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  • India’s high growth rate and the price of food – Ecologise
    2008 09 Before the world could recover there came the European sovereign debt crisis of 2011 led by the insolvency of Greece a crisis which is not over yet Then came the war against ISIS in Syria and Iraq which is still continuing Now we have the China Shock The tapering of Chinese demand combined with the tapering of quantitative easing in the US has led to the collapse of global commodity prices especially the price of oil The latter has been further pushed on the supply side by the emergence of shale gas as an alternative to Middle East oil and the return of Iran to the global oil market following the lifting of sanctions The shock waves from the series of crises culminating in the China slowdown is impacting not just commodity markets but also and inevitably the emerging market economies including India These economies too have experienced the flight of capital and the consequent collapse of asset prices Here in India the benchmark Sensex has fallen below 25 000 points and the Nifty below 7 500 points levels that last prevailed before the Narendra Modi government came to power in May 2014 China already seems to be on the path of regression to mean global growth as had been anticipated three years ago by Pritchett and Summers in a widely cited paper What is the outlook for India In the long run different factors will determine the outcome But to assess our prospects in the near term it is necessary unravel a peculiar macroeconomic phenomenon that has puzzled most observers including the Reserve Bank of India RBI governor and the Chief Economic Advisor Central Statistics Organisation CSO estimates based on the new series since 2011 12 indicate that GDP measured at constant market prices grew at a healthy pace of 7 3 in 2014 15 and 7 2 in the first half of 2015 16 This is the highest growth rate recorded by any major economy in the world in this period as we noted at the outset Yet most other collateral indicators would suggest that growth is much lower Initial results of corporate performance now coming in for the third quarter of 2015 16 suggest overall net profits have declined The Purchasing Managers Index shows demand is depressed Not surprising considering that the wholesale price index for manufactures the nearest we have to a producer price index in India is now declining while base rates of commercial banks are in the 9 5 to 9 7 range That implies real interest rates faced by manufacturers are very high around 10 or more Manufacturing output actually declined by 4 4 compared with a year ago in November the last month for which Index of Industrial Production data is available and rose by only 3 9 for the April November period Agricultural growth for the first half of the year 2015 16 was only 2 thanks to a weak monsoon Central bank data available up to September indicates

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/2016/02/10/indias-high-growth-rate-and-the-price-of-food/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Hopium economics and the madness of infinite growth on a finite planet – Ecologise
    Infinite growth in a finite world Hopium economics has given us deeply in debt individuals businesses and nations Satyajit Das The Times of India Economic growth is a central assumption to political and economic systems It is the mechanism relied upon for improving living standards reducing poverty to now solving the problems of over indebted individuals businesses and nations All brands of politics and economics assume sustainable strong economic growth combined with the belief that governments and central bankers can control the economy to bring this about But strong growth is not normal being a recent phenomenon over the last two centuries Economic activity and the wealth created have increasingly relied on borrowed money and speculation It was based upon the profligate use of mispriced natural resources such as oil water and soil It relied on allowing unsustainable degradation of the environment The human race refuses to accept that it is not possible to have infinite growth and improvement in living standards in a finite world As author Edward Abbey warned Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of a cancer cell Central to the problem is the level of indebtedness Debt accelerates consumption as borrowed funds are used to purchase something today against the promise of paying back the money in the future Spending that would have taken place normally over a period of years is squeezed into a relatively short period because of the availability of cheap borrowing Business overinvests misreading demand assuming that the exaggerated growth will continue indefinitely increasing real asset prices and building significant overcapacity Around 85 of the debt incurred over the last 30 35 years funded the purchase of existing assets or consumption rather than being used for creating new businesses or productive purposes which build wealth Global debt now stands at around 200 trillion over 280 of the world annual produce an increase of 57 trillion since 2008 when high debt levels brought the world to the brink of collapse Hopium economics cannot mask the problem of excessive leverage forever The debt will have to be repaid out of future income or proceeds of asset sales diminishing growth or savaging investment values If as is likely this debt cannot be repaid then it will be written off resulting in an unprecedented loss of wealth for savers Compounding the problems of debt resources and environment are challenges of slowing rates of innovation lower improvements in productivity demographics inequality and exclusion The amount of global arable land has remained relatively constant for the last decade at 3 4 billion acres The annual increase in global population requires water flow equivalent to Germany s Rhine River The frequency of extreme weather events is increasing In a Faustian bargain policy makers sold the future originally for present prosperity and are now reselling it for a precarious and short lived stability There is a striking similarity between the problems of the financial system irreversible climate change and shortages of vital resources like oil food and

