Archive for: Journal Article


Women’s Role in Adapting to Climate Change and Variability

Women are engaged in more climate-related change activities than is often recognized. This article highlights women’s important role in the adaptation of and search for safer communities, which leads them to understand better the causes and consequences of changes in climatic conditions. It is concluded that women have important knowledge and skills for orienting the adaptation processes, a product of their roles in society (productive, reproductive and community). In addition, the importance of gender equity in these processes is recognized. The relationship among climate change, climate variability and the accomplishment of the Millennium Development Goals is also considered.

Year: 2008

Source: Advances in GeoSciences

Access the resource

    Voluntary Family Planning to Minimise and Mitigate Climate Change

    Simply put, climate change is caused by excessive production of green-house gases. As highlighted by the late Professor Tony McMichael, the “cause(s) of the causes” should not be overlooked. With climate change already close to an irreversible tipping point, urgent action is needed to reduce not only our mean (carbon) footprints but also the “number of feet”—that is, the growing population either already creating large footprints or aspiring to do so. Wise and compassionate promotion of contraceptive care and education in a rights based, culturally appropriate framework offers a cost effective strategy to reduce greenhouse gases. This article outlines the evidence for voluntary accessible family planning as a strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change.

    Year: 2016

    Source: British Medical Journal

    Access the resource

      The Interaction of Human Population, Food Production, and Biodiversity Protection

      Research suggests that the scale of human population and the current pace of its growth contribute substantially to the loss of biological diversity. Although technological change and unequal consumption inextricably mingle with demographic impacts on the environment, the needs of all human beings—especially for food—imply that projected population growth will undermine protection of the natural world. Numerous solutions have been proposed to boost food production while protecting biodiversity, but alone these proposals are unlikely to staunch biodiversity loss. An important approach to sustaining biodiversity and human well-being is through actions that can slow and eventually reverse population growth: investing in universal access to reproductive health services and contraceptive technologies, advancing women’s education, and achieving gender equality.

      Year: 2017

      Source: Science

      Access the resource

        The Environment as a Strategic Healthcare Partner

        The purpose of this review is to describe the growing consensus regarding the contribution of natural processes – ‘nature’ – to human health. Globally, natural environments are becoming smaller and critically degraded because of various human-related factors. Consequently, some of the ‘free’ health benefits nature confers are being lost. This is especially problematic for people in rural areas with limited access to clinical services whose lives depend closely upon nature. The “Millennium Ecosystem Assessment” explored ecosystem changes and their subsequent effects on human well-being, including health. Global Burden of Disease studies have also revealed the importance of environmental factors to health. Not coincidentally, geographic areas in the two research efforts overlap, but convincing research describing how conserving healthy environments may positively affect human health remains lacking. Establishing ecosystem-human health causal linkages via traditional epidemiological approaches is challenging. Innovative research initiatives are increasing our understanding and appreciation of nature’s role as a provider of health, rendering conservation potentially a healthcare strategy. Transdisciplinary university teaching is also playing a role in broadening the awareness of these important linkages and developing research skills to meet the challenge.

        Year: 2013

        Source: Current Opinion in Obstetrics & Gynecology

        Access the resource

          Resource Management and Fertility in Mexico’s Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve: Campos, Cash, and Contraception in the Lobster Fishing Village of Punta Allen

          This case study examines the link between marine resource management and the contraceptive use among married couples in the lobster-fishing village of Punta Allen, located in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, Quintana Roo, Mexico. Several reasons appear to contribute to small desired and actual family sizes, including a medical clinic staff effective in promoting family planning, cooperative and private resource ownership, changing cultural attitudes, geographical limitations to population and economic growth, and a desire to conserve the environment for aesthetic and economic motives.

          Year: 2008

          Source: Population and Environment

          Access the resource

            Resilience, Integrated Development and Family Planning: Building Long-Term Solutions

            For the many individuals and communities experiencing natural disasters and environmental degradation, building resilience means becoming more proficient at anticipating, preventing, recovering, and rebuilding following negative shocks and stresses. Development practitioners have been working to build this proficiency in vulnerable communities around the world for several decades. This article first examines the meaning of resilience as a component of responding to disasters and some of the key components of building resilience. It then summarises approaches to resilience developed by the Rockefeller and Packard Foundations, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, USAID and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), which show how family planning services can contribute to resilience. Next, it gives some examples of how family planning has been integrated into some current environment and development programmes. Finally, it describes how these integrated programmes have succeeded in helping communities to diversify livelihoods, bolster community engagement and resilience, build new governance structures, and position women as agents of change.

