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Floods And Drought Devastate Crops All Over The Planet – Could A Global Food Crisis Be Coming?

Floods And Drought Devastate Crops All Over The Planet – Could A Global Food Crisis Be Coming?

It looks like global food production could be well below expectations in 2019, and that could spell big trouble in the months ahead.  In recent weeks, I have written extensively about the problems that we have been experiencing here in the United States.  As many as a million calves were lost to the flooding that hit the state of Nebraska in March, farmers have planted less than half of the corn that is normally in the ground by this time of the year, and a lot of the crops that have been planted in the middle of the country are really struggling due to extremely wet soil.  But it isn’t just the United States that is facing a very troubling year.  Earlier today, one of my readers sent me an article entitled “Global food crisis ahead as extreme weather events devastate crops and fields around the world”which I would encourage everyone to read.  In that article, we are told that after the worst drought in 116 years Australia has actually been forced to import wheat.  And according to the Guardian, this is the first time in 12 years that this has happened…

Australia is planning to import wheat for the first time in 12 years after drought across the eastern states saw grain production fall 20% last year.

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources confirmed this week it had issued a bulk import permit to allow wheat to be brought in from Canada to be processed for the domestic market.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Australian Fuel Security Review ignores peak oil in China 2015 (part 3)

Australian Fuel Security Review ignores peak oil in China 2015 (part 3)

Australia increased its internal oil dependency & vulnerability

Let’s summarize what we covered in part 1 and 2

  • Australian oil production peaked in the year 2000 while oil consumption is going up relentlessly
  • 3 Australian refineries closed, resulting in fuel imports dramatically increasing, mainly from South Korea and Japan. This is a big problem if there is a military conflict in the South China Sea
  • Australia’s emergency oil stock is only 60% of IEA requirements since 2014. The government has no firm plans to improve this situation
  • Asian oil production started to peak in 2010 while consumption is still going up
  • China’s oil production started to decline after 2015. Oil imports are now around 10 mb/d. No one really knows where China will import its oil from in the next 5-10 years, not to mention in the next decades
  • China’s maritime silk road project is to be seen as securing China’s oil import routes
  • Asia imports around 16 mb/d from the Middle East, making it highly vulnerable to the next ME war
  • US shale oil will peak in a yet unknown year, but it will peak due to extraordinarily high decline rates
  • The Fuel Security Review argues that the global oil industry will always solve problems of supply disruptions and return to business as usual. This is an untested assumption because there will be fierce competition as Asia has entered the era of peak oil.

So what should Australia have done to prepare for this change? It should have REDUCED its oil use by

  1. developing alternative transport fuels and building up associated infrastructure
  2. introducing bio-fuels for sole use in agricultural production and for transport of food to the cities
  3. electrifying rail: intercity, freight and urban rail including expanding and modernising manufacturing capacities for rolling stock and other rail equipment
  4. NOT planning and building additional oil dependent infrastructure like freeways, road tunnels and airports

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Australian Fuel Security Review ignores peak oil in China 2015 (part 2)

Australian Fuel Security Review ignores peak oil in China 2015 (part 2)

Coming back to the 2019 Liquid Security Review
https://www.environment.gov.au/energy/liquid-fuel-security-review-consultation

Figures 9-11 in part 1 show how dependent Australia has become on fuel imports from South Korea and Japan, even China. The Review is aware of this, as shown on this map:

Australia_oil_supply_routes_2019
Fig 18: Australia’s oil supply routes

Note that any military confrontation in the South China Sea would necessitate the re-routing of crude supplies from the Middle East to South Korea and Japan via the Strait of Lombok (East of Bali) or – in the worst case – the Bass Strait as shown on this sketch map of the Centre of Strategic and International Studies (Washington):

SLOC-map
Fig 19: Alternative shipping routes for the Sunda and Malacca Straits
https://chinapower.csis.org/much-trade-transits-south-china-sea/

Similar detours will be necessary if there is a military confrontation in the Taiwan Strait or around the Korean peninsula. Although tensions have eased, the North Korean problem has not been solved. Particularly vulnerable is the refining complex in Ulsan because of its size.

