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Geography: Edexcel: A2: SUPERPOWERS
Terms in this set (164)
A superpower is a nation with the ability to project its influence anywhere in the world and be a dominate global force.
A nation that can conduct a global strategy including the possibility of destroying the world; to command vast economic potential and influence; and to present a universal ideology.
An unchallenged superpower that is dominant in all aspects of power (political, economic, cultural, military)
(E.g. USA from 1990 to 2010 and Britain from 1850 to 1910)
Define emerging superpower
A nation whose economic, military, and political influence is already large and is growing.
Define regional power
These are smaller. They influence other countries at a continental scale.
E.g. South Africa wishing Africa
Pillars of power: economic power
Represents the 'base' of the temple. A large and powerful economy gives nations the wealth to build and maintain a powerful military, exploit natural resources and develop human ones through education.
Pillars of power: military power
This is used in 2 ways:
1. The threat of military action is a powerful bargaining chip.
2. Military force can be used to achieve geopolitical goals.
Some forms of military power, like blue water navy, drone, missile and satellite technology, can be devoted global ally and reach distant places.
Define blue water navy
One which can deploy into the open ocean. Many smaller nations only have. Green water navy designed to patrol littoral waters.
Pillars of power: cultural power
This includes how appealing a nation's way of life, values and ideology are to others, and is often exercised through film, the arts and food.
Pillars of power: resources
These can be in the form of physical resources but also human resources. The latter includes the level of education and skills in a nation, but also the sheer numbers of people (demographic weight).
*China and EU
China and EU as superpowers
-China weakened by its lack of cultural and political influence.
-EU weakened bc it's 28 member states don't always act coherently so the bloc's economic size is not reflected in global influence.
A set of beliefs, values and opinions held by the majority of people in a society. These determine what is considered normal or acceptable behaviour.
Superpowers project their ideology on others. In the can of USA, this includes free speech, individual liberty, consumerism and free-market economics (western values)
Hard vs soft power, Joseph Nye 1990
Soft power - power of persuasion: making policies attractive and appealing so other countries follow
Hard power - getting your own way by force
Both forms of power have existed for centuries.
Economic power can be thought of as sitting somewhere between hard and soft power.
Combination of hard power of coercion and payment with soft power of persuasion and attraction
Why is soft power necessary?
-invasions, war and conflict are blunt instruments. Hey often do not go as planned and fail to achieve the aims of those exercising hard power.
-soft power alone may not persuade one nation to do as another says, especially if they are culturally and ideologically very different.
-military action and conquest, or the threat of it
-alliances (economic and military) to marginalise some nations
-use of economic sanctions to damage a nation's economy
-economic or development aid from one nation to another
-signing favourable trade agreements to increase economic ties
-the cultural attractiveness of some nations (making it more likely others will follow their lead)
-the values and ideology of some nations being seen as appealing
-the moral authority of a nation's foreign policy
Define gel-strategic policies
Policies that attempt to meet the global and regional policy aims of a country by climbing diplomacy with the movement and positioning of military assets.
The heartland theory, Mackinder, 1904
He identifies a region of Eurasia as the heartland.
This continental land area is protected by invasion from the sea, stretched from Russia to China and from the Himalayas to the Arctic.
Mackinder argues that this was the key geo-strategic location in the world bc control of it meant control of a large portion of the world's physical and human resources.
Policies of containment resulting form the Heartland Theory :
1. Attempts, after WW1, to limit the ability of Germany to expand the land area it controlled.
2. The post-WW2 NATO allies' attempts to contain the Soviet Union from expanding into western and Southern Europe.
Role of hard power today - examples
(Less powerful than before)
- The Gulf War
-the invasion of Iraq in 2003 by US-led forces
-the American-led war in Afghanistan
-Russian annexation of Crimea in Ukraine in 2013, and the subsequent economic sanctions imposed on Russia in response by the EU, USA and other nations.
