tagged w/ Population
In an era of economic turmoil that has produced massive unemployment, accelerated industrial decline, and sowed fear and doubt across much of North America and Europe, China last week offered a much different lesson on growth and development.
The 12th Five-Year Plan comes in the midst of a massive and politically popular economic transition that is rapidly converting China’s economy from its previous focus on export-related revenue to one devoted to building domestic markets. In the latest draft of its new 12th Five-Year Plan to manage the world’s fastest growing industrial economy, China’s leadership called for restraining the runaway growth that is raising the incomes of more than 400 million people, but is also drawing China ever closer to a potentially calamitous confrontation over energy, water, and the quality of the nation’s environment.
The 12th Five-Year Plan, submitted for review on March 5 at the start of China’s annual plenary session in Beijing and adopted on March 14, sets a new limit on energy consumption in order to spur efficiency and conservation measures. But it also envisions record high levels of water use, which is expected to rise to 620 billion cubic meters (163 trillion gallons) by 2015—up from 599 billion cubic meters (158 trillion gallons) in 2010—and as much as 670 billion cubic meters (177 trillion gallons) by the end of the decade. The restraints on coal production, which supplies 70 percent of the nation’s energy and is the largest industrial consumer of fresh water, will serve to keep water use from climbing even higher.
In public statements and in interviews with Chinese media, the nation’s top leaders said the central focus of the new Five-Year Plan is to curb inflation and provide investments and guidance that improves the quality of life by ensuring the continuing development of manufacturing, transportation infrastructure, domestic production, the energy sector, research, science, health care, and education. But the leaders asserted that the 12th Five-Year Plan, the master economic blueprint that charts China’s development through 2015, also is meant to reckon with the damage that the nation’s modernization is causing to air, land, and water, a steadily diminishing resource.
From 2000 to 2009, total water reserves in China dropped 13 percent, and water scarcity is especially evident in the northern and western provinces, where China’s major coal reserves lie. By calling for limits on energy production, China’s leaders are apparently mindful of the dangerous choke point developing between the nation’s surging economy and its demand for opening new coal reserves in the dry provinces that cannot currently be tapped because of water shortages.
“The 12th Five-Year Plan period is crucial for building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and for deepening reform and opening up and speeding up the transformation of the pattern of economic development,” said Premier Wen Jiabao in a statement.
Largest and Fastest—Is Restraint Possible?
But it is not at all clear that China’s provincial and industrial leaders—never mind the hundreds of millions of workers benefiting from modernization—will be eager to comply with the goals of the new development strategy.
China now has either the fastest growing or largest markets in the world for coal, cars, steel, cement, glass, residential housing, rail construction, clean energy equipment, highway development, power plant construction, and grain production, just to name a few.During extensive reporting in December for the Choke Point: China series, Circle of Blue found a nation that grumbles about pollution, inflation, and corruption, but also is tremendously enthusiastic about modernization and the economic opportunities it has provided.
The restraints on economic growth described in the 12th Five-Year Plan come in the midst of a massive and politically popular economic transition that is rapidly converting China’s economy from its previous focus on export-related revenue to one devoted to building domestic markets.
Just to name a few, China now has either the fastest-growing or the largest-markets in the world for:
•Fossil fuel energy
•Power plant construction
Over the next five years, China will continue to build one of the world’s largest water transport projects, the world’s largest highway and high-speed rail networks, and the world’s largest network of hydropower dams. China also will continue to construct the world’s largest industrial manufacturing installations, or “bases,” to produce the components and plants that generate energy from coal, wind, solar, and nuclear power.
Conservation and Efficiency Stressed
The 12th Five-Year Plan calls for reducing annual economic growth to seven percent a year (down from about 10 percent in each of the last four years), restraining the growth in coal production to three percent a year (down from more than 15 percent annually since 2000), and limiting water consumption.
cont.In an era of economic turmoil that has produced massive unemployment, accelerated... more
Poverty, repression, decades of injustice and mass unemployment have all been cited as causes of the political convulsions in the Middle East and north Africa these last weeks. But a less recognised reason for the turmoil in Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Yemen, Jordan and now Iran has been rising food prices, directly linked to a growing regional water crisis.
The diverse states that make up the Arab world, stretching from the Atlantic coast to Iraq, have some of the world's greatest oil reserves, but this disguises the fact that they mostly occupy hyper-arid places. Rivers are few, water demand is increasing as populations grow, underground reserves are shrinking and nearly all depend on imported staple foods that are now trading at record prices.