Conflicts are more likely because Asian oil production has peaked and oil demand is growing:

Asia_oil_production_consumption_2005-2017_fill_in-2037
Fig 20: Homework for all State and Federal governments

More details are in following posts:

15/8/2018   Peak oil in the Asia Pacific (part 3)
http://crudeoilpeak.info/peak-oil-in-the-asia-pacific-part-3

12/8/2018   Peak oil in China and the Asia Pacific (part 2)
http://crudeoilpeak.info/peak-oil-in-china-and-the-asia-pacific-part-2

18/6/2018   Peak oil in Asia Pacific (part 1)
http://crudeoilpeak.info/peak-oil-in-asia-pacific-part-1

Asia imports around 16 mb/d from the Middle East, not sufficient for its growing demand. Increasing imports now also come from Africa, South and Central America and the Former Soviet Union (FSU)

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

On Health of the Great Barrier Reef and Case of Sacked Scientist Peter Ridd, Sky News Creates Alternate Reality

On Health of the Great Barrier Reef and Case of Sacked Scientist Peter Ridd, Sky News Creates Alternate Reality

Peter Ridd

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is in some serious trouble, with the latest research in the journal Nature showing the number of new corals has dropped by 89 percent.

In 2016 and 2017, the reef was smashed by back-to-back mass bleaching events and heat stress caused by global warming that killed about half the corals.

“Dead corals don’t make babies,” said James Cook University’s Professor Terry Hughes, the paper’s lead author.

“We used to think that the Great Barrier Reef was too big to fail — until now,” added colleague Professor Morgan Pratchett.

The paper was just the latest in a steady and, many would agree, depressing parade of findings for the World Heritage icon. And if the scientific papers don’t do it for you, then there are always the pictures.

But the release of the study served as a remarkable contrast to the way the Rupert Murdoch-owned Sky News, furnished with material from climate science denial think tank the Institute of Public Affairs, has been “reporting” on reef science in the past week.

On at least five occasions the channel has interviewed the IPA’s policy director Gideon Rozner, who has been updating the channel on the case of Dr. Peter Ridd, a marine scientist specializing in sediments who was fired in March 2018 from James Cook University.

According to the various interviews, the reef is in great shape, the science is probably wrong, and Ridd is a “world renowned” reef expert in a historic fight for freedom. None of this is true, yet the claims have been allowed to stand unchecked.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Why We Should Not Be Surprised That Murdoch Tabloid’s Favorite Sydney School Pupil Didn’t Join Climate Strike

Why We Should Not Be Surprised That Murdoch Tabloid’s Favorite Sydney School Pupil Didn’t Join Climate Strike

Student holding sign at school climate strike

Somewhere in the order of 150,000 students went absent from classes in Australia on Friday afternoon for the global “School Strike 4 Climate” marches.

In what might be seen as an afternoon practical lesson in democracy, free speech, and civic engagement, students from cities and towns across the country and the world marched, chanted, and held placards aloft.

One of the biggest marches in Australia saw 25,000 students on the streets of Sydney, the home of the Rupert Murdoch-owned The Daily Telegraph.

But one student in particular caught eye of The Daily Telegraph — a 17-year-old, Year 12 pupil called Joanne Tran, who wrote an article for the newspaper explaining why she would not be marching.

Real Motives?

Australia’s Education Minister Dan Tehan described the march as “appalling political manipulation” and said parents needed to know “who is influencing their kids, what are their real motives and who is paying for it.”

Good advice, no doubt.

In an articulate column, Tran argued her fellow pupils were “perfect political pawns for activists and their agendas” and that the website for the School Strike 4 Climate campaign was being run by “adults who came from partisan backgrounds.”

Tran said she had learned in economics class that coal, iron ore, and gas were essential for the country’s prosperity and her mates would be better off staying in school to learn about “the importance of the mining sector to Australian life and its contribution to the world.” Clearly, her economics class hasn’t covered this study in the scientific journal Nature finding that global warming of 2.5°C to 3°C by the end of the century would likely see a drop in per capita economic output of between 15 and 20 percent globally. 

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

David Holmgren: A Baby Boomers’ Apology

David Holmgren: A Baby Boomers’ Apology

Raphael The miraculous draught of fishes 1515

There are days, though all too scarce, when very nice surprises come my way. Case in point: yesterday I received a mail from David Holmgren after a long period of radio silence. Australia’s David is one of the fathers of permaculture, along with Bill Mollison, for those few who don’t know him. They first started writing about the concept in the 1970s and never stopped.

Dave calls himself “permaculture co-originator” these days. Hmm. Someone says: “one of the pioneers of modern ecological thinking”. That’s better. No doubt there. These guys taught many many thousands of people how to be self-sufficient. Permaculture is a simple but intricate approach to making sure that the life in your garden or backyard, and thereby your own life, moves towards balance.