Define unipolar world
A world dominated by one superpower
E.g. The British Empire or US-dominated world of today
Define bipolar world
One in which two superpowers, with opposing ideologies, vie for power
E.g The Cold War (USA and USSR)
Define multi-polar world
More complex : many superpowers and emerging poets compete for power in different regions
The British Empire
-by 1920 ruled over 20% of the world's population and 25% of its land area
-The Royal Navy dominates the world's oceans, protecting the colonies and trade routes (in 1914, Britain's Navy was about 2x as large as the next largest - Germany's)
The British Empire: colonial India
-British military personnel, civil servants and entrepreneurs emigrated to India to run the Raj.
-Educated Indians (speaking English and eating European dress) occupied many lower administrative positions.
-Symbols of imperial power, such as the residence of the governor-general in Delhi and the Howrah Bridge in Kolkata, demonstrated Britain's imperial wealth and technical prowess.
-a process of acculturation was undertaken as British traditions, such as cricket, the English language and afternoon tea, were introduced
-a strict social order was maintained that differentiates the ruling white British from the Indians
-India was modernised
Define Cold War
A period of tension between ideologically rival superpowers the capitalist USA and communist USSR from 1945-1990.
Also the time when nuclear weapons were perfected
Define colonial control
Direct control exerted over territories conquered by mainly European powers in the period of 1600 to 1900. They were ruled by force, with almost no power or influence being given to the original population
A process of cultural change that takes place when two different cultures meet and interact; it includes the transfer of a dominant culture's ideas on to a subordinate culture.
The British Empire: Mercantile phase (1600-1850)
-Small colonies are conquered on coastal fringes and islands (e.g. New England) and defended by coastal forts
-the forts and navy protect trade in raw materials and slaves
-the economic interests of private trading companies such as the Royal African Company and East India Company are defended by British armed forces
The British Empire: Imperial phase (1850-1945)
-coastal colonies extend inland, with the conquest of vast territories
-religion, competitive sport and the English Lang. are introduced to colonies
-British government institution are set up to rule the colonial population
-complex trade develops
-settlers from Britain set up farms and plantations in colonies
-technology is used to connect distant parts of the empire
The post-colonial era
Most colonial powers had lost their colonies by 1970. REASONS:
-post-War bankruptcy - no money left to run/defend colonies
-the focus on post-War reconstruction at home meant that colonies were viewed as less important
-anti-colonial movements, e.g. India, grew increasingly strong and demands for independence could not be ignored
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: HUMAN RESOURCES
-USSR had a bigger population (more Human Resources)
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: PHYSICAL RESOURCES
-both self-sufficient in most raw materials
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: ECONOMIC SYSTEMS
-USA: capitalist, USSR: socialist
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: POLITICAL SYSTEMS
-USA: democracy, USSR: dictatorship
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: ALLIES
USA: Western Europe, Japan + South Korea
USSR: Eastern Europe and Cuba
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: MILITARY POWER
USA: largest navy and most powerful Air Force, large nuclear arsenal, global intelligence
USSR: large army (often outdated), nuclear weapons, troops in Eastern Europe, global intelligence
The Cold War - 1945-1990: the USA compared to USSR: CULTURAL INFLUENCE
USA: radio, TV and music industry - powered vehel for convert positive view of Western ideology
USSR: strict censorship, 'high' culture focused on ballet, classical music and art.
