May 4, 2017
In Benin, a long dry season makes it almost impossible for women farmers to grow food. For six months of the year, there is little rainfall and the land is parched. For years, women farmers and their families were trapped in a cycle of poverty and poor health.But thanks to an innovative project developed by the Solar Electric Light Fund, year-round food production is now possible in Benin’s remote villages. The Fund’s Solar Market Garden project combines solar-powered pumps with drip-irrigation systems to provide a cheap and eco-friendly way to get water from nearby rivers and underground aquifers. This means farmers can now water crops year-round and produce reliable, healthy food. To tell us more, we spoke to Bob Freling, the Executive Director of the Solar Electric Light Fund. Learn more...
March 30, 2017
Did you know that more than 1.2 billion people around the world don’t have access to electricity in their homes? As a result, they are forced to burn expensive and polluting fuels for their basic lighting needs.Azuri PayGo Energy wants to change that. Azuri has combined solar and mobile phone technology to bring clean energy to people living in Sub-Saharan Africa. The pay-as-you-go solar home system provides eight hours of emission-free lighting each day and enough power to charge mobile phones.To learn more, we spoke to Simon Bransfield-Garth, CEO of Azuri Technologies.
February 3, 2017
Across the United States, transportation is responsible for 27% of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions. ChargePoint is addressing climate change by making it easier and more fun for people to drive an electric vehicle. ChargePoint is the world’s largest network of electric vehicle charging stations, with 25,000 charging stations across the United States. With more than 350,000 electric vehicles sold in the United States, drivers need crucial EV infrastructure to make it easy to shift from fuelling with gasoline to fuelling with electricity. ChargePoint is transforming the transportation industry by providing the charging stations, mobile app and the network that allow people to charge their cars everywhere they go. To learn more, we spoke to Pasquale Romano, the President and CEO of ChargePoint.
January 5, 2017
What do you think about when you think about Microsoft? Maybe computers, software and Bill Gates were the first things that came to your mind. But did you know that Microsoft is also a leader when it comes to fighting climate change? In 2012, Microsoft voluntarily introduced an internal carbon fee that holds its business units financially accountable for their carbon emissions. Microsoft’s business units are charged for the emissions associated with their energy consumption and business air travel. Microsoft then collects and spends the funds on its environmental initiatives. These include efficiency projects, green power projects, carbon offset projects, e-waste recycling, research and innovation. To learn more, we’re joined by TJ DiCaprio, the Director of Environmental Sustainability at Microsoft.
December 15, 2016
In Uganda, farmers depend on the right amount of rain coming at the right time. Farmers used to know when to plant and what to plant to expect a good harvest because they knew when rainfall would begin and end. But now rainfall in the country is becoming scarce and unpredictable, and extreme heat is increasing in intensity and frequency. The Enabling Farmers to Adapt to Climate Change project was built with this in mind. Using information and communication technology tools in local languages, the project collects, analyzes and sends out agricultural advisories, crop and livestock market information and weather data to Ugandan farmers. To learn more, we spoke to Berhane Gebru, Director of Programs, FHI 360 TechLab.
October 6, 2016
Did you know that 90 percent of all households in rural Rwanda and Tanzania still lack access to energy? Polluting and expensive kerosene lamps and diesel generators are the primary source of lighting and electricity. Berlin-based company Mobisol is changing that by bringing solar home systems to Rwanda and Tanzania. The systems are reducing pollution, improving indoor air quality and cutting emissions. Mobisol is also making a real difference in people’s lives. Mobisol enables the lower-income population to own a reliable energy source. This makes them independent from grid-electricity costs, power cuts and expensive, inefficient and unhealthy fuels like kerosene. To learn more, we spoke to Thomas Duveau, Mobisol’s Head of Business Development.
September 15, 2016
Chances are that you’re listening to this podcast on your smartphone. It’s amazing to think how these devices connect us to each other and the entire world. But we’re not just talking about using your smartphone. The way your smartphone is made also connects you to the world. For example, there are at least 30 different minerals in every smartphone. What’s more, those minerals often come from conflict zones. A Dutch social enterprise has produced what has been heralded as the world’s first ethically sourced smartphone. Fairphone improves access to conflict-free minerals, while increasing fair labour practices and reducing e-waste. To learn more, we spoke to Bibi Bleekemolen, who is part of Fairphone’s Value Chain team.