For a region that expects populations to double to more than 600 million within 40 years, and climate change to raise temperatures, these structural problems are political dynamite and already destabilising countries, say the World Bank, the UN and many independent studies.
In recent reports they separately warn that the riots and demonstrations after the three major food-price rises of the last five years in north Africa and the Middle East might be just a taste of greater troubles to come unless countries start to share their natural resources, and reduce their profligate energy and water use.
"In the future the main geopolitical resource in the Middle East will be water rather than oil. The situation is alarming," said Swiss foreign minister Micheline Calmy-Rey last week, as she launched a Swiss and Swedish government-funded report for the EU.
The Blue Peace report examined long-term prospects for seven countries, including Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, the Palestinian territories and Israel. Five already suffer major structural shortages, it said, and the amount of water being taken from dwindling sources across the region cannot continue much longer.
"Unless there is a technological breakthrough or a miraculous discovery, the Middle East will not escape a serious [water] shortage," said Sundeep Waslekar, a researcher from the Strategic Foresight Group who wrote the report.
cont.Poverty, repression, decades of injustice and mass unemployment have all been cited as... more
A cool interactive map showing ethnicity and population in America provided by the US Census Bureau's American Community Survey from 2005 to 2009. Green = Whites, Blue = Blacks, Yellow = Hispanics, Red = Asians, Gray = Native Americans/Pacific Islander/Other.
Link to the map: http://projects.nytimes.com/census/2010/explorer
http://tx.flamjam.com/img/mapping-america.jpgA cool interactive map showing ethnicity and population in America provided by the US... more
The worst drought in the 105-year historical record of the Colorado River has opened a new era of water scarcity that is prompting state and federal water managers to evaluate never before considered options for increasing water supply and reducing demand.
The new ideas for managing the seven-state river basin, which supplies water to 30 million residents and thousands of farms, have attracted increasing attention from agricultural users and other big water interests, particularly in the upper basin states that counted on receiving more water under the region’s near-century-old water use agreement.
In Las Vegas last month, at the annual meeting of the Colorado River Water Users Association—the only organization bringing together stakeholders from each of the seven basin states—opponents and supporters made their views known during a speech by Doug Kenney, the director of the Western Water Policy Program at the University of Colorado-Boulder.
Kenney was invited to Caesar’s Palace to share the first-year findings from his study on water governance in the Colorado River Basin. His message: in a new era of water scarcity along the river—where supply and demand lines have already crossed—traditional water management practices will need to be fundamentally changed.
New options for managing the Colorado include establishing provisions for year-to-year agreements with states and farmers to avoid shortages. They also include improvements in the efficiency of river operations, or by river augmentation, which means adding new supplies from a slew of sources—some viable, some expensive, and some fanciful: desalination, river diversions, and weather modification, respectively.
“I thought it was time for someone to stand up at that meeting and start talking about the reality.”
Kenney’s governance study is just one of several such assessments—carried out by academics and federal agencies, as well as state and regional water management authorities—suggesting the need for new ways to manage water flows. The studies are providing a new legal and scientific foundation for defining existing water rights within states, clarifying laws and regulations about how shortages on the river would be handled, and evaluating options for increasing the basin’s water supply and reducing demand.
Kenney argued that the states of the upper basin—Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming—are the most vulnerable if future flows are as low as predicted because the river’s legal structure gives priority to Mexico and the lower basin states of Arizona, California and Nevada.
“I thought it was time for someone to stand up at that meeting and start talking about the reality,” Kenney told Circle of Blue. “That there’s just not any water left on that river.”
While there were no catcalls or rotten fruit, Kenney admits that some representatives from the upper basin states were not pleased to hear that water promised to them nearly a century ago under the Colorado River Compact would probably not be available in the coming decades.
cont.The worst drought in the 105-year historical record of the Colorado River has opened a... more
Falling birth rates will slow the world's Muslim population growth over the next two decades, reducing it on average from 2.2 percent a year in 1990-2010 to 1.5 percent a year from now until 2030, according to a new study which will undoubtedly be ignored by the xenophobes.
Muslims will number 2.2 billion by 2030 compared to 1.6 billion in 2010, making up 26.4 percent of the world population compared to 23.4 percent now, according to estimates by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.
