWPEA Seeks to recruit a regional coordinator for its secretariat which has become vacant. Read More

Iraq: WASH Program Manager (Deadline: 2016-10-07)
13 September 2016 | Mercy Corps
The WASH Program Manager is a member of Iraq’s humanitarian unit, working under the supervision of the Humanitarian Team Leader. S/he will be responsible for ensuring the delivery of high quality WASH interventions (including infrastructure); developing and evolving the organization’s strategy and future direction in WASH; engaging actively with the... Read More

International News

Afghanistan: Snow Leopards' Return Brings Hope to Remote Afghan Region
12 September 2016 | Associated Press
In a picturesque corner of Afghanistan, a unique conservation effort has helped bring the elusive snow leopard back from the brink and given hope to one of the poorest and most isolated communities on earth.  The leopards range across the snowy mountains of a dozen countries in Central and South... Read More

Iraq: Baghdad Wants Back All Oilfields that Fell to Kurds During ISIS War
10 September 2016 | Rudaw
Iraq's ministry of oil says that it intends to retake full control of all Kirkuk oil fields that fell to the Peshmerga during the war with the Islamic State (ISIS) and that the recent rise of export from Kirkuk is part of an old agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government... Read More

Myanmar: Is Yearly Flooding the New Normal?
9 September 2016 | Hein Ko Soe, Fronteir
Environmentalists and activists told Frontier that they believed there were two factors driving more regular flooding. The first is man-made climate change. Myanmar’s National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA), which was drafted under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, forecasts that Myanmar will be subject to both increased... Read More

Nature Protection Mulled as Path for Peace
9 September 2016 | SciDev.Net
The United Nations and other peacekeeping bodies should include an element of environmental protection and research in their efforts to pacify warring nations, a conference has heard. By sharing responsibilities for protected areas and natural resources, such as forests and water sources, countries can be brought around the negotiation table... Read More

Myanmar: The Lost Forests of Myanmar [Photos]
7 September 2016 | Ledger Independent
These hills were once so thick with trees that condemned criminals were sent here to die. Today, illegal logging has left only a handful of old-growth stands. Read More

Colombia: Colombia’s War Has Displaced 7 Million. With Peace, Will They Go Home?
5 September 2016 | Nick Miroff, Washington Post
In the nation with more internal refugees than any other, you won’t find the uprooted and the dispossessed huddled in tent camps or fleeing in long caravans. Colombia’s war doesn’t look like that, at least not anymore. Read More

Timor-Leste: Timor-Leste Backing Oil Development before Hague Ruling
3 September 2016 | Hamish McDonald, Saturday Paper
Timor-Leste’s government has insisted that gas and oil from the discovery called Greater Sunrise be brought for processing to Timor’s coast. Timor-Leste has stepped up a legal and diplomatic drive to renegotiate the 50-year maritime boundary agreed with Australia in 2006, which created a 50-50 split of the future Greater... Read More

Conflict Minerals: Can Blockchain Help Curb the Flow of Blood Diamonds?
2 September 2016 | Prableen Bajpai, Nasdaq
The more precious the asset, the higher the probability of people committing crime to gain a share in it. Diamonds are no exception. The $80 billion diamond industry suffers from the problem such as theft, fraud, diamond-fueled conflict and more. Can blockchain technology be the answer? Read More

Somalia: UN Worried La Nina Will Worsen 'Dire' Drought in Somalia
1 September 2016 | Katy Migiro, Reuters
The La Nina weather phenomenon is likely to worsen drought and hunger in Somalia, especially in the north where many people and their animals are migrating in search of water after four failed rainy seasons, the United Nations said on Thursday. Read More

Liberia: Ellen Signs Criminal Conveyance Act
31 August 2016 | New Dawn
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has signed into law an “Act against Criminal Conveyance of Land” following its passage by both Houses of the Legislature. According to the Act, a surveyor who encourages, persuades, surveys, uses his influence or in any other way participates or conspires with anyone in the sale or... Read More

Colombia: Colombia Asks FAO to Collaborate in Implementation of Peace Agreements
31 August 2016 | EIN News
The government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, FARC, have asked FAO to collaborate in the implementation of the first point of the peace agreement they recently signed, which centres on fighting hunger and promoting rural reforms and development. Read More

DRC: 'Clean up' Artisanal Mining Sector in South Kivu, DRC Minister Warns after Gold Rush Exposé
31 August 2016 | Romil Patel, International Business Times
The Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC) mines minister has called for a "genuine clean up" of South Kivu's mining sector. Martin Kabwelulu issued the call after a Global Witness investigation reported by IBTimes UK in July revealed that up to $17m (£12.93m) of gold produced by Kun Hou Mining, a... Read More