September 13, 2016
What do you think about when you think about Microsoft? Maybe computers, software and Bill Gates were the first things that came to your mind. But did you know that Microsoft is also a leader when it comes to fighting climate change? In 2012, Microsoft voluntarily introduced an internal carbon fee that holds its business units financially accountable for their carbon emissions. Microsoft’s business units are charged for the emissions associated with their energy consumption and business air travel. Microsoft then collects and spends the funds on its environmental initiatives. These include efficiency projects, green power projects, carbon offset projects, e-waste recycling, research and innovation. To learn more, we’re joined by TJ DiCaprio, the Director of Environmental Sustainability at Microsoft.
July 28, 2016
For most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, access to safe and reliable water remains a major challenge. In Kenya alone, 16 million people do not have access to clean water. Increased incidences of drought linked to climate change is worsening water scarcity, particularly in areas that have limited and sporadic rainfall, leading to migration and increased urbanization. Grundfos Lifelink Water Solutions helps build resilience to the effects of climate change by providing access to safe, sustainable and affordable water to people in developing countries. To collect water, people charge a smart card with credit bought onsite or via their mobile phones, insert it into the dispenser and pay for the water they need. To learn more, we spoke to Peter Todbjerg Hansen, the Managing Director of Grundfos Lifelink.
June 16, 2016
In Kolkata, India, the Trash2Cash initiative has developed an innovative solution to the city’s waste problem. More than 5,000 tonnes of solid waste is generated by the city every day. Dumping this waste is polluting the groundwater and emitting large amounts of methane gas. Trash2Cash is an independent community enterprise, let by people who live in the city’s slums, who are paid to collect and recycle waste. To learn how Trash2Cast creates sustainable jobs for the urban poor and reduces emissions, we spoke with Amrita Chatterjee, the project leader.
May 31, 2016
Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction in Bangladesh is a women-centered initiative that helps communities adapt to climate change. In particular, it seeks to address extreme weather conditions such as cyclones and flooding, as well as the consequence of increased salinity conditions in agriculture in Bangladesh. The initiative, which is implemented by ActionAid Bangladesh, brings groups of women together to assess vulnerability to these risks. Then, they identify and implement action plans, such as improved cook stoves that reduce carbon emissions or dams to preserve fresh water from salinization. To learn more, we spoke to Farah Kabir, ActionAid’s Country Director.
April 26, 2016
The Hindu Kush region of the Himalayas is one of the most complex and dynamic mountain systems in the world. This region is especially affected by climate change, meaning that floods have become more frequent and severe than ever before. To help vulnerable communities in this region become more resilient, a community-based flood early warning system was established. This information and communications technology (ICT) system uses a sensor to detect rising water levels during floods. This is connected to a transmitter - so that when flooding happens, the system sends text messages to at-risk communities downstream. To learn more, we spoke to Neera Pradhan – Water and Adaptation Specialist with the Community-Based Flood Early Warning System.
April 5, 2016
The Paris Agreement is a game changer. It represents a major turning point in our collective efforts to address climate change. But what does that really mean? And what needs to happen next? To tell us more, we’re joined by Nick Nuttall, the Spokesperson and Director of Communications for the United Nations Climate Change secretariat.
March 18, 2016
The impact of floods is significant – floods affect more people globally than any other type of natural disaster. This podcast looks at an initiative that lessens the impact of floods, in communities that need it the most. The Zurich Flood Resilience Program brings together the private sector, academia and community partners to create flood-resilience projects in Indonesia, Mexico, Nepal and Peru. The program is developing early-warning systems and other measures in flood- prone areas, with direct benefits to more than 125,000 people. To tell us more, we spoke to Linda Freiner, who is the manager of the Zurich Flood Resilience Program.
February 23, 2016
This podcast takes us to Uruguay, where climate-related flooding is increasingly a problem. During the last decade, flooding has displaced sixty-seven thousand people from their homes in sixty cities across Uruguay. In response to this increased flooding, Uruguay’s National Resettlement Program is helping communities adapt. The Program moves vulnerable families who live in areas at high risk of flooding, resettling them to safer locations. The houses the families are settled into are located in urban areas that have access to public transport and education, and that are connected to the electrical grid. To tell us more, we’re joined by Raquel Lejtreger, Uruguay’s Former Vice Minister of Housing, Land Planning and Environment.
February 3, 2016
This podcast takes a look at a project in Gorakhpur, India, called Community-Based Micro-Climate Resilience. The initiative helps urban poor communities adapt to climate change by designing and building new types of flood-resilient and affordable houses. They combine locally available bricks with technologies and techniques that make the construction process less energy intensive. Because it uses fewer raw materials, this method ends up being more environmentally friendly than the conventional approach. To learn more, we spoke to Dr. Shiraz Wajih, President of the Gorakhpur Environmental Action Group.
