Globalization and Scarcity - Center on International Cooperation ...

Globalization and Scarcity - Center on International Cooperation ...

Table 3: Selected linkages between scarcity issues

Cause...effect Energy Food / long>andong> use Water Climate change


Agriculture is a major

consumer of energy,

both directly (cultivation,

harvest, processing,

refrigeration, distribution)

ong>andong> indirectly (fertilizer,

pesticides, other inputs)

Water is a highly energy

intensive industry (energy

= 40% of cost of water in

developing countries)

Groundwater depletion

leads to higher energy use

for extracting / desalinizing


Climate change demong>andong>s

retreat from fossil fuels,

investment in new energy


Extreme weather can

severely impact oil

production (e.g. hurricanes

in Gulf of Mexico)


Food / long>andong> use

Higher energy prices lead

to higher food prices as

input ong>andong> transport costs


Biofuels create arbitrage

relationship between food

ong>andong> fuel, pulling food costs

upwards in line with energy

Biofuel cultivation leads

to increase in demong>andong> for

cultivable long>andong>

Deforestation for firewood

Lower water availability

has negative effect on crop

yields, can make some

crops unsuitable for areas

Changes in water

management (dams,

irrigation, etc.) can affect

viability ong>andong> productivity of

long>andong> downstream

Short term yield variance

due to rising temperatures

Reduced yields through

extreme weather events

Reduced yields through

changes in precipitation

ong>andong> water availability

Desertification, long>andong> ong>andong>

soil degradation will

increase with climate



Higher energy costs lead

to higher water costs

because of energy used

in extracting / pumping /

processing it

Water essential for

hydroelectric power

generation (c. 16%

of global total power


Increased water use for

irrigation can affect water

resources (e.g. shrinking of

Aral Sea)

Long>andong> use change affects

water management (e.g.

wetlong>andong> drainage reduces

flood resilience)

Climate-driven changes

in precipitation; increased


Changes in water

availability e.g. through

glacial melting

Climate change

Emissions drive climate


Some air pollution

dampens climate change

by reducing radiative


Energy security concerns

may lead to more coal use

CO2 emissions from

agriculture energy use

(cultivation, processing,

refrigeration, distribution)

Methane emissions from

livestock, rice cultivation;

deforestation leads to

methane emissions as trees


See energy intensity points




ong>Globalizationong> ong>andong> ong>Scarcityong> | Multilateralism for a world with limits

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