Surviving a Global Financial Crisis
Society is actually experiencing an unexpected financial crisis that will undoubtedly impact all nations (Beyond Growth 2008). It will affect in particular the poorest countries that are already suffering from hunger and diseases. Governments are attempting to heal this issue by injecting large amounts of money in banking systems and major companies. At the same time, effects of climate change are accelerating and deeply altering ecosystems (IPCC 2007). Recent alarming reports even warn that it is already too late to stop global warming, though the forecasted value of the warming in degree Celsius and the date at which it will occur are still debated (Vince 2009). Given the urgency, geoengineering - the notion that to save the planet we must artificially tweak its thermostat by, e.g., firing fine dust into the atmosphere to deflect sun rays - is even gaining cause as a rapid solution to the attempt of cooling the earth (Brahic 2009). Injecting government cash and geoengineering are...
Very costly and was partly financed by the export of wine. Although Rome shipped large quantities of wine to India, they were not enough to settle the balance of payments. The remainder had to be paid in gold and silver. The outflow of gold to India resulted in a severe economic crisis. Roman emperors could no longer finance the customary free distribution of food. Unable to pay its soldiers, Rome was no longer capable of stopping the barbarian incursions in the north. Ultimately, the overextended and financially strapped empire collapsed.
Before signing a contract with such a waste disposal company, the laboratory manager and his or her chief technical assistant should personally visit the disposal facility. Facility personnel should be asked to describe or demonstrate their methods for handling, storing, and disposing of waste solutions. They should be able to produce permits and licenses to operate, as well as inspection records. Copies of such documents should be furnished to the prospective customer laboratory for its permanent files. The ultimate disposal of wastes from the treatment facility should be clearly stated, and the service company should be willing to furnish a signed statement to the laboratory, after each chemical pickup, that the laboratory no longer has title to the waste. The officers and principal stockholders of the company should be known, and their names checked with the state regulatory agency to be certain that they have no past record of waste-handling violations. A Dun and Bradstreet report...
Global CO2 emissions increased by 0.9 Gt CO2 between 2006 and 2007, primarily due to an increase in the coal demand of developing countries (Figure 4, non-Annex I Parties to the UNFCCC). This represented a growth rate of 3 in CO2 emissions, identical to that of the previous year. However, as with TPES, early indicators suggest that growth in emissions slowed in 2008 and may have declined in 2009 as a result of the global economic crisis.
The Rankine cycle (or vapor steam cycle) represents the basic energy conversion cycle providing 70 of the electricity in the US economy. Fundamentally, it is the conversion of water into steam, followed by the extraction of work, which today is usually accomplished by conversion into electricity (or in the case of cogeneration, steam for industrial processes). The first design was developed in the late 1712, yielding a cycle efficiency that was less than 2 . It has taken almost 300 years to reach an efficiency of over 40 , the current state-of-the art for fossil steam plants. Today's facilities operate with steam temperatures on sub-critical plants range from 537 C 1,000 F to 565 C 1,050 F.
The European Union member states have set an initial goal of incorporating at least 5.75 of biofuels in 2010 and 10 by 2020 in the fuels of fossil origin (gasoline and diesel). Within the present context of economic crisis and controversy about the role of biofuels, these figures might be revised.
The vast majority of the world's climate scientists believe that the build-up in the atmosphere of the heat-trapping gas carbon dioxide will lead to global warming in the next century unless we burn less coal, oil and natural gas. At the same time, it is clear that energy must be supplied in increasing amounts if the developed world is to avoid economic collapse and if developing countries are to attain wealth. Innovative Energy Strategies for CO2 Stabilization discusses the feasibility of increasingly efficient energy use for limiting energy requirements as well as the potential for supplying energy from sources that do not introduce carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
The forests are now under intense pressure. Lombok is one of Indonesia's poorest and most densely populated islands. Pressure for land has always been intense but the problem has become much worse in recent years. First, following the Asian economic crisis in 1997 large numbers of Lombok people who had been migrant workers in Malaysia were sent home. Many of them returned to farming. Then the Bali bombing in 2001 had a huge impact on the tourist industry. As a result, the local Sassak people have fallen on hard times. A large part of their income came from work in hotels and restaurants, and from producing the beautiful handicrafts for which Lombok is renowned. Lack of cash employment is forcing them back onto the land. And with 2.9 million people crowded onto this 5625 km2 island, it is hard to make a living from traditional agriculture alone. The modelling exercise suggested that few solutions would be effective if they were not accompanied by more effective application of laws. But...