January 18, 2016
This podcast takes a closer look at the Guangzhou bus rapid transit system in China. The system is exceptional, in that it carries more than three times the single-direction passengers than any other similar system in Asia. It is also the second busiest in the world after Bogota’s bus system in Colombia. More than 1 million people use Guangzhou’s bus system every day, with one bus arriving at the station every 10 seconds. The system provides a subway-like level of service and speed, but using buses rather than fixed rail trains. Bus rapid transit systems are especially appealing to rapidly growing cities because they are more than 10 times cheaper than subway systems to build and operate, and can be built much faster. To tell us about the transit system, we spoke to Duan Xiaomei, Chief Engineer from the Guangzhou Municipal Engineering, Design and Research Institute.
January 8, 2016
In Malaysia and India, SmartSense is helping companies become more energy efficient. SmartSense accesses data from the electrical metre, then sends it via wifi to devices like smartphones and computers. This allows companies to monitor, analyse and optimise their use of energy. Companies signing up for this information and communication technology (ICT) platform are seeing an average of 15-20% energy savings. That’s almost as much as greenhouse gas emissions of 215,000 cars per year! To learn more, we spoke to Pratik Kundu, SmartSense’s Marketing Manager.
November 2, 2015
This podcast takes us to Indonesia, where Ibu Inspirasi is turning women into green technology agents – training them to sell solar lamps, water filters and fuel-efficient cook stoves. These small technologies are making a big difference in rural Indonesia, by helping to increase the standard of living while reducing carbon emissions. To learn more, we spoke to Monica Christy, Senior Program Officer with Kopernik, the company heading up this initiative.
October 15, 2015
This podcast takes us to Da Nang City in Vietnam. Climate-change related storms and floods there are taking a toll on the urban poor, who typically live in homes that are poorly constructed and maintained. Such homes have fewer defences against these storms and floods, and families hit by storm damage often struggle to recover. The project Building Storm-Resistant Houses helps vulnerable families to better deal with climate change. A Women’s Union in Da Nang complements the project by offering a revolving loan program to help finance these storm-resistant homes. This has already helped hundreds of families reinforce and rebuild their homes. To learn more, we spoke to Phong Tran, Technical Lead with ISET-Vietnam.
September 29, 2015
Our Senegal-based Momentum for Change award winning activity is protecting Senegal’s coastal areas against erosion caused by rising and storm surges. This reduces the impacts of climate change on the coast by protecting houses and infrastructure threatened by erosion and the intrusion of saltwater. The activity includes anti-salt dikes to reduce salination of agricultural lands and defenses against the sea to prevent coastal erosion.To learn more, we’re joined by Dethie Soumare Ndiaye, who coordinates the office at the ecological monitoring centre in Senegal.
September 8, 2015
Millions of people in sub-Saharan Africa lack access to decent and affordable housing. Deforestation has led to scarcity of timber and straw for traditional roof construction. Families spend what little money they have on imported and expensive timber and sheet metal to put a roof over their heads, further worsening the vicious circle of poverty in which they are trapped.Through its Earth Roofs in the Sahel Program: A Roof + A Skill + A Market, the Association la Voûte Nubienne is addressing this problem with a traditional, very low-carbon building technique known as Nubian Vault. The organization supports the training of local builders, in order to create a sustainable and autonomous Nubian Vault market.To tell us more, we spoke to Cecila Rinaudo, the project’s Director of Development.
August 18, 2015
Belgian-based EcoNation developed Lighten the Energy Bill to promote a unique financing mechanism that enables the installation and management of sustainable lighting systems, by absorbing the entire upfront investment and sharing the profits with the end user. Once the lighting system is installed, customers are charged monthly installments that are guaranteed to be lower than their original electric bill. To tell us more, we sat down in the studio with Xavier Verbeken, Business Development Manager with EcoNation.
August 3, 2015
Thailand is on the verge of a solar energy transformation as private companies have committed to investing at least USD 2 billion over the next five years in solar power production. The woman leading the country down a cleaner path is Wandee Khunchornyakong, who runs Solar Power Company Group, the largest solar power generation company in Thailand. Solar Power Company Group has constructed 36 solar farms in sunny, northeast Thailand, accounting for 250 MW of installed capacity by the end of 2014. This translates into potential savings of 200,000 tonnes of CO2-equivilent per year compared to Thailand’s fossil-fuel driven electricity generation. To tell us more, we sat down with Solar Power Company Group’s CEO Wandee Khunchornyakong.