Refers to an indirect form of control that meant newly independent countries were not actually masters of their own destiny
Mechanisms of neo-colonial control: strategic alliances
Military alliances between developing nations and superpowers make the developing nation DEPENDENT on military aid and equipment from the superpower
Mechanisms of neo-colonial control: aid
Development aid comes with 'strings attached' (tied aid), forcing the recipient to agree
to policies and spending priorities suggested by the aid donor
Mechanisms of neo-colonial control: TNC investment
Investment from abroad may create jobs and wealth, but be dependent on the receiving country following 'friendly' policies
Mechanisms of neo-colonial control: terms of trade
Low commodity export prices contrast with high prices for imported goods from developed countries, inhibiting development
Mechanisms of neo-colonial control: debt
Developing countries borrow money from developed ones, and then end up in a debtor-creditor relationship
Neo-colonial relationships: USA and USSR w/allies
*these relationships often propped up corrupt, anti-democratic and violent regimes
E.g. those of President Mobutu in Zaire (supported by USA) and President Mengistu in Ethiopia (supported by USSR)
Stability: Unipolar world
Domination by one hyperpower may seem stable but the hyperpower is unlikely to be able to maintain control everywhere, all the time
— leading to frequent challenges by rogue states not accepting the hyperpower's position
Could be stable, as it's divided into 2 opposing blocs. Stability will depend on diplomatic channels of communication between the blocs remaining open and each superpower having the ability to control countries in its bloc
— breakdown of control/communication could lead to disastrous conflict
Complex bc numerous relationships between more or less equally powerful states
— the opportunities to misjudge the intentions of others, or fears over alliances creating more powerful blocs, are high and may increase the risk of conflict
The dominance of a superpower over other countries.
Can be exercised in several ways .
—-Sheer size and multiple capabilities of US military forces give it dominance over world affairs. The USA spend mor won its military then the next 9 largest spenders combined.
—- by education systems teaching a particular ideology, religion subtly reinforcing political ideology, music/television/film reinforcing/demonising certain values, news media controlling messages people hear (E.G. Mussolini, Italian fascist dictator)
Emerging powers: BRICS
*set up a formal association in 2009
Emerging powers: The G20 major economies
This group formed in 1999 and meets annually.
It is made up of 19 countries + EU and includes some potential emerging powers like Mexico, Indonesia, South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Turkey
-collectively accounts for 85% of global GDP and 85% of world trade
Largest Countries by population and GDP in 2030
Strengths and weaknesses of the emerging powers: Brazil
-strong agricultural economy and exporter
-energy independent in oil and biofuels
-growing middle class
-culturally influential w/ 2012 World Cup and 2016 Olympics
-economy suffers from boom and bust phases
-needs to control the destruction of its forests
-education levels lag behind
Strengths and weaknesses of the emerging powers: Russia
-a nuclear power with larger military capacity
-huge oil and gas reserves
-permanent seat on the UN Security Council
-ageing and declining population
-extreme levels of inequality
-difficult relations with the EU and USA
Strengths and weaknesses of the emerging powers: India
-english is widely spoken
-possible future resource shortages
-poor transport and energy infrastructure
-high levels of poverty
-poor relations with neighbours
Strengths and weaknesses of the emerging powers: China
-highly educated, technologically innovative
-soon to be world's largest economy
-military technology is challenging the USA's
-will soon have an ageing population
-tense relationships with its neighbours
-relies on imported raw materials
-plays a limited geopolitical role
Theories of power: modernisation theory
Theory argues that countries develop in 5 stages *take-off model/modernisation theory
Pre-industrial societies would develop very slowly until certain preconditions for economic takeoff:
-exports of raw materials
-development of key infrastructure
-technology becomes more widespread
-education leading to increased social mobility
-banking and financial systems to allow places to take part in global trade
-governance and legal systems, to protect investors, property owners and trade transactions
Once these were in place, industrialisation and the growth of secondary industry would begin, along with increasing urbanisation
A country would rapidly become an industrial one and wealth would increase
Disadvantages of Rowstow theory
-only really describes the economic change and growth
-doesn't help us understand how come countries gain the political and cultural aspects of power needed to be a superpower
-however, economic wealth and an industrial economy and precursors to obtaining military power
Theories of power: Dependency theory
Despite independence, many developing African, Asian and Latin American nations existed in a state of dependency and underdevelopment
The progress of a developing country is influenced by economic, cultural and political forces that are controlled by developed countries
The mechanisms of dependency theory
Core developed countries to peripheral developing countries:
-political and economic ideas
Peripheral developing countries to core developed countries:
-debt repayments and purchase payments
Frank saw periphery countries providing a range of services to core countries, for example:
-cheap commodities, such as oil, coffee and copper.
