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The Great Transition
Policy news & blueprints for the transition to a new Sustainable and Social Economy
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China Outlines Cuts in Carbon Emissions

With global climate talks set to begin next week, China on Tuesday issued the most comprehensive document yet on its plans and negotiating positions on emissions.

 

Unfortunately, this White Paper is in my opinion nothing more than a tactical tool to shift the blame and the responsibility for future big action on the rich, developed countries. China should stop positioning itself as a "developing" country.

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Let's not pussyfoot around with the banks

Let's not pussyfoot around with the banks | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
A closer examination of money creation shows the need for major banking reform.

 

The New Economics Foundation's Tony Greenham makes the case for a radical change in the way banks can "create" money and the need for a fundamental banking reform.

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Sustainable Good Society: Why the European Way is Still the Best Hope in an Insecure Age

"In the post-collapse era, economic and ecological sustainability increasingly will take center stage. Despite the eurozone crisis, Europe’s social capitalism, steady state economy, pluralistic democracies and environmental policies still provide the best foundation for comprehensive sustainability."

 

American Steven Hill has this challenging analysis in the Social Europe Journal. Although he has the right diagnosis of the world's economic and ecological crisis, his views on Europe's "awareness of the need for comprehensive sustainability" seem a bit too rosy. He also uses a definition of the "steady state economy" which is too close to the "sustainable growth" paradigm.

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2 Degree Celsius Climate Target at Risk from Ozone-Friendly Replacement Chemicals - UNEP

Keeping a global, 21st century temperature rise under 2 degrees Celsius will require urgent action on a group of chemicals increasingly being used in products such as air conditioners, refrigerators, firefighting equipment and insulation foams.
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CCS in Europe under serious threat

"Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is facing strong headwinds in Europe. EU member states have so far failed to translate an EU CCS law into national legislation. In the UK, a prestigious demonstration project has been cancelled. The European Commission still supports CCS, but sees an important role for it only after 2030. Too late, say beleaguered industry representatives. They fear that the momentum for CCS will be lost and key players will desert their CCS activities if policymakers don't take firm action soon."

 

Excellent overview of the state-of-play on CCS in Europe in this article in European Energy Review.

 

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Rich nations 'give up' on new climate treaty until 2020

Rich nations 'give up' on new climate treaty until 2020 | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Ahead of critical talks and despite pledge for new treaty by 2012, biggest economies privately admit likelihood of long delay...
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Gordon Chang: The Reasons For China's Imminent Bust

Gordon Chang: The Reasons For China's Imminent Bust | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The global dominant narrative about China is wrong, claims Gordon Chang. Don't expect it to be the 'pocketbook of last resort' that will rescue world markets from their current malaise. And don't expect its remarkable economic growth to continue.

 

At Chris Martenson's blog, China expert Gordon Chang paints a bleak picture of China's economic future.

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Water's Economics as Muddy as Ever

Interesting article in Harvard Business Review on the economic costs of water scarcity and efforts by big companies to measure their "water footprint" and draw the necessary lessons.

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UBS analysts predict collapse in EU CO2 permits

(Reuters) - European Union carbon permits, which have shed more than 40 percent since June, could plunge further as the bloc struggles with a mounting debt crisis and a glut of supply in the carbon...

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Five Takeaways from the IPCC Report on Extreme Weather and Climate Change | WRI Insights

Five Takeaways from the IPCC Report on Extreme Weather and Climate Change | WRI Insights | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

Excellent analysis by the World Resources Institute of the latest IPCC report on extreme weather and climate change.

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A new era for commodities

A new era for commodities | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"Cheap resources underpinned economic growth for much of the 20th century. The 21st will be different." (Source: McKinsey Quarterly)


Good to see that even McKinsey starts to get the "peak everything" story. Now they just need to study a bit harder on what this means for economic growth and draw other conclusions than their quasi-religious belief in more resource productivity.

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Can We Really Make Sustainable Consumption Work?

Can We Really Make Sustainable Consumption Work? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"We've always looked at the problem of sustainable consumption as needing to convince individuals to buy less. But the real challenge may be in convincing companies to sell less -- and to make what they sell more sustainable." (Source: GreenBiz)


"In order to provide for the needs of an ever-growing population on a planet with finite resources, we need to improve the sustainability of the products we buy and sell. Businesses can start this transition by getting closer to consumers, educating them on how they can reduce their impacts, in order to make more sustainable product offerings a sustainable business model over the long term."