July 20, 2015
Solar panels traditionally require a significant up-front investment and a long-term pay-back period, but what if you could rent them short term? Redavia leases cost-effective, convenient and clean solar farms without up-front capital investment or long-term obligations. The farms in turn reduce consumption of diesel fuel by generators, improve access to electricity and reduce emissions and power costs in communities around the world. To give us an update since we last spoke to them, we were joined by Elisabeth Schallhart, Sales and Marketing Manager with Redavia. Elisabeth was in Bonn recently for the UN Climate Change Conference and we caught up with her in the studio.
June 16, 2015
The Ahmedabad bus rapid transit system boasts climate friendly buses, integrated bicycle lanes and an ever-expanding network of routes that have helped reduce car journeys by more than 700,000 kilometres each year. To tell us more, we are joined by Professor Shivanand Swamy, Associate Director of the Center for Environmental Planning and Technology University in Ahmedabad.
June 16, 2015
The Alliance for International Reforestation (AIR) is an NGO in Guatemala that promotes tree planting to sequester carbon and improve farming techniques, such as preventing erosion, improving yields and increasing crop diversity. They also build highly-efficient brick stoves with chimneys that reduce both the negative health impacts caused by smoke inhalation and the need to cut down trees for fuel. To tell us more, we’re joined by Anne Hallum, AIR’s U.S. Administrator.
April 15, 2015
The Momentum for Change awards recognize innovative examples of how people around the world are addressing climate change. Organizations, cities, industries, governments and other key players that are taking the lead on tackling climate change can nominate their game-changing projects for an award until April 24th at http://momentum.unfccc.intTo tell us more, we talk to Nick Nuttall, UNFCCC Spokesperson and Director of Communications.
April 14, 2015
Food & Trees for Africa is a South African initiative that fosters women's leadership to address climate change. They're focused on activities such as planting trees to sequester carbon and raising public awareness about climate change. Their programs also enhance food security, alleviate poverty, teach women skills and create a healthier and more sustainable environment. To tell us more, we are joined by Jeunesse Park, Founder of Food & Trees for Africa.
March 27, 2015
The China Clean Development Mechanism Fund is a national climate fund that supports low carbon growth and climate resilience in China. It is a revolving fund that receives regular capital injections from levies collected by the government on clean development mechanism projects in China. The revenues collected by the Fund are specifically earmarked to finance climate actions in China. The revenues are mainly used to finance investment programs to leverage additional resources from the private sector and to test innovative financial and economic instruments to support actions to address climate change. To tell us more, we are joined by Jiao Xiaoping, Deputy Director General of the China CDM Fund.
February 15, 2015
In Sudan, climate change, drought and desertification are facts of life. The Low Smoke Stoves Project transforms communities and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by replacing traditional wood and charcoal stoves with energy efficient stoves. To tell us about the project, we talk to Impact and Practice Manager Omar Fedlala Modowi from Practical Action.
January 30, 2015
In Ghana, a women-run initiative to build bicycles out of local, sustainable bamboo is turning heads. Ghana Bamboo Bikes has provided jobs for over 30 bike builders, who produce bikes with less electricity and no hazardous chemicals. Not only are the bikes light and stable, they can handle rough terrain and can carry large farm loads and passengers. We talk to founder Bernice Dapaah about her initiative.
January 16, 2015
Solar panels traditionally require a significant up-front investment and a long-term pay-back period, but what if you could rent them short term? Redavia leases cost-effective, convenient and clean solar farms without up-front capital investment or long-term obligations. The farms in turn reduce consumption of diesel fuel by generators, improve access to electricity and reduce emissions and power costs in communities around the world. To tell us more, we’re joined by Erwin Spolders, CEO and Founder of Redavia.
December 18, 2014
On this week’s episode, we visit the to learn about the Sustainable Energy Finance (SEF) Program. It’s the first of its kind in the country, and it’s paving the way for more private financial sector investment into sustainable energy projects. These projects are reducing greenhouse emissions, improving energy security and boosting economic development in the Philippines. The SEF is an advisory programme being implemented by the International Finance Corporation in different regions around the world. We talk to Jesse Ang, the International Finance Corporation’s Philippines representative.
