What’s New March 2011

This page lists changes to this site for March 2011.

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A wave of protests has erupted throughout the Middle East and North Africa. A combination of the global financial crisis, rising costs of living, high unemployment — especially of educated youth, frustration from decades of living under authoritarian and corrupt regimes, various document leaks revealing more details about how governments around the world are dealing and viewing each other, have all combined in different ways in various countries, leading to a wave of rising anger.

Some protests have become revolutions as governments such as those in Tunisia and Egypt have been overthrown. Others have not got that far but have sometimes been peaceful, other times met with very brutal repression.

Is this a wave of democracy that cannot be stopped, and will forever change the region, and the global power politics?

It is well established now that large scale fossil fuel production comes at a high geopolitical cost as well as an environmental one. That is, those dependent on such fuels resort to violence or support authoritarian regimes to ensure they retain their positions of power and influence. This is why we see so many autocratic regimes in the Middle East and why they have been supported for decades by the West.

And yet while alternatives to fossil fuels also include large scale government or big industry backed ideas, there is also the potential threat of locally produced energy sources, such as solar power. That is, it takes away the role of governments and large industries in these areas, potentially giving people truer freedom while bringing development. This update explores this further.

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