My face to face history with David is limited, we spent some time together on two occasions only, I think, in 2012 a day at his home (farm) in Australia and in 2015 -a week- in Penguin, Tasmania at a permaculture conference where the Automatic Earth’s Nicole Foss was one of the key speakers along with Dave. Still, despite the limited time together I see him as a good and dear friend, simply because he’s such a kind and gracious and wise man. 

In his mail, David asked if I would publish this article, which he originally posted on his own site just yesterday under the name “The Apology: From Baby Boomers To The Handicapped Generations”. I went for a shorter title (it’s just our format), but of course I will.

Dave has been an avid reader of the Automatic Earth for the past 11 years, we sort of keep his feet on the ground when they’re not planted and soaking in that same ground: “Reading TAE has helped me keep up to date..”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

As Midwest Freezes, Aussie Heatwave Reaches Record Highs

As Midwest Freezes, Aussie Heatwave Reaches Record Highs

While Midwest America hunkers down for the coldest temperatures in a generation, temperature records have also tumbled across South Australia, with the city of Adelaide experiencing its hottest day on record.

Life-threatening cold is sweeping across Chicago…

As Australians face animal culls, mass fish deaths across the nation,  roads melting, and bats falling from trees…

Adelaide hit 46.6C, the hottest temperature recording in any Australian state capital city since records began 80 years ago, sending homelessness shelters into a “code red”, and sparking fears of another mass fish death in the Menindee Lakes in the neighbouring state of New South Wales.

In central and western Australia, local authorities were forced to carry out an emergency animal cull, shooting 2,500 camels – and potentially a further hundred feral horses – who were dying of thirst.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

If The World Understood Sovereignty, It Could End All Our Problems

If The World Understood Sovereignty, It Could End All Our Problems

My own Australia has of course joined the chorus of US lackeys who are refusing to recognize Venezuela’s only legitimate and elected government, recognizing instead the presidency of some guy named Juan who decided to name himself Venezuela’s president with the blessing of the United States government. A statement from our Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marise Payne, reads as follows:

Australia recognises and supports the President of the National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, in assuming the position of interim president, in accordance with the Venezuelan constitution and until elections are held. Australia calls for a transition to democracy in Venezuela as soon as possible.

Australia supported the Lima Group’s early call for Nicolas Maduro to refrain from assuming the presidency on 10 January, relayed through our non-resident Ambassador to Venezuela.

We now urge all parties to work constructively towards a peaceful resolution of the situation, including a return to democracy, respect for the rule of law and upholding of human rights of the Venezuelan people.

It was only a matter of time before such a statement was issued. Australia has long served as Washington’s basement gimp, marching to the beat of US foreign policy on all issues no matter how idiotic or dangerous for as far back as I can remember. My country has seamlessly transitioned from British colony to US military/intelligence asset without ever once raising its head toward anything resembling national sovereignty except once briefly in the mid-seventies, which saw a CIA/MI6 coup oust our elected leadership here. This coup was preceded by our then-Prime Minister’s discovery that Australian intelligence officers had been operating as proxies of the CIA to overthrow the Allende government in Chile in yet another sovereignty-violating coup, one which has often been compared to what we’re seeing in Venezuela today.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Collapse Is Already Here

Collapse Is Already Here

It’s a process, not an event.

Many people are expecting some degree of approaching collapse — be it economic, environmental and/or societal — thinking that they’ll recognize the danger signs in time. 

As if it will be completely obvious, like a Hollywood blockbuster. Complete with clear warnings from scientists, politicians and the media.  And everyone can then get busy either panicking or becoming the plucky heroes. 

That’s not how collapse works.

Collapse is a process, not an event.

And it’s already underway, all around us. 

Collapse is already here.

However, unlike Hollywood’s vision, the early stages of collapse cause people to cling even tighter to the status quo. Instead of panic in the streets, we simply see more of the same — as those in power do all they can to remain so, while the majority of the public attempts to ignore the growing problems for as long as it possibly can.

For both the elite and the majority, their entire world view and their personal sense of self depends on things not crumbling all around them, so they remain willfully blind to any evidence to the contrary.

When faced with the predicaments we warn about here at PeakProsperity.com, getting an early start on prudently shifting your own personal situation is of vital strategic and tactical importance. Tens of thousands of our readers already have taken wise steps in their lives to position themselves resiliently.

But most of the majority won’t get started until it’s entirely too late to make any difference at all. Which is sad but perhaps unavoidable, given human nature.