November 28, 2014
Because of its coastal location, facing the Indian Ocean, Maputo, Mozambique is exposed to severe climate risks, such as flooding, cyclones and sea level rise. In addition, 44% of the population lives in poverty and access to services and other infrastructure is low. Heightened environmental risks are compounded with high vulnerabilities to these risks. Public Private People Partnerships for Climate Compatible Development (4PCCD) empowers the people living in urban poor neighborhoods to design and implement activities to adapt to climate change. These activities include improving and maintaining drainage channels; protecting the water supply; managing local waste; and establishing awareness and communication channels between citizens and relevant institutions. On this podcast, we talk to Vanessa Castan Broto, founder of 4PCCD about the community-based project.
November 13, 2014
In the arid lands of Kenya, the BOMA Project is helping vulnerable women adapt to climate change. These impoverished women are learning how to start small businesses in their villages, which enables them to diversify the ways in which they can make a living. Most of these women live on less than US $1.25 a day. BOMA helps them become more resilient to climate change by making money that is not tied to the drought-threatened livestock industry. In two years, these women are able to double their incomes and save money for the more frequent droughts. To tell us more about BOMA’s work, we talk to the organization’s founder, Kathleen Colson.
October 31, 2014
In Kathmandu, BioComp Nepal produces high-quality compost from a local, abundant resource: organic waste from vegetable markets and private companies. The compost assists farmers in producing organic and high-quality vegetables and fruits and generating more income. By collecting waste destined for the landfill and turning it into compost, Biocomp Nepal helps the environment and people at the same time. To learn more about the initiative, we talk to Kathrin Dellantonio, head of Marketing and Communications with myclimate.
October 16, 2014
In Australia, women are building a movement to tackle climate change. 1 Million Women has a simple goal with a big impact: get one million women to pledge to take small steps in their daily lives to save energy, reduce waste, cut pollution and lead change. Thus far, they’ve signed up more than 100,000 women to their campaign. Together, they’ve committed to cut more than 100,000 tons of carbon emissions. In this week’s podcast, we interview 1 Million Women founder, Natalie Isaacs.
October 2, 2014
In 2011, Vestergaard Frandsen launched a breakthrough initiative called LifeStraw Carbon for Water. The LifeStraw is a water purification system that uses no fuel. Each filter can produce at least 18,000 liters of quality drinking water over a 10-year life span. In Kenya's Western Province, they delivered nearly 880,000 family water filters to 91% of all households without access to safe municipal water. In doing so, they provided 4.5 million people with sustainable access to safe drinking water for the first time. To talk to us about LifeStraw Carbon for Water, we’re joined by Tara Lundy, Concept Development Manager at Vestergaard.
September 18, 2014
In Namibia, a community-based adaptation programme is piloting six strategies for addressing climate change vulnerability in local communities. The strategies include the innovative use of energy-efficient stoves and agro-forestry and vegetable production under micro drip. This approach helps sustain food security and income generation with no adverse impacts to the land and other natural resources. We talk to representatives from Creative Entrepreneur Solutions about the initiative.
September 18, 2014
On today's podcast, we talk with Neha Misra, Chief Collaboration Officer at Solar Sister. She talks about Solar Sister's work as a social enterprise that enables African women entrepreneurs to become sellers of solar-powered products and clean cookstoves.
September 3, 2014
By increasing both the production of low-carbon housing and the supply of mortgages for such housing, EcoCasa is helping Mexico reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. By providing financing to build more sustainable houses, they're helping to construct over 27,000 low-carbon or 'passive' houses. This week, we talk to Klaus Veigel, Senior Project Manager at KfW about EcoCasa's work.
August 20, 2014
In the slums of Bangalore, children cannot do their homework after the sun sets. Families use polluting kerosene lamps, and the fuel eats up a significant percentage of their humble incomes. Pollinate Energy trains members of the local community to distribute and install solar lighting systems as micro-entrepreneurs. We talk to Monique Alfris and Ben Merven, co-founders at Pollinate Energy, about their initiative.
August 6, 2014
We talk to Swisscontact's Jon Bickel about reducing the carbon footprint of traditional brick-making in Peru. By installing new, energy-efficient kilns, brick-producers have cut down their fuel consumption and carbon emissions by almost 50 percent, while increasing their incomes.
June 27, 2014
This week we talk with Elwyn Grainger-Jones about the Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Programme (ASAP). ASAP finances smallholder farmers so they can access the tools and technologies that help build their resilience to climate change.
June 9, 2014
This week our host Sarah Marchildon talks with Kwaku Kyei of Recnowa in Kumasi, Ghana. Recnowa employs local artisans and street youth in poor urban communities to take recyclable waste out of landfills and off the streets.
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