The study saw a close link between education and birth rates in Muslim-majority countries. Women in countries with the least education for girls had about five children while those where girls had the longest schooling averaged 2.3 children.It said about 60 percent of the world's Muslims will live in the Asia-Pacific region in 2030, 20 percent in the Middle East, 17.6 percent in sub-Saharan Africa, 2.7 percent in Europe and 0.5 percent in the Americas.Continued migration will swell the ranks of Europe's Muslim minorities by one-third by 2030, to 8 percent of the region's inhabitants from 6 percent, it said.Muslims in France will rise to 6.9 million, or 10.3 percent of the population, from 4.7 million (7.5 percent), in Britain to 5.6 million (8.2 percent) from 2.9 million and in Germany to 5.5 million (7.1 percent) from 4.1 million (5 percent).The Muslim share of the U.S. population will grow from 0.8 percent in 2010 to 1.7 percent in 2030, "making Muslims roughly as numerous as Jews or Episcopalians are in the United States today," the study said.Pakistan will overtake Indonesia as the world's most numerous Muslim nation by 2030, it said.The report did not publish figures for worldwide populations of other major religions, but said the United States-based Pew Forum planned similar reports on growth prospects for worldwide Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Judaism.
Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE70Q12D20110127 Falling birth rates will slow the world's Muslim population growth over the... more
BEIJING: Chinese planners are reportedly proposing to merge nine cities around the Pearl River Delta in the southern parts of the country, to create the world's biggest mega city, twice the size of Wales with a population of 42 million.
According to The Telegraph, the "Turn The Pearl River Delta Into One" scheme will create a 16,000 square mile urban area that is 26 times larger geographically than Greater London, or twice the size of Wales.
The new mega-city will cover a large part of China's manufacturing heartland, stretching from Guangzhou to Shenzhen and including Foshan, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Zhuhai, Jiangmen, Huizhou and Zhaoqing, which accounts for nearly a tenth of the Chinese economy, the paper said.
Around 150 major infrastructure projects would reportedly link the transport, energy, water, and telecommunications networks of the nine cities together at a cost of some two trillion Yuan (190 billion pounds) over the next ten years.
The paper quoted Ma Xiangming, the chief planner at the Guangdong Rural and Urban Planning Institute and a senior consultant on the project, as saying that an express rail line will also connect the hub with nearby Hong Kong.
"The idea is that when the cities are integrated, the residents can travel around freely and use the health care and other facilities in the different areas," Ma added.
He said that it will help spread industry and jobs more evenly across the region and public services will also be distributed more fairly, adding that 29 rail lines, totaling 3,100 miles, will be included, cutting rail journeys around the urban area to a maximum of one hour between different city centres.
The planners believe that the project would help in reduction of phone bills by 85 per cent and improve conditions of hospitals and schools. Besides, the major problem of pollution around the Pearl River Delta caused because of its industrialization would also be reportedly addressed.BEIJING: Chinese planners are reportedly proposing to merge nine cities around the... more
"As we zoom toward 7 billion, population growth is looking ever more hairy and daunting. The big-picture solution is empowering women everywhere and making sure they have the tools, knowledge, and support to control the size of their families, but that's not something an average person can tackle on a lunch break. Of course you can (and you should) badger your congresspeople to fund family planning, both abroad and at home, and donate to nonprofits that work on these issues." Lisa Hymas"As we zoom toward 7 billion, population growth is looking ever more hairy and... more
What if the world’s population of nearly 7 billion people lived in one giant megacity?What if the world’s population of nearly 7 billion people lived in one giant... more
IT HAS long been true that California on its own would rank as one of the biggest economies of the world. These days, it would rank eighth, falling between Italy and Brazil on a nominal exchange-rate basis. But how do other American states compare with other countries? Taking the nearest equivalent country from 2009 data reveals some surprises. Who would have thought that, despite years of auto-industry hardship, the economy of Michigan is still the same size as Taiwan's?
http://www.economist.com/blogs/dailychart/2011/01/comparing_us_states_countriesIT HAS long been true that California on its own would rank as one of the biggest... more
World faces overpopulation 'disaster' as number of population is set to rise by 75 million EACH YEARGlobal population is expected to peak at 9.5bn in 2075. Annual rise is the equivalent of entire UK population. The world is edging closer to overpopulation Armageddon as swelling cities drain the planet of its vital resources, a report warns today.Population growth, especially in newly developing countries, is the 'defining challenge of the 21st century'.