From the mid 1990s onwards, however, a fascinating transformation took place. Though a handful of companies continue vociferously to resist tougher forms of action, many started to sense that regulation of greenhouse gases (GHGs) was on its way, and that they were better off preparing themselves to compete and survive in this new business environment. Some then learned what a smaller number of companies had already worked out - that beyond just being a question of risk management, there were in fact many good business opportunities in a carbon-constrained economy. There was a strong 'business case' for action on climate change. The US Climate Action Partnership, for example, an organisation that is 'committed to a pathway that will slow, stop and reverse the growth of US emissions while expanding the US economy'1 includes among its members companies like Alcoa, British Petroleum, Ford, General Electric and Shell, all of which were previously among the ranks of the industry lobbies...
The economic case for allowance auctioning, with the revenues used to reduce income and business taxation, is overwhelming. As an illustration, Smith and Ross (2002) used a model of the US economy to show that the economic costs of an economy-wide trading scheme were 80 per cent higher with free allocation than with auctioning. Similarly, Bovenberg and Goulder (2000) show that only a small fraction (less that 15 per cent) of the auction revenues need to be sacrificed in such a scheme to fully compensate the most vulnerable firms for adverse impacts on their competitiveness. However, it has taken a long time for policymakers to recognise the benefits of auctioning and much of business remains opposed.
From the information available it is difficult to assess the possibilities for income generation on the basis of collection of medicinal plants in rural areas. Instead, it is necessary to examine the experience of other products, the most applicable being other collected non-timber forest products (NTFPs). Falconer (1990) concludes that the markets for NTFPs are growing throughout West Africa, especially in urban and peri-urban areas. There is strong or growing demand for products such as bushmeat, palm oil, chewsticks, cola nuts and medicines, as well as manufactured goods such as furniture. In some regions the use of plant medicines is thought to be increasing because of the rising cost of Western drugs and the negative experience of disillusion with modern drugs and the modern health system. Previous sections have shown that Ghana's economic crisis and subsequent structural adjustment policies have resulted in modern medical treatment and facilities becoming less accessible to many...
The 'sunrise' industries - those involved in renewable energy, energy efficiency and conservation, in particular - were always more than happy for governments to send strong signals to the market that the future was bright in their sector. But frankly they were always too small to make it to centre stage. What became interesting was the way major companies were now acknowledging and acting upon the issue. In May 1997, BP's chief executive officer (CEO) John Browne decided that there was mileage in being seen to be green, announcing the shift of strategy at a high-profile talk at Stanford University. With his backing, the company re-branded itself 'Beyond Petroleum', an ambitious claim for a company whose 2005 accounts indicate that the company invested just 800 million a year into its 'Alternative Energy' division, representing just 5.7 per cent of its 2005 total capital investment, while 72 per cent of BP's new capital investment was spent looking for yet more oil and gas.10 Browne's...
The organisation FOR Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) was tasked by its founding convention (December 14, 1960) with assisting member countries with sustaining economic expansion, increasing employment, raising their standards of living, and maintaining financial stability while developing a sustainable global economy benefiting humankind. The OECD seeks to meet these goals by the collection, evaluation, and dissemination of pertinent data, by fostering cooperation between governments and economies, and by assisting governments in developing and evaluating policies that positively and negatively impact these goals. In 1961, the OCED absorbed the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) that starting in 1947 had administered American and Canadian aid for the post-World War II Marshall Plan reconstruction of Europe.
As mentioned in Section 2.3, world oil production is likely to peak in a decade or two, and thereafter fall steadily. The supply of natural gas is expected to peak a decade later, and thereafter to fall rapidly. At the same time the demand for oil and gas continues to increase, so it is inevitable that soon the demand will exceed the supply. The price of oil will rise sharply and this will have serious and extensive repercussions. The most immediate effect will be on all forms of transport, which already use about 65 of world oil. The cost of transport will increase and many people will no longer be able to afford a car. Road transport of food and manufactured goods will become more expensive, and this will be passed on to the consumer. Already there is strong pressure to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from cars and lorries and this can be met by transferring to hydrogen-driven vehicles. The hydrogen has to be produced, and this can best be done without further carbon dioxide...
