The case for nuclear

In the search for low-carbon energy supply options, nuclear is under reconsideration as part of a diversified mix. There are those who advocate that nuclear is, at present, the only safe large-scale energy source available for base load power. Soothing corporate advocacy campaigns claim that nuclear is clean, affordable and reliable. Industry advocates have been joined by some environmentalists, including Stewart Brand, author of The Whole Earth Catalogue, Gaia guru James Lovelock, and Patrick...

References

Adam, D. (2007) 'Move to identify climate change security hot spots', The Guardian, 11 September 2007 Afzal, M. (2006) A Violation of His or Her Human Security - New Grounds for the Recognition of Refugee Status A Proposal for Reform, UNHCR Research Paper No 140, December 2006, UNHCR, Geneva Alexander, D. (2007) 'The role of international development in a changing world The perspective from Britain', Speech at the Council on Foreign Relations, Washington, DC, 12 July 2007 Barnett, J. (2001)...

Strategic global alliances and cooperation to address climate change

Trade unions attribute many issues concerning energy, climate change and human security to deepening globalization, a condition that calls for a collective global response. National efforts towards sustainable development can only succeed if, for instance, trade in harmful products is restricted or if Multilateral Environmental Agreements prevent overexploitation of natural resources for export. In his report, Stern pointed to examples of successful collective action in the areas of...

List of Acronyms Abbreviations and Other Special Terms

Administrative Committee on Coordination (UN Secretary General's Cabinet) Asian Development Bank Africa, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean and South China Sea African Ministers Conference on Environment Arab Maghreb Union the 40 countries plus the European Economic Community listed in Annex I of the UNFCCC that agreed to try to limit their GHG emissions (developed countries) the countries listed in Annex II to the UNFCCC that have a special obligation to provide financial resources and facilitate...

When the wells run dry

The world has finally woken up to the reality of climate change. Harsh weather events have shown that not even the most developed countries of this world can fully withstand these freak weather events. We are increasingly seeing floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, drought and wildfires of huge proportions. With these events, citizens around the world are experiencing increased incidence of disease, poverty, losses and untold hardships. Due to the fact that the climate crisis also manifests in...

Trade union responses to climate change and human insecurity

The United Nations Security Council debate occurred at a time when many of the world's trade unions recognized that climate change and energy security must form part of their historical mission to ensure that development yields personal and community benefits to the working class. In response to calls for action issued by the ITUC, TUAC and several Global Union federations, a Trade Union Working Group on Climate Change has been formed, which now enjoys official status at negotiations under the...

United Nations Environment Programme UNEP

UNEP's mission is to provide leadership and encourage partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations. (UNEP Mission Statement, asp DocumentID 43) UNEP's mandate was expanded and rearticulated by the 1997 Nairobi Declaration 'to be the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, that promotes the coherent implementation of the...

Notes

1 This chapter is based on work undertaken for the UNFCCC Expert Group on Technology Transfer (EGTT) supporting the post-2012 negotiations and the Bali (COP 13) mandate, and reflects contributions from many other researchers and organizations with an interest in a successful post-2012 negotiation under the UNFCCC in terms of financing the convention and the technology development, deployment, diffusion and transfer challenges posed by climate change. The views expressed are those of the author...

Biodiversity and climate

As scientists more thoroughly understand the climate cycle, ensuring resilience within ecosystems becomes vitally important. Adapting to climate change would pressure even healthy ecosystems (United Nations Foundation and Sigma XI, 2007). The United Nations Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA, 2005) catalogues ecosystems under pressure across the world - and very few are deemed healthy. Watersheds and the forests that protect them are already showing some of the adverse effects of climate...

Introduction

Any analysis of the current state of geopolitics and economic development reveals a pervasive sense of insecurity about future energy supply and global climate disruption. How to meet our ever increasing energy needs and wants in a responsible and environmentally sustainable way is one of the most vexing social and technological conundrums facing the world today. The most recent World Energy Outlook report of the International Energy Agency (IEA) describes the rise in energy demand as...

Coastal connections and resource conflicts

The global population is moving to coastal zones, according to United Nations reports. Nearly half of the world's population lives within 200km of coastline, and that number is likely to double by 2025 (Creel Population Reference Bureau, 2003). Although some of these are large inland lakes, such as the Great Lakes, much of the concentration is near the ocean. Sea-level rise will impact directly upon these areas as well as interior floodplains. Highly developed countries, such as the UK and The...

Conclusions and recommendations

Existing water resources in the Middle East are inadequate to meet each country's current internal agricultural, domestic and other usage, let alone to meet the needs of new transboundary water agreements or the minimum water needs of nature. The political, economic and physical security risks that could result from the potential water shortages, due to projected climate changes, are of such a magnitude that preventive actions must be taken now to protect the security of the region. Countries...

Tipping points

'Warming could lead to some impacts that are abrupt or irreversible, depending upon the rate and magnitude of the climate change' (IPCC, 2007a). Unfortunately, history shows that the climate system does not always respond in a gradual, linear manner to increased concentrations of heat-trapping greenhouse gases. Rather, the system can respond slowly, resisting change and obscuring the underlying march towards a critical threshold. Once the threshold is crossed, the system will respond relatively...

