[photo credit: www.banthebottle.net] Bottling Up Efforts to Conserve Precious Water?

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org Most Americans are probably aware that California and much of the U.S. Southwest is in the grips of a major drought.  And it’s likely that people know at least something about conserving water.  Take shorter showers, don’t wash your car, water your lawn at risk of $500 fines, etc. But a
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[image credit: www.earthtimes.org] The Fork in the Road: Which Way this World Population Day?

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org As the world, or at least some of it, recognizes World Population Day on July 11th, it might be a good time to look around at some encouraging projects and initiatives empowering people and protecting the environment in communities across the globe. But first, some fast facts for a brief overview:
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[photo credit: data.unfpa.org] Family Planning is a Smart Investment

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org. In a time of government budget cuts and austerity programs, family planning is a low-cost investment that yields big dividends.  And more importantly, it saves lives. Globally, there are 222 million women in developing counties who lack access to contraception.  Off these, 162 million women live in the world’s poorest countries.
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[photo credit: timesofindia.com] Acts of Violence Against Women: From India to the Congo to the USA

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org It’s been a horrific year for women’s rights across the globe.   Just in the past couple of months there has been the kidnapping of nearly 300 girls in Nigeria, an “honor” killing of a pregnant woman in Pakistan, the rape and hanging of two teenage girls in India, and a
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[photo credit: www.plan-international.org/girls/childmarriagereport/] Wedding Busters: Betting on Child Marriage-Free Zones

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org Child marriage is a difficult issue that is complicated by culture and religion, and especially by poverty. It takes time and effort to change culture, but it is possible.  Ending poverty is something that many people, organizations, and governments have tried to end for decades, but the challenge is enormous.Yet the
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Consumption and Waste

[photo credit: ocean.si.edu] Extinguishing Extinction: Ending the Demand for Shark Fins

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org All across the planet, species are at risk, due to humankind’s voracious appetite for practically every natural “resource.” The bounty of the oceans, for example, is being decimated at an unprecedented rate, and fish stocks are near collapse. Unfortunately, some of what people (or industrial trawlers) catch is completely wasted for
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Reproductive Rights/Women's Rights

[photo credit: www.unfpa.org] Refugees, Women’s Rights, and Reality in Gaza

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org Try to imagine giving birth in a spartan refugee tent, or worse, while missiles are exploding around you.  Or simply visualize having to have your reproductive and women’s health needs met in a war zone. For women (and men) in the Gaza Strip, survival is paramount, but so is confronting the
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Youth Rights

Afghan schoolgirls [photo credit: womenthrive.org] Heeding the Voice of Youth to Save Youth

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org An unsettling article in the New York Times recently highlighted how the world is failing to protect and educate youth, especially girls.  At the same time, the article underscores how important education is for adults too, in order to help them protect children. The piece – Struggling to Keep Afghan Girl
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Energy and Carbon Emissions

Tar sands, Canada.  [photo credit: extremeenergy.org] Carbon Emissions Just Keep Going Up, Up, Up

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org In 2013, the amount of carbon dioxide in Earth’s atmosphere passed 400 parts per million (ppm) for the first time in modern human history. And now, in 2014, carbon levels have remained above 400 ppm for three months in a row.  This makes the past three months the first period of
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Family Planning and Women's Health

[image credit: www.pirateparty.org.uk] Corporate Rights Trump Women’s Rights

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org In this increasingly polarized country with a deeply partisan Congress, a divided Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of corporate rights (aka corporate “personhood”) over a woman’s right to use the contraception of her choice. In the long-anticipated outcome of Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that family-owned
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[photo credit: www.worldwildlife.org] Gone in a Blink of an Eye?

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org There is no denying that humans are impacting the planet, and not necessarily for the good. Some people may argue this point, but one look at mountaintops blown off in Appalachia or forests cleared for palm oil production would have to elicit some acceptance of human alteration of the environment. Many
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Economics and GDP

[image credit: www.tapchitaichinh.vn] How Capitalism Stole Our Happiness

By Anjie Cai, guest youth blogger for www.howmany.org Capitalism as we know it today came into force around the early 1700s when Adam Smith laid the groundwork for the free market system in his famous book The Wealth of Nations. It quickly gave power to corporations, allowing them to control much of our lives. In
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