[OPE-L] another predication of global economic collapse

From: glevy@PRATT.EDU
Date: Sat Aug 19 2006 - 13:27:52 EDT

A 'liberal' neo-Malthusian perspective or is there so me truth to this
prediction?/ In solidarity, Jerry

John Vidal, environment editor
Aug. 17, 2006, The Guardian

Cholera may return to London, the mass migration of Africans could
cause civil unrest in Europe and China's economy could crash by 2015
as the supply of fresh water becomes critical to the global economy.
That was the bleak assessment yesterday by forecasters from some of
the world's leading corporate users of fresh water, 200 of the
largest food, oil, water and chemical companies.

Analysts working for Shell, Coca-Cola, Procter & Gamble, Cargill and
other companies which depend heavily on secure water supplies,
yesterday suggested the next 20 years would be critical as countries
became richer, making heavier demands on scarce water supplies.

In three future scenarios, the businesses foresee growing civil
unrest, boom and bust economic cycles in Asia and mass migrations to
Europe. But they also say scarcity will encourage the development of
new water-saving technologies and better management of water by

The study of future water availability, which the corporations have
taken three years to compile, suggests water conflicts are likely to
become common in many countries, according to the World Business
Council on Sustainable Development, which brought the industrial
groups together.

Lloyd Timberlake, spokesman for the council, said: "The growing
demand for water in China can potentially lead to over-exploitation
and a decline in availability for domestic, agricultural, industry
and energy production use. This inevitably leads to loss of
production, both industrial and agricultural, and can also affect
public health - all of which in turn will ultimately lead to an
economic downturn. The question is how can business address these
challenges and still make a profit."

The corporations were yesterday joined by the conservation group WWF
and the International Water Management Institute, the world's
leading body on fresh water management, which said water scarcity
was increasing faster than expected. In China, authorities had begun
trucking in water to millions of people after wells and rivers ran
dry in the east of the country.

Full: http://www.guardian.co.uk/water/story/0,,1851712,00.html

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