Environmental Peacebuilding Update

Issue 85: 11 Apr 2017


Call for Abstracts: International Conference on Water Security and Climate Change (WSCC) 2017
31 March 2017 | Technology Arts Sciences TH Köln (and others)
Academics and practitioners from various sectors are set to discuss the diverse facets of water security in dynamic environments and its relation to climate variability and change. Read More


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

6th Annual AIAG Conflict Minerals Industry Briefing

7 June 2017 | Automotive Industry Action Group, Livonia, MI

The 2017 Conflict Minerals Industry Briefing is designed to offer the necessary information for new professionals and to advance the knowledge level of those experienced in conflict minerals reporting.  New professionals and those seeking a refresher of basic content will find value in the event’s morning agenda.  More experienced conflict minerals... Read More

23rd International Sustainable Development Research Society Conference

14 June 2017 – 16 June 2017 | International Sustainable Development Research Society, Bogotá, Colombia

Sustainability issues today must be seen not only from an environmental perspective; the social perspective is very relevant as well for the Sustainable Development Goals. In this regard, issues of inclusiveness in the development model of nations, regions and municipalities attain a high priority level. Read More


In the last two weeks, 17 new publications were added to our online library of materials on environmental peacebuilding. Here is a sampling of the new additions:

Land Tenure in South Sudan: Does It Promote Climate Change Resilience?
Nhial Tiitmamer, Augustino Ting Mayai, and Nyathon Hoth Mai (The Sudd Institute, 2017)
Land was a key driver of the war between Khartoum and Southern Sudan. The Khartoum government had placed the land and its resources under the state’s control, while the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), which represented the South during the war, argued that the “land belongs to the community” and... Read More

Natural Resources, Conflict and Investment: Conflict Minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Challenges to Sustainable Investment
Onita Das (International Natural Resources Law, Investment and Sustainability, 2017)
Since 1990, at least 18 violent conflicts have been fuelled by the exploitation of natural resources such as timber, minerals, oil and gas. Sometimes this is caused by environmental damage and the marginalization of local populations who fail to benefit economically from natural resource exploitation. Read More

Afghanistan Flood Report 2017
ACAPS, 2017
Continuous heavy rainfall since February has caused severe flooding in Khashrod and Chakhansur districts in Nimroz province. As of 23 February several homes had been destroyed or swept away by flood waters, and over 20,000 hectares of arable land had been submerged in flood water. Read More

Counting the Cost: Agriculture in Syria after Six Years of Crisis
Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN, 2017
Despite six years of crisis in Syria, agriculture remains a key part of the economy. The sector still accounts for an estimated 26 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and represents a critical safety net for the 6.7 million Syrians – including those internally displaced - who still remain in rural areas. Read More

Translating Policies on the Rights of Indigenous Communities into Concrete Practice to Mitigate Conflicts over Natural Resource Exploitation in Central Africa: Case Study of the Baka People in Eastern Cameroon
Nah Anthony Tetinwe (Studies in Sociology of Science , 2017)
Although the exploitation of natural resources has been presented as an impetus to economic growth, it is often associated with dispossession and deprivation of indigenous/local communities with respect to their land rights, control of resources, human rights, self-determination, cultural integrity and the right to development. Read More

2016 Near East and North Africa Regional Overview of Food Insecurity: Sustainable Agriculture Water Management is Key to Ending Hunger and to Climate Change Adaption
Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN, 2017
The second edition of the Regional Overview of Food Insecurity in the Near East and North Africa 2016 coincides with the adoption of the sustainable development agenda and the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the agreement on climate change reached at CCOP21 in Paris. Read More

River Activism, Policy Entrepreneurship and Transboundary Water Disputes in Asia
Pichamon Yeophantong (Water International, 2017)
This article examines the role of non-state actors – namely, ‘river activists’ – in the management of major transboundary rivers in Asia. Focusing on unresolved disputes over the utilization of the water resources of the Mekong, Nu-Salween and Brahmaputra Rivers, it argues that aside from riparian governments, these activists have... Read More

Nature Knows No Boundaries: The Role of Nature Conservation in Peacebuilding
Alexandre Roulin, Alexandre Roulin, Alexandre Roulin, Mansour Abu Rashid, Baruch Spiegel, Motti Charter, Amélie N. Dreiss, and Yossi Leshem (Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 2017)
Nature is sometimes a source of conflicts, but more often suffers as a result of them. Although in some instances warfare might benefit wildlife by depopulating wilderness areas and reducing resource exploitation, conflicts are usually harmful to ecosystems. The destruction of natural resources can be deliberately used as a weapon,... Read More


Please visit our jobs page to view these positions and other job opportunities.