So emissions trading emerged as the preferred option because of its ideological fit with neoliberal logic. But it was also more successful because of its fit with the interests of newly dominant financial actors. The USA first formally proposed emissions trading in the UN negotiations in December 1996, and initially there was much resistance from more or less everyone. The US rationale was initially to create flexibility for countries in implementing their commitments. The political resistance to emissions reductions in the USA was considerably stronger than in Europe, and the Clinton administration, while favourable itself to action, was heavily constrained by a Congress which was hostile. Economists in the USA also insisted that the costs of reductions to the US economy were very high, and Clinton was certainly a strong proponent of using market-mechanisms to bring compliance costs down. These factors combined to make the USA propose emissions trading as a means to pursue reductions...
This one has always worked better in theory than on Main Street. The many mistakes that led to the economic collapse of 2008, in Joseph Stiglitz's words, boil down to just one a belief that markets are self-adjusting and that the role of government should be minimal (2009). Downsizing government removes any countervailing power to that of corporations and leaves the public defenseless to face, as best it can, the many problems generated by unfettered capitalism, such as unfair distribution of wealth, unequal legal protection, exposure to pollution, inadequate and expensive health care, lack of emergency help, and unavailability of basic services. Libertarian ideas appeal most strongly to those who are wealthy enough to buy their own services and live in well-defended enclaves isolated from the larger society.
The emerging trade union consensus firmly rejects the 'jobs environment dichotomy'. As the United Steel Workers Association (USWA) states in Securing Our Children's World 'In the last five years, we can clearly see that the 3 million manufacturing jobs that vanished from the US economy had almost nothing to do with domestic environmental regulation, and everything to do with US corporate trade policy' (USWA, 2002, p29). As well, it rejects solutions based on the model of privatization and government cutbacks that prevailed during the last decade. An officer of Public Services International (PSI) made the point to the 2007 Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development
Considering strategy as an evolutionary process can also significantly affect the types of actions we consider and the criteria we use to judge those actions. For instance, a key question in the design of adaptive-decision strategies is the information to which decision-makers ought to pay attention. For example, the US Federal Reserve follows an adaptive-decision strategy as it periodically adjusts interest rates to regulate the growth of the US economy. Much attention is paid to the information and indicators the Fed governors use to make their decisions and, when the Fed chairman makes comments that additional information will be deemed important, the markets can react strongly. In fact, sometimes indicators alone can be a large step towards the solution. One of the most striking examples was the US EPA's policy of requiring companies to publish their toxic-release inventories. This communication of information itself reduced emissions, without any other regulation, because...
The OECD has forecast rising prices for agricultural commodity prices, particularly vegetable oils (OECD, 2008). While the world financial crisis of 2008 will slow demand for commodities in the near future, world economic growth will in time regain its former momentum. Given constraints on domestic supply, a likely scenario is that much of the developed world's needs for vegetable oils for biodiesel and human consumption and for ethanol to replace petroleum fossil fuels will be outsourced. Production is likely to come from existing low-cost countries in south-east Asia and Brazil. The OECD (2008) expects palm oil production to increase by 40 percent by 2017, for example, and Brazilian sugarcane production to increase by 75 percent over the same period. This growth will entail the clearing of tropical forests and savannah lands unless drastic measures are taken to modify the economic drivers.
Abstract Here I tackle three major issues, climate change, financial crisis and national security, to disclose the weak points of current remedies and propose sustainable solutions. Global warming and the unexpected 2008 financial crisis will undoubtedly impact all nations. Treating those two critical issues solely by painkiller solutions will fail because only adverse consequences are healed, not their causes. Therefore, all sources of issues must be treated at the same time by enhancing collaboration between politicians and scientists. Furthermore, the adverse consequences of globalisation of markets for energy, food and other goods have been overlooked, thus deeply weakening the security of society structures in the event of major breakdowns. Therefore, dependence among people, organisations and nations must be redesigned and adapted to take into account ecological, social and security impacts. Solving climate, financial and security issues can be done by using tools and principles...
