What’s New January 2011

This page lists changes to this site for January 2011.

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An overview of the Climate Change Conference (also known as COP 16), held in Cancún, Mexico in the December 2010.

This conference came a year after the Copenhagen conference which promised so much but offered so little. It also came in the wake of WikiLeaks’ revelations of how the US in particular tried to cajole various countries to support an accord that served US interests rather than the world’s.

What resulted was an agreement that seems much watered down, even an almost reversal, from original aims and spirit of climate change mitigation. In effect, the main polluters (the industrialized nations) who should have borne the brunt of any emission reduction targets, have managed to reduce their commitments while increasing those of the developing countries; a great global warming swindle if any!

Many in the US establishment have been concerned by the actions of WikiLeaks lately, but the release of classified US diplomatic cables by WikiLeaks on Iraq (as well as on many other issues) also reveals more concerns about US conduct in Iraq.

This short new post includes a video from Journeyman Pictures offering a glimpse of the issues and concerns revealed.

A new report from the UN shows that poverty remains a mostly rural phenomenon, with some 70% of all those in developing world’s extremely poor living in rural areas (mostly sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia).

This update includes some further information as well as charts and graphs breaking this down further, plus some additional notes about gender inequality, which is very much related to rural poverty and central to addressing poverty generally.

As globalization has resulted in manufacturing moving further away from where goods are often consumed, the importance of oil in the transportation of those goods has risen. High oil prices therefore may threaten the current form of globalization (at least in its current form).

This further highlights the importance (as if we needed reminding of it) of alternatives to oil, and even the importance of alternative economic models such as localization and regional trade which may help revive industries. This update explores this and includes a video of economist Jeff Rubin explaining this further. A separate note is also made of how climate change inaction in 2009 alone is estimated to have cost us an extra $1 trillion.

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