Nigeria: Strategic Resilience Assessment Manager
10 April 2017 | Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by building secure, productive and just communities. Mercy Corps has been present in Nigeria since 2012, focusing its interventions on adolescent girls’ empowerment, economic development and conflict mitigation. Read More

Afghanistan: Consultance for Territorial Diagnosis (Deadline: 2017-04-15)
10 April 2017 | MADERA and Solidarités International
The French Agency for Development (AFD) has granted funding to a consortium of three French NGOs to implement a three-year rural development programme in the Central Highlands of Afghanistan. This consortium is led by GERES, in partnership with MADERA and SolidaritésInternational (SI). The overall objective of the Central Highlands Programme (CHP) is to increase living standards and the quality of... Read More

Sierra Leone: National Project Manager (Deadline: 2017-04-17)
10 April 2017 | UNDP
The Government of Sierra Leone through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) received a grant from Sustainable Development Goal Fund (SDG-F) to implement a project on Enabling Sustainable Livelihoods through Improved Natural Resources Governance and Economic Diversification in the Kono district,... Read More

Afghanistan: Advisor - Watershed Management (Deadline: 2017-04-26)
10 April 2017 | Concern Worldwide
Concern Worldwide is an Irish-based non-governmental, international, humanitarian organisation dedicated to the reduction of suffering and working towards the ultimate elimination of extreme poverty in the world’s poorest countries. Read More

Cameroon: Un(e) Responsable Technique WASH à Batouri (Deadline: 2017-04-30)
10 April 2017 | Première Urgence Internationale
Première Urgence Internationale est une Organisation Non Gouvernementale de solidarité internationale, à but non lucratif, apolitique et laïque. L’ensemble de ses personnels se mobilise au quotidien pour couvrir les besoins fondamentaux des victimes civiles mises en péril, marginalisées ou exclues par les effets de catastrophes naturelles, de guerres et de situations... Read More

International News

Liberia: Liberia, EU Sign Agreement to Strengthen Forestry Sector
9 April 2017 | FrontPageAfrica
The agreement was signed by Ambassador Tina Intelmann, Head of the European Union delegation and Sister Mary Laurene Browne, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Forestry Development Authority during a press conference at the Monrovia City hall on Friday, April 7, 2017. Read More

Myanmar: A Group of Divers is Saving Myanmar’s Marine Wildlife from Deadly Ghost Nets
5 April 2017 | Jacob Goldberg, Coconuts
Myanmar’s underwater earthscape may be relatively untouched by tourism, but it is steadily becoming a trash receptacle for local fishers. In fact, these two circumstances might be related. Thanda said that while it is rare to find a single piece of rubbish during a dive in Australia, where tourism provides... Read More

Iraq/Kurdistan: Obliterating ISIS May Hamper Iraqi Oil Production
5 April 2017 | Nick Cunningham, OilPrice.com
Iraq’s oil production could fall involuntarily if a dispute between the central government and the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) continues to escalate. Some of the oil fields around Kirkuk, in northern Iraq, are controlled by the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, while others are controlled by the federal government of Iraq. Read More

Iraq: Desert on Fire [Photos]
5 April 2017 | Namak Khoshnaw and Daniel Silas Adamson, BBC
Early in summer 2016, the so-called Islamic State set fire to one of Iraq’s largest oil fields. It has taken Iraqi firefighters 10 months to put the flames out. The smoke has poisoned the air, the land, and the water across a vast region of Northern Iraq. Read More

Afghanistan: Canal Project Turns Wastelands into Farmlands in Northern Afghanistan
4 April 2017 | Military Technologies
The rehabilitation of Sharqi canal has revived many areas of wasteland and turned them into productive farmland, irrigating over 13,000 hectares. Besides the new canal embankment, the rehabilitation project also fortified riverbanks and created channels to distribute water from the canal to different fields. Read More

Colombia: Warnings but No Action Preceded Deadly Flood in Colombia
4 April 2017 | Ben Fox and Alba Tobella, Associated Press
People were caught off guard when a devastating flash flood surged through a small city in southern Colombia, but not everyone was surprised. Government agencies, land use experts, and environmental organizations had said for years that Mocoa could face dangerous flooding. Read More

Conflict Minerals: Council Adopts New Rules to Reduce Financing of Armed Groups
3 April 2017 | European Council
On 3 April 2017, the Council adopted a regulation aimed at stopping the financing of armed groups through trade in conflict minerals. The regulation obliges EU companies to source their imports of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold responsibly and to ensure that their supply chains do not contribute to funding... Read More

Iraq/Kurdistan: Iraqi Oil Dispute Could Impact Supply [Video]
3 April 2017 | Bloomberg
A territorial dispute in northern Iraq threatens to disrupt oil output at a field containing as much crude as Norway. Read More

