The Day After...
What happens when people realise that the revolution had brought no change?
Food prices in Africa, Middle East and India are rising quickly repeating the troubles of the US bank crisis of 2008, causing riots in poor countries. Once more the poorest of the poor suffer at most from the climate change which aggravates drought, storms or flood catastrophes in these regions. Now the situation worsens because prices of all kind of food clean water and energy to cook meals are exploding.
The population of the US and other wealthy western nations, which are to be blamed for the climate change, will hardly notice impairments in their daily life. However, according to the World Bank maize, wheat and oil have brought 44 million people to the edge of extreme poverty since June 2010. This forces farmers in Indonesia to defend their fields with machetes.
The causes of food price inflation varying from country to country. Extreme weather events that destroy crops, such as drought in China, floods in Australia, Pakistan and India, droughts in Argentina and Eastern Europe leaded to food scarcity on the international market.
Governments need to take immediate actions to provide sustainability of food, reduce emission of greenhouse gases, and most of all, avoid the disastrous politics which lead to concentration of wealth built at burden of the poor.
USA: The country does not show any sign that it moves toward sustainability. It has the highest greenhouse gases emission per capita of the world. Steven Chu is the example of how scientists bow to the power of giant corporations. Speculations on food prices and oil barrel prices at the bourses increase the price hype.
Germany: Under the image of sustainability, Germany imports alcohol from Brazil and palmoil from Malaysia, grown on land which had been used for food crops or at the expenses . The political parties are entangled in combating each others and German scientist follow their inactivity mourning the deployed climate conditions but they fail to present feasible immediate global solutions. Germanys' green look is built on the depletion of the ecology of the developing regions:
Nigeria increases its sugar cane monoculture which need much water and displaces small farmers. This will destroy local self-sufficient communities disregarding the needs of the local population.
Soy cultivation has already resulted in the deforestation of 21 million hectares of forests in Brazil. Monocultural production of soy in the Amazon Basin has rendered much of the soil infertile. One hundred thousand hectares of depleted former soy-growing lands have been abandoned to cattle-grazing, which leads to further degradation. In Brazil, soybean cultivation displaces eleven agricultural workers for every new worker it employs.
France: France is entangled with the use and propagating one of the most dangerous source of energy which leaves nuclear waste for million of years. Germany is having a hard time to handle its nuclear waste. France and USA do not bother about this issue.
Arab countries: Concentrate on state projects such as export of oil and gas which are burned by their customers and boost the emission of greenhouse gases of the developed countries.
Thari Al-Ajmi of the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR), commenting data of the Arab environment report, says that the Arab world's carbon dioxide emissions represent only 4.7 percent of global emissions but the region will be heavily affected by any increase of sea level as a result of global warming because 50 percent of the Arab world's population lives at sea level. The Arab population is growing fast from 334 million to 586 by 2050, while agricultural land in the Arab world dropped from 23 percent in the year 1980 to 5.1 percent today. Another challenge is the demand of water, because 66 percent of the region's surface water resources come from outside the Arab world. The Arab citizens' annual share of water dropped from 3,500 cubic meters in the year 1960, to 1,000 cubic meters now. Urgent actions need to be taken to cope with the future demand of water and confront poverty.
Combating the causes of the insurrection of the people
The actual situation is marked by the dissolution of self-feeding economic units such as tribes and closed communities. Their local believes and friendships kept peace. Their local markets provided food at accessible prices, To restart such autochthonous government should tackle the most pressing problems of the poor people which are local energy, water and food, by distributing photovoltaic arrays with additional equipment such as storage batteries water pumps and desalination systems. These measures must initially meet the poor settlements. It cannot be a measure of broad agricultural activities because this could lead to environmental displacements, as happens in Israel where the excessive use of water from the Jordan river leads to the death of rare ecosystems and formation of dangerous sinkholes.
The price of energy
Electricity is dramatically underpriced for domestic consumers in Abu Dhabi paying less than two US cents per kWh, for the US consumers which pays 10 cents/kWh and for the European consumers which is paying 23 cent/kWh. Western countries have to realise that they have built their wealth at the expenses of the global climate. Now it is time to invest in solar technology instead of spending tens of billion US dollars on armament shown at the armament exhibition in Abu Dhabi in February while revolt of the poor is shaking Arab governments. The six Gulf Cooperation Council countries, which includes Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait and Jordan are set to spend $68 billion on defence in 2011. Their spending is expected to reach nearly $80 billion in 2015.
Morocco: The country projects to invest US$9 billion (Dh33bn) in solar energy plant designed to supply more than one-third of the country's generating capacity by 2020, however political instability will retard any further development of the project and there is doubt if such goals will ever be realised.
Democracy and hunger
India is the best example of a democracy failing to eliminate hunger. Official data say that there are 238 million people living in hunger, while the country bears one of the richest society of the world. It is an alarming fact that malnutrition is worse in India than in many sub-Saharan African countries. Hunger is also growing in major democracies. In the US one in every ten Americans lives in hunger. In Europe, 40 million people are hungry.
To avoid further ecological destabilisation the climate must be addressed on. For this a global action should be started using great photovoltaic plants to generate electricity and use it for the production on hydrogen as fuel as described by Desert Energy Project.
Local immediate action
Small actions planned to become part of a mix of activities in a far future are only meant to postpone the problems. They are planed to maintain status quo. The actual problems of the poor population of the Mena region, the Middle East and the South of Asia are not being addressed. When the awakening after the revolution comes and the hungry people realised that nothing has changed this second uprising will be more violent and will be uncontrollable. Urgent action is therefore imperative. We are on the eve of a global revolution of the hungry and thirsty population.
Small farms are more efficient in the use of land, produce diversity of crops needed for their immediate neighbours, protect landscapes, and biodiversity. Local grown vegetables fruits and grains are linked to the social cohesion of the communities. Importing food weakens the bonds between ethnic groups. Such communities should be addressed to counter local hunger and the resulting government defiance.
Tribal elder of rural communities should be furnished with photovoltaic and desalination equipment to start local small self-sufficient communities. Investing in the infrastructure of such organic growing settlements within the local family bonds rebuilds the human dignity and the gratitude toward the donor. It incentives the local small farmers to be proud of their work, instead of being jobless in an ugly city. Providing agricultural equipment to the poor is a better investment in the future of the country than distribute money without being connected to specific projects. Such actions are affront to human dignity. Local communities are the foundation of humanity. Interference and change of the rural culture of a people leads to the loss of ancient wisdoms which are best suited to small farms where diversity can achieve a sustainable agriculture.