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Is congestion charging a good idea?

Crikey, 14 May 2012

Every time Governments contemplate massive investments in urban road infrastructure, it’s instructive to bear in mind there’s a much better alternative. Instead of building something gargantuan like a road tunnel, they could instead elect to implement congestion charging across the metropolitan area.

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Biking through China’s Countryside

Documentary of a bike trip through the countryside of Shandong, China, where we interview elderly farmers, peasant Catholics and ride through China's housing bubble.

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Oil prices could double by 2022, IMF warned

The Guardian, 13 May 2012

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been warned by its internal research team that there could be a permanent doubling of oil prices in the coming decade with profound implications for global trade. "This is uncharted territory for the world economy, which has never experienced such prices for more than a few months," the report warns.

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Peak Oil Driving The Global Gas Shift

EU Energy Blog, 26 March 2012

In its February 15 report ‘Resurging North American oil production’, Citigroup’s analysts claimed that the shale gas boom was set to morph into a shale oil boom. The report said: “The concept of peak oil is being buried in North Dakota, which is now leading the US to be the fastest growing oil producer in the world. The belief that global oil production has peaked, or is on the cusp of doing so, has underpinned much of crude oil’s decade-long rally (setting aside the 2008 sell-off)”.  Only 14 days later however the US Energy Department, which in January cut its estimates for likely recoverable shale gas from the USA’s giant Marcellus Basin by 66% from previous, released its report on world oil market trends with an array of peak oil-friendly facts and figures.

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The WA Healthcare Systemӳ Oil Vulnerability: 16 May

Dr James Barson, Convenor, Health
Sector Working Group, ASPO-Australia

Wednesday 16th May, 2012, 3 Pakenham Street, Fremantle

at Curtin University Sustainability Policy
(CUSP) Institute, hosted by Doctors for
the Environment, Australia

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Getting Naked to Change the World

Der Spiegel, 11 May 2012

The Ukrainian activist group Femen has made headlines around the world by baring their breasts to protest against prostitution, exploitation and corruption. But can their naked stunts change anything, or are they just providing images for a sex-obsessed media?

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The cities that never sleep

BBC News, 10 May 2012

In a 2011 study of the world’s 24-hour cities, Cairo was ranked the “most
24-hour” of all. Just behind Egypt’s capital came Montevideo, Beirut, six
Spanish cities (Malaga, Zaragoza, Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and Seville) and
Buenos Aires. London was ranked 17th, Paris 18th and New York 32nd. Virtually no cities are entirely 24-hours all year round, noted Marion Roberts, a professor of urban design at London’s University of Westminster.

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This Climate’s Not Changing Fast Enough for Us to Care

Huffington Post, 8 May 2012

"Although the federal government has begun to lower greenhouse gas emissions, right now the reductions are not happening fast enough to meet the 2020 target," Environment Commissioner Scott Vaughan said in a report tabled in the House of Commons, according to the Canadian Press.

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The Future of Oil: Geology versus Technology

IMF, 1 May 2012

We discuss and reconcile two diametrically opposed views concerning the future of world oil production and prices. The geological view expects that physical constraints will dominate the future evolution of oil output and prices. It is supported by the fact that world oil production has plateaued since 2005 despite historically high prices, and that spare capacity has been near historic lows. The technological view of oil expects that higher oil prices must eventually have a decisive effect on oil output, by encouraging technological solutions. It is supported by the fact that high prices have, since 2003, led to upward revisions in production forecasts based on a purely geological view. We present a nonlinear econometric model of the world oil market that encompasses both views. The model performs far better than existing empirical models in forecasting oil prices and oil output out of sample. Its point forecast is for a near doubling of the real price of oil over the coming decade. The error bands are wide, and reflect sharply differing judgments on ultimately recoverable reserves, and on future price elasticities of oil demand and supply.

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New IMF Working Paper Models Impact of Oil Limits on the Economy

Our Finite World, 7 May 2012

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently issued a new working paper called “The Future of Oil: Geology versus Technology” (free PDF), which should be of interest to people who are following “peak oil” issues. This is a research paper that is being published to elicit comments and debate; it does not necessarily represent IMF views or policy.

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