Environment

Philippine cities facing 'slow-motion disaster'

When Mary Ann San Jose moved to Sitio Pariahan more than two decades ago, she could walk to the local chapel. Today, reaching it requires a swim. 

The main culprit is catastrophic subsidence caused by groundwater being pumped out from below, often via unregulated wells for homes, factories, and farms catering to a booming population and growing economy.

21 May 2019
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ASEAN’s megacities in danger

As megacities emerge across the globe, the ones in Asia remain among the fastest growing and cheapest places to build. These cities will continue to grow in size and affluence, due to ever-increasing urban populations. The United Nations (UN) describe megacities as urban areas with a population of 10 million or more.

20 May 2019
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Building a sustainable food future

In the last three years, the absolute number of people affected by undernourishment or chronic food deprivation globally has been on an increasing trajectory.

18 May 2019
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Deadly pigeon racing in the Philippines

It is a brutal 600-kilometre gauntlet during which competitors face searing heat, wild seas, vicious predators, and the threat of kidnapping. 

Only one in 10 will finish.  

This is the MacArthur competition – the Philippines' longest homing pigeon race. It's a tough challenge for the birds and a tense affair for the owners.

17 May 2019
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Bangkok is sinking fast

For the more or less 10 million people living in Thailand’s capital city of Bangkok, flooding is a common and recurring phenomenon. This is partly due to the city’s geographic location at the southern end of the Chao Phraya River Basin, as well as its low-lying terrain of around 1.5 metres average elevation above mean sea level.

16 May 2019
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Cambodian surrogates freed but must keep babies

11 women allegedly paid to be surrogate mothers have been released on bail after agreeing to keep their babies, Cambodia's trafficking czar said Wednesday, as the poor Southeast Asian nation seeks to regulate the womb-for-hire trade.

16 May 2019
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The sad end of Lao’s elephants

The elephant is a cultural symbol in Lao. This is probably due to the fact that at one period in time, the country was known to have a large number of these mighty mammals roaming its lands free, so much so that before it was ever known as Lao, people used to call parts of the country Lan Xang (Land of a Million Elephants).

15 May 2019
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Vietnam’s illegal bear bile trade  

Five moon bears were rescued in August last year from a bile farm near the city of My Tho, located 70 kilometres from Ho Chi Minh City in South Vietnam. The bears, likely captured from the wild, were rescued by the Animals Asia Foundation. They were found confined in barren concrete cells, displaying signs of severe stress after having been in captivity for more than 20 years.

9 May 2019
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Cambodia’s sanctuaries under threat

Cambodia’s Beng Per Wildlife Sanctuary is symbolic of the country’s poor forestry management. Around 2,000 square kilometres (sq km) – around three times the size of Singapore – is lost to illegal logging in Cambodia every year where wildlife sanctuaries – despite their name – are not spared.

7 May 2019
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Porn in the Philippines

The Philippines has moved up three spots to tenth place but it isn’t immediately clear whether it’s for something the country can pride itself over. The tenth spot is for countries with the highest number of people watching porn, according to one of the most famous pornographic video sharing and pornography sites on the internet: Pornhub.

6 May 2019
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