food security

Syrian Market Bombing Death Toll Tops 100

Aug. 17 - The Syrian air force continued bombing north of Damascus Monday, one day after bombing a market area in the area. About 100 people were killed in that Sunday attack in Douma, an air raid which escalated fighting near the Syrian capital and was condemned by human rights and humanitarian workers.

Syria: Food Aid in Crisis, Assistance Slow in Coming

Aug. 4, 2015 - A $65 million donation by the United States last week helped the World Food Programme continue its food program for Syrians fleeing war. But the UN food agency said it still requires more to provide food aid for about 4 million displaced Syrians.

Middle East Food Crisis Grows With Conflict

July 13 - As early harvests of grain come in from the fields in the Middle East, Iraq is facing shortages because of war-related problems farmers had in obtaining seed and also in distribution problems that began at the storage silos and continued through the supply chain to the point of household rations dispersals, according to press reports and UN Food and Agriculture Organization reports.

A July 12 Wall Street Journal story quoted the FAO's country brief on Iraq, which said "Food prices in Anbar are the highest of all governorates, around 58 percent above the prices in Baghdad."

Saudis to Build World's Largest Solar Seawater Desalination Plant

Saudi Arabia initiated a project to building the world's largest solar desalination plant. The plant, on the Persian Gulf coast at Al Khafji City, will produce 60,000 cubic meters of water daily when the plant begins operation in 2017. The Spanish firm Abengoa will integrate the solar panels into the plant's system.

Humanitarian Open Street Map Team: GIS as Relief Work

This network uses the the open source Open Street Map GIS system to assist disaster relief workers. Primarily, volunteers trace buildings, bridges or other items of interest that would illustrate how a locale looked before disaster struck. Thus, relief workers who encounter a destroyed area would be able to estimate where a building was before an earthquake or landslide, and possibly rescue people who are still trapped inside.

Human Trafficking in Thai Seafood Industry

This study looks at the influx of trafficked workers into the seafood industries of Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries. The US State Department in 2014 downgraded Thailand's compliance status with human trafficking norms. The study calls for a renewed effort during the 2015 monsoon season to put better practices in place before more trafficking resumes when the rains recede.