-labour in the form of migration, especially 'brain drain' migration of skilled workers
-markets for manufactured good and locations for investment, such as mines and HEP dams
Dependency theory is relevant to superpower status in a number of ways:
-superpowers that control developing nations are gaining economic wealth and power by exploiting them
-in turn, keeping these countries underdeveloped reduces the number of potential emerging powers
-wealthy local elites, who own exporting/importing businesses and have political connections, benefit from the dependency relationship because they control the limited trade in goods and services, but the wider population does not benefit
Weakness of dependency theory
it is static. The theory suggests that countries are stuck in a permanently underdeveloped state.
Theories of power: world systems theory
He stressed that development should be viewed within a global economic context rather than focusing on individual countries.
As the global capitalist economy expanded in the 19th and 20th centuries some once peripheral regions have increasingly become part of the work economy
3 broad economic development categories:
1. CORE REGIONS - the Organisatiom for Economic Co-operation and development countries and the USA and EU superpowers
2. SEMI-PERIPHERY REGIONS - the NICs of Latin America and Asia, including emerging powers such as India and China
3. PERIPHERY REGIONS - the rest of the developing world
Wallerstein's theory has the flexibility to recognise that countries may change group over time.
e.g. in the future China may move into the core world
A more classically Marxist theory, such as Frank's dependency theory, is more rigid, simply seeing the world divided into 'owners' and 'workers'
In the world system theory model:
-core countries use semi-periphery countries as cheap locations to manufacture goods, such as the Free Trade Zones is China, or as locations for cheap services, such as the call centres of Bangalore
-core countries get large returns on the foreign investment hey make in semi-periphery countries
-periphery regions provide raw materials to supply the manufacturing industry in semi-periphery regions and consumption in core regions. The periphery is furthest down the supply chain and therefore least able to benefit from the profits made by selling finished goods and services
World systems theory seems to fit today's world reasonable well
Whereas dependency theory fits the north-south divide that existed up until the mid-1980s
Valid criticism: world systems theory is really just an analysis of the world's patterns of power and wealth rather than an explanation
Both theories have roots in Marxism
Marxist theories of development worth within this paradigm of rich and powerful versus poor and powerless.
Rowstow's modernisation theory ignores the Marxist class division and instead argues that countries develop in a linear way from 'poor' to wealthy and powerful.
*has become increasingly dominant as alternative economic systems have weakened, notably:
- the collapse of socialise economies in the USSR and Eastern Europe after 1990
- China's movement away from a socialist economy towards what has been called state capitalism
-reform in communist Cuba, allowing limited private ownership of businesses
Capitalism vs centrally planned economy: features
-private ownership of property
-private ownership of businesses
-the right to make a profit and accumulate any amount of wealth
-the buying and selling of goods and services in a competitive free market
-government ownership of property and land
-most businesses state owned and used to provide public services
-prices controlled by the government, which also controls the supply of goods and services
Capitalism vs centrally planned economy: examples
USA, Canada, Japan, Western Europe
Centrally planned economy:
USSR, China, Eastern Europe, Cuba
Global organisations and capitalism: world bank
Makes development loans to developing countries, but within a 'free-market' model that promotes exports, trade, industrialisation and private businesses, which benefits large developed-world TNCs.
Global organisations and capitalism: International Monetary Fund (IMF)
Promotes global economic security and stability, and assists countries to reform their economies. Economic reforms often mean more open access to developing economies for TNCs.
Global organisations and capitalism: World Economic Forum (WEF)
A Swiss non-profit organisation that promotes globalisation and few trade via its annual meeting at Davos, which brings together the global business and political elite.
Global organisations and capitalism: World Trade Organisation (WTO)
IGO that regulates global trade. Established in 1995, it has brokered many agreements aimed at promoting open trade and reducing protectionism. Previously known as the General Agreement in Tariffs and Trade.
