With food supplies tightening, countries are competing for the land and water resources needed to feed their people. With food scarcity driven by falling water tables, eroding soils, and rising temperatures, control of arable land and water resources is moving to center stage in the global struggle for food security. “In this era of tightening world food supplies, the ability to grow food is fast becoming a new form of geopolitical leverage. Food is the new oil,” Lester R. Brown writes. What will the geopolitics of food look like in a new era dominated by scarcity and food nationalism? Brown outlines the political implications of land acquisitions by grain-importing countries in Africa and elsewhere as well as the world’s shrinking buffers against poor harvests. With wisdom accumulated over decades of tracking agricultural issues, Brown exposes the increasingly volatile food situation the world is facing.
From the authors of the bestselling The Big Shift, a provocative argument that the global population will soon begin to decline, dramatically reshaping the social, political, and economic landscape. For half a century, statisticians, pundits, and politicians have warned that a burgeoning planetary population will soon overwhelm the earth's resources. But a growing number of experts are sounding a different kind of alarm. Rather than growing exponentially, they argue, the global population is headed for a steep decline. Throughout history, depopulation was the product of catastrophe: ice ages, plagues, the collapse of civilizations. This time, however, we're thinning ourselves deliberately, by choosing to have fewer babies than we need to replace ourselves. In much of the developed and developing world, that decline is already underway, as urbanization, women's empowerment, and waning religiosity lead to smaller and smaller families. In Empty Planet, Ibbitson and Bricker travel from South Florida to Sao Paulo, Seoul to Nairobi, Brussels to Delhi to Beijing, drawing on a wealth of research and firsthand reporting to illustrate the dramatic consequences of this population decline--and to show us why the rest of the developing world will soon join in. They find that a smaller global population will bring with it a number of benefits: fewer workers will command higher wages; good jobs will prompt innovation; the environment will improve; the risk of famine will wane; and falling birthrates in the developing world will bring greater affluence and autonomy for women. But enormous disruption lies ahead, too. We can already see the effects in Europe and parts of Asia, as aging populations and worker shortages weaken the economy and impose crippling demands on healthcare and social security. The United States is well-positioned to successfully navigate these coming demographic shifts--that is, unless growing isolationism and anti-immigrant backlash lead us to close ourselves off just as openness becomes more critical to our survival than ever before. Rigorously researched and deeply compelling, Empty Planet offers a vision of a future that we can no longer prevent--but one that we can shape, if we choose.
For almost its entire history, Canada has been run by the political, media and business elites of Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. But in the past few years, these groups have lost their power—and most of them still do not realize it’s gone. The Laurentian Consensus, the term John Ibbitson has coined for the dusty liberal elite, has been replaced by a new, powerful coalition based in the West and supported by immigrant voters in Ontario. How did this happen? Most people are unaware that the keystone economic and political drivers of this country are now Western Canada and immigrants from China, India and other Asian countries. Politicians and businesspeople have underestimated how conservative these newcomers are making our country. Canada, with its ever-evolving economy and fluid demographic base, has become divorced from the traditions of its past and is moving in an entirely new direction. In The Big Shift, Darrell Bricker and John Ibbitson argue that one of the world’s most consensual countries is becoming polarized, exhibiting stark differences between East and West, cities and suburbs, Canadianborn citizens and immigrants. The winners—in both politics and business— will be those who can capitalize on the tremendous changes that the Big Shift will bring.
A dazzling new history of the irrepressible demographic changes and mass migrations that have made and unmade nations, continents, and empires The rise and fall of the British Empire; the emergence of America as a superpower; the ebb and flow of global challenges from Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, and Soviet Russia. These are the headlines of history, but they cannot be properly grasped without understanding the role that population has played. The Human Tide shows how periods of rapid population transition--a phenomenon that first emerged in the British Isles but gradually spread across the globe--shaped the course of world history. Demography--the study of population--is the key to unlocking an understanding of the world we live in and how we got here. Demographic changes explain why the Arab Spring came and went, how China rose so meteorically, and why Britain voted for Brexit and America for Donald Trump. Sweeping from Europe to the Americas, China, East Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa, The Human Tide is a panoramic view of the sheer power of numbers.
LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILEY'S WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 'A quietly profound, humane tour de force' Guardian The beloved debut novel that will restore your faith in humanity #SmallAngryPlanet When Rosemary Harper joins the crew of the Wayfarer, she isn't expecting much. The ship, which has seen better days, offers her everything she could possibly want: a small, quiet spot to call home for a while, adventure in far-off corners of the galaxy, and distance from her troubled past. But Rosemary gets more than she bargained for with the Wayfarer. The crew is a mishmash of species and personalities, from Sissix, the friendly reptillian pilot, to Kizzy and Jenks, the constantly sparring engineers who keep the ship running. Life on board is chaotic, but more or less peaceful - exactly what Rosemary wants. Until the crew are offered the job of a lifetime: the chance to build a hyperspace tunnel to a distant planet. They'll earn enough money to live comfortably for years... if they survive the long trip through war-torn interstellar space without endangering any of the fragile alliances that keep the galaxy peaceful. But Rosemary isn't the only person on board with secrets to hide, and the crew will soon discover that space may be vast, but spaceships are very small indeed. PRAISE FOR THE WAYFARERS 'Never less than deeply involving' DAILY MAIL 'Explores the quieter side of sci-fi while still wowing us with daring leaps of imagination' iBOOKS 'So much fun to read' HEAT 'Chambers is simply an exceptional talent, quietly and beautifully redefining the space opera' TOR.COM 'The most fun that I've had with a novel in a long, long time' iO9
Before May 2011 the top demographics experts of the United Nations had suggested that world population would peak at 9.1 billion in 2100, and then fall to 8.5 billion people by 2150. In contrast, the 2011 revision suggested that 9.1 billion would be achieved much earlier, maybe by 2050 or before, and by 2100 there would be 10.1 billion of us. What's more, they implied that global human population might still be slightly rising in our total numbers a century from now. So what shall we do? Are there too many people on the planet? Is this the end of life as we know it? Distinguished geographer Professor Danny Dorling thinks we should not worry so much and that, whatever impending doom may be around the corner, we will deal with it when it comes. In a series of fascinating chapters he charts the rise of the human race from its origins to its end-point of population 10 billion. Thus he shows that while it took until about 1988 to reach 5 billion we reached 6 billion by 2000, 7 billion eleven years later and will reach 8 billion by 2025. By recording how we got here, Dorling is able to show us the key issues that we face in the coming decades: how we will deal with scarcity of resources; how our cities will grow and become more female; why the change that we should really prepare for is the population decline that will occur after 10 billion. Population 10 Billion is a major work by one of the world's leading geographers and will change the way you think about the future. Packed full of counter-intuitive ideas and observations, this book is a tool kit to prepare for the future and to help us ask the right questions
This book is a compilation of articles that were published from 2010-2018 under CASSE's former blog, the Daly News. Topics covered included limits to growth, the conflict between economic growth and environmental protection, ecological economics, steady state economics, sustainable economic welfare, population growth, economic policy, and international diplomacy. It should be viewed as a guide for better understanding CASSE's mission of advancing the steady state economy as the sustainable alternative to growth.
The year 2008 marks the beginning of the baby boomer retirementavalanche just as the different demographics in advanced and mostdeveloping countries are becoming more pronounced. People areworrying again that developments in global population trends, foodsupply, natural resource availability and climate change raise thequestion as to whether Malthus was right after all. The Age of Aging explores a unique phenomenon for mankind and,therefore, one that takes us into uncharted territory. Low birthrates and rising life expectancy are leading to rapid aging and astagnation or fall in the number of people of working age inWestern societies. Japan is in pole position but will be joinedsoon by other Western countries, and some emerging marketsincluding China. The book examines the economic effects of aging,the main proposals for addressing the implications, and how agingsocieties will affect family and social structures, and the type ofenvironment in which the baby-boomers' children will grow up. The contrast between the expected old age bulge in Western nationsand the youth bulge in developing countries has importantimplications for globalization, and for immigration in Westerncountries - two topics already characterized by rising discontentor opposition. But we have to find ways of making bothglobalization and immigration work for all, for fear that failuremay lead us down much darker paths. Aging also brings newchallenges for the world to address in two sensitive areas, thepoliticization of religion and the management of internationalsecurity. Governments and global institutions will have to takegreater responsibilities to ensure that public policy responses areappropriate and measured. The challenges arising within aging societies, and the demographiccontrasts between Western and developing countries make for afractious world - one that is line with the much-debated 'declineof the West'. The book doesn't flinch from recognizing the ways inwhich this could become more visible, but also asserts that we canaddress demographic change effectively if governments andstrengthened international institutions are permitted a larger rolein managing change.
From the #1 bestselling author of Why Your World Is About to Get A Whole Lot Smaller, a provocative, far-reaching account of how the middle class got stuck with the bill for globalization, and how the blowback--from Brexit to Trump to populist Europe--will change the developed world. Real wages in North America have not risen since the 1970s. Union membership has collapsed. Full-time employment is beginning to look like a quaint idea from the distant past. If it seems that the middle class is in retreat around the developed world, it is. Former CIBC World Markets Chief Economist Jeff Rubin argues that all this was foreseeable back when Canada, the United States and Mexico first started talking free trade. Labour argued then that manufacturing jobs would move to Mexico. Free-trade advocates disagreed. Today, Canadian and American factories sit idle. More steel is used to make bottlecaps than cars. Meanwhile, Mexico has become one of the world's biggest automotive exporters. And it's not just NAFTA. Cheap oil, low interest rates, global deregulation and tax policies that benefit the rich all have the same effect: the erosion of the middle class. Growing global inequality is a problem of our own making, Rubin argues. And solving it won't be easy if we draw on the same ideas about capital and labour, right and left, that led us to this cliff. Articulating a vision that dovetails with the ideas of both Naomi Klein and Donald Trump, The Expendables is an exhilaratingly fresh perspective that is at once humane and irascible, fearless and rigorous, and most importantly, timely. GDP is growing, the stock market is up and unemployment is down, but the surprise of the book is that even the good news is good for only one percent of us.
A millennium into the future, two advancements have altered the course of human history: the colonization of the Galaxy and the creation of the positronic brain. On the beautiful Outer World planet of Solaria, a handful of human colonists lead a hermit-like existence, their every need attended to by their faithful robot servants. To this strange and provocative planet comes Detective Elijah Baley, sent from the streets of New York with his positronic partner, the robot R. Daneel Olivaw, to solve an incredible murder that has rocked Solaria to its foundations. The victim had been so reclusive that he appeared to his associates only through holographic projection. Yet someone had gotten close enough to bludgeon him to death while robots looked on. Now Baley and Olivaw are faced with two clear impossibilities: Either the Solarian was killed by one of his robots--unthinkable under the laws of Robotics--or he was killed by the woman who loved him so much that she never came into his presence!