Kerri-Ann Jones discusses the work that the State Department is doing internationally to aid conservation efforts. This meeting is part of the Global Resources, the U.S. Economy, and National Security symposium, sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations and Conservation International.
"If a government can finance itself through the profits on oil, it needn't collect taxes. Let me suggest that this is not a good thing. Taxes create accountability — citizens want to know how the government is spending their money. Substituting oil revenues decouples government from the people. The list of the world's worst-governed countries today features many that are dependent on the production of oil: Nigeria, Angola, Chad, Venezuela, Libya, Equatorial Guinea."
The concept of pricing ecosystem services and allowing them to be bought and sold has gained wide acceptance among conservationists in recent years. But does this approach merely obscure nature's true value and put the natural world at even greater risk?
Authors: Suan Ee Ong, Rômulo S. R. Sampaio, Andrei Marcu, and Agathe Maupin and Elizabeth Sidiropoulos
Although this year's Rio+20 conference produced only vague goals and few concrete commitments, it provided a major opportunity to shift the global environmental focus to the national and local levels, says this Expert Roundup.
Forty years ago, the Club of Rome produced a best-selling report warning humanity that its escalating wants were on a collision course with the world's finite resources and that the only way to avoid a crash was to stop chasing economic growth. The predictions proved spectacularly wrong. But the environmental alarmism they engendered persists, making it harder for policymakers to respond rationally to real problems today.
Emerging economies taking advantage of mineral and petroleum wealth often face corruption and conflict rather than benefit from sustainable development. This resource curse can be obviated, CFR Fellow Terra Lawson-Remer argues, if capital-exporting countries, banks, and corporations insist on transparency.
Current global population growth rates and consumption patterns are not environmentally sustainable. Integrated population and environment approaches would allow governments to effectively address these at both a macro and micro level.
The authors argue that the United States has responded inadequately to the rise of Chinese power and recommend placing less strategic emphasis on the goal of integrating China into the international system and more on balancing China's rise.
Campbell evaluates the implications of the Boko Haram insurgency and recommends that the United States support Nigerian efforts to address the drivers of Boko Haram, such as poverty and corruption, and to foster stronger ties with Nigerian civil society.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2015 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »