Environmental Peacebuilding Update

Issue 60: 26 Apr 2016


Natural Resources Leadership Academy
29 April 2016 | Oregon State University
NRLA puts a unique twist on the standard college based learning environment, allowing both the graduate student (credit) and working professional (non-credit) the opportunity to learn side-by-side, sharing and networking on natural resources topics with individuals from around the globe, while integrating leadership and emphasizing collaboration across all disciplines and throughout. Read More


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

Book Launch: "Governance, Natural Resources, and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding"

3 May 2016 | ELI & UNEP, Washington, DC

The Environmental Law Institute, United Nations Environment Programme, University of Tokyo, and McGill University cordially invite you to the launch of Governance, Natural Resources, and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding, from 12pm–2pm on 3 May 2016 at the offices of the Environmental Law Institute in Washington, DC. Read More

Avoiding Catastrophe: Linking Armed Conflict, Harm to Ecosystems, and Public Health Conference

4 May 2016 – 6 May 2016 | Concordia University (Loyola Sustainability Research Centre), Montréal, Quebec, Canada

Gathering experts from the medical, epidemiological, veterinary, conflict management, biodiversity conservation, climate change and political science communities, this conference will pursue an integrated understanding of the catastrophic combination of prolonged armed conflict, environmental alterations such as biodiversity loss, and challenges to the provision of public health, including emergent infectious diseases,... Read More

Peace After Paris: Addressing Climate, Conflict, and Development

6 May 2016 | Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, DC

2015 was a milestone year for international commitments on climate change, sustainable development, and peacebuilding. Where are the opportunities at the intersection of these processes to address climate security risks and build peace? What needs to happen in the next five years for these frameworks to achieve their long-term goals? Read More

Forum on Responsible Mineral Supply Chains

10 May 2016 – 12 May 2016 | OECD, International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, and UN Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of Congo, Paris, France

The 2016 forum will focus on compliance and implementation of the OECD Due Diligence Guidance, the ICGLR Regional Certification Mechanism, and other initiatives to enable responsible mineral supply chains. Focus areas will include: Read More

Addressing the Environmental Dimensions of Armed Conflict to Achieve the SDGs

24 May 2016 | Zoï Environment Network, ELI, Toxic Remnants of War Project, and Norwegian People's Aid, Nairobi, Kenya

This event will provide an introduction to the environmental dimensions of contemporary armed conflicts and their relationship to the SDGs. It will also consider the gaps in legal protection and international assistance that should be addressed, and the role that States and civil society can play in promoting efforts to... Read More

Building Peace in a Changing Climate

24 May 2016 | ELI and Conservation International, Washington, DC

There is growing recognition of the interrelationship between climate change and conflict. Climate change is already having—and will continue to have—significant impacts in fragile, natural-resource dependent states, and the risk of those impacts exacerbating conflict is greatest in societies that rely heavily on natural resources and have limited adaptive capacity. 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:

The Extractive Industries, Mineral Sector Reform and Post-Conflict Reconstruction in Developing Countries
Roy Maconachie (Science, 2016)
This paper introduces a Special Section on the extractive industries, mineral sector reform and post-conflict reconstruction in developing countries. The collection of papers presented reflects on a wide range of post-conflict natural resource management scenarios across a variety of geographical settings in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Melanesia. Read More

REDD+ on the Rocks? Conflict over Forest and Politics of Justice in Vietnam
Thomas Sikor and Hoàng Cầm (Human Ecology, 2016)
In Vietnam, villagers involved in a REDD+ (reduced emissions from deforestation and forest degradation) pilot protect areas with rocks which have barely a tree on them. The apparent paradox indicates how actual practices differ from general ideas about REDD+ due to ongoing conflict over forest, and how contestations over the... Read More

Theorizing the Enactment of Mediatized Environmental Conflict
Brett Hutchins and Libby Lester (The International Communication Gazette, 2015)
Contemporary ‘mediatized environmental conflict’ involves complex interactions between (i) activist strategies and campaigns, (ii) journalism practices and news reporting, (iii) formal politics and decision-making processes, and (iv) industry activities and trade. This article theorizes how these interactions occur, drawing on evidence produced by a nine-year period of investigation into environmental... Read More