Afghanistan: In Afghanistan’s Farm Belt, Women Lead Unions and Find New Status
31 August 2016 | Mujib Mashal, New York Times
In this lush farm belt deep in central Afghanistan, women have been the organizing force behind a new wave of small village farm unions. That seems to have brought some changes. In a reversal of tradition, husbands tend to walk after their wives, trailing a couple of steps behind with... Read More

China/South China Sea: China, ASEAN Eye Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea —Sources
31 August 2016 | Michaela del Callar, GMA News
Amid mounting worries over territorial conflicts in the South China Sea, Chinese and Southeast Asian leaders plan to establish an emergency diplomatic hotline and adopt a joint statement on a Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES) to prevent armed clashes in the disputed waters, diplomatic sources told GMA News... Read More

Blogs & Opinion

In the last two weeks, 11 blogs & opinion pieces on environmental peacebuilding were posted on our website. Following is a sampling:

Intel Ad Campaign Highlights Importance of Supply Chain Responsibility
9 September 2016 | Lewis Golove
The past two decades in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) have been characterized by civil war and mass atrocity, the staging ground of “Africa’s world war.” Since 1998, militias and rebel groups have killed over five million people. They have funded their operations by exploiting the country’s vast wealth of natural... Read More

Afghanistan: Mineral-Rich, Conflict Torn Electronics Treasure Trove
6 September 2016 | Jennifer Baljko
Besides oil, gas, and minerals such as as gold, copper and tantalum, a 2010, New York Times article cited an internal Pentagon memo stating that Afghanistan was poised to become the "Saudi Arabia of lithium," a key element used in batteries for computers, smartphone, laptops, tablets, and electric cars, among other products. Read More

This Precious Resource Leads to Most Wars and Armed Conflicts and Things Are Only Getting Worse
5 September 2016 | Benedict Brook
Armed conflicts are usually seen as falling into one of very few categories; capturing territory, a political ideology attempting to dominate another or, simply, for a country to get its hands on oilfields. But, according to one theory, whatever the stated reason for most wars, they actually come down to one reason. Read More

Climate Change, Arctic Security, and Methane Risks
5 September 2016 | Chad Briggs
Over the past year, the climate risks of methane (CH4) released from natural sources have attracted increasing media attention in scientific and media forums as “the Arctic climate threat that nobody’s even talking about yet.” Scientific journals have likewise run articles detailing the risks that methane, in addition to CO2, poses... Read More

RGS Annual Conference 2016
4 September 2016 | Becca Farnum
The RGS Annual Conference 2016 took place this week at the Royal Geographical Society and included a session on "Environmental Peacebuilding: The Peace-Environment-Conflict Nexus (2): Nature as Diplomat: Emerging Theories and Practices of Environmental Peacebuilding." Participants examined the logic of the environmental peacebuilding rationale and the links between peace, the natural environment,... Read More

In Myanmar, Nature Can Help Communities Face Climate Challenges
3 September 2016 | Ryan Barlett
The impacts of climate change are becoming an ever starker reality around the world, with 2016 on pace to be the hottest year in human history - topping the previous record set just last year. While the Paris Agreement represents significant progress toward addressing this global challenge, international leaders need to further... Read More

In Kosovo, Post-War Water Faults Show Challenge of Balancing Political with Technical
1 September 2016 | Florian Krampe
Rivers have shaped the Western Balkan Peninsula’s characteristic landscape and played an important role in its history. Following the violence of the Yugoslav secession wars in the 1990s and the creation of six new nations, the number of transboundary river basins doubled from 6 to 13. Read More

About Our Community of Practice

Environmental Peacebuilding is a knowledge platform and global community of practice on natural resources, conflict, and peace, hosted by the Environmental Law Institute (ELI), UN Environment, McGill University, and the University of Tokyo. The platform unites a global network of researchers, practitioners, and decision makers in sharing experiences and lessons from managing natural resources in fragile states and conflict-affected settings. The platform also helps people to access new publications on the topic, conduct new research, and participate in events to support the growth of the field. As part of our Community of Practice, we bring you biweekly updates on recent developments, including news about our program as well as links to new publications, upcoming conferences and events, and job openings.

Please visit us at www.environmentalpeacebuilding.org for more information. Financial support for the platform has been provided by the Government of Finland, USAID, and the European Commission. 

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