A new international report makes for bleak reading on the state of the world's soils. It predicts that land degradation will displace up to 700 million people worldwide by mid-century.
Mass hysteria and lawlessness during disasters are remarkably rare, contrary to Western Cape Premier Helen Zille's prediction of anarchy when Cape Town's taps run day.
From turkeys to salmon and brussels sprouts, modern living is putting mounting pressure on the festive feast.
The leaders of Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan have shown some commitment to sharing the waters of the Nile. But hard negotiations on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam are only beginning.
Ambitious plans to divert rivers are all very well, but what is needed is to manage water sources at the local level.