LINK : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1346357/World-faces-overpopulation-disaster-number-people-set-rise-75-million-EACH-YEAR.htmlGlobal population is expected to peak at 9.5bn in 2075. Annual rise is the equivalent... more
By 2050, the world’s population is likely to reach 9 billion. Most of these
people are expected to live in developing countries and have higher incomes
than currently is the case, which will result in increased demand for food. In
the best of circumstances, the challenge of meeting this demand in a sustain-
able manner will be enormous. When one takes into account the effects of
climate change (higher temperatures, shifting seasons, more frequent and
extreme weather events, flooding, and drought) on food production, that
challenge grows even more daunting. The 2010 floods in Pakistan and exces-
sive heat and drought in Russia that resulted in wildfires and a grain embargo
are harbingers of a troubled future for global food security.By 2050, the world’s population is likely to reach 9 billion. Most of these... more
"I just want to make some of the reasons why the MAHB, the Millennium Assessment of Human Behavior is possibly a tiny little chance for the future. Everybody's focused on greenhouse gases as an environmental issue. Just before the last presidential election, we had a press conference at the National Press Club to bring environmental issues into the story, and every single question was on climate change, or climate disruption, as John Holdren likes to call it (and he's right). It's going to be an extremely serious problem for us, as we all know; but it may not be the worst of the problems that we're facing environmentally. Unfortunately, it attracts a lot of attention. The loss of populations and species of other organisms - populations in particular, because they're what deliver the ecosystem services; there's a major problem with communication about biodiversity with all the focus on species, when the focus ought to be on the loss of populations - it's going on now thousands of times more rapidly than it has in the last 65 million years, decaying our ecosystem services. ""I just want to make some of the reasons why the MAHB, the Millennium Assessment... more
Census data show the fastest growth continues to be in the West and South, but places like Texas and Florida far outpaced California. The shift is likely to benefit Republicans
Read Full Post>>>http://anewsfuse.blogspot.com/2010/12/californias-population-gains-not-enough.htmlCensus data show the fastest growth continues to be in the West and South, but places... more
What does it take to count more than one billion people in China? Six-and-a-half million census-takers going door to door, visiting more than 400 million households nationwide for several days.
The world's most populous nation is conducting its sixth national census after a gap of 10 years (the last one showed a population of 1.29 billion). The counting is done, but the numbers need to be collated and crunched. Results won't be announced until April 2011, but there is already much anticipation.
"The information gathered is vital for China's economic and social policies," Vice Premier Li Keqiang told state-run Xinhua news agency. "Only by getting a clear picture of the population could we better plan and provide people with equal public services in education, health care, housing and pension."
http://edition.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/asiapcf/12/03/florcruz.china.census/index.html?hpt=C2What does it take to count more than one billion people in China? Six-and-a-half... more
Analysis: Despite a Drying and Flooding Planet, Cancun Climate Negotiators Anticipate Scant ProgressOn November 29 representatives from 190 countries will be in Cancun, Mexico for the 16th Conference of the Parties under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Late last week, following a two-day Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate in Washington, the Obama administration’s chief climate negotiator told reporters not to expect too much.
More than 125,000 demonstrators convened in the streets of Copenhagen last year, hoping their cheers and compelling testimonies would encourage swifter, more comprehensive action from negotiators.“I would describe myself right now as neither an optimist nor a pessimist,” said Todd Stern, the State Department’s special envoy on climate, adding that there won’t be any “enormous leaps forward” in Cancun but “real and concrete steps” can be made.
Exactly what those could be has not come into focus, though Stern and other negotiators also noted that unless something tangible occurs at the Cancun meeting, the credibility of the UN process will weaken. “The process can’t continually stalemate and remain the locus of activity,” Stern said.
A year ago, of course, global anticipation of a diplomatic breakthrough was high enough to attract the American president, the Chinese premier, and over 100 other heads of state to the Copenhagen climate summit. More than 125,000 people from all over the world marched for climate action on a cold and sunny Saturday afternoon. Thousands of journalists and producers filed reports from a crowded media room at the Bella Center, itself so full that security forces limited access.