            Year: 2014

            Source: Reproductive Health Matters

            Access the resource

              Providing Family Planning Services to Remote Communities in Areas of High Biodiversity Through a Population-Health-Environment Programme in Madagascar

              Population-Health-Environment (PHE) is an interdisciplinary model of programme design which recognises the complex interconnections between people, their health and their environment. PHE responds holistically to the challenges faced by ecosystems and the communities dependent on them, with thematically distinct but interconnected work strands sharing the same infrastructure, resources and goals. This has been shown to achieve better outcomes than tackling health and environmental issues in isolation. This paper shows how PHE programme design has been used by Blue Ventures for providing family planning services in a remote, biodiverse coastal region in southwest Madagascar. The PHE programme has integrated family planning services into a pre-existing, community-based conservation programme, aided by the established infrastructure and good community relations developed by the conservation workers. Implementation of the programme has led to a strong uptake of family planning services, and couples in the region are now able to make their own family planning choices. Successes and challenges of the programme are discussed.

              Year: 2014

              Source: Reproductive Health Matters

              Access the resource

                Poverty and Biodiversity: Measuring the Overlap of Human Poverty and Biodiversity Hotspots

                In an effort to prioritize conservation efforts, scientists developed the concept of biodiversity hotspots. Since most hotspots are located in countries where poverty is widespread, the success of conservation efforts depends in part upon a recognition that poverty can be a significant constraint on conservation, and at the same time conservation could be an important component of alleviating long-term poverty. This paper presents five key socioeconomic poverty indicators (access to water, undernourishment, potential population pressure, number living below poverty line and debt service) and integrates them with an ecologically based hotspots analysis in order to illustrate the magnitude of the overlap between biological conservation and poverty. The analysis here suggests that the overlap between severe, multifaceted poverty and key areas of global biodiversity is great and needs to be acknowledged. Understanding the magnitude of overlap and interactions among poverty, conservation and macroeconomic processes is crucial for identifying illusive, yet possible, win–win solutions.

                Year: 2007

                Source: Ecological Economics

                Access the resource

                  Population, Sexual and Reproductive Health, Rights and Sustainable Development: Forging a Common Agenda

                  This article suggests that sexual and reproductive health and rights activists seeking to influence the post-2015 international development paradigm must work with sustainable development advocates concerned with a range of issues, including climate change, environmental issues, and food and water security, and that a way of building bridges with these communities is to demonstrate how sexual and reproductive health and rights are relevant for these issues. An understanding of population dynamics, including urbanization and migration, as well as population growth, can help to clarify these links. This article therefore suggests that whether or not sexual and reproductive health and rights activists can overcome resistance to discussing “population”, become more knowledgeable about other sustainable development issues, and work with others in those fields to advance the global sustainable development agenda are crucial questions for the coming months. The article also contends that it is possible to care about population dynamics (including ageing and problems faced by countries with a high proportion of young people) and care about human rights at the same time. It expresses concern that, if sexual and reproductive health and rights advocates do not participate in the population dynamics discourse, the field will be left free for those for whom respecting and protecting rights may be less of a priority.

                  Year: 2014

                  Source: Reproductive Health Matters

                  Access the resource

                    Population, Health and Environment Situational Analysis in the Saandani National Park Area, Tanzania

                    This study provides a snapshot of the population, health, and environment situation and practices in the villages surrounding the Saadani National Park (SANAPA) and demonstrates the utility of a transdisciplinary systems perspective to evaluate population–health–environment linkages (PHE). Analyzing survey data from eight villages, this paper shows that in the SANAPA area, livelihoods are highly dependent on natural resources, but both agriculture and fisheries are experiencing a decline in productivity and profitability. Population stressors include a high population momentum, early marriages, teenage pregnancies, and migration. Women bear a heavy workload, while having little or no say in decision-making. The public health situation is severe with health facilities few and far in-between; lack of access to clean water and safe sanitation; and many households suffering from diarrhea, malaria, pneumonia, skin diseases, and HIV/AIDS. Environmental protection arrangements are in place in all sites, however, the awareness of protected areas and their benefits is low and many feel helpless in protecting the environment. Climate change—increasing periods of drought and irregular rainfall—contribute to food insecurity and health problems. The interconnectedness between these stressors reinforces the need for an integrated approach to addressing coastal conservation and community development in the SANAPA area.

                    Year: 2012

                    Source: Ocean & Coastal Management

                    Access the resource