Tuesday, December 11, 2012

"Global Trends 2030: Megatrends vs. game-changers"

We are fans of Joel Achenbach.*
From the Washington Post's Achenblog:
This is a town full of reports, some of them auguring deep into a single topic and some of them broader and more comprehensive. Yesterday we saw the publication of an unusually sweeping document called Global Trends 2030, produced by the National Intelligence Council, which answers to the Director of National Intelligence.

Poke around the document a bit and you’ll see that it was written primarily by a certain Mathew Burrows. It’s about 160 pages. It says that in the coming years the global economic and political landscape will be dramatically changed by the rise of China and other Asian powers, and by the emergence of non-state actors. The United States will cease to be the lone superpower, but the U.S. will still be “first among equals.” Europe, Japan and Russia will continue to decline relatively to other established and emerging countries. There will be 3 billion middle-class people, up from 1 billion today. Energy, food, water form a nexus of needs amid new challenges from climate change. Here’s my colleague Peter Finn’s report.

I haven’t yet read the full report or gone over all the footnotes and verified the information through secondary interviews and reviewing of source documents. I’ve actually read only the introduction and then skipped ahead looking for the, you know, “good parts.” It’s interesting and kind of up my alley, since, when not thinking about RGIII’s knee, I think about declinism, the future of America, the pros and cons of human ingenuity and the fate of human civilization.

[Update: Also black swans. And megaquakes hitting megacities.] [And chewed on Progress vs. Regress in the first Why Things Are book.]...

*Some of his stuff we've lifted/linked to over the years:
Risk: "The ARkStorm Scenario Could Flood California's Central Valley like a Bathtub and Cost $725 Billion"
Traditional Energy's Modern Boom
The Tasmanian Megafauna
I know: It's all anyone can talk about. The Tasmanian megafauna!
But it's a clue in a big riddle. What happened to all the big animals that used to stomp around the planet during the Pleistocene?>>>MORE

Next Stop:The Dead Zone

Dead zones are all the rage! Here's my latest dead zone story. That's all I do now: I've got the dead zone beat. Refrain from obvious "deadbeat" jokes!!!...MORE...
And of course: