1 Energy, Environment and Climate, The Department of Environmental, Social and Spatial Change, Roskilde University2 The Department of Environmental, Social and Spatial Change, Roskilde University3 The Department of Society and Globalisation, Roskilde University
a counterfactual hypothesis
According to Stern 2006, postponing investments against global warming leads to much higher costs in the future. Historically, the world already experienced such a time-delay and its costs. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, less than 2% of global GDP in two decades, available from halving military expenditure, would have been sufficient to make the world safe against global warming. The energy procurement, chemicals and transport sectors, agriculture and other energy application systems could have been reconstructed ecologically and the debt burden of developing countries removed (Commoner 1990). Boomerangs of the international debt crisis including bail-out of U.S. banks, loss of jobs, deforestation, migration, conflict and war could have been avoided (Susan George 1992). Defending its geopolitical position, the dominant block at power excluded, however, any peace dividend (Fortune 1990). In crucial bifurcations, environmentally progressive alternatives are easily dismissed. Although technologically advanced scenarios for low energy paths make the very concept of sustainable development operational (Czeskleba-Dupont 2003), it is made irrelevant that they falsify prognoses of ever rising demand (WCED 1987, chapter 7). In the raison d' état of an anarchic world-system, it seems more 'secure' by violence to expropriate others of their natural resources.