Myanmar: Homegrown Clean Energy an Alternative to Myanmar’s Spotty Power Grid
30 March 2017 | Erin Rubin, Nonprofit Quarterly
Necessity is the mother of invention, and in the case of rural Myanmar’s electricity generation, it’s also the mother of improvement. In rural areas where the national power grid does not reach, residents are creating electricity out of what’s available to them: sun and water. Read More

South Sudan: Conflict Now Eroding Food Security in 'Stable' Areas of South Sudan – UN Mission
30 March 2017 | UN
The ongoing conflict in South Sudan is affecting food security in some of the country's more “stable” states, the head of United Nations peacekeeping operation there has said. Read More

Sierra Leone: The Protective Powers of Chocolate [Video]
29 March 2017 | Ruth Krause and Björn Kietzmann, Deutsche Welle
Sierra Leone has lost 95 percent of its original forests. The vision of Gola Rainforest National Park, and the Greater Gola Landscape in which it sits, is to conserve the country's last and largest remaining forest and protect its unique habitats and rich biodiversity while directly benefitting communities at the... Read More

Mexico: Oil Drillers Face an Angry Mob in Mexico’s Guerrilla Country
29 March 2017 | Adam Williams, Bloomberg
When an angry mob torched City Hall in the southern Mexican town of Tecpatan last month, it sent a warning flare across a country already thrown into turmoil by Donald Trump. The outrage was over oil, specifically the government’s plan to auction off a swath of land around their farming... Read More

Blogs & Opinion

In the last two weeks, 7 blogs & opinion pieces on environmental peacebuilding were posted on our website.

Colombia's Fracking Boom Risks Deepening Environmental Conflicts
7 April 2017 | Sebastian Ordoñez Muñoz
A multinational fracking boom has begun in Colombia. New concessions threaten the water supply to the capital city of Bogota. Read More

Successful Colombian Rainforest Project Exposes Problems with Carbon Emissions Trading
6 April 2017 | Bart Crezee
The Chocó-Darién Conservation Corridor, as the community’s REDD+ project is called, is the first REDD+ project to be certified in Colombia. In 2012 it was the first REDD+ project operating on community land in the world.COCOMASUR, an organization representing 2,600 Afro-Colombians, utilizes a team of forest rangers to monitor the... Read More

"Disaster Foretold" Leaves Hundreds Dead in Colombia, Many of Them Kids
6 April 2017 | Associated Press
People were caught off guard when a devastating flash flood surged through a small city in southern Colombia, but not everyone was surprised. Government agencies, land use experts, and environmental organizations had said for years that Mocoa could face dangerous flooding. Read More

How Advocacy Gave Trump Ammunition on Conflict-Free Minerals
6 April 2017 | Emmanuel Freudenthal
US President Donald Trump has signalled his intention to suspend the world’s first conflict-free minerals law, much to the consternation of advocacy groups and others who argue it is vital for addressing the deadly conflicts in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Read More

Repeal and Replacement of Conflict Minerals Rule 1502 Undermines Peace and Stability in the Congo
4 April 2017 | Lauren Compere
The cell phone in your pocket or laptop you may be reading this on could contain minerals used to fund militia groups and war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The conflict is ongoing and only last week, American UN researcher Michael Sharp, his Swedish colleague, and their... Read More

A Survey of the “War on Wildlife”: How Conflict Affects Conservation
3 April 2017 | Bethany N. Bella
Over the last 60 years, more than two-thirds of the world’s remaining biodiversity hotspots have experienced armed conflict. The effects have been myriad, from destruction as a result of military tactics to indirect socioeconomic and political changes, like human migration and displacement. Read More

State Department Ventures into Conflict Minerals
29 March 2017 | Cydney S. Posner
Bloomberg BNA is reporting that the State Department has launched a new review of “how best to support responsible sourcing of conflict minerals,” which will continue through April 28. Although it’s not known whether the SEC is involved in the State Department’s efforts, BNA suggests that the review “could help determine the next... 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. 

Sharing and Posting Materials

The strength of the knowledge platform depends on submissions and suggestions on contents from users. To share publications and information on events, job opportunities, and other announcements, please contact share@environmentalpeacebuilding.org. Please also feel free to share ideas on how the platform can be further improved to meet your needs.

Platform Statistics

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March, 2017 2926 4818 2684
February, 2017 2908 5478 2636
January, 2017 2900 4909 2556
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November, 2016 2870 4969 2469
November, 2013 298 5866 108

Compiled by Brooke Helstrom, Liz Hessami, Natalia Jiménez Galindo, Britt Sheinbaum, Sofia Soto Reyes, Annabelle Vinois, and Erin Wenk
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Design by Graham Campbell
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