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Housing in Havana 30
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
09 Sep 2013

A kitchen in Old Havana
The man who lives here is an alcoholic and he survives by begging.

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Housing in Havana 6
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
07 Sep 2013

A jumble of small dwellings that have been built onto the original flat roofs, further destabilising the already weakend structures of the buildings

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Housing in Havana 3
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
05 Sep 2013

Both the flimsy wooden supports holding buildings up and the vegetation growing in the damp cracks of the buildings can be seen all over Havana.

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Housing in Havana 17
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
03 Sep 2013

An elderly resident looks down at the stairs leading to her apartment. The original stairs collapsed completely and were replaced by this rickety, homemade staircase. Ten years ago this woman fell down these stairs and broke her shoulder, hip and all her front teeth.

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Housing in Havana 20
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
02 Sep 2013

Humidity is one of the major factors in the deterioration of the buildings in Havana.

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Housing in Havana 8
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
01 Sep 2013

The Capitolio seen from the roof of the former Hotel Bristol in Central Havana. This 1930’s hotel was abandoned and fell into disrepair. The former employees of the hotel decided to live in the hotel. Every available space is being used, even the shaft of the broken elevator and the empty and cracked roof top swimming pool that is being used as a kitchen.

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Housing in Havana 4
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
01 Sep 2013

A man walks through the arcades below a dangerously unstable building that has been inadequately supported by wooden poles.

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Housing in Havana 15
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
31 Aug 2013

The inhabitants of this building, which is dangerously close to collapsing, have been evicted. The flimsy wooden poles that prop it up are insufficient and there is a serious risk that the building could topple at any time, injuring or killing people in this busy street in Old Havana.

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Housing in Havana 18
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
31 Aug 2013

Residents of a neighbourhood in Old Havana try to stabilise the top of a crumbling building. Debris from this building had recently fell into the street and injured people.

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Housing in Havana 22
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
31 Aug 2013

The view from an apartment in the former Hotel Bristol in Central Havana

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Destruction of homs 16
Homs
By yazan1985
13 Jul 2013

Destruction of the Al Qarabees mosque in Al Qarabees neighborhood in Homs as a result of airstrikes by the Syrian Regime. Homs, Syria

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Food insecurity: Does South Korea hav...
Seoul, South Korea
By maltekol
12 Jul 2013

The World Health Organization warns that overpopulation and a lack of arable land contribute to global food insecurity. So scientists are developing new farming technology to offset potential food shortages. Researchers in South Korea are experimenting with vertical farms; gardens that instead of spreading out, go straight up.
Jason Strother and Malte Kollenberg report from Seoul.

Almost half of South Korea’s 50 millions citizens live here in the capital. And in a country with very limited agricultural land, feeding all of these people presents a challenge. Some observers say the nation faces increasing food insecurity.

Park Hwan-il is food security analyst at the Samsung Economic Research Institute in Seoul.

Int: Park Hwan-il, SERI (English)
"The food self sufficiency rate in Korea is just about 26 percent. Which means three quarters of the food we consume is from the foreign countries. That means the Korean people’s health and nutrition depends on outside factors that we cannot control”

Park says that climate conditions or other instability in the international market makes importing food unpredictable. It’s not only a problem for Korea, but for many other countries too. But some scientists say there is a solution.

Int. from online: Dickson Despommier, Columbia University (English)
“My name is Dickson Despommier: I teach at Columbia Universities Medical School and school of public health. The world would be a much better place, if we had vertical farming.”

Despommier says tower-like hydroponic farms could someday stand alongside skyscrapers as a key food source for billions of city dwellers

Int. from online: Dickson Despommier, Columbia University (English)
“Here’s my vision of what a vertical farm might look like. My gold standard for this is the Apple Store in New York City on 5th Avenue. If you took that building and made it into a five-story building. Now in the building you have multiple floors of course, and inside each floor you have multiple layers of crops.”

