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Our Common Agenda

Our Common Agenda is the most future-oriented document about about Un reform ever issued by the Secretary-General of the UN: Summit on the Future, Trusteeship Council as a multi-stakeholder foresight body, UN Futures Lab, Strategic Foresight and Global Risk Report every two to five years, Special Envoy for Future Generations, and the High-level Advisory Board led by former Heads of State and/or Government. Source

 

Irrecoverable carbon

A new mapping project estimates how much irrecoverable carbon resides in peatlands, mangroves, forests and elsewhere around the globe — and which areas need protection. The new estimate puts the total amount of irrecoverable carbon at 139 gigatons — the equivalent to about 15 years of human CO2 emissions at current levels. And if all that carbon were released, it’s almost certainly enough to push the planet past 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming above preindustrial levels. Source

 

Clean Water

Water Stress to Affect 52% of World’s Population by 2050

Some 52 percent of the world’s projected 9.7 billion people will live in water-stressed regions by 2050, MIT researchers say. The researchers used the MIT Integrated Global System Model Water Resource System (IGSM-WRS) to evaluate water resources and needs worldwide. The modeling tool also allowed researchers to measure how climate change and socioeconomics affect water stress. Source

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China’s water scarcity has geopolitical implications

Disappearing rivers and pollution are reducing China’s water resources to critical levels; desertification is expanding due to water shortages and unsustainable agriculture. By some estimates, over 50% of China’s groundwater and 25% of its river water is too polluted to be used even for agriculture or industry, and 80% to 90% of its groundwater is undrinkable. Annual losses due to water scarcity are estimated to over $100 billion. Neighbouring countries are increasingly affected by China’s quest for new water sources. Source

 

Rich-Poor Gap

Poverty and fragility: Where will the poor live in 2030?

The world is experiencing a tipping point in its fight against poverty. By 2022, more than half of the world’s people living in extreme poverty will be living in fragile states, according to projections by World Data Lab. There are currently 39 fragile states that the World Bank classifies as “countries with high levels of institutional and social fragility” and “affected by violent conflict.” They are home to almost 1 billion people, 335 million of which lived in extreme poverty in 2020. Projections by the World Data Lab’s World Poverty Clock suggest that by 2030, there will be 359 million people living in extreme poverty in today’s fragile states, representing 63 percent of the world’s poor. This means that while most stable countries can anticipate the end of extreme poverty, more than a third of the population in fragile states will live in extreme poverty. Source

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 A Statista study on labor shortages found that the share of global workforce working in low-skilled occupations will decrease from 44% in 2020 to 39% by 2030. However important gaps will persist among countries: while in high-income countries the low-skilled workforce is expected to decrease from 19% today to 18% by 2030, in low-income countries it might still represent 69% of the workforce (slightly lower than the 72% today.) The most significant change is in upper-middle income countries, from 41% to 33%, and in lower-medium income countries, where the change is expected to be from 53% ti 46%. Source

 

10 Ways AI Will Change The World By 2050

By 2050, AI will reach remarkable advancements that will be beyond many people’s wildest dreams. Robots will not only be able to attain, but also generate, that task in a cost-effective, timely, and meticulous manner, hence increasing efficiency. Source

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Researchers find the first warp bubble. This might represent an important advancement towards warp-capable spacecraft — the ability to travel faster than light, which until now was considered science fiction. Source  and article

 

Civil unrest on the rise

In 2020, civil unrest rose globally by 10%, reveals the 2021 Global Peace Index computed by the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP). There were 14,871 violent demonstrations, protests and riots recorded globally. Against pandemic related measures were widespread globally, with over 5,000 events recorded globally. The economic impact of violence reached $14.96 trillion in 2020, the equivalent to 11.6% of the world’s GDP – or $1,942 per person – due to increased military spending, notes the report. Source

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China is working on ‘brain-control weaponry’ that ‘paralyzes and controls opponents’

China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences and 11 affiliated research institutes have been sanctioned by the USA “for using ‘biotechnology’ to support the armed forces including ‘purported brain-control weaponry’.” Reportedly, the weaponry is ‘paralyzing and controlling the opponent’ by ‘attacking the enemy’s will to resist’.” Source

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China, France, Russia, UK, and USA agree that “nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought”

China, Russia, Britain, the United States and France have agreed that a further spread of nuclear arms and a nuclear war should be avoided. The statement stipulates that “nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought,” and nuclear weapons should be used for defence or war deterrence purpose only. The five nuclear states are permanent members on the UN Security Council and didn’t join the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Source

 

Behind China’s Belt & Road projects

Some 140 countries are part of China’s Belt and Road project. While this has helped many developing countries, in some cases contracts come with difficult strings attached, which could give China control over countries’ critical infrastructure or even governance issues. Sri Lanka’s port has been taken over by a Chinese government company in 2016. Now several African countries — e.g. Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Zambia — are discovering or questioning the implications of “fine print” clauses in the contracts with Chinese landing entities, which might imply sovereignty or democracy problems.  Source

 

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