Global TNCs and their role
*world's largest TNCs originate from the world's superpowers and emerging powers
Publicly traded TNCs
their shares are owned by numerous shareholders (usually other TNCs, banks and large financial institutions such as pension funds) around the world
State owned TNCs
Majority or wholly owned by state government
*state owned TNCs are often large but not well known as their brand isn't global
The dominance of TNCs in the global economy has been caused by a number of factors:
-their economies of scale mean they can outcompete smaller companies and, in many cases, take them over.
-their bank balances and ability to borrow money to invest has allowed hygiene to take advantage of globalisation by investing in new technology.
-the move towards free-market capitalism and free trade has opened up new markets, allowing them to expand.
arguable that TNCs have been the main beneficiaries of the post-1990 US dominance of the global economic system and the free-market capitalism economy.
Key criticism of TNCs as a drive of globalisation
Their pursuit of shareholder profit above all else
The world's largest public and state-owned TNCs
Global brand value rankings, 2015:
-12/16 top companies are from the USA, 2 from Germany and 1 each from South Korea and Japan
-10/16 top brands are involved in ICT and communications, 3 are car makers and 2 are good and drink
-the top Chinese company in 2025 was Lenovo at position 100
-many of the brands can be recognised instantly from the colour and shape of their logos
Define brand value
The value of a brand using metrics such S market share, customer opinion of the brand and brand loyalty
Characteristics of westernisation
-a culture of consumerism
-capitalism and the importance of attaining wealth
-a white, Anglo-Saxon culture with English as the dominant language
-a culture that cherry picks and adapts selective parts of other world cultures and absorbs them
-in the UK: curry = most popular takeaway food, 6x as many curry restaurants as threes are McDonalds
-Sushi (Japanese) has become an increasingly popular food in the West
-American football and baseball have had a hard time being exported to the rest of the world
India: the Maharaja Mac (Big Mac made of lamb or chicken) and McAloo Tikki (a vegetarian burger)
—- to suit the Muslim and Hindu religions, no beef or pork
Japan: green tea flavoured milkshake and Ebi-Chilli (shrimp nuggets)
Israel: over 1/4 of its restaurants are kosher, burgers are grilled over charcoal (not fried), the McKebab w/ Eastern seasoning is served in pitta bread
Innovation and patents
*TNCs invent new technology and develop new products and brands
TNCs, and governments, invest huge sums in research and development to develop new products.
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Intellectual property law protects these new developments in the form of:
-patents, for new inventions, technologies and systems
-copyright for artistic works, such as music, books and artworks
-trademarks to protect designs, such as logos
*any person wishing to use one of the above has to pay a royalty fee to the inventor or designer.
Globally, 85% of all royalty payments go to the USA, EU and Japan.
This domination of global royalties reflects the fact that:
-existing superpowers and developed countries are paid for inventions and artistic works they created decades ago
-developed world TNCs are in the best position to invest in R&D (research and development), so patent holders tend to also be new patent developers
-education levels are higher in already developed countries, as are skill levels
-westernisation and cultural globalisation tend to spread US and European music, film, TV and brands
The Security Council
The primary global mechanism for maintaining international peace and security.
It has 5 permanent member states and ten rotating non-permanent members.
The security council can maintain international laws by:
-applying sanctions to countries that are deemed to be a security risk, harbouring terrorism, threatening or invading another state or breaching human rights
-authorising The has of military force against a country
-authorising a UN Peacekeeping Force: troops occupy a country or region under the UN flag to keep the peace in a conflict but do not 'take sides'
* In the latter 2 cases, military forces are pooled from UN member states
The Security Council works in a very imperfect way:
-any one of the five permanent members can veto a decision, preventing it from happening
-the USA, UK and France tend to vote 'as one', as do Russia and China, leading to deadlock
-the Security Council has been accused of passing resolutions condemning a country's actions but then failing to act to prevent these
USA: global police?
