Practical Action Blogs

    Mock flood drill at the advent of monsoon

    Monsoon has approached and flood can occur anytime, which requires actions based on different community contexts, with available flood early warning systems entailing interrelated components of Flood risk knowledge, Risk monitoring, Communication and dissemination of risk information, and Response. As an institutionalization process 5th June (world environment day) is marked as the advent of monsoon and mock flood exercise day. This year in the lower Karnali basin (Nepal part) where we work; 53 community disaster management committees (CDMC) and associated […]

    July 11th, 2019

    No sense of urgency in climate talks

    “You guys really need to do something,” a restaurateur in Bonn, Germany told us when he learnt that we were in the city to attend United Nations Bonn Climate Conference from 17 to 27 June 2019. His comments were prompted by the record-breaking heat waves across Europe while we were looking for a cool corner for dinner. Just four kilometres away in the World Conference Centre, governments were wrangling over whether to consider or bury the latest scientific report on […]

    July 2nd, 2019

    Impactful partnerships for inclusive energy access at scale

    The renewable energy market has grown rapidly in recent years, with vast and successful national programs and initiatives reaching upper poverty quintiles. However, big areas of energy poverty remain in remote communities and hard-to-reach areas. Asia Clean Energy Forum (ACEF) Last week, I was at the Asia Clean Energy Forum 2019 (ACEF) in Manila, one of the Asia’s premier networking and knowledge-sharing events dedicated to clean energy and energy access in Asia. The theme for ACEF 2019 was “Partnering for […]

    July 1st, 2019

    Rebuilding dreams, rebuilding hopes – a melancholic reflection

    Almost 200 kilometres west from Kathmandu lies a small village called Rainas in Lamjung district. It is one of the villages which was hard hit by the 2015 earthquake. 83 year old Sape Damai lives with his 86 year old blind wife, Dalli Damai in a small temporary shelter in Rainas-8, Lamjung. They have been through thick and thin and are still going strong. All of their seven kids died during birth. “We were cursed, none of our kids survived,” […]

    June 25th, 2019

    DAIRY – Empowering women

    Few months back, I was visiting one of the project sites where we are supporting smallholder dairy farmers, particularly in better production techniques, access to improved breeds, improved extension services, and inclusive value chain development. During the trip I came across many smallholder dairy farmers – each one of them had a story to tell. One of them was Mina Bohora (39) from Madhyabindu Municipality – 4 of Chitwan District in Province 3. Mina, Treasurer of Panch Pandav Sahakari – […]

    June 12th, 2019

    Climate Crisis. The New Reality.

    Beating drought with ingenuity, Turkana. Climate change is leading to increasingly frequent and more severe hazards and disasters. It’s something that is effecting us all but varies in severity. A recent article from the Guardian reported that Fairbourne in north Wales will become the first community in the UK to be decommissioned as a result of climate change. Whereas in Mozambique, Malawi and India, 3 cyclones of different scales have left millions homeless. From these different disasters caused by climate […]

    June 10th, 2019

    The challenge of scaling-up energy access in least developed countries

    As shown in the latest UN Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) tracking report published last week, we are making some progress towards the goal of universal energy access by 2030. The number of people without access to electricity is now down to 840 million (compared to 1.2 billion in 2010). However, progress has been patchy, with sub-Saharan Africa mostly left behind. Furthermore, there are still around 3 billion people without access to clean cooking. Unless progress speeds up, we are […]

    May 31st, 2019

    Practical Action for the New Planetary Reality

    “We never used to have mosquitoes here in the winter. Now we have them all year round,” said Purnima Chaudhary, the co-ordinator of a flood resilience group we helped form in the Bardiya region of Nepal. Year-round mosquitoes for Purnima is undoubtedly an inconvenience, but it’s also tangible evidence of a changing climate. As is the very existence of the flood resilience group. Two recent reports demonstrate just how much trouble we’re in. The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and […]

    May 30th, 2019

    Menstrual Hygiene Day 2019: It’s Time for Action

    One Vision Creating Countless Hope. Entrepreneur Lily Akhter. From a destitute victim of river erosion to a successful entrepreneur, it’s not been an easy path for Lily Akhter (58). After losing everything from river deterioration in 2003, Lily and her husband with their 6 children started their new life in Baitul Aman slum, Faridpur municipality. Her husband’s earnings were not sufficient enough to feed 8 people a day which persuaded her to earn for her family. Lily got the idea […]

    May 29th, 2019

    Pumpkin Commerce for Fighting Poverty and Hunger

    Uttam Kumar Saha is a Strategic Lead of Urban and Energy for Practical Action in Bangladesh. I went to the northern Char areas in Rangpur last week along with the Agriculture team to facilitate the field visit with the Secretary, Ministry of Commerce. Char is the transitional, infertile sandy land, which generally goes under water for six months of the year and is always considered as one of the biggest poverty prone hot spot in Bangladesh. What I saw, heard […]

    May 29th, 2019