The Russian authorities can be forgiven if the prospect of any sudden exodus by foreign investors makes them sweat profusely. For this is a country where memories of severe economic crisis are still bitter and recent, and where another similar downturn might push an unforgiving general public too far. The economy reached its nadir during the financial meltdown of 1998, when the government devalued the rouble and in doing so wiped out the life savings of millions of ordinary Russians. But the spectre of not just another economic crisis but a further devaluation would haunt everyone if investors flee the country. At the end of 2008, the rouble dived in value partly because foreign investors were dumping their Russian holdings. The authorities in Moscow were spending the country's foreign reserves to buy up roubles and support the currency's value, but were fast running out of spare money.20 If this happens, then they would have no option but to let the rouble fall in value, bringing...
But rather than causing other countries to resent the gains made by these countries, this competitive advantage works to stimulate other countries to compete in the new carbon economy, seeking to emulate China' s success. Other developing countries realise the need to create an effective infrastructure to attract CDM investment in order to compete with China, thus enhancing investment in their countries and adopting a suite of policy measures to attract and keep investors in low-carbon sectors of the economy. The pressure in the USA, from the Climate Action Partnership, the Pew Center on Climate Change, and others, forces the US federal government, as well as many state-level governments, to regulate CO2 and impose reductions targets across the US economy. This helps to further develop existing policies such as Renewable Energy Certificates as support for the rapid expansion of wind and solar energy to compete with European companies. Canada realises it still has a slim competitive...
We raise a serious note of caution about this too. Putting everything under the banner of 'climate change' is not a solution to the problems we are facing. It is critical that we remember that climate change will definitely make things worse but things are already going in the wrong direction. We need to address other priority environmental and development issues, along with addressing climate change. It is unlikely that more than a handful of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) will be fulfilled, and even those that were on track are now under threat with the present economic crisis. MDG 7 on environmental sustainability didn't adequately address the challenges we face in the area of environmental threats.
The multilateral system also needs to be strengthened. Increasingly, challenges have global dimensions (e.g. the food crisis, climate change, the financial crisis, the energy crisis) and require increasing international cooperation. Multilateral systems also need to be supported to increase collaboration among different actors, which are specialized in specific areas. Water resources issues are cross-cutting and need to be addressed from that perspective. United Nations Water represents an innovative and flexible mechanism to promote such collaboration within the UN system and with key partners. Is the lack of financial resources a real problem Maybe this question is a bit provocative in this day and time with a global financial crisis crippling economic development. Although comparisons between different sectors can be unfair to make, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI, 2007) calculates that world military expenditures in 2006 reached US 1204 billion and...
Despite increased political attention, pressure on the world's water resources will increase and must be managed. The driving forces are population growth, more food and better diets, changing consumer preferences and disposable income, trade policies and socio-economic development, in general. The latter, although a driver, also influences society's ability to handle water scarcity and is perhaps the most critical factor for water resources management. Thus, the recent financial crisis will have an impact upon water resources management, although it is difficult to predict exactly how.
In today's world of accelerating globalization there are many challenges that nations simply cannot address working on their own fighting terrorism, pandemics such as bird flu, poverty in Africa, nuclear proliferation, financial and economic crisis, energy security and climate change. These are all areas
Short-term financial indicators by themselves are inadequate to provide insight into the opportunities for improving firm operations, and a focus on these indicators to the exclusion of other performance measures is one possible reason that the potential economic benefits of some environmentally related process changes went unrecognized for years and in some cases decades. Yet the meaningful utilization of other performance measures requires an understanding by top management of the importance of operational improvement to the long-term financial stability and competitiveness of the firm.
The successful passage of an emissions cap and trade bill through Congress will be no easy task and will involve the intersection of many disciplines and interest groups and much political haggling. The pace of development and implementation of legislation will probably be affected by the diversion of the attention of representatives and the administration on the immediate task of avoiding a deepening of the financial crisis.
Reduction in future emissions in the US is made difficult by the fact that the country is characterized by strong population and economic growth and a reliance on carbon-based power generation. While the global financial crisis of 2008 slowed the economy, growth is expected to resume at something like previous levels as the world economy recovers. A range of sources suggest a rise in emissions from 7.2 Gt of CO2e in 2005 to 9.7 Gt in 2020, that is an increase of 35 percent.
