I am normally a bit skeptical about the power of data to radically transform public policy. After all in the transport sector, the most serious issues of congestion, road accident fatalities and injuries and air pollution are readily obvious by looking out the window of any major Asian city. Would knowing the numbers more accurately make a difference to policy makers?
Bhutan, located in the eastern Himalayas, is a small landlocked country between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and India. Virtually the entire country is mountainous. Despite challenging geography and limited connection to the global markets, the country managed to ignite and sustain strong economic growth by unlocking its hydro potential.
Resource depletion and environmental pollution are serious issues in developing Asia. This was well illustrated in January of this year when northern People’s Republic of China (PRC) suffered its worst air pollution on record. The level of pollution moved many to question the old development model of “pollute first, improve later”.
Women use the time saved from having electricity in doing more household work while men use the extra time in recreation and leisure. This was one of the results of a study on the interfaces of energy, poverty and gender through in-depth investigation in selected rural provinces of the People’s Republic of China, Indonesia and Sri Lanka.
The upcoming Asia Clean Energy Forum 2013 on June 25 to 28 at the ADB Headquarters is one of Asia’s premiere clean energy events. The event will bring together high level policy makers, the private sector, financial institutions, and civil society to discuss cutting-edge renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies and approaches that are changing the face of developing Asia.
A multitude of statistics underscore the challenges that the people of Myanmar face when it comes to access to electricity - many of these illustrating a lack of conveniences other parts of the world consider commonplace, ranging from water pumps to stovetop ranges.
Can energy projects transform gender relations and deliver gender equality? What are the possible pathways? These are questions that gender and energy practitioners regularly consider.
Starting 22 February, Asian Development Bank (ADB) is holding its second No Impact Week challenge for individuals to cut their carbon footprint, following the success of the pilot event in January 2013.
Striking rates of economic growth notwithstanding, 550 million people remain hungry in Asia and the Pacific, 65% of the population has no safe piped water, and more than 600 million people live without electricity. Overcoming these problems requires a combined approach in which food, water and energy are treated as a nexus, rather than as separate, standalone issues, which has too often been the case in the past.
Feeding the world is becoming an increasingly complex task. Providing all our daily bread—or rice—requires grappling with intense competition for natural resources, producing more from less land and dealing with changing dietary habits. But meeting food needs is not just about quantity. Quality is also important. Along with daily minimum calorie requirements, people also need vital micronutrients from their meals. High levels of micronutrient deficiencies, a phenomenon we call “hidden hunger” remains pervasive, particularly in South Asia and Southeast Asia.