The New North: The World in 2050
Publication date: March 2011
Digital Book format: ePub (Adobe DRM)
The New North explores the four forces that are changing the world - climate change, rising population, globalisation and resource depletion - and attempts to predict how they will shape the world between now and 2050. It is a book about people, and the "push" and "pull" factors that determine where and how they live. In particular, it examines the countries of the far north - Scandinavia, Canada, Greenland, etc - which stand to gain from the changes underway. The book is not a doomsday script. All of human history is a story of adaptation and change, in response to our environment and to each other. Despite our booming numbers we are healthier, safer, better fed, more knowledgeable, and less violent than ever before. The population boom is slowing, our prosperity generally rising. And as our coastlines inundate and the deserts encroach, there will be new homelands for us throughout the high latitudes and high altitudes, places currently marginal for human existence. Who will benefit? Who will suffer? Current migration trends - to Florida and the drought-stricken American southwest, towards vulnerable low-lying coasts, into Asian megacities atop subsiding deltas - will go into reverse. Instead, we will turn north, where the tragic loss of unique ecosystems will be countered by rising biological production, stable water supplies, warmer winters, rising food stocks, and new shipping access throughout the region. These physical benefits intertwine crucially with human ones, like abundant cheap land, stable governance and legal systems, new oil discoveries, the end of indigenous land-claims, and rising global markets for energy, raw materials, and food.