Between 1948 and 1984, the Ocean Weather Station (OWS) network operated in the North Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The principal goal of this network was to get oceanic meteorological and aero-logical data for improvement of the weather forecast in North America, Europe, the North Atlantic Ocean, and the Pacific Ocean. At the same time, OWS performed deep-ocean hydrographic casts and soundings. This network provided long-term and compatible deep-ocean time series of temperature and salinity, and aerological data on wind, pressure, temperature, and humidity within air columns up to about 19 mi. (30 km.). The OWS network initially consisted of 13 stations in the North Atlantic and nine stations in the Pacific. After 1973 (when a world economic crisis occurred), funding was cut off, and in 1984 (soon after beginning of the satellite era in meteorology), OWS observations ceased (with the exception of one Norwegian station in the North Atlantic that is still in operation).
With these difficulties in mind, we begin by looking at estimates of past energy intensities in the US. The World Energy Council reports the long-term rate of energy intensity improvement in the US, averaged over the past 200 years, was about 1 per year (WEC IIASA, 1995). However, analysis on decadal time scales (Dowlatabadi and Oravetz, 1997) has shown that energy intensity responds to changes in energy prices beyond the price elasticity of demand. Thus for the 20 years from 1954 to 1974, energy intensity rose by close to 2 per annum. This can be attributed to technological drift as energy efficiency was not incorporated into the design of goods and services. Following the 1970s oil shocks, the energy intensity of the US economy declined in response to price signals from 1979-1986, energy intensity fell an average of 3.1 per year. However, as energy prices tumbled post 1986, the decline in energy intensity steadily slowed as the US failed to carry on the energy efficiency experiment...
The financial crisis of autumn 2008 provoked a new sharp drop in price. Due to these very rapid oscillations, the price of oil tends to become unpredictable in the short term. In the longer term, it appears that the era of cheap and abundant oil is finished and that a general trend towards increasing prices should be observed in the future.
Changes in the historical vulnerability of the US economy to weather can be seen by looking at variability of output in agriculture, which is the most weather-sensitive sector of the economy. The variability is measured as the deviations from trend of real gross output originating in agriculture in 1996 prices over the 1929-2000 period (Figure 5.2)1 and is caused by a wide variety of factors including weather, floods, exchange-rate changes, demand volatility, as well as bad harvests abroad. The year-to-year variability of agricultural output has risen over time along with the growth in
Warr. 2002. Exergy, power and work in the US economy, 1900-1998. 2002 52 EPS CMER. Fontainebleau, France INSEAD, Centre for the Management of Environmental Resources. Costanza, R., R. d'Arge, R. de Groot, S. Farber, M. Grasso, B. Hannon, K. Limburg, S. Naeem, R. V. O'Neill, J. Paruelo, R. G. Raskin, P. Sutton, and M. van der Belt. 1997. The value of the world's ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature 387 253-260.
Wherever there is uncertainty in the body of scientific evidence, the deniers insert a crowbar into the chink and try to open up a crack that will bring the edifice down. They proselytise about the disastrous consequences if the world fails to listen to them, with predictions of economic collapse if governments are foolish enough to try to cut greenhouse gas emissions. As evidence of global warming accumulates, the deniers cling ever more firmly to their contrarian views. They bombard newspapers with angry letters and express outrage in blogs and online forums, where they vilify those who do not share their beliefs. They meet together at their own conferences where they engage in mutual reinforcement, convinced that they possess a special knowledge that the rest of the world needs urgently to hear. The truth has been revealed to them because they are more rational than others and are therefore able to see through the distortions of the mainstream climate scientists.
Ironically Penny took no whales in 1840. The voyage, an exploratory success, was a financial disaster. In 1844, Penny returned to Cumberland Sound, where Eenoolooapik, now father to a son, joined him aboard ship and assisted in the whale fishery Penny took seven whales. The following year he took 19 whales and in 1846 four, each year working with Eenoolooapik's assistance. Eenoolooapik's trip to Scotland had afforded him considerable status among his fellow Inuit, and he traded with his people and amassed quantities of whalebone to trade with the whalers. In 1847, Penny did not reach Cumberland Sound until September, when he learned of Eenoolooapik's death.
Yet, only the Annex I Parties were subject to a specific commitment to adopt policies and measures with the aim of returning their emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases to 1990 levels by 2000. This was not a legally-binding emissions target the commitment of Annex I Parties was simply to aim to return their emissions to 1990 levels by 2000, not necessarily to achieve that goal. In addition, the approach of the UNFCCC, stressing as it does the common, but differentiated, responsibility among the signatories, takes into account national diversity in addressing climate change. The UNFCCC calls for special consideration for least-developed countries (LDC) and economies in transition (EIT) and has granted them a certain degree of flexibility in implementing its targets. Several EITs have taken advantage of this flexibility by choosing a baseline earlier than 1990, prior to the economic collapse that led to dramatic cuts in their emissions.
This is why oil-producing states across the world reaped such large profits from the dramatic rise in the price of crude that lasted from the end of 2003, when a barrel fetched around 25, until the late summer of 2008, when the price peaked at 147. Russia, for example, had faced a serious economic crisis in the late 1990s when its 200 billion economy nearly defaulted, but by the spring of 2008 its gross domestic product reached 1.4 trillion (35 trillion roubles), driven almost entirely by the sale of oil and natural gas. In the Middle East, many governments were also similarly awash with petrodollars. These sums of money remain vital to every aspect of the economies of almost every chief oil exporter, whether it is to pay their civil servants, to finance a state-induced spending boom or to subsidize the price of gasoline at home, thereby offsetting any price increases in the wider global market.
Mexico made the crisis a global one when it threatened to default on its debt in 1982, prompting emergency action to reschedule its debt and shore up the world's banking system. Many other Southern countries during this period ended up spending the majority of their export earnings on merely servicing the interest on their debt. To add insult to injury, they had to go to the World Bank and the IMF to get emergency loans to stabilise their economies. Those institutions used this new-found power to force neoliberal 'structural adjustment' -read, austerity - measures on them. This frequently made their crises worse, and almost always turned the economic crisis into a social one. For example, forcing the removal of subsidies on basic foodstuffs provoked 'food riots' against the IMF in a number of places.16
The next battle ground was economics how much would it cost to tackle this issue The fossil fuel lobby set to work producing economic studies suggesting that economies would be driven into recession if they adopted measures proposed by leading scientists. A popular figure in the early 1990s was that reducing CO2 emissions by 20 - the amount proposed by a high-profile conference in Toronto in 1988 and repeated by many groups as a first step - would cost the US economy 3.6 trillion. This figure was used in the 1990 Economic Report of the President, and came from analyses by US economists Alan Manne and Richard Richels. In the spin of the GCC and right-wing think tanks, however, what got lost was that this was the high end of a wide range of possible costs. These ranged from 800 billion to 3.6 trillion -other economists like William Cline, Jae Edmonds, or those at the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) gave lower figures still. Furthermore, the figure was for the...
Our world is facing simultaneously a multitude of crises a worldwide financial and economic crisis of historic proportions, a severe food crisis in many parts of Africa, wars and insurrections, corrupt and incompetent governments, not to speak of the multitudinous natural catastrophes of the past few years tsunamis, hurricanes, floods, droughts, and earthquakes.
The most important near-term actions that an organization or individual can take to reduce their impact on the climate are lowering their consumption of energy and increasing the efficiency of their energy use, ideally trying to derive none of their energy from fossil-fuel carbon (i.e. becoming 'carbon neutral'). Because so much of the US economy uses fossil-fuel carbon for energy, it is, however, nearly impossible to independently reduce carbon consumption to zero. One means of bridging the gap between carbon savings achieved through reduced consumption and increased energy efficiency, is through the use of 'greenhouse gas offsets' that are derived from greenhouse gas reduction projects. Such greenhouse gas offsets can provide a practical, cost-effective means of reducing greenhouse gas levels safely and sustainably.
Figure 6.2 gives a more detailed image of the previous years. In 2005 oil prices were on a level of 50-60 per barrel and in 2007 experts debated whether the 100 barrier would ever be reached (Fig. 6.2). This graph does not show the devastating course after 2007. The steep increase continued and in May 2008 the price of crude oil peaked at 135. Due to the financial crisis that followed after the summer of that year prices dropped again, but experts expect a renewed climb to new heights within a year.
The recent report by Stern (2006) has facilitated the debate. Adaptation costs to unabated climate change are so high that they would cause a major economic crisis within the 21st century and mitigation costs are much less. Massive mitigation efforts are therefore needed. Although the Stern report did not report new research results but assessed existing ones carefully with a focus on economical consequences, its impact was very high, especially since a high rank economist said it. It is now highly probable that mitigation measures bring a strong economic dividend and - in view of the North-South conflict -less conflict potential.