A striking feature of the last 40 years is the number of times the USA has intervened militarily in foreign countries: it has done this in 3 ways:
1. As part of a UN Security Council action
2. Together with allied countries as a coalition, but outside a UN remit
3. Unilaterally, that is, with no support from other countries
Military alliances: USA and NATO
-since 1980, the USA has increasingly acted with NATO allies rather than the UN
-Despite the USA's vast firepower, NATO is important to it because of the 'strength in numbers' an alliance brings.
NATO needs to be seen within the context of wider US military power:
-the NATO alliance, dating from 1949 has 28 member states that collectively account for most of the world's firepower including nuclear weapons
-NATO has a mutual defence agreement, meaning if one member is threatened, they all come to its aid
-the USA also has alliances across the Pacific (ANZUS treaty, with Australia and New Zealand) and mutual defence pacts with Japan, Soutb Korea and the Philippines
-US naval and Air Force bases are spread globally, not just in the USA, giving the USA true global reach
Russia's military alliance: the Collective Security Treaty Organisation
Only consists of former USSR republics attached to Russia's borders
Lacks any formal military alliances that go as far as a mutual defence agreement
The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, 1996
Becoming a more strategic partnership in Asia. The countries involved cooperate on:
-Security (e.g. counter-terrorism)
-military matters (e.g. carrying out joint exercises)
-some cultural and economic co-operation
Global crisis response: Haiti earthquake humanitarian relief effort, 2010
The devastating magnitude 7.0 earthquake destroyed 70% of buildings in the capital city, Port-au-Prince, and created a humanitarian disaster of huge proportions.
Global crisis response: Haiti earthquake humanitarian relief effort, 2010
A huge relief operation began, led by the UN and involving numerous countries and NGOs. US military logistical and technical assistance was crucial. Within 6 days:
-the US Air Force restores air traffic control to port-au-prince's airport to allow relief flights in
-US Coastguard helicopters began relief flights
-the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and helicopter carrier USS Bataan arrived to assist with rescue, food and water aid
-1600 US marines arrived by sea to provide humanitarian aid and technical help
Global crisis response: the Ebola epidemic, 2014-16
The outbreak of Ebola in West Africa in 2013 had become a terrifying epidemic by early 2014. Ebola has no cure or vaccine, and is easily transmitted in insanitary conditions. It has a mortality rate of 50-70%. The initial global response was slow and led by NGOs, such as MSF.
Global crisis response: the Ebola epidemic, 2014-16
-the USA, France and UK led the response in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone
-in Sierra Leone the UK committed £430 million, 1500 troops and 150 NHS personnel to fight the epidemic
-the work of NGOs and the World Health Organisation was crucial, but so was the support of traditionally powerful countries that can deploy significant assets quickly
By early 2016 the epidemic was over. (11,300 people died)
Strengthens interdependence between nations.
-those countries that have free-trade agreements between them are also members of military alliances. —- This creates a powerful act of economic and military security that reflects the ideology of each bloc.
Economic alliances: Western allies
For these, economic and military alliances overlap with many EU countries that are also NATO members, as well as overlap between NATO and NAFTA.
Economic alliances: ASEAN
*the association of southeast Asian nations, founded in 1967.
It has economic, cultural, security and political aims.
In 2009, it became a free trade bloc. ASEAN has free trade agreements with China, South Korea and Japan, and possibly with the EU in the future.
The free-trade agreements within trade blocs like the EU, NAFTA, ASEAN and potentially TTIP encourage economic interdependence because:
-free of import/exports taxes and tariffs, TNCs can operate as truly international entities, moving physical, human and financial resources anywhere within the bloc
-workers find it easier to move between countries, especially when freedom of movement is part of the agreement, as it is within the EU
-the revenues and profits of TNCs, and the smaller businesses that supply them, are highest when the economic health of the whole trade bloc is good
Global security: post-War system is under strain:
-it's leaders - the USA, UK and France - are not as economically or militarily powerful as they were
-there is a strong case for emerging powers - India and Brazil especially - to have more of a say in world affairs
-currently, neither Africa nor Latin America has a seat at the top table of world security decision-making, despite a combined population of 1.5 billion
-the global financial crisis of 2007-8 = worst since the Great Depression of the 1930s, strained the IMF and global financial system to the limit
-the ongoing threat of global terrorism from al-Quaeda, IS and the Taliban, among others, might suggest that global security co-operation is not all it could be
Global security: system has promoted stability
-UN agencies, such as WHO, Food and Agriculture Organisation and World Food Programme have reduced the burden of disease and hunger so that scenes of desperate people are rare today unless caused by war and conflict.