United Nations Development Programme UNDP

Climate change is the defining human development issue of our generation. As the United Nations' global development network, UNDP's goal is to align human development and climate change management efforts by promoting mitigation and adaptation activities that do not slow down, but rather accelerate socioeconomic progress. (Vandeweerd, 2008) The UNDP as the main development agency of the United Nations has offices in 135 countries and acts as the coordinator for the growing UN One Country...

List of Contributors

Linda Adams is secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal EPA). Formerly director of the California Department of Water Resources, she was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in May 2006, making her the first woman to serve as head of the agency. As Cal EPA's secretary, Adams oversees the environmental activities of the Air Resources Board, California Integrated Waste Management Board, State Water Resources Control Board, Office of Environmental Health Hazard...

Handling or not Handling the Food Crisis

In 2008 we had before us a world food crisis that had tragic social and political consequences in different continents, with riots and deaths that endangered world peace and security. Those sad events are, however, but the chronicle of disaster foretold. In 1996, at the Food Summit, 112 heads of state and government and the representatives of 186 members of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) solemnly pledged to reduce by half the number of hungry in the world by the year...

Beaten by all sides

Fence-line communities suffer great impacts from energy production activities. This is very stark in communities where oil is extracted in the Niger Delta. Natural gas associated with crude oil extraction is burned in inefficient and highly injurious infernos on a continuous basis. This routine flaring has been declared an illegal activity by a high court in Nigeria and the Nigerian Senate is making efforts to formally outlaw it, probably because both the oil corporations and the government...

Objections and concerns

However, not all delegations were pleased. Among the dissenting voices was Ambassador Farukh Amil of Pakistan, who was speaking for the entire Group of 77 (G77) developing countries. Ambassador Amil argued that the Security Council was not the right venue for discussions on energy and climate change. These matters, he said, were better addressed under the UN General Assembly (UNGA), its Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and subsidiary bodies, including the Commission on Sustainable...

Subnational action Then and now

Since signing the Montreal Declaration, sub-national governments throughout the world have met and exceeded the commitments outlined in the document. States and regions have expanded partnerships in China and India. They have also become test beds for new low-carbon technologies. In California, we have seen both the urgency of dealing with climate change and the opportunities that low-carbon policies represent at the sub-national level. Governor Schwarzenegger set aggressive greenhouse gas...

Potential impact of ea level rise Nile Delta

Population 3 BOO 000 Cropland (Km2) 1 800 Population 6 100 000 Cropland (Km2) 4 500 Population 6 100 000 Cropland (Km2) 4 500 Source adapted from National Environmental Trust (2005) Simonett (2005) Figure 13.1 Potential impacts of 0.5m and 1m sea-level rise in the Nile Delta levels of demand. The creation of water and food shortages, and large numbers of displaced people and even greater unemployment due to loss of agricultural lands, industries and infrastructure from climate-induced...

Biodiesel and bioethanol

Ambitious biofuels targets have been agreed in major automobile markets. In the US, a goal of 35 billion gallons of biofuels, replacing approximately one fifth of oil-based transport fuels, is proposed by 2017. Current production is just 4.2 billion gallons. The European Union (EU) Biofuels Directive demands that 5.75 per cent of European fuel comes from biomass by 2010, increasing to 10 per cent by 2020. Even more ambitious targets are being discussed (Doornbosch and Steenblik, 2007)....

Global water use trends Ever increasing

Water is fundamental for all kinds of development. Human development and well-being, industrial and economic development, energy production and agriculture all rely on the availability of (often abundant) water resources. However, there are distinct differences between sectors of society, their relationship to water and the future implications that changes in availability may have. The 20th century witnessed a sixfold increase in human water use, while the population increased 'only' threefold...

Reference By Mata 1992 On Agricultural Development

Ban Ki Moon (2008) World Economic Forum www.un.org apps news story.aspPNews ID 25398& Cr davos& Cr1 Baresel, C. and G. Destouni (2005) 'Novel quantification of coupled natural and cross sectoral water and nutrient pollutant flows for environmental management', Environmental Science and Technology, vol 39, pp6182-6190 CSD (Commission on Sustainable Development) (1994) Report of the Commission on Sustainable Development on Its Second Session, 16-27 May 1994, E CN.17 1994 20, New York, NY...

Climate Change and Biodiversity Loss The Great New Threats to Peace Security and Development

Since the Industrial Revolution, humanity has entered an era of global changes that is transforming the face of the Earth. The effects of that revolution will ripple down for centuries. Rising living standards are taking their toll on the natural resource base that underpins them. As a result, humanity's footprint on the environment has never been as significant as it is now. The pressures on the planet's natural functions caused by human activity have reached such levels that ecosystems'...

Policy options for financing climate change technologies

Financing options for climate change technologies vary according to specific technology and country circumstances. Different financial vehicles target technologies in each stage of technological maturity. Typically, a complex mix of types of finance and financial instruments must be used simultaneously. It is important to tailor financing policy options to closely match the types of finance and financing instruments needed. There are many different types of financing that can be applied to a...