AN AMERICAN sTATE in the central Pacific, Hawaii consists of eight large islands and hundreds of islets stretching more than 1,500 mi. (2,414 km.). Located about 2,500 mi. (4,023 km.) from the mainland of the United States, this 50th state is unique in composition. Less than 6,500 sq. mi. (16,835 sq. km.) of total land area is divided 48 percent for conservation and 47 percent for agriculture. The division reflects the two largest industries of the state, tourism and food processing, with tourism contributing substantially more to the state's economy. In 2006, more than 7.5 million visitors spent 12.4 billion in Hawaii. Tourism generates more than 25 percent of the state's tax revenues. The economic crisis that Hawaii faced after 9 11, a crisis categorized as the most severe in Hawaii's history, made clear how dependent the state is on tourism, and tourism is dependent upon the island paradise that Hawaii's image promises. Hawaii has begun to take steps to preserve that image.
We all noticed in recent years that energy prices, and by this energy costs, have risen dramatically. As an example in Figure 12 we see the petroleum price development over the last 20 years. While the petroleum price was relatively stable during the 1990s at a level around 20 per barrel we observe a strong increase in the last 10 years. In 2008 the petroleum price rocketed, achieving its peak at 140 per barrel. Although it came down during the economic crisis in 2009 the prices of petroleum and other energies sources will probably continue to rise in the long term.
The recent increase in the price of natural gas, which remains strongly correlated to the price of oil, and also the economic crisis which occurred in the second half of2008 have made the future rate of growth more uncertain. Most recent estimations were based upon an average growth rate of around 2 for the overall gas demand during the next two decades 85 .
At the end of the book, we draw out various possible scenarios for what sorts of climate capitalism we might end up having to live (or die) with. We invite you, the reader, to decide which one you feel is most likely and which one you would like to see. None are inevitable. All result from the complex interplay of a wide array of actors, institutions and decision-making processes. And the financial crisis of the last couple of years gives us unusual room for manoeuvre in shaping these responses. Getting involved as consumers, activists, entrepreneurs and concerned citizens will allow us all to shape the sort of future we want in a carbon-constrained world.
The mechanical philosophy set out to create a division between humans and the non-human world, a fissure between people and Nature that allowed a growing preoccupation with the personal self. The process reached its peak with the rise of modern consumerism, and especially the phase from the early 1990s to the financial crisis of 2008. Heavy emphasis on the creation of personal identities through consumption activity reinforced the turn to the outer self. In the face of these individualising pressures many people still retain a sense of connectedness with the environment, as if three centuries of mechanical thinking, self-determination and self-creation could only cover over but not sever some primal bond with the natural world. In recent years, an extensive volume of research has codified the extent to which the modern self remains bound to the natural world.53
Amidst the largest and deepest economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Their first round of decisions will have been made by the time you read this book. But whatever policy emerges in the form of cap and trade legislation, taxation, and new regulations on carbon, they are only the first steps, and they will quickly prove to be inadequate to deal with a deteriorating biophysical situation. Emerging climate realities will drive this or the next president, probably sooner rather than later, to more comprehensive measures as a matter of national and global survival. The problem for President Obama presently is that we are running two deficits with very different time scales, dynamics, and politics. The first, which gets most of our attention, is short-term and has to do with money, credit, and how we create
Chukotka's economy in the late Soviet period was based on mineral extraction, fishing and traditional hunting, and reindeer herding, but secession from Magadan Oblast' and the effects of Russia's economic collapse sent the okrug into deep decline. By 2000, Chukotka's living standards were the second-most depressed in Russia after Chechnya. At the time of governor Abramovich's 2001 inauguration, government debt exceeded the annual budget by four times and okrug assets had dropped in value by over 90 in a decade. Reindeer herds had dropped from half a million head in 1990 to below 100,000. In the 1990s, as its productive enterprises closed, Chukotka's economy became almost entirely reliant on federal subsidies.
Financial End Game
How to profit from the global crisis and make big bucks big time! The current global financial crisis has its roots embedded in the collapse of the subprime markets in the United States. As at October 2007 there was an estimated loss on the subprime market of approximately 250 billion. If you want to come out on top, you have come to the right place.