Monday, October 24, 2011

The neoContagion

In a recent post, The Peak of Health and The Peak of Oil, we looked at some of the known impacts that peak oil will have on health care and food production.

At least as far as the professional opinion of The American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) is concerned.

That contemplation of the impact of peak oil and the subsequent decline in the production of oil, set forth by the AJPH, unfortunately comes at a time when The United Nations is slated to issue a warning about overpopulation running amok.

Not only that, this looming unwelcome reality also comes at a time when contagion is in a position to raise its ugly head too:
"Scientists have been accused of overreacting and crying wolf over the threat of virus outbreaks after the influenza pandemic of 2009," Lipkin told the Observer. "Sars [Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome] didn't progress beyond a few locations, but outbreaks and pandemics will occur and we need to get our heads out of the sand and realise the real risks that we face. More than three-quarters of all emerging infectious diseases originate when microbes jump from wildlife to humans.

"Our vulnerability to such diseases has been heightened by the growth in international travel and the globalisation of food production. In addition, deforestation and urbanisation continue to displace wildlife, increasing the probability that wild creatures will come in contact with domesticated animals and humans."
(Guardian, review of movie Contagion). It looks like the concept of "a perfect storm", as some have described these conditions in recent times.

Add to that the specter of global warming induced climate change, that governments are already bogged down with economic disasters, and that their revenue is declining.

It then becomes reasonable to think that governments are likely to have to throw up their hands to simply plan for triage as the best they can do.

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