Over half a century ago, Lao PDR began its journey to become a modern nation and committed itself to long-term development ambitions. It has delivered electricity, schools, roads, and has become an important energy exporter.
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In Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua, making tortillas on a smoky fire is a way of life. Women spend an average of four hours a day cooking for their families, routinely inhaling toxic smoke from... Show More + burning wood and charcoal. Every year in Central America, 37,000 premature deaths—most of them women, but also many children—are caused by household air pollution. All told, about 20 million Central Americans, just over half the region’s people, use wood as cooking fuel.Moving from Central America to Southeast Asia, we find the same phenomenon in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, where 96 percent of the population still uses solid fuels for cooking, making indoor air pollution the country’s number one health threat. This endures even as 72 percent of households now have electricity, up from just 18 percent in 1995.In Indonesia, about 40 percent of the population—about 25 million households—uses traditional biomass for cooking. Again, the result is tragic: 165,000 premature deat Show Less -
August 29, 2007— From more than 400 miles in space, the World Bank is pinpointing the true extent of one of the planet’s major environmental problems – gas flaring.The problem isn’t new. Gas flaring –... Show More + a byproduct of petroleum production that spews about 400 millions of tons of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere – has been going on for decades. But new satellite imagery, commissioned by the Bank’s Global Gas Flaring Reduction public-private partnership, is showing that some countries are burning off more gas than what was initially reported.The imagery has reshuffled who are the top 20 gas-flaring nations, compared to previous official figures from 2004. Russia has moved to No. 1, replacing Nigeria, and new on the list, based on what satellite sensors see on their 14 daily globe-girdling journeys, are China, Oman, Uzbekistan, Malaysia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia.The World Bank collaborated with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to produce the eagle-eyed imagery.“Gas Show Less -