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/2016/01/08/hopium-economics-and-the-madness-of-infinite-growth-on-a-finite-planet/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Top 10 stories on the emerging global ‘Sharing Economy’ – Ecologise
    articles of all time and decided to share the top 10 here For those of you who have been following us all this time thank you 1 Tiny Houses Tiny houses are huge on Shareable We re not exactly sure why but whenever we post a piece on tiny houses readers come in droves to check it out We know that tiny houses are trending right now but we think it speaks to something more in Shareable readers a desire to step out of the rat race gain control of our time and our lives pursue meaningful relationships and projects and generally simplify things We want freedom and living smaller is a way to create more of it The runaway favorite tiny house articles are How to Live Off the Grid in a Tiny House Yes you can live off the grid in a tiny house We asked several people who are already doing it to share their best tips and insights Austin to Shelter Homeless in a Tiny House Village Austin created a simple yet innovative way to address homelessness build a village of tiny houses 11 Tiny House Villages Redefining Home The tiny house village movement is just getting started but there are already several projects leading the way 25 Incredible Tiny Houses Available on Airbnb If you re interested in tiny house living but not sure you re ready to commit you can rent one on Airbnb and give it a try 2 21 Technologies that will Decentralize the World Decentralization is a common theme at Shareable Distributed power goods platforms and money have the potential to create more equitable resilient and enjoyable communities Here are 21 new technologies that are pushing the decentralization movement forward 3 How to Become a Lawyer Without Going to Law School Did you know that in some states you can become a lawyer without going to law school Our friends at the Sustainable Economies Law Center SELC gave us the inside scoop on legal apprenticeships The popularity of this story really surprised us though it s well align with our point of view which values practical people powered ways to get things done 4 The Ultimate Guide to Traveling Without Money Have you ever wished you could travel more but think you don t have enough money to do so This guide to traveling without money covers the basics and more from transportation and food to accommodations and hygiene Proponents believe this is the best way to travel because it forces you to engage with people in the communities you visit However if dumpster diving hitchhiking and sleeping on the ground aren t your thing this one may be a bit too out there for you Nonetheless it s still a compelling look into a nontraditional lifestyle which may explain it s popularity 5 Afghans Build Open Source Internet from Trash What happens when you get cut off from the Internet One group of crafty Afghans created their own Internet out

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/2016/01/02/top-10-stories-of-all-time-from-shareable-net/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Curbing Consumption is the Only Way Out to Avoid Climate Change – Ecologise
    integrated issues of climate change to be held in Paris and sustainable development that took place in UNGA New York under the United Nations Framework discussions are taking place globally on the transformation of economies and the role of technology in achieving these goals The international community on climate change is strongly pushing the agenda of deep de carbonization for the global economy in order to meet the challenge of restricting temperature increase to 2 degree Celsius The assumption seems to be that this transition will be achieved primarily through the transition of economies towards renewable energy energy efficiency and through afforestation Technology and innovation are being touted as the two powerful drivers that will help achieve low carbon growth in the context of climate change This is the vaunted sustainable development that has filled the headlines but recent research by the authors show that this scenario is based on assumptions that do not bear scrutiny To put it bluntly those who champion the process of economic growth essentially growth in consumption and production often neglect that fact that this growth is heavily dependent on the exploitation of finite natural resources many of which are in decline In other words even assuming the world takes to the climate change related agenda of low carbon growth countries would still continue to heavily rely on both renewable and non renewable resources such as mineral metals fossil fuels land forest and water Is renewable energy really renewable Energy is a good example to understand how growth is tied to finite resources when it is considered renewable In 2014 for the first time in four decades the global economy and energy demand grew without a corresponding increase in global carbon emissions The recently released Renewables 2015 Global Status Report attributes this to the increased penetration of renewable energy and to improvements in energy efficiency While that is true the fact remains that adopting renewable energy requires material requirement to multiply For instance the global copper consumption is poised to increase not just because electricity demand is growing but also because new energy technologies typically require more of this metal than the traditional sources like fossil fuel generated power plants Each MW of renewable energy on average requires 6 to 8 tons of copper while traditional energy sources require only one sixth of it Supposing all the economies of the world were to successfully deeply decarbonize their energy systems what will the future demand and availability of copper look like There is an imperative need to answer this question with an approximate figure and time limit in the context of growth If we were to extrapolate this to all other natural resources both renewable and non renewable such as mineral energy land forest and water the question arises as whether sustainable development is feasible at all This is not a futuristic scenario either since there s a growing body of research which suggests that the recent global economic crises and the still ongoing debt crises

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/2015/10/14/curbing-consumption-is-the-only-way-out-to-avoid-climate-change/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Swati Agarwal – Ecologise
    From farmer to national treasure H R Prakash on When communalists turns on environmentalists Ashok Kundapur on In spite of cool advertising electric cars also damage the environment Tags activism agrarian crisis agriculture air pollution alternatives Books capitalism carbon emissions China Climate Change coal corporate rule deforestation development ecological conflict economic growth education awareness energy extreme weather events food security fossil fuels future scenarios Gail Tverberg global economy green politics India inequality Kurt Cobb Narendra Modi government neoliberalism oil prices organic farming Paris climate talks peak oil Renewable energy resource depletion resource extraction Richard Heinberg rural India Sagar Dhara Sustainability Transition videos water crisis weather patterns Archives Archives Select Month May 2016 4 April 2016 51 March 2016 46 February 2016 31 January 2016 27 December 2015 31 November 2015 29 October 2015 19 September 2015 12 August 2015 13 July 2015 9 June 2015 11 May 2015 13 April 2015 12 March 2015 16 February 2015 17 January 2015 10 December 2014 10 November 2014 10 October 2014 10 September 2014 11 August 2014 7 July 2014 5 June 2014 7 May 2014 2 April 2014 3 March 2014 4 February 2014 1 January 2014 2 December 2013 3 November 2013 2 October 2013 8 Upcoming Events Webinar on Groundtruthing at online event Groundtruthing gathers information that connects regulatory requirements with actual impacts development has on people Resource person Kanchi Kohli 12th May 2016 12th May 2016 Rainwater Harvesting Workshop at Hyderabad Understand and combat Hyderabad s water problems through rain water harvesting 15th May 2016 15th May 2016 Thought for Food at Palampur Himachal Pradesh Workshop on eating responsibly sharing strategies and tools for doing so 18th May 2016 22nd May 2016 Two short courses on Development at Azim Premji University Bangalore Designed for professionals working in various

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/author/swati-agarwal/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Curbing Consumption is the Only Way Out to Avoid Climate Change – Ecologise
    scenario is based on assumptions that do not bear scrutiny To put it bluntly those who champion the process of economic growth essentially growth in consumption and production often neglect that fact that this growth is heavily dependent on the exploitation of finite natural resources many of which are in decline In other words even assuming the world takes to the climate change related agenda of low carbon growth countries would still continue to heavily rely on both renewable and non renewable resources such as mineral metals fossil fuels land forest and water Is renewable energy really renewable Energy is a good example to understand how growth is tied to finite resources when it is considered renewable In 2014 for the first time in four decades the global economy and energy demand grew without a corresponding increase in global carbon emissions The recently released Renewables 2015 Global Status Report attributes this to the increased penetration of renewable energy and to improvements in energy efficiency While that is true the fact remains that adopting renewable energy requires material requirement to multiply For instance the global copper consumption is poised to increase not just because electricity demand is growing but also because new energy technologies typically require more of this metal than the traditional sources like fossil fuel generated power plants Each MW of renewable energy on average requires 6 to 8 tons of copper while traditional energy sources require only one sixth of it Supposing all the economies of the world were to successfully deeply decarbonize their energy systems what will the future demand and availability of copper look like There is an imperative need to answer this question with an approximate figure and time limit in the context of growth If we were to extrapolate this to all other natural resources both renewable and non renewable such as mineral energy land forest and water the question arises as whether sustainable development is feasible at all This is not a futuristic scenario either since there s a growing body of research which suggests that the recent global economic crises and the still ongoing debt crises in many regions are indications of a systemic crisis of resource depletion Growth cannot be decoupled from resources As the above example shows while the thrust towards low carbon growth can help economies to decouple economic growth from emissions they still will not be able to decouple growth from resource consumption In other words so long as the balance between economic growth and natural resource consumption is not met even if we are able to meet with the global agenda of climate change sustainable development in the longer terms will still be compromised Even if technology is made available leading to quantum leaps in energy efficiency and clean energy through new discoveries such advancements might only be able to delay the impacts of this imbalance to a future time but may not be able to defer it infinitely Vast variation in consumption patterns is seen among

