journalist & photographer

Kira Walker

23 Posts Here

War, law and biodiversity: A race against time

07/11/2020.conflict

November 6 is the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict. Biodiversity is in free fall globally, declining faster than at any other moment in human history. Current global efforts to prevent and reduce biodiversity loss focus on times of peace — but what about during armed conflict? From [...]

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In the wake of the coronavirus, are we ready to redefine ‘security’?

23/06/2020.environment

COVID-19 has brought light to the connections between the environment, health, livelihoods, economies, food systems, personal safety, communities and political stability – and how a shock to one can send ripples throughout the rest. Last autumn, a report compiled at the request of UN Secretary-General António Guterres raised the alarm on the “very real threat [...]

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Can militant groups be environmentalists?

02/05/2020.conflict.#Iraq

The case for engaging with militant groups to protect the environment Competition over scarce natural resources is often a key driver of the tensions that fuel armed conflict in different corners of the world. Yet in the heat of battle, environmental considerations are often relegated to afterthoughts, as smoke from burning buildings clouds the skies [...]

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On the frontline of war, Yemeni women are building peace

27/04/2020.conflict.#Yemen

The lived experience of those most affected by war, and those working hardest to end it, has led to a tangible understanding that without women, there can be no just peace in Yemen. It was the third year of the war when Muna Luqman heard of a conflict over water in Al-Haymatain, a remote area [...]

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An environmental movement for times of war, too

29/03/2020.conflict.#Iraq

While current global action focuses on the impact of humans and industry on the environment during peacetime, what about during conflict? Oil wells set ablaze in Iraq. Forests pillaged in Colombia. Wildlife populations decimated across the Sahara-Sahel. Around the world, armed conflicts continue to cause significant damage to the environment. In turn, this damage often [...]

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Hitting nature where it hurts: Iran feels the pernicious effects of U.S. sanctions on biodiversity conservation

28/03/2020.conflict.#Iran

US sanctions are hampering conservation interventions necessary to protect critically endangered species from going extinct Situated at the confluence of the Mediterranean, arid west Asian and temperate semi-humid Caspian climatic zones, Iran is home to a rich and complex array of biodiversity, including the world’s few remaining Asiatic cheetahs. Efforts to protect its biodiversity, however, [...]

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Dam building projects could fuel water stress in Middle East

24/03/2020.conflict.#Iraq

While scientists warn of their negative impact on biodiversity, the autonomous Kurdistan Region is building multiple dams to respond to water insecurity. Local groups fear shortages and raised tensions could follow. Over the last 30 years, Jassim Al-Asadi has witnessed the Mesopotamian Marshes of southern Iraq where he was born undergo dramatic changes. Once the [...]

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A worsening water crisis is threatening Iraq’s future

21/03/2020.conflict.#Iraq

Instability will continue in Iraq so long as its long-neglected water crisis is not addressed The many ongoing challenges in Iraq—from political upheaval and COVID-19 to plummeting oil prices and the resurgence of the Islamic State—often overshadow the precarious state of the country’s water resources, even though water shortages are exacerbating many of those very [...]

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Wildlife declines in conflict hotspots

26/11/2019.conflict.#Africa

The escalation of armed conflicts has caused dramatic population declines of endangered local species, ultimately putting humans at risk. The escalation of armed conflicts in the Sahara and Sahel – up 565% since 2011 – is accelerating population declines of endangered local species, such as African Savannah elephants and Saharan cheetahs, in areas that once [...]

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For possible assignments, story tips, or to say hello, please contact me at kira.a.walker(at)gmail(dot)com or +34 625 952 495