If everybody around you is saying “Everything is awesome!”, it can take a long time to determine for yourself that things in fact aren’t:

Real collapse happens slowly, and often without any sort of acknowledgement by the so-called political and economic elites until its abrupt terminal end.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Yellow Vest Movement Spreads to Australia & Poland

We are witnessing the Yellow Vest Movement now also spreading to Australia. We are seeing the rise there and in Canada also against Fake News that the media is desperately fighting Trump on who now label him an idiot in headlines. We are also witnessing a backlash against taking in the Muslim claimed refugees from Syria in Australia as well. It is not a matter of race, but culture. People who traveled to Paris from the USA this summer have often returned with horror stories of being robbed on the street, cell phones, jewelry, purses being stolen by people on motorcycles. Muslim women begging on every corner of the Champs-Élysées. The culture clash is the problem. These people cannot speak the language and lack skills for employment for the most part. Immigrants historically seek economic opportunity – not handouts. Last November, Merkel was offering cash to the refugees to leave Germany it was getting that bad. Now she is willing to pay one year’s rent back home to leave Germany.

The Green groups that have taken over the UN are frantic fearing that they want to avoid the violent clashes that have rocked France from becoming a “je suis Trump” (I’m Trump) moment for against climate change. It was the higher global warming fuel taxes and other environmental efforts that sparked the “yellow-vests” protests that have forced Pres­ident Emmanuel Macron into ­retreat. In Canada, the Yellow Vests are also growing over environmental sanctions that block pipelines and creating employment in the energy industry which is also lurking behind a growing separatist movement in Alberta.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Climate Diary of an extreme heatwave across Australia and climate heat impacts

Climate Diary of an extreme heatwave across Australia and climate heat impacts

The Bureau of Meteorology in the lead up to christmas in 2018 showed a heatwave building through the week. The forecast was for severe and extreme heatwave impacts particularly Thursday 27 December to Saturday 29 December.

A blocking high in the Tasman and strong heat from the Pilbara in Western Australia and right through Central Australia, will periodically extend tendrils of sweltering heat to encompass the major population centres of Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney.

While these cities may get occasional relief from weak cold fronts and coastal sea breezes, inland towns will swelter in the scorthing heat with temperatures in the mid to high 30s and low 40s.

Graphing the Tmax trend in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and some regional towns

Heatwave climate diary

  • December 22 – Initial Warning
  • December 23 – UK Met Office takes note, VicHealth issues heathealth alerts
  • December 24 – No report as travelling
  • December 25 – Hot christmas for Sydney, Climate scientists says this is the face of climate change
  • December 26 – Marble Bar feeling the heat, SBS story on Heat health, South African heatwave, Was it hot on Boxing Day?
  • December 27 – Heatwave spans 5 states with 49C forecast, Climate Council heatwave and Heathealth reports, hot in Sydney, bloody hot in Adelaide, 5 years of climate inaction, Melbourne Temps hit 40C, Tennant Creek smashes record, Emus seek heat respite in sea
  • December 28 – Catastrophic fire warning in South Australia, Surface temperatures soar, heat records fall in several SA towns, South African heatwave finishes
  • December 29 – Slow roasting Australia, Cruel increase in night time temps in Albury, warning about taking fur buddies for a walk, Thongs and roads melting in Sydney while NSW inland records fall, Heat in Canberra, Alice Springs sets all time heat record, historical heat deaths stats, New extreme heat policy by Tennis Australia, AMA on heathealth Safety, climate scientist warning

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Australia Inserting Nano-Chips in $50 & $100 Bills to Track Underground Economy & Coming Barter System

 

While the BitCoin people have hated me for not agreeing with them that a private currency could displace the currencies of all nations and BitCoin would be the new “reserve currency” killing the dollar, to me they are in serious need of help. They have ZERO comprehension of governmental power and ZERO understanding of what is going on behind the curtain. The IMF has come out and stated that each nation should issue their own cryptocurrency and these fools cheers claiming I am not with it and do not get this new age of technology. Sorry, but these people are really clueless if not perhaps undercover people with a mission to get people willing to surrender their final liberty – paper money.

While cryptobugs advocate gold is dead and BitCoin will conquer the financial world, they miss the point entirely. The IMF is by no means embracing cryptocurrencies for the same reason these people have claimed it will bypass central banks. The IMF is advocating the end of paper money to kill the underground or black economy solely to aid the hunt for taxes and to PREVENT bank runs. If there is no paper money, how can you run to the bank in a panic demanding to withdraw your money? They also argue eliminating paper money will end crime.

