Weekly Round-up

This week in development…

  • Former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson announced the launch of a program that will seek “practical and pragmatic solutions to the problems of air pollution and climate change,” in China.  Paulson met with Chinese President Xi Jinping earlier this summer, and has framed the initiative as holding relevance for China, the United States, and the world.  There is a huge upside to projects focused on climate changeinChina- the Middle Kingdom is the world’s largest polluter, but also the largest investor in green energy.
    Yangtze factory

    A factory along China’s Yangtze River

  • To mark this year’s Work Water Week, PepsiCo, in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank, revealed a new data management and modeling tool called Hydro-BID. The new tool will estimate the availability of freshwater in water-scarce regions throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.

  • The Asian Development Bank will be opening an independent advisory service for public-private partnerships operating in the region.  The new office will provide technical and transactional advisory services to member countries seeking to engage in the public-private partnership model.  The announcement occurs as the Asia Pacific confronts a growing need for infrastructure spending- some estimate that the region will require upwards of $8 trillion in infrastructure investment over the next decade.  The ADB noted that the private sector is particularly effective in managing infrastructure projects, and could increase efficiency by “making investments in new technologies, bringing innovative solutions and encouraging more transparent organizational structures.”
  • It is widely known that from among the Millennium Development Goals, the least progress has been made in meeting the sanitation target, despite increased efforts in recent years.  Today 2.5 billion people are still without access to a basic toilet, and furthermore 748 million people lack access to improved drinking water.  A new Devex article, based on a WaterAid report, suggests that WASH may not be as effective as it could be due to lack of mutual accountability. Moving forward into the SMDGs, new policy must be formed in order to ensure progress on sanitation.
  • Former Spanish Foreign Minister and CSIS Project on Prosperity and Development Senior Adviser Ana Palacio writes about how Ebola coverage has monopolized the policy conversation around Africa at a time when a new image of a dynamic Africa was emerging and there is reason for optimism.
  • Lynne Featherstone, the U.K. Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for International Development, blogs that now is the time to address the threat of famine in South Sudan.  Since fighting broke out in the country last December, there have been 1.7 million people displaced by conflict, and over 4 million people are now “food insecure.” UNICEF estimates that up to 50,000 children could starve to death before the year is out unless the situation is addressed.

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