Earth Wars: The Battle for Global Resources

Earth Wars: The Battle for Global Resources

Geoff Hiscock

Language: English

Pages: 286

ISBN: 1118152883

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


A fascinating insight into the global battle for our energy future

The global competition for scarce natural resources that pits the West against the super-hot economies of China and India, plus a clutch of other contenders including Russia, Brazil, and Indonesia, has become one of the biggest issues facing the world today. Whether it is the rare metal lithium found in salt pans in the Andes, gas from the Caspian Sea, oil off the coast of Brazil, coal from Africa's Zambezi River, or uranium from Kazakhstan, China and India are desperate to ensure the security of their future energy supplies. The same goes for food and water, as contamination and over-use take their toll, the need to provide continued access for the next generation and beyond has increased exponentially. In Earth Wars: The Battle for Global Resources, international business journalist Geoff Hiscock explores the problems, potential solutions, and inevitable tensions in this ongoing scramble for finite natural resources.

Going beyond "big power" politics to explore resource ownership and the use of innovative technology to get the most out of them, the book takes a forward-looking approach to this pressing issue. Written in clear, jargon-free language, it tells the global resources story in a fresh and engaging way that anyone can understand.

  • Includes insightful, up-to-the-minute coverage of the most pressing debates over resource allocations
  • Discusses the major Chinese and Indian businesses that are just becoming known to those in the West (Sinopec, CNOOC, CNPC, Indian Oil, ONGC, Reliance, Coal India, SAIL, and many others)
  • Presents resource- and region-specific chapters to help readers view the pertinent issues from multiple angles

As the economies of China and India grow to challenge those of the West, the battle over natural resources will continue to heat up. Earth Wars looks at this very real problem in-depth, presenting a definitive look at one of the greatest challenges of our time.

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growth figure in 2010 with 19.5 percent in 2011, the fastest pace in the world. About $250 billion is earmarked for infrastructure spending and other projects leading up to the 2022 World Cup—a substantial figure for a country with a GDP of only $125 billion. After a period as a British protectorate, Qatar became independent in 1971. The current ruler, Sheikh Hamad, replaced his father in 1995. Kazakhstan’s Fields of Dreams The Kashagan field, named after a nineteenth-century Kazakh poet

hundred years later, prospectors big and small pegged out claims for tenements rich in nickel, iron ore, copper, and zinc. Now there is a new lure—rare earths: the 17 chemical elements that one day may prove the biggest mining bonanza of them all. Their names—scandium, yttrium, and the 15 lanthanides such as lanthanum and cerium—are yet to loom large in the public consciousness. But in the ongoing battle for control of the world’s most valuable resources, rare earths and rare metals sit

damage that could be visited on the global oil sector by a determined adversary; Saddam Hussein’s scorched-earth policy as his troops retreated from Kuwait left 700 oil wells alight. It would take nine months before the last fire was extinguished in November 1991. Despite its regional vulnerability, Jamnagar is just one example of how complex refining capacity is moving away from Europe to the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Latin America. The four biggest refineries in the world now under

2030. All told, Iraq plans to spend $20 billion on Nassiriyah and three smaller plants at Karbala, Kirkuk, and Maysan. South Korea stands near the top of the tree when it comes to refining capacity. It has three of the world’s top-ten refineries: the 817,000 b/d Ulsan plant operated by SK Group; the 750,000 b/d Yeosu plant operated by GS Caltex, and the 565,000 b/d Onsan plant run by S-Oil. The other significant project in Asia is Vietnam’s 200,000 b/d Nghi Son refinery, a $6 billion plant due

29, arriving at Ningbo three weeks later. It was the first of seven tankers it would send to Asia via the NSR in 2011, aided by icebreakers such as the nuclear-powered NS Yamal. The NSR has its limitations—a short sailing season, the cost of hiring icebreakers, and the hazards of extreme northern waters—but Novatek says the route is an integral part of the company’s logistical strategy to develop prospective gas fields in the Yamal peninsula, an area that holds as much as 83 percent of Russia’s

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