Archive | March, 2010

The generals to the rescue? The security facet of climate change

22 Mar

Failures in food and water security, natural disasters, and progressive degradation of ecosystem goods and services are all factors that can act to undermine human security and threaten the health and sustainability of communities and entire nations. – CSIRO, 2006

If generals and national security ministries around the world become convinced that climate change menaces their state will it be enough for them to push through meaningful action on climate change? NGOs can be ignored or brushed aside; environment ministries often wield little concrete power, but the military is a game changer. When the generals get involved, we may see serious movement on climate change, and quickly.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Climate Change and Human Health – Peril and Promise

12 Mar

“Climate change will affect human health in many ways—mostly adversely.” – McMichael et al., The Lancet 2006

Asia is going to experience significant public health changes due to climate change, nearly all of them bad. The science behind the dire human health predictions for the region, which grows stronger nearly daily, shows a confluence of negative health effects underway. Just as in the area of food security, many health impacts are overlapping and correlated and have a multiplier effect. As climate change causes population displacement, food and water sources are stressed, thereby increasing vulnerability to diseases whose vectors have steadily expanded.

Continue reading

Our Chinese Neighbors to the North: the First Nations, China and Natural Resources

8 Mar

At first glance it seems like an unlikely pairing: Canadian First Nations tribal leaders and Chinese businessmen, developers and policymakers. However implausible a meeting between the Chinese economic behemoth and a small, historically marginalized native Canadian community may appear, that is exactly what happened in late 2008. At the RCI China-Canada Aboriginal Business Opportunity 2008 the two groups met to talk Chinese investment in and development on First Nations land.

Continue reading