The Baltic Sea is one of the key things that makes Helsinki the city it is. In addition to beauty and diverse possibilities for relaxing it provides us with a gateway to the world and its oceans.
 
Unfortunately, the Baltic is not doing great. Eutrophication remains a big problem that hampers achieving a good status of the sea.
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Feeding a rapidly growing world in the face of climate change and resource scarcity will be an immense challenge and test for human ingenuity. The effects of climate change on food production around the world are accelerating and could lead to more than 500,000 deaths by the year 2050, according to a grim new study. Rising temperatures, more frequent droughts and extreme weather events will result in crop productivity losses for farmers in many parts of the world.

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Slush 2017 Global Impact Community Event participants

Slush is a startup and tech conference organised annually in Helsinki, Finland. Last year Slush took place 30 Nov - 1 Dec 2017. The event which was established in 2008 by a few techies and game producers, has grown to a huge international event, from a small gathering of 300 people.

This was my first experience with Slush. Arriving there was like stepping into the future. There were cool startups and new inventions everywhere you looked. It felt super inspiring and motivating to see what these intelligent and innovative people had come up with, to help other people and the community.

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When I was a boy Finnish winters used to be cold and snowy. A white Christmas was more of a rule than an exception. Today, things have turned the other way around, at least in the Helsinki region: winters have gradually become rainy and warmer than before. However, globally we are among the very fortunate ones – it can be annoying to walk dark and rainy streets for months but that is nothing compared to the extreme weather conditions caused by climate change in other parts of the world.

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The frequent occurrence of extreme climate conditions is threatening the life of urban dwellers. Currently, more than 50 percent of the world’s population lives in urban areas. By 2050 this will increase to 70 percent. With rapid growth of urbanization comes rapid changes in the landscape that affect the climate and air quality in urban areas, leading to higher temperatures – or “heat islands” – higher emissions, and more ambient pollutions. During the summer, the higher urban temperatures may lead to more frequent health problems, and actually increase the mortality rate among the most vulnerable urban dwellers including elders and less economically fortunate, for example.

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President Donald Trump’s exaggerated “America First” doctrine elevates a zero-sum approach to pursuing U.S. interests that undermines both U.S. and global security. The era of Pax Americana, which brought seven decades of relative global peace and prosperity, has entered a new and more dangerous stage of decline thanks to Trump’s embrace of narrow-minded nationalism. The result will be a much more favorable environment for autocrats at the expense of liberal democracy and human rights.

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Striving to keep climate change within tolerable limits to our planet and people is one reason I became a politician. In my former profession as an organic farmer, I very strongly realized that our future depends on how efficiently and quickly we manage to contain this phenomenon that affects the entire globe.

The Paris Climate Agreement provides a framework for global climate action.

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Empowerment is one of the most talked about goals of development projects aimed at women, yet many government agencies and NGOs consider empowerment only in terms of the economy.

They believe women will gain more confidence and more decision-making power in the household if they earn money through entrepreneurship or participation in the labor market.

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Forecasting is a tricky business, but Nesta isn’t backing down from the human-versus-machine battle.

Forecasting is a fool’s errand, so why we do fallible humans persist in trying to peer into an uncertain future, especially when machines are outpacing us on so many other predictive tasks?

People who should have known much better dismissed the telephone, the car and, famously, the Beatles as fads. That’s because discerning the difference between a flash in the pan and a truly disruptive development is a very tricky art with a long and chequered history. As far back as Nostradamus in the 16th Century, we have long been drawn to the tantalizing idea that we can control an uncertain future by predicting it. While this sense of control might be illusory, it is true that sketching out possible futures is the first step in creating a desired one.

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During a visit to Ohio to promote his infrastructure plan on March 29, US president Donald Trump dropped one of the bombshells that Americans have become accustomed to over the last year and a half: "We'll be coming out of Syria, like, very soon .... Let the other people take care of it now."

If he's serious, if the more hawkish members of his administration don't dissuade him, and if he follows through, Trump will be taking a giant step in the right direction on foreign policy. The US never had any legitimate business in Syria. Its military adventurism there has been both dumb and illegal from the beginning.

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In late February, Venezuela's government began accepting presidential candidate registrations and announced a snap legislative election for April. The country's opposition denounces the process as a sham and Maduro as a dictator, both of which may be true.
 
Oddly,  a third voice -- the US government -- also weighed in. Per US state media outlet Voice of America, "the United States, which under President Donald Trump has been deeply critical of Maduro's leadership in crisis-torn and economically suffering Venezuela, on Saturday rejected the call for an early legislative vote."
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