Doing research for my current book project, I came across an amazing series by the photographer Kadir Van Lohuizen on Sea Level Rise.
At the right is one of his images, this one taken in Bangladesh, where the subsiding delta is combining with typhoons and rising sea levels to imperil millions of farmers and other poor people.
Van Lohuizen’s project focuses on the impact of sea level rise in a number of countries around the world, from threatened island nations like Kiribati to abandoned corners of wealthy nations like East Yorkshire in Great Britain.
Kadir Van Lohuizen’s Rising Sea Level project can be viewed online.
The political and economic establishment in the United States has finally woken up to the threats posed by climate change.
In a new report, appropriately entitled Risky Business, members of the business and policy-making establishment sound the alarm call about the potentially cataclysmic impact of climate change on the US economy.
Published by an economic modeling firm that normally works for the fossil fuel industry, Risky Business predicts starkly apocalyptic scenarios over the coming two centuries: more than a million homes and businesses along the nation’s coasts could flood repeatedly before ultimately being destroyed; agriculture will become impossible in Midwest, the nation’s grain belt; heat and humidity will become so intense that spending time outside will become impossible in much of the eastern half of the United States.
What does the group propose should be done about this dire situation? According to the summary article in the New York Times, many of the power brokers involved in the report are in favor of imposing a tax on carbon emissions.
A step in the right direction, but adequate to the horrifying scenarios depicted in the report? Not half likely! What we clearly need is a wholesale reorganization of the economy away from the cardinal principle of headlong, heedless growth. Not much about that in Risky Business.
Uncovering the truth behind the Gulf oil spill
The recent Sino-Russian gas deal needs to be seen as part of a broader shift in global power relations. From a uni-polar world dominated after the end of the Cold War exclusively by the United States, a multi-polar global contest is emerging. The major powers challenging US world hegemony are China and Russia, and the recent gas deal helps cement their growing alliance.
As Michael Klare has documented in The Race for What’s Left, the upshot of this emerging multi-polar world is an increasing inter-imperial rivalry to gain access to as much of the world’s hydro-carbon energy resources as possible. This is, of course, terrible news for the environment, and for the sustainability of life on the planet.
Ashley Smith recently published an excellent article tracking these rising inter-imperial rivalries. It concludes with a ringing call to climate justice activists to interrupt the planet-destroying machinations of both new and old imperial powers.