Planet GAP: 3 richest persons weathier than poorest 48 countries

Tom Boland (wgcp@earthlink.net)
Fri, 20 Nov 1998 01:16:35 -0400


--============_-1300583482==_ma============
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

FWD  Excerpt from "Anarchism & Environmental Survival"

A WORLD DIVIDED


The history of this century has been of deepening
divisions in humanity. The gap between rich and poor
has widened enormously, today 225 people own more
than the poorest 50% earn in a year. Eighty four
people are together wealthier than China, three
people wealthier than the poorest 48 countries. The
wealthiest 20% of the global population consumes 60%
of the energy, 45% of the meat and fish, and owns
87% of the vehicles1. This is not to say that
everyone in the 'developed' world is well off, of
course. Within the richer countries the gap between
rich and poor is also growing, with the figures for
homelessness, unemployment and malnutrition rising
all the time. In the last decade, diseases like
tuberculosis, caused essentially by poverty, have
reappeared, having been eradicated earlier this
century. The US may be the world's biggest consumer,
but it also has the highest per capita prison
population, and 16.5% of its population lives in
poverty.

On a global level, the picture is of a southern
hemisphere owned, controlled and exploited by the
north. Raw materials - minerals and food - are
produced in the south and consumed in the north. The
environmental problems in the north/west are mainly
those caused by over a century of industrial
production - pollution has become a fact of life.
The earth, the air, the rain, all have been
contaminated.

The south may not have as long a history of
industrialisation as the north, but as far as
environmental damage goes it is gaining rapidly.
When a corporation shifts production to the
developing world, it does so to escape not just
trade unions, but also environmental regulations.
Workers in the south are not just lower-paid,
they're subject to much more dangerous working
conditions, and much more damage to their
environment, than workers in the north. As well as
industry, agriculture is made more damaging. Leaving
aside the use of insecticides and fertilisers that
have been banned in the north, the trend towards
large-scale monoculture farming means the soil
becomes exhausted and prone to erosion. The need to
expand the area of land under cultivation means the
destruction of wilderness areas and deforestation,
which also causes soil erosion. This in turn causes
flooding, which destroys people's homes and crops
under cultivation, leading to more pressure on the
land.

The worldwide increase in the human population and
the level of (industrial and agricultural)
production means that the potential impact of
humanity on the environment continues to grow. At
the moment, this impact is enormous because, often,
the people who are making environmentally sensitive
decisions are shielded from the results.....

From: Anarchism & Environmental Survival
Originally published in Red & Black Revolution No4
more articles from this issue at
http://flag.blackened.net/revolt/rbr.html
Anarchist News is forwarded via the Revolt site
http://flag.blackened.net/revolt/inter.html

END FORWARD

*******************************************************
3,000+ posts by or via homeless & ex-homeless people
HOMELESS PEOPLE'S NETWORK <http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/>
*******************************************************
HOMELESS PEOPLE'S NETWORK  <http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/>  Home Page
ARCHIVES  <http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/archives.html>  read posts to HPN
TO JOIN  <http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/join.html> or email Tom <wgcp@earthlink.net>
--============_-1300583482==_ma============
Content-Type: text/enriched; charset="us-ascii"

FWD  Excerpt from "Anarchism & Environmental Survival"


<paraindent><param>right,left</param>A WORLD DIVIDED

</paraindent>


The history of this century has been of deepening

divisions in humanity. The gap between rich and poor

has widened enormously, today 225 people own more

than the poorest 50% earn in a year. Eighty four

people are together wealthier than China, three

people wealthier than the poorest 48 countries. The

wealthiest 20% of the global population consumes 60%

of the energy, 45% of the meat and fish, and owns

87% of the vehicles1. This is not to say that

everyone in the 'developed' world is well off, of

course. Within the richer countries the gap between

rich and poor is also growing, with the figures for

homelessness, unemployment and malnutrition rising

all the time. In the last decade, diseases like

tuberculosis, caused essentially by poverty, have

reappeared, having been eradicated earlier this

century. The US may be the world's biggest consumer,

but it also has the highest per capita prison

population, and 16.5% of its population lives in

poverty.


On a global level, the picture is of a southern

hemisphere owned, controlled and exploited by the

north. Raw materials - minerals and food - are

produced in the south and consumed in the north. The

environmental problems in the north/west are mainly

those caused by over a century of industrial

production - pollution has become a fact of life.

The earth, the air, the rain, all have been

contaminated.


The south may not have as long a history of

industrialisation as the north, but as far as

environmental damage goes it is gaining rapidly.

When a corporation shifts production to the

developing world, it does so to escape not just

trade unions, but also environmental regulations.

Workers in the south are not just lower-paid,

they're subject to much more dangerous working

conditions, and much more damage to their

environment, than workers in the north. As well as

industry, agriculture is made more damaging. Leaving

aside the use of insecticides and fertilisers that

have been banned in the north, the trend towards

large-scale monoculture farming means the soil

becomes exhausted and prone to erosion. The need to

expand the area of land under cultivation means the

destruction of wilderness areas and deforestation,

which also causes soil erosion. This in turn causes

flooding, which destroys people's homes and crops

under cultivation, leading to more pressure on the

land.


The worldwide increase in the human population and

the level of (industrial and agricultural)

production means that the potential impact of

humanity on the environment continues to grow. At

the moment, this impact is enormous because, often,

the people who are making environmentally sensitive

decisions are shielded from the results.....


From: Anarchism & Environmental Survival

Originally published in Red & Black Revolution No4

more articles from this issue at

http://flag.blackened.net/revolt/rbr.html

Anarchist News is forwarded via the Revolt site

http://flag.blackened.net/revolt/inter.html


END FORWARD


*******************************************************

3,000+ posts by or via homeless & ex-homeless people

HOMELESS PEOPLE'S NETWORK <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/>

*******************************************************

HOMELESS PEOPLE'S NETWORK  <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/>  Home Page

ARCHIVES  <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/archives.html>  read posts to HPN

TO JOIN  <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/join.html> or email Tom <<wgcp@earthlink.net>

--============_-1300583482==_ma============--