Examining the Relationship between Environmental Factors and Conflict in Pastoralist Areas of East Africa
Essayas K. Ayana, Pietro Ceccato, Jonathan R.B. Fisher, and Ruth DeFries (Science of the Total Environment, 2016)
The eastern Africa region has long been known for recurring drought, prolonged civil war and frequent pastoral conflicts. Several researchers have suggested that environmental factors can trigger conflicts among pastoralist communities, but quantitative support for this hypothesis is lacking. Read More

Connecting Climate Variability and Conflict: Implications for Empirical Testing
Hanne Seter (Political Geography, 2016)
Quantitative research on climate variability and conflict is frequently criticized for being theoretically underdeveloped. In this article I discuss the most plausible suggested mechanisms connecting climate variability to conflict explicitly in reference to empirical testing. This approach could help solve the puzzle of how climate variability and conflict are related... Read More

Contesting Land Rights in a Post-Conflict Environment: Tenure Reform and Dispute Resolution in the Centre-West Region of Côte d'Ivoire
Matthew F. Pritchard (Land Use Policy, 2016)
Large-scale land tenure reforms in post-conflict environments present significant challenges to and unique opportunities for peace processes. Fundamental to reconciliation, economic rehabilitation, and rural livelihood security, land and land tenure are essential components of post-conflict development. Read More

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam: The Road to the Declaration of Principles and the Khartoum Document
Salman M.A. Salman (Water International, 2016)
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), which Ethiopia started constructing in 2011, presented major challenges to the notion of existing rights and uses of the Nile waters asserted by Egypt and Sudan. Through an incremental approach based on gaining time, Ethiopia succeeded in making the GERD a reality, bolstered four... Read More

We Will Manage Our Own Resources: Karen Indigenous People in Kamoethway Demonstrate the Importance of Local Solutions and Community–Driven Conservation
Rays of Kamoethway Indigenous People and Nature and Tenasserim River and Indigenous People Network, 2016
The report documents the accomplishments of the indigenous Karen community of the Kamoethway River valley in Dawei District, Tanintharyi Region of Myanmar/Burma in implementing community-driven conservation grounded in indigenous rights and customary management of their lands and natural resources. Read More


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

South Sudan: Project Manager - Food Security and Livelihoods
19 April 2016 | CARE
CARE is seeking a talented Project Manager - Food Security and Livelihoods who will be responsibility for overall management and technical operations of the Dutch Consortium NGOs SSJHR (South Sudan Joint Humanitarian Response) project to ensure that tasks are completed and project objectives are successfully met. Read More

Somalia: Regional Program Officer
25 April 2016 | Pact
Pact seeks a Program Officer for the anticipated Fund Management and Technical Assistance for the Somalia Stability Fund II Programme (SSF II). The goal of the programme is to work towards a peaceful, secure and stable Somalia. Read More

Sierra Leone: Capacity Development Senior Officer
26 April 2016 | Pact
The goal of the Forest Incomes for Environmental Sustainability (FIFES) project is to develop key rural forest-based enterprises which provide inclusive, sustainable economic opportunities for rural farmers and forest- dependent communities that combat drivers of deforestation and biodiversity loss. Read More

Afghanistan: Livelihoods Advisor (Deadline: 2016-04-27)
9 April 2016 | Concern Worldwide
Concern Worldwide is an international humanitarian organisation dedicated to tackling poverty and suffering in the world’s poorest countries. It works in partnership with the very poorest people in these countries, directly enabling them to improve their lives, as well as using its knowledge and experience to influence decisions made at... Read More

Lebanon: Provision of Individual Services of a Legal Consultant for the Institutional Strengthening to the Ministry of Environment Project (Deadline: 2016-04-28)
8 April 2016 | UNDP
The Institutional Strengthening to the Ministry of Environment (ISMoE) project was established in 2010 with the ultimate goal of setting-up an enabling environment for sustainable environmental development at the national level.  The specific objectives of the Project are to: Read More

Myanmar: Programme Analyst (Environmental Governance, Natural Resource Management)(Open to Myanmar National Only) (Deadline: 2016-04-29)
20 April 2016 | UNDP
UNDP is implementing the UNDP Country Programme in Myanmar for 2013-2017 with the aim to promoting local governance, growth and sustainable development with the emphasis on rights-based, gender sensitive, inclusive and equity. This goal will be pursued through three complementary pillars; Pillar I - Local Governance, Pillar II - Environmental... Read More