Despommier says vertical farms could be a key solution for countries with a growing population or limited arable land. Like South Korea.

30-kilometers south of Seoul in Suwon, the government is trying to make Despommier’s vision a reality. The Rural Development Administration has built the prototype of a vertical farm.Inside this research facility a small team of scientists is working on turning this concept a marketable product.So far, their experiment is only 3-storeys high. But they hope that one day, the technology will expand and be capable of feeding the entire nation.

Agrarian scientist Choi Kyu-hong is still sorting out more basic challenges.

Int: Choi Kyu-hong, RDA (English)
“The plant factory requires a lot of energy, the light energy and the heating and cooling energy. So we provide the heating or cooling energy using geothermal systems. We adopted the solar cell system to provide light source energies, but we are still (only) provide 15 percent of the total energy”

Choi adds his team still faces many challenges:

Int: Choi Kyu-hong, RDA (English)
“We are still (in) the research state, its take some time to make a commercial plant factories. We are firstly trying to find out the optimum wavelength of light”

Choi says the problem is that different plants grow at different speeds, depending on the light’s color and wavelength.

But even though the government hasn’t perfected vertical farming technology yet, some in the private sector are already putting it to use. Inside this Lotte Mart, a supermarket franchise in Seoul, lettuce grows under the lights of this small vertical farm.

Store mangers say produce grown in this facility has extra benefits for customers.

Int: Kim Chang-jo, Lotte Mart
(Korean) “We are the first super market to install a vertical farm. We hope that it will draw attention to environmental concerns. The plants are affordable and no pesticides were used, so its healthier for our customers”

Kim says the vertical farm lettuce costs the same as lettuce grown the old fashioned way. But some analysts say that all the lights and heating systems required to operate a vertical farm is just too expensive to make it a viable solution for food insecurity.

Int: Park Hwan-il, SERI
(English) “Vertical farming costs too much. / Even though the productivity in vertical farming is very high, very good, but it does not have the merit in price or marketing advantage at all”

Back at the Suwon experimental vertical farm, scientists admit they still have a long way to go. The Rural Development Administration’s Lee Hye jin gives a rough time frame.

Int: Lee Hye-jin, RDA
(Korean) “It might take at least five more years of research to make progress on these obstacles. Then vertical farms might be ready for commercial use”

The South Korean scientists say that once all the problems are resolved, vertical farms won't just have to stop at three-stories. The sky is the limit.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (14 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

A Pakistani man moments before jumping from the fifth floor of a building that caught on fire in Lahore, Pakistan, Thursday, May 9, 2013. The 13-storey government building caught fire and quickly intensified spreading to three floors of the tall building.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (13 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

A Pakistani man moments before jumping from the fifth floor of a building that caught on fire in Lahore, Pakistan, Thursday, May 9, 2013. The 13-storey government building caught fire and quickly intensified spreading to three floors of the tall building.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (12 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

A man jumps from the fifth floor of a building that caught on fire in Lahore, Pakistan, Thursday, May 9, 2013. The 13-storey government building caught fire and quickly intensified spreading to three floors of the tall building.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (11 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

Lahore : A Pakistani army helicopter rescues people from a burning building in Lahore on May 9, 2013. At least three persons fell from the 13-story LDA plaza situated on Lahore’s Edgerton road 9 trying to avoid a fire that engulfed the building.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (10 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

Lahore : A Pakistani army helicopter rescues people from a burning building in Lahore on May 9, 2013. At least three persons fell from the 13-story Lahore Development Authority plaza situated on Lahore’s Edgerton road 9 trying to avoid a fire that engulfed the building.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (9 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

A man jumps from a building that caught on fire in Lahore, Pakistan, Thursday, May 9, 2013. The 13-storey government building caught fire and quickly intensified spreading to three floors of the tall building.