-the International Criminal Court is charged with bringing war criminals to justice
Global security pillars: political
-UN security council and UN peacekeeper forces 1945
New York, USA
Global security pillars: economic
-international monetary fund, 1945, Washington DC, USA
Global security pillars: social
World health organisation 1948, Geneva
Food & agriculture organisation 1945, Rome
Global security pillars: judicial
International court of justice & international criminal court, 1945, The Hague, Netherlands
Global environmental concerns
Superpowers have v large resource footprints. Maintaining a large economy, a military machine with global reach and a wealthy population requires energy, mineral, land and water resources.
e.g. China accounts for 1/2 of the world's coal consumption but only have 19% of the world's population. Coal has fuelled China's dramatic industrialisation since 1990.
The high resource consumption of superpowers and emerging powers generates a range of environmental issues:
-urban air quality is low in emerging power cities due to coal-burning power stations, the continued use of open stoves and dramatic increases in car use. This has major health implications: air quality in Beijing, Shanghai, Delhi and Mumbai regularly exceeds WHO safe limits
-demand for fossil fuel, mineral and food imports, plus manufactured goods exports, accounts for most of the world's CO2 emissions from shipping
-deforestation and land degradation are issues in some emerging powers as they seek to convert more land into farmland, continue to urbanise, increase demand for water and increase the use of chemicals in farming to increase yields
Reducing carbon emissions
Emerging power per capita emissions are rising bc still developing, industrialising and urbanising.
China's emissions per person are the same as those of an EU citizen. China's emissions could grow much higher as affluence increases. Decisions that China makes on emissions therefore have a disproportionate impact on global emissions because its share and potential for growth is so large.
2 arguments that might be put forward by emerging powers to defend their rising emissions are:
-should they not be allowed to industrialise and develop in the same way the EU, North America and Japan did?
-emerging countries can argue they are not really to blame - at least not yet. From 1850 to 2007, the USA emitted 339,000 million tonnes of CO2, or 28.8% of all cumulative historical emissions, to China's 105,000 million tonnes or 9%
On the other hand:
Huge range of technology and energy alternatives that can help reduce emissions today that were not available even 20 years ago. Perhaps there is an obligation for emerging powers to use these.
The global middle class
Significant furniture concern related to the growth of BRICS and other emerging powers is that rising affluence will rapidly increase the numbers of middle-class consumers.
—positive in terms of development but it may place huge strain on resources.
Numbers of middle-class consumers are expected to increase from about 2 billion today to 5 billion by 2030
The global middle class : implications
If by 2030, the average Chinese consumer has a similar income to a consumer in the EU or USA, it would mean:
- 1 billion cars on China's roads
-1350 million tonnes of cereals consumed each year
-180 million tonnes of meat consumed each year
-coal consumption in China would exceed global consumption in 2015
*are there enough resources?? What would environmental implications be??
