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Roach rescuers

Being crushed under your own home during an earthquake, and then having a cockroach – drawn by your moans – crawl all over you is not at first thought particularly reassuring
In Pakistan, bonded slavery is as prevalent now as it has ever been. Luke Duggleby reports on the efforts being made to combat this horrific violation of human rights
Cuba has been generous during the recent Ebola outbreak, but the country’s health care system faces major challenges
As many as two thirds of the 15,000 children kept in ‘orphanages’ in Nepal are not, in fact, orphans, with the criminals who run the establishments duping naive Western volunteers into providing funding

Sahel squeeze

Food, animal feed and fuel are all in high demand in Africa’s troubled Sahel region, but supply is not rising to meet demand
Three months after a spill released copper sulphate into the Sonora River, northwest Mexico, health authorities continue to monitor and treat locals on the river course
While it may be more usual for advances in agricultural practices to create greater productivity and a healthier planet, a report by professor Thomas Hertel, Purdue University, warns that for Africa, it may actually be more harmful for the environment

Indian water tonic

India’s rural water supply is a vast problem for public health officials. If disease outbreaks are to be kept in check, water sources need to be subject to routine monitoring
China could reduce its water consumption if it reorganised its crop production and trade, reports a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Food for an extra 100 million people could be grown on land that has been ‘grabbed’ in developing countries, according to a new study published in Environmental Research Letters
The rate of suicide in India is highest in areas with the most debt-ridden farmers growing cash crops on smallholdings, according to a new study
New study published in Population and Environment has highlighted the recent rapid increase in the number of households around the globe, and the consequent increased consumption of resources
Fishing communities in Madagascar are generally supportive of certain types of regulation, despite possible negative economic impacts
Global food production could be increased substantially without clearing more land for agriculture simply by harvesting existing cropland more frequently, according to a new study published in Environmental Research Letters

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