The final episode of the very wonderful "Spooks" posed some interesting questions.

Let's say for a moment, that :-

1) Global Climate change is real. And because it's a laggy, exponential system with some tipping points, it's too late to do anything about it. Even if we drastically change our behaviour, it's going to get a lot worse before it gets better.

2) Sooner or later and perhaps sooner, oil demand is going to seriously outstrip oil supply. Exponential growth in the West, much faster exponential growth in the East and supply that is growing linearly.

3) As for 2) but also for a range of other raw materials. Like Tungsten. Or water.


4) A small number of extremely powerful and extremely wealthy western nations.

Now what should the governments of those Western nations do? It's very difficult to imagine their populations giving up their taste for cheap air travel, air conditioners and personal transport. They can

a) Follow Kyoto and try to turn their consumption habits around, leading to a world wide economic slump or
b) Take any and all steps to protect their current way of life and head off potential widespread panic and insurrection.

So that means an aggressive, nuclear backed external policy of securing control of raw materials allied to a repressive domestic regime designed to maintain control.

The fight for control of the Earth is just beginning. It's the 19th century "Great Game" but another loop up the spiral.

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[ 16-Nov-06 7:21pm ] [ ]