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What can U.N. climate talks in Durban deliver?

(Reuters) - "Delegates from nearly 200 countries meet in South Africa from November 28 for major climate talks with the most likely outcome modest steps toward a broader deal to cut greenhouse pollution to fight climate change."

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What Are Leaders Really For?

What Are Leaders Really For? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

At the Harvard Business Review Blog, Yahoo's Duncan Watts has great insights into social movements and their leaders and what it means for the Occupy movement.

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First EU chief scientific adviser named

First EU chief scientific adviser named | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Europe’s first chief scientific adviser (CSA) is to be Anne Glover, Nature has learned. Glover is a molecular and cell biologist and is Scotland’s CSA at present.

 

Anyone has any information on her views for sustainability, energy security and climate change? Please mail us.

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Italy against EU green farm plans

Italy against EU green farm plans | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

ROME (Reuters) - Italy's new government will join France and Germany in opposing new environmental regulations being proposed as part of an overhaul of European Union farm laws, Agriculture Minister Mario Catania said on Monday.

 

Italy's technocrat government show its first anti-green colours. Just what we need now - more failed neo-liberal policies.

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Phoenix Europe: How the EU Can Emerge from the Ashes

Phoenix Europe: How the EU Can Emerge from the Ashes | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The old European Union didn't work, that much has been made clear by the ongoing debt crisis. But many in Europe think there is now a clear path to a new, more integrated -- and smaller -- bloc. What must happen first?

 

Food for thought in this International Spiegel article.

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Boring, Cruel Euro Romantics

Boring, Cruel Euro Romantics | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

In the International Herald Tribune, economist and Nobel Prize winner Paul Krugman accuses the European technocrat leaders of being "boring cruel romantics" driven "by dreams about the way things should be rather than by a cool assessment of the way things really are".

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Prospects Appear to Dim for EU-Backed Gas Pipeline

Prospects Appear to Dim for EU-Backed Gas Pipeline | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Prospects for the European Union's favored Nabucco natural-gas pipeline project appear to be dwindling, weeks before a consortium of Caspian Sea producers is to choose one of four planned pipelines to carry its gas to Europe.

 

The Wall Street Journal reports on the gloomy outlook for Europe's grand Caspian pipeline project. Is this article tactical part of the new pipeline war or reality?

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Defense Science Board Report Stresses Need For Climate Change Study In Intelligence Community

Defense Science Board Report Stresses Need For Climate Change Study In Intelligence Community | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
How will the U.S. government tackle climate change? A recent report suggests that the intelligence community could benefit from the creation of an open and collaborative group to study and mitigate climate change.

 

US defence and intelligence circles are getting increasingly worried about the national and global security implications of the climate crisis. Could this change the Republicans views on the subject and lead in the longer run to more US mitigation action?

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Eurozone debt web: Who owes what to whom?

Eurozone debt web: Who owes what to whom? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

The BBC News web site has this very informative graph showing the scale of foreign debt owed between key eurozone countries and the main world economies.

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Puma Reveals Its £124m Ecological Footprint In Groundbreaking New Research

Puma Reveals Its £124m Ecological Footprint In Groundbreaking New Research | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Sportswear and fashion company Puma has revealed the full extent of its ecological footprint, after going through a groundbreaking exercise to quantify the severity of its impact on the planet.
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New Report: Achieving Food Security in the Face of Climate Change

New Report: Achieving Food Security in the Face of Climate Change | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

Interesting new report from the Commission on Sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change with recommendations for policymakers.

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Who is taking over Europe? Technocrats or Goldman Sachs?

Who is taking over Europe? Technocrats or Goldman Sachs? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

French online magazine Mediapart.fr has an intriguing analysis of the new "technocrats" who will have to save the Euro and the European Union. All three, Lucas Papademos, Mario Monti and Mario Draghi (ECB) have worked or are connected to Goldman Sachs, the bank which helped cook the books of Greece to enter the eurozone.

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Robert Reich (Occupiers Occupied: The Hijacking of the First Amendment)

Robert Reich (Occupiers Occupied: The Hijacking of the First Amendment) | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"A funny thing happened to the First Amendment on its way to the public forum. According to the Supreme Court, money is now speech and corporations are now people. But when real people without money assemble to express their dissatisfaction with the political consequences of this, they’re treated as public nuisances and evicted."


Former US labour secretary Robert Reich on the eviction of the Occupy movement in several cities. His conclusion: "Time to occupy our democracy".


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