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PAKISTAN BUILDING FIRE (7 of 14)
Lahore, Pakistan
By Murtaza Syed
09 May 2013

PAKISTAN, Lahore : A Pakistani man climbs a rope to the roof top of a burning building in Lahore on May 9, 2013. At least three persons fell from the 13-story Lahore Development Authority plaza situated on Lahore’s Edgerton road 9 trying to avoid a fire that engulfed the building.

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Cairo by TokTOk (13 of 26)
Giza, Egypt
By Teo Butturini
23 Mar 2013

Two women walk past a smoking pile of garbage, in the local area of Imbaba in Cairo (Egypt). Hundreds of thousands of people live in these suburbs, forgotten by their government that despite promises is unable to provide them with security, jobs or even decent living conditions.

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Military plane crash in Sana'a, Yemen...
Sana'a, Yemen
By luke_somers
20 Feb 2013

A deaf and dumb soldier at the site of the crash used gestures to explain how the aircraft struck the impacted buildings.

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New York City
brooklyn bridge
By motasemdhawi
31 Dec 2012

Amazing View For New York City from Brooklyn Bridge

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GAZA UNDER ATTACK
Gaza City
By Mais Istanbuli
19 Nov 2012

An Israeli airstrike killed 11 members of the same family on 18.11.12 in an attack aimed at Hamas official Jamal Al Dalou. The casualties included four children.

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houses
Eastleigh, Kenya
By Ulrik Pedersen
15 Nov 2012

View of houses in Eastleigh, Nairobi, Kenya. Somalia part of Nairobi.

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Destruction of homs 20
Homs
By yazan1985
01 Nov 2012

Destruction in the neighborhood of Jura Al Shiyah in Homs as a result of airstrikes by the Syrian regime. Homs, Syria.

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ANGRY CITIZENS PROTEST IN AFTERMATH O...
Achrafiyeh, Beirut, Lebanon
By Editor's Picks
20 Oct 2012

Protesters burned tires and set up roadblocks around Lebanon Saturday, October 20, in an angry response to the massive car bomb that killed senior intelligence official Wissam al Hassan, who was allegedly leading an investigation into a Lebanese politician accused of working with two Syrian officials to plan a string of attacks inside Lebanon. The blast killed at least eight people and wounded over 100. Saturday was declared a day of mourning in the country, though protesters set up roadblocks in Beirut, Sidon, Tripoli and the Bekaa Valley. Many Lebanese worry that the explosion is evidence of an escalation of Syria's war spilling over the borders and fear a return to the wave of political assassinations that rattled Lebanon between 2005 and 2008.

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CAR BOMB SHAKES BEIRUT - Beirut Edito...
Beirut, Lebanon
By Beirut Editor's Picks
19 Oct 2012

A car bomb blast in the East Beirut neighborhood of Ashrafieh killed at least eight people and wounded fifty others, security sources said on Friday October 19, 2012. The explosion, which took place at the busy Sassine Square, where the office of the anti-Assad Christian Kataeb Party is located, struck around 3 p.m damaged buildings and shattered windows over a radius of several blocks.
The incident occurred at a time of heightened tension between Lebanese factions and political parties on opposite sides of the Syria conflict. It is the first bombing in the Lebanese capital since 2008.

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Aleppo Cries (Part 9 of 17)
Aleppo, Syria
By Maamoun
18 Oct 2012

Destruction and smoke rising in Aleppo sky.
Al Sha'ar neighborhood.

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Destroyed Building in Idlib
Idlib, Syria
By info
23 Mar 2012

Idlib, Syria | March 21, 2012

A man standing among destroyed buildings in Idlib after Assad soldier's attack.

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Sleeping City
Tehran, Iran
By Dorsa Kh.
04 Jan 2012

A view of the Tehran in the evening.

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Housing in Havana 24
Havana, Cuba
By Alison McCauley
31 Dec 2008

A man smoking a cigar is standing next to a building that has completely collapsed. The building next door is still standing and people continue to live and work there.