Weekly ReadingAugust 7, 2009 By Wilson Center Staff
The NYT’s Andrew Revkin muses about whether “whether should be able to get into the carbon business,” citing a study released by Oregon State University that says that the number of children an American resident has could have the greatest environmental impacts of any decision taken by that individual. Reporting on the study, The Oregonian observes that “having fewer children is best way to reduce your carbon footprint.” An interactive graphic from Breathing Earth maps the relationship between population and carbon emissions.
Colorado State University’s Nicole Detraz and Michelle M. Betsill examine whether the April 2007 United Nations Security Council debate, “which emphasized the threat of climate-related conflict, reflects a discursive shift” in an International Studies Perspectives article, “Climate Change and Environmental Security: For Whom the Discourse Shifts.”
A study in Science, “Rebuilding Global Fisheries,” warns that overfishing has decimated global marine resources. However, it also reports that careful, collaborative restoration efforts at the international level could yield significant improvements.
In Der Speigel (republished on Salon.com), Horand Knaup and Juliane von Mittelstaedt report that investors, corporations, and governments are angling to profit from future food shortages (the result of a burgeoning global population and inhospitable climate changes) by buying arable land in less developed countries—particularly in weak states—with little concern for the food security of the host nation.
Now available online, a special issue of the International Social Science Journal from 2005 examines the resource curse. Eleven articles explore “how to translate revenues derived from natural resource exploitation into real benefits for citizens of resource-rich countries.”