Yet what was clear in Copenhagen, just as it was plain in the two other international climate conferences I’ve attended — in Barcelona in 2009 and in Tianjin last month — is this: The very same governments that produced a near stalemate on a climate treaty are simultaneously supporting global alliances of powerful energy companies to develop and consume the planet’s remaining reserves of fossil fuels.
Let’s just put it this way. The executives of those companies are perfectly content with the grudging pace of climate negotiations. Nobody else should be. The equatorial regions of east Africa are drying up as fast as the tinderbox hills and water-scarce fields of Australia’s Murray Darling Basin. Both poles are melting along with the glaciers of Greenland and the Himalayas. South Dakota this year experienced floods and hail and fierce storms that formed the most erratic and dangerous weather in its recorded history.
The damage to freshwater supplies is the most personal consequence of climate change around the world. Climate change, in fact, is producing an emergency, except in the front offices of the world’s major fossil fuel companies and the legions of elected and appointed officials they’ve helped to install in public office. And as Circle of Blue reports in its Choke Point: U.S. series this year, and in its other projects, there is no more visible evidence than the effect climate change is having on the planet’s reserves of fresh water. In the U.S., persistent drought on the Colorado Plateau has so significantly lowered water levels in the Colorado River and Lake Mead that Hoover Dam is fast approaching the day when it will no longer produce any power. In Myanmar and Bangladesh, record floods this year displaced hundreds of thousands of people.
The damage to freshwater supplies is the most personal consequence of climate change around the world. It’s true that a number of nations have initiated important industrial programs to lower carbon emissions by fostering the switch to cleaner energy sources. China, for instance, has gained international renown for the speed at which it’s developed an alternative fuels manufacturing and power-generating sector.
It’s not nearly enough, though, to slow the planet’s warming. That’s because the bigger money in the industrialized world involves producing and consuming carbon-emitting coal, oil, and natural gas.
cont.On November 29 representatives from 190 countries will be in Cancun, Mexico for the... more
On the tails of a recent TED conference where Bill Gates stated that vaccines need to be used to reduce world population figures, he added more to this insanity last week with a keynote address at the mHealth Summit, an annual gathering whose supposedly focuses on improving health care through mobile technology.
Gates told an audience of more than 2,000 that if we could register every worldwide birth on a cell phone, we could ensure that children receive the proper vaccines. He also said the key to controlling population growth is to save the lives of children under 5; and the next big thing in technology is robots.
“About one-third [of that improvement] is by increasing income,” he said. “The majority has been through vaccines. Vaccines will be the key. If you could register every birth on a cell phone—get fingerprints, get a location—then you could [set up] systems to make sure the immunizations happen.”
Gates said he’d like to see a birth registration system, and because it’s a new technology, “we should let 1,000 new ideas blossom.”
Gates told the audience that there is no such thing as a healthy, high-population growth country. “If you’re healthy, you’re low-population growth,” he said.
more at link...
What a sick, eugenicist freak! What do you think they're gonna do with you after they have all these robots? You're a useless eater. You know how much it costs to feed, clothe, educate, entertain your stupid ass. They can't wait to pump you up with a vaccine.On the tails of a recent TED conference where Bill Gates stated that vaccines need to... more
By 2050, 40 per cent of the US population will be obese, according to a new prediction based on American trends by Alison Hill at Harvard University.
link: http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2010/11/harvard-study-half-of-us-population-will-be-obese-by-2050.htmlBy 2050, 40 per cent of the US population will be obese, according to a new prediction... more
Article: Anglicans: We have to acknowledge and respond to population issues in order to care for lifeThe Anglican General Synod of Australia recently held its three-yearly meeting, at which a motion about the need to acknowledge and respond to population issues in order to care for life on our planet was warmly supported.The Anglican General Synod of Australia recently held its three-yearly meeting, at... more
Every day we hear about topics like sustainable growth and sustainable building, but what does it really mean to be "sustainable?" In broad terms, sustainability quite clearly means that each new year finds the earth in at least as good of a condition as the last one. No increasing degree of deforestation, no fewer fish in the ocean, no higher levels of toxic pollution, and the concentration of atmospheric pollutants the same or better the next year as it was the prior one. Classically, many native American tribes had a high respect for the sustainability of the world, making collective decisions about whether or not to continue a particular course of action based upon if it would have a negative effect seven generations into the future.Every day we hear about topics like sustainable growth and sustainable building, but... more