Now,  Michael Andrew, the man appointed by the Australian Federal government to lead the ‘Black Economy Taskforce’ at the end of 2016, is arguing for an interim-step.  He believes tracking the currency denomination is the best solution in stopping the underground/black economy and grabbed taxes if you found a $50 or $100 bill on the street and failed to give the government their 50%.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Australia’s House of Cards is Collapsing: Recession Coming Up

Australia’s housing collapse is now in full swing. A recession will follow shortly.

Inga Ting, Geoff Thompson and Alex McDonald provide and excellent set of graphics and information on the bursting of Australia’s housing bubble at House of Cards.

Home prices in more than four out of five council areas have reached their peak and are sliding towards an unknown nadir, according to the latest figures from property market analyst CoreLogic.

As the slump moves into its second year with little or no prospect of rebound, the downturn in capital city property markets threatens to drag down the rest of the economy.

And with a mixed outlook for the global economy, doubts are surfacing about where Australia is going to find the fuel to extend its near-record run of 27 years of unbroken economic growth.

Yearly Change in Median Dwelling Value

​The graph in the article is interactive with a choice of eight cities. Sydey displayed above.

Major Declines Since 1980

Click on the graph for an even larger image.

Perth and Darwin have been clobbered. Sydney is in the works.

Every Bubble is Different

Lindsay David on Twitter

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“Severe Collapse” of Home Prices Might Trigger a “Financial-Institution Crisis” in Australia: OECD Frets about the Bank

“Severe Collapse” of Home Prices Might Trigger a “Financial-Institution Crisis” in Australia: OECD Frets about the Bank

“The authorities should prepare contingency plans.” The big four banks are too exposed to mortgages. Even if the banks don’t topple, the economy will get hit hard.

In its latest report on Australia, the OECD focuses to a disturbing extend on housing, household debt, what the current housing downturn might do to the otherwise healthy economy, and what the risks are that this housing downturn will lead to a financial crisis for the big four Australian banks, an eventuality that it says “authorities” should make “contingency plans” for.

The big four banks are huge in relation to the Australian stock market and the overall economy: Their combined market capitalization, at A$341 billion, even after today’s sell-off following the OECD report – accounts for 26% of Australia’s total stock market capitalization.

How they dominate the stock market showed up on Monday after the release of the report:

  • Common Wealth Bank of Australia (CBA): -2.98%
  • Westpac (WBC): -3.38%
  • Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ): -4.09%
  • National Australia Bank (NAB): -2.54%

The overall ASX stock index on Monday dropped 2.27%.

These big four are heavily owned by Australian pension funds, retail investors, and the like and form a big part of the retirement nest egg of the nation. So a banking crisis that involves the Big Four matters on all fronts – and the OECD report even pointed out that a collapse in the share prices of the Big Four would itself impact the overall economy negatively.

The report (PDF) starts by explaining just how strong the economy is in Australia:

With 27 years of positive economic growth, Australia has demonstrated a remarkable capacity to sustain steady increases in material living standards and absorb economic shocks.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Australia’s Economy Is A House Of Cards, Set For Sharp Downturn In 2019 

Damien Boey, a research analyst at Credit Suisse, has warned that economic growth in Australia could slow quite sharply next year, raising the prospect that a slowdown could be immient.

Boey expects the recent growth spurt driven by strong infrastructure investment, could fade in the first half of 2019, and the risks associated with housing construction and household spending from the downturn in real estate could signal that the Reserve Bank of Australia’s rate hike cycle would have to be put on hold.

“Our view is that the economy is overshooting,” Boey said.

“We believe that growth will eventually slow as timely leading indicators [such as PMIs] are suggesting.”

Boey said infrastructure investments had driven the recent surge in economic activity.

“We think that the [economy] is still being supported by infrastructure,” he said.

“The latest Access Economics data for Q3 suggest that growth in the stock of infrastructure spending has re-accelerated. And recently, project spending growth has been remarkably positively correlated with the cycle in domestic demand.”

While actual infrastructure investment has been substantial, Boey did not expect the trend to last due to the lack of new projects in the pipeline.

“In 2018 to date, actual project spending growth has accelerated, even as the project pipeline has thinned out,” he said.

“It is in this sense that we think infrastructure spending growth has been overshooting, contributing to the overshooting we are also seeing in domestic demand growth relative to leading indicators,” Boey added.

“However, the more growth in spending we experience today, the more we also eat into future growth, unless policy makers are able to adequately top up the project pipeline.

“As the saying goes, ‘serenity now, insanity later’.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
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