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/2015/10/14/climate-change-5/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Mihir Mathur – Ecologise
    to national treasure RAMESHWAR NAYAK on Subhash Palekar From farmer to national treasure Hareesh on Subhash Palekar From farmer to national treasure H R Prakash on When communalists turns on environmentalists Ashok Kundapur on In spite of cool advertising electric cars also damage the environment Tags activism agrarian crisis agriculture air pollution alternatives Books capitalism carbon emissions China Climate Change coal corporate rule deforestation development ecological conflict economic growth education awareness energy extreme weather events food security fossil fuels future scenarios Gail Tverberg global economy green politics India inequality Kurt Cobb Narendra Modi government neoliberalism oil prices organic farming Paris climate talks peak oil Renewable energy resource depletion resource extraction Richard Heinberg rural India Sagar Dhara Sustainability Transition videos water crisis weather patterns Archives Archives Select Month May 2016 4 April 2016 51 March 2016 46 February 2016 31 January 2016 27 December 2015 31 November 2015 29 October 2015 19 September 2015 12 August 2015 13 July 2015 9 June 2015 11 May 2015 13 April 2015 12 March 2015 16 February 2015 17 January 2015 10 December 2014 10 November 2014 10 October 2014 10 September 2014 11 August 2014 7 July 2014 5 June 2014 7 May 2014 2 April 2014 3 March 2014 4 February 2014 1 January 2014 2 December 2013 3 November 2013 2 October 2013 8 Upcoming Events Webinar on Groundtruthing at online event Groundtruthing gathers information that connects regulatory requirements with actual impacts development has on people Resource person Kanchi Kohli 12th May 2016 12th May 2016 Rainwater Harvesting Workshop at Hyderabad Understand and combat Hyderabad s water problems through rain water harvesting 15th May 2016 15th May 2016 Thought for Food at Palampur Himachal Pradesh Workshop on eating responsibly sharing strategies and tools for doing so 18th May 2016 22nd May 2016 Two short courses on Development at Azim Premji University Bangalore Designed for professionals working in various domains of development 24th May 2016 3rd June 2016 View All Events Special Features About Mihir Mathur Mihir Mathur is an interdisciplinary researcher working in the Earth Science and Climate Change division as Associate Fellow at The Energy and Resources Institute TERI New Delhi Before choosing to work on climate change and sustainability issues he was working in stock markets and commodity markets as research analyst His current work focuses on finding sustainable adaptation pathways using system dynamics modelling for policy formulation at local and global level Mihir blogs at http mihirsmusings wordpress com and can be reached at mihir09mathur gmail com Posts by Mihir Mathur Curbing Consumption is the Only Way Out to Avoid Climate Change Written by Mihir Mathur Oct 14 2015 3 Comments CLIMATE CHANGE Consumption ECONOMY ENERGY INDIA Sustainability Finding new ways to continue with the same model of growth and consumption will put enormous pressure on finite resources Swati Agarwal Mihir Mathur The Wire With two major conferences this year on the deeply integrated issues of climate change to be held in Paris and sustainable development that took

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/author/mihir-mathur/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Paper: Sustainability Dynamics of Resource Use and Economic Growth – Ecologise
    27 December 2015 31 November 2015 29 October 2015 19 September 2015 12 August 2015 13 July 2015 9 June 2015 11 May 2015 13 April 2015 12 March 2015 16 February 2015 17 January 2015 10 December 2014 10 November 2014 10 October 2014 10 September 2014 11 August 2014 7 July 2014 5 June 2014 7 May 2014 2 April 2014 3 March 2014 4 February 2014 1 January 2014 2 December 2013 3 November 2013 2 October 2013 8 Upcoming Events Webinar on Groundtruthing at online event Groundtruthing gathers information that connects regulatory requirements with actual impacts development has on people Resource person Kanchi Kohli Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window 12th May 2016 12th May 2016 Rainwater Harvesting Workshop at Hyderabad Understand and combat Hyderabad s water problems through rain water harvesting Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window 15th May 2016 15th May 2016 Thought for Food at Palampur Himachal Pradesh Workshop on eating responsibly sharing strategies and tools for doing so Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window 18th May 2016 22nd May 2016 Two short courses on Development at Azim Premji University Bangalore Designed for professionals working in various domains of development Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window 24th May 2016 3rd June 2016 View All Events Special Features Paper Sustainability Dynamics of Resource Use and Economic Growth Written by Swati Agarwal Sep 7 2015 0 Comments A Discussion on Sustaining the Dynamic Linkages between Renewable Natural Resources and the Economic System Mihir Mathur Swati Agarwal TERI In this paper we have used System Dynamics to test three popular policy options for sustaining Economic Growth 1 Resource Efficiency 2 Resource Efficiency and Green Growth 3 Doubling of Resource Base due to technological advancement The model outcomes indicate that the above policies fail to avoid the overshoot and fall of the economy due to resource depletion but are successful in delaying it Abstract All economies of the world depend upon the use of renewable natural resources for their growth This relationship inherently reflects that continued increase in extraction of resources is a must to sustain economic growth Inevitably a tipping point is reached from where the regeneration rates of the resources diminish due to depletion of the resource stock The resource production peaks and declines which lead to a delayed feedback on the economy ultimately restricting its ability to grow and sustain its level of output This discussion paper demonstrates with the help of

    Original URL path: http://www.ecologise.in/2015/09/07/paper-sustainability-dynamics-of-resource-use-and-economic-growth/ (2016-05-02)
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