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General How can we balance growing demand....

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Astroboy, Aug 12, 2008.

  1. Astroboy

    Astroboy Malaysia
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    ਨਾਮ ਤੇਰੇ ਕੀ ਜੋਤਿ ਲਗਾਈ (Previously namjap)
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    How can we balance growing demand for both energy and food ?

    Comments welcomed.
     
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  3. svea00

    svea00
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    We´re all becoming vegetarians, sell our cars and start riding bicycle or use public traffic. :idea:
    But I think this would be too easy to work out.
     
  4. dalsingh

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    This is a complex matter as society, especially western, has become so accustomed to consuming. I think rising food prices may result in more people actually growing some of their food, be this in their gardens or whatnot. Some peopel are already inclined towards organic food, this is the logical conclusion to this.

    With respect to energy, the world increasingly seems to be taking the nuclear option. But I know the UK is increasingly experimenting with wind water generated enery. Countries with sunny climates should be heavily investing in solar power.

    All in all though, it is a tricky business because so much has become tied to the energy business and corporate interests result in a reluctance to foster quick change. Hence we (humankind) are now globally beset with conflicts based on controlling oil reserves and preventing nuclearisation in various places. Instead we should be research alternatives and exercising restraint in our daily lives. For example banning solely petrol run cars and legislating to ensure manufacturers develop alternatives - which could be easily done. Obviously people such as oil barons will have vested interests which will resist this.

    Maybe we should all learn to live simpler lives. So much is at stake.
     
  5. Astroboy

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    #4 Astroboy, Aug 28, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 5, 2016
  6. Astroboy

    Astroboy Malaysia
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    Brazil's Sweet Taste of Ethanol

    by Julie McCarthy
    Listen Now [4 min 13 sec] add to playlist

    All Things Considered, June 22, 2008 · With an abundance of sugar cane in Brazil, drivers are able to fill their tanks with ethanol at much cheaper prices than gasoline. Liz Marshall, a senior economist at the World Resources Institute speaks with host Guy Raz.
     
  7. Huck_Finn

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    Brazil's cost of ethnol

    This is insight into monoculture and destruction of soil as well as forest cover due to mass scale plantations

    Excerpt from "The WTO and the Destructive Effects of the Sugarcane
    Industry in Brazil." February 13, 2006
    Sugarcane Industry in Brazil

    "The sugarcane industry is Brazil?s fastest-growing agribusiness of
    2005. Its expansion has brought with it serious consequences for the
    country, such as environmental destruction, removal of agricultural
    workers from their land and frequent workers? rights violations.
    Sugarcane plant supervisors demand that each worker cut, on average,
    twelve to fifteen tons of sugarcane per day. Between January 2004 and
    September 2005, the Migrants? Pastoral registered eight workers?
    deaths due to an excess of work in the cane fields of the Ribeir o
    Preto region alone."

    ..

    "According to the University of S o Paulo professor, Ariovaldo
    Umbelino, of the total jobs generated in the Brazilian countryside,
    87.3% are in the small units of production, 10.2% are in medium-sized,
    and only 2.5% are in the large units. This study also demonstrates
    that the small and medium-sized rural properties are responsible for
    the majority of food production. Despite these data, the government
    has prioritized an agricultural policy that principally favors large
    businesses. In 2004, 10 transnational corporations received close to
    $4.5 billion reais from Banco do Brasil. This amount is larger than
    all of the credit given to small farmers through PRONAF (National
    Program for the Strengthening of Family Agriculture). In total, the
    government disposed of R$37 billion reais in credit for large
    landowners."

    ...

    After Australia, Brazil has the lowest cost of production of sugar in
    the world because it exploits workers. In the state of S o Paulo, the
    cost of production is $165 dollars per ton. In the European Union the
    cost is $700 dollars per ton. "The sugarcane complex is one of the
    most important agroindustrial complexes of Brazil; it has very
    competitive products in the international market thanks to low costs
    of production, which are associated with low salaries paid to
    workers", explains professor Francisco Alves, from the Federal
    University of S o Carlos."


    Continue reading entire article...Migration, Slave Work and Violations
    of Workers? Rights...
    Sugarcane Industry in Brazil




    ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT
    =====================


    From Bioenergy and the Rise of Sugarcane-Based Ethanol in Brazil
    by Joao Martines-Filho, Heloisa L. Burnquist, and Carlos E.F. Vian
    Choices Article - Bioenergy and the Rise of Sugarcane-Based Ethanol in Brazil


    "One of the most harmful environmental effects from sugarcane
    production is the burning of fields to facilitate manual harvesting.
    Burning is conducted prior to harvesting to eliminate pests and remove
    weeds. This makes movement through the field safer and easier, but
    produces significant quantities of greenhouse gases, ash, and other
    airborne particulates. Absolute elimination of burning has proven
    difficult so a schedule was established to gradually reduce the
    burning over the next 20 years in Sao Paulo, the largest production
    region. In 2000, additional steps were taken to eliminate burning and
    shift practices over to mechanized harvesting (Law no. 10.547, March
    5, 2000). The new law specifically established where burning was
    prohibited and mechanization in turn would be used; about 55% of
    production. It also established rules where burning would be allowed;
    45% of production. Burning is still permitted where the ground is
    sloped 12% or more, making mechanized harvesting impossible; or where
    small landholders were involved and had no other means of harvesting."
     
  8. Sinister

    Sinister
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  9. Canuck Singh

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    Renewable alternatives are feasible, just cut the profit margin of the few in power.

    BC will be completely self sufficient on Hydro by 2012. That has a lot to say for itself,
     

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