Afghanistan: Plastic Recycling Best Opportunity Study (Deadline: 2016-04-30)
9 April 2016 | Groupe Energies Renouvelables, Environnement et Solidarités
The Central Highlands Rural Development Programme (CHP) has the overall objective to increase living standards and quality of life of rural mountainous populations by promoting balanced rural development and the preservation of natural resources. Read More

South Sudan: National Programme Officer (Deadline: 2016-05-06)
23 April 2016 | UNEP
Under the supervision of the UNEP Country Programme Manager South Sudan, the National Programme Officer to coordinate and manage all the GEF and non-GEF funded Projects and assist UNEP Country Programme Manager South Sudan, in the technical coordination; programme development and management; and resource mobilization of new UNEP projects. Read More

Liberia: Expression of Interest - Provision of Professional Services to Evaluate the UN Peacebuilding Priority Plans in Liberia for the UN Peacebuilding Fund (Deadline: 2016-05-09)
25 April 2016 | UN Peacebuilding Support Office
The United Nations Procurement Division (UN/PD) will shortly be issuing a solicitation for the provision of Professional Services to conduct an evaluative exercise for the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) of the Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO). Read More

Liberia: Collaborating, Learning, and Adaptation Director (Deadline: 2016-05-10)
8 April 2016 | ACDI/VOCA
We are currently seeking a Collaborating, Learning, and Adaptation (CLA) Director for the anticipated USAID Office of Food for Peace funded Liberia Development Assistance (DFAP) Program. This multi-year, non-emergency program is integrated with USAID strategies to address the underlying causes of chronic food insecurity. Read More

Kenya: Programme Manager (Deadline: 2016-05-16)
25 April 2016 | Peace Direct
Peace Direct is looking for a dynamic and experienced Programme Manager to oversee some of Peace Direct’s projects in sub-Saharan Africa. In particular the postholder will be responsible for managing a large EU-funded livelihoods and peacebuilding project in Kismayo, Somalia, which is being implemented in partnership with the Somali based... Read More

International News

DRC: Elephant Poachers Kill Rangers, Wound Swedish Park Manager in Congo
25 April 2016 | Reuters
Elephant poachers killed three rangers in Democratic Republic of Congo's Garamba wildlife park and wounded two other people including the Swedish park manager, environmental officials said. One of the rangers was found dead near the site of the Saturday attack, said African Parks, which manages the UNESCO world heritage site. Read More

Senegal: Climate Change Brings Conflict, Senegal Leader Warns
24 April 2016 | Channel News Asia
Senegal's President Macky Sall sees a link between climate change and security, in particular when it comes to the militant threat in the Sahel. "Global warming exacerbates receding water levels ... and when water becomes scarce there are fewer agricultural lands and conflict begins," Sall told AFP in an interview... Read More

Colombia: Ineffective & Possibly Carcinogenic, but Colombia Will Go back to Attacking Coca with Glyphosate
22 April 2016 | Mint Press News
Less than a year after the government halted its use over concerns that it could cause cancer, Colombia plans to resume using glyphosate, a controversial weed killer, on illegal coca crops. Glyphosate had been used for 20 years in Colombia’s battle against coca, the vast majority of which will be... Read More

Bhutan: Rethinking Human-Wildlife Conflict
19 April 2016 | Tshering Palden, Kuensel
The agriculture ministry has begun preparing a long-term holistic approach to manage human wildlife conflict in the country. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Bhutan trained agriculture, livestock and wildlife conservation officials on an emerging concept in the field of human wildlife conflict management yesterday. Read More

China/India: Water War: This River Could Sink China-India Relations
19 April 2016 | Joel Wuthnow, National Interest
The Chinese and Indian defense ministers will meet in Beijing to discuss border issues. At the top of the agenda will be how to improve stability along the border, where both countries have overlapping sovereignty claims. Chinese military incursions across the Line of Actual Control (LAC) into Indian-controlled territory, most... Read More

Central African Republic: Agriculture is Key to Achieving Lasting Peace in Central African Republic
18 April 2016 | FAO
FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva today met Central African Republic President Faustin-Archange Touadera for talks that focused on rebuilding the country's agriculture sector and making it an engine for peace and sustainable development. In particular, they discussed ways in which to tap into the Central African Republic's considerable agricultural... Read More

Syria: Syria's Kurds Take Control of Oil Fields, Now What?
15 April 2016 | Massoud Hamed, Al-Monitor
Five years into the Syrian revolution, entire cities have been brought to rubble and a population has been forcibly displaced by the Syrian regime or the forces that controlled the areas deserted by the Syrian regime's army. Read More

Colombia: Land Reform Critical to Lasting Peace in Colombia, Says UN
15 April 2016 | teleSUR
The Colombia office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the U.N. Agency for Refugees reiterated its support Thursday for the Victims and Land Restitution law passed in 2011, which has been questioned recently for its alleged ineffectiveness. Read More

Iraq: Marsh Loss Shatters Lifestyle of Iraq’s Ma’dan Women
14 April 2016 | Rasha Dewedar, SciDev.Net
Iraq is losing crucial knowledge about water management as marshland depletion is altering the lifestyle of local women, a paper has warned. The indigenous people of the Hammar Marshes, called Ma’dan, hold a treasure trove of traditional knowledge and skills that help with water management, medicine and sustainable farming, a... Read More

Afghanistan: A Simple Solution for Farmers
13 April 2016 | Mohammad Hanif Ayubi, Asian Development Bank
In this picturesque, mountainous province of central Afghanistan, the rich soil and climate are well-suited for growing vegetables. Bamyan’s carrots, cauliflower, lettuce, potatoes, and onions are highly regarded in the markets of Kabul, the country’s capital. Read More

Myanmar: Myanmar to Be Taught How to Fish [Video]
13 April 2016 | BBC
Myanmar is a country rich in water resources, and yet few farmers are used to the idea of breeding fish. It means poor rural households are missing out on fish as a source of nutrition as well as income. Read More

Blogs & Opinion

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

The South China Sea Dispute Isn't about Oil, at Least Not How You Think
25 April 2016 | Jeremy Maxie
The geopolitical context in the South China Sea has evolved considerably on the implications of the territorial disputes on upstream oil and gas development in 2008; however, the fundamental nature of disputes over oil and gas development remains much the same. Read More

This Is Not the Time for an Independent Kurdistan
22 April 2016 | Dov Friedman
Many have wondered when Iraqi Kurdistan, which already enjoys broad autonomy from Baghdad, might finally declare independence. The present moment doesn’t seem particularly auspicious for a separation: War with the Islamic State, low oil prices, sclerotic governance, and near-bankruptcy have caused political and economic turmoil as severe as any that... Read More

The West’s Campaign against Conflict Minerals Is Doing More Harm Than Good
20 April 2016 | Ben Radly
In recent years Western advocacy groups have achieved unprecedented success in mobilizing Europeans and North Americans behind a “conflict minerals” campaign to help end the conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Read More

New Documentary Inspires Collaborative Action for Peace in Congo
19 April 2016 | Annie Callaway
On Thursday, April 14, a crowd gathered in Washington DC for a private screening of the new documentary, Merci Congo, hosted by the Enough Project and Intel. From Emmy and Peabody Award-winning director Paul Freedman, Merci Congo explores the stories of individual activists – including a schoolteacher, a polio survivor,... Read More

Turning the Impending Mosul Dam Disaster into Opportunity
19 April 2016 | Azzam Alwash
Iraq has seen its share of calamities in recent years, but none is as dangerous as the impending failure of the Mosul Dam. A breach of the dam will result in a tsunami-like wave that sweeps through cities and hamlets along the Tigris River from Mosul to as far south... Read More

No Petition for Certiorari in Natl Assoc. of Manufacturers V. SEC, The Conflict Minerals Case
13 April 2016 | Cydney Posne
No reason to keep checking the SCOTUS website for the SEC’s cert petition in Natl Assoc. of Manufacturers v. SEC, the conflict minerals case. According to this letter from Attorney General Loretta Lynch to House Speaker Paul Ryan (courtesy of thecorporatecounsel.net blog), “[a]lthough the Commission defended the constitutionality of the... Read More

Food Security and Climate Change: New Frontiers in International Security
13 April 2016 | Tom Daschle and Michael Werz
In 2010, President Barack Obama’s National Security Strategy, or NSS—the periodic planning document that assesses the risks facing the country and outlines the United States’ response—for the first time recognized climate change as a security threat. 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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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.

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