Stories by Tanvi Nagpal

Expert Voices

Dry taps in India and Zimbabwe signal looming urban water crises

bicyclist transporting colored water cans
A cycle cart of water cans in Chennai, India. Photo: Atul Loke/Getty Images

A dangerous combination of hot and dry weather, poor water management and rising demand is leaving cities such as Chennai, India, and Harare, Zimbabwe, without water for days on end.

The big picture: The pressures on municipal water supplies are likely to worsen with the effects of climate change. Cape Town, South Africa, narrowly averted its "Day Zero" last year, but cities in 17 other countries classified as high stress could soon face their own water crises.

Expert Voices

Mounting cholera cases add to post-cyclone challenges in Mozambique

Children in a medical treatment tent in Beira, Mozambique.
A medical treatment tent in Beira, Mozambique. Photo: Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images

Cholera has returned in the aftermath of the deadly Cyclone Idai that devastated large swaths of southern Africa on March 15.

Why it matters: Catastrophic events have the potential to reverse health, education and income gains in countries like Mozambique and Malawi, which are among the poorest in the world. Approximately half the population in both countries live below the official poverty lines, and many lack access to safe water and toilets.

Expert Voices

Women are challenging menstruation taboos in India and Nepal

Women take oath as they gather to participate in the 620 km-long 'Women's Wall' against communalism and gender discrimination
Women gather to participate in the 385-mile-long "Women's Wall" against gender discrimination, in Kerala, India, on Jan. 1, 2019. Photo: Vivek R Nair/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

On Thursday, a woman and her children were found dead after being sequestered in a menstruation hut in Nepal. The death came on the heels of a protest on Jan. 1 in India, where thousands of women created a human wall that stretched 385 miles from the north of Kerala state to its capital in support of equal rights and against gender discrimination.

The big picture: Notions of ritual purity are at the heart of Hindu practices that ban women from entering kitchens or temples when they are menstruating. Public health professionals and women’s rights advocates have campaigned against ostracizing women for a long time, but the events in both Nepal and India have brought the discussion into mainstream media again.