The world is on track to add 700 million new ACs by 2030, and 1.6 billion by 2050, largely in hot, developing countries like India and Indonesia ... Air conditioners use refrigerants, and some of the most common types — hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs — are powerful greenhouse gases, with thousands of times the warming potential of carbon dioxide. If HFC use continues to grow at its current pace, these chemicals could make up as much as 19 percent of emissions by 2050.

Asia accounts for more than half of global food waste due to a lack of adequate infrastructure but a technique practiced by early Egyptians could help resolve the modern-day problem ... The bulk of food wasted is at the post-harvest, storage and transport stages, not at the consumption end, they observed, noting that India loses up to 40 percent of fruit and vegetable output because of poor refrigeration.

A study done by physicians in India says that strokes are rising sharply there, projecting that one in six Indians will have a stroke in their lifetimes, and one-third of those stroke victims can blame air pollution ... about 300 million children breathe what is considered to be “highly toxic air.” Nearly three-quarters of those kids live in South Asia, where vehicle pollution, factories, naturally-occurring dust, and slash-and-burn agriculture are the leading culprits.

Murals of mythological characters playing board games and permanent carvings of board games on floors of several temples in south India, point at their prevalence and popularity in earlier times ... temples were not just places of worship, but also a centre of community activity. That is why they were big and spacious places ... Dancers, musicians and other workers involved in several upacharas (rituals) in the temple needed recreation and these games kept them occupied in their spare time

Indian optimism is, in large part, based on demographics. The Chinese population is ageing and its supply of young workers is shrinking... By contrast, 65% of the Indian population was under the age of thirty in 2015, creating a healthy ‘dependency ratio’ of productive workers to old people. Demographers think that India is likely to surpass China as the world’s most populous country, with 1.4 billion people, around 2022. And some economists reckon it might be the world’s largest economy by 2050

India is officially leprosy free, meaning the disease afflicts fewer than one in 10,000 people. But specialists understand the true infection rate to be far higher, and the disease is still endemic in some of the country’s poorest districts ... Today India accounts for more than 60% of the world’s new leprosy cases ... This week the government announced a major step: the world’s first leprosy vaccine, developed in-country but tied up for years in testing, will be rolled out in Gujarat and Bihar

diarrhoea-causing protozoa can travel 150 metres or more in the high contaminate even deep tube wells, which are thought safer than shallow tube wells and open ponds... full latrine coverage in high water table areas would reduce contamination in open ponds, but increase it in tube wells... recommended safeguards may reduce contamination a little, but won’t eliminate it... Drinking-water aquifers are already seriously polluted with...pathogens from the existing stock of latrines

in have never seen their harvest ruined by drought or delayed rainfall, despite having no access to irrigation pipes or water pumps. Their secret is a 100-year-old indigenous irrigation system...a network of canals that uses the downhill flow of the area's rivers and streams to bring water to villagers and their fields. Built, monitored, and maintained by locals, the system gives the...residents access to clean water even as droughts devastate many other areas of the country

An Oregon judge has allowed a 52-year-old retired Army tank mechanic to change gender identity. Not from male to female, or vice versa. But to a new, third gender ... Oregon joins several countries in recognizing a third gender. In 2014, India became the largest country in the world to have an official third option, following in the footsteps of Pakistan, Australia and Germany.

several million Americans – black, white, and Hispanic – now live in households with per capita income of less than $2 a day, essentially the same standard that the World Bank uses to define destitution-level poverty in India or Africa. Finding shelter in the United States on that income is so difficult that $2-a-day poverty is almost certainly much worse in the US than $2-a-day poverty in India or Africa. Beyond that, America’s much-vaunted equality of opportunity is under threat.