Pressure of resources from rising consumption: food
-pressure on food supply in emerging powers will result from the nutrition transition and demands for new food types
-land once used for staple food grains will be converted to produce meat and dairy products
-without new land, prices could rise, squeezing the poorest
Pressure of resources from rising consumption: water
-some emerging powers already have water supply problems, notably India
-India's situation is likely to be critical by 2030, with 60% of areas facing water scarcity
-water supply in China, Indonesia and Nigeria could be problematic by 2030, especially in urban areas
Pressure of resources from rising consumption: energy
-global oil demand was about 95 million barrels per day in 2015
-by 2030, this is likely to rise, along with coal and gas demand, perhaps by 30%
-meeting his demand may lead to price rises and/or supply shortages
-countries with their own domestic supplies are likely to be in a stronger position than those relying in imports
Pressure of resources from rising consumption: resources
-demand for rare earth minerals - used in LCD screens and numerous other hi-tech gadgets - could increase prices
-the demand for lithium-based batteries is very high and could be hard to meet in the future
-even more basic metals, such as copper, tin and platinum, are at risk of supply shortage and dramatic price changes
Some resources are contested. This could be because:
-the land border between two countries is in dispute, such as the border between India and Pakistani-controlled Kashmir
-the ownership of a landmass is in dispute, such as Argentina's claim to the UK-governed Falkland Islands (which may contain offshore oil and gas resources)
-the extent of a nation's offshore exclusive economic zone is in dispute or claimed by another nation (several nations claim owenership over the Arctic which may contain valuable oil and gas reserves)
Define exclusive economic zone (EEZ)
The area of ocean extending 200 nautical miles beyond the coastline, over which nation controls the se and sun-sea resources.
EEZ borders are decided by the UN in the event of a dispute
Intellectual property (IP rights)
A global system of IP has been run since 1967 by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), which is part of the UN.
It ensures TNCs, individuals and government agencies can protect new inventions, trademarks and artistic works from use of others.
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This is important because:
-without IP, innovations and ideas can be stolen and used by others
-this would be a huge disincentive to innovate and invent
-the costs of developing new medicines or communication technologies could not be recouped through selling products of others could simply copy the idea.
On the other hand, IP has been criticised:
-IP requires users of a product to pay royalties to the inventor, which is a cost to developing countries
-IP holders do not have a duty to make a new invention available; in theory at least, they could prevent a new medicine being made.
-the system can create a monopoly where a patent holder can charge what they look like for a new product, denying it to some people on the basis of price
Chinese companies are well know for infringing IP by producing counterfeit goods.
E.g. many western car companies including BMW and Mercedes Benz have seen Chinese companies make copies of their models.
Fake apple products are also common
In 2013, the UN estimated that 70% of al of the world's counterfeit goods originate in China
Disregard for international IP treaties and counterfeiting sour relations between countries, especially the USA and China:
-TNCs may be reluctant to invest in China, know that their profits are likely to be reduced by counterfeiting
-lack of action by the Chinese authorities on IP issues might suggest its government is less likely to co-operate on other issues of international law
-the possibility of trade agreements being made is limited if one side believes the other will not 'play by the rules'
Spheres of influence
A physical region over which a country believe it has economic, military, cultural or political rights. Spheres of influence extend beyond the borders of the country and represent a region where he country believe it has a right to influence the policies of other countries.
Spheres of influence
Counterfeiting is unlikely to lead to physical conflict, but there are some situations that might. Several locations in the world have contested spheres of influence.
In some cases these are simply disputed borders. Nuclear armed Pakistan and India have a long-running territorial dispute over the ownership of Kashmir, further complicated by Chinese occupation of a nearby area called Aksai Chin.
Such disputes frequently flare up, often because:
- the balance of power changes, such as when Pakistan rested a nuclear weapon in 1998, putting it on a par with India in terms of military capability
-disputed territories are visited by high-level officials, such as when the Russian President Medvedev visited the Kuril Islands in 2010, which incensed Japan
-military 'sabre rattling' occurs, such as flying nets of sailing naval vessels close to a disputed territory: this frequently occurs in the South and East China seas by both China and the USA
-new resources are discovered or suspected, such as the possibility of oil in waters off the Falkland Islands, governed by the UK but claimed by Argentina
Arctic oil and gas
-estimated that 30% of the world's undiscovered gas, and 13% of oil resources, are in the Arctic. = 90-100 million barrels of oil, worth billions of dollars
Much dispute and tensions
Arctic oil and gas : Lomonosov Ridge
Dispute whether this is extension of Russia's continental shelf or not
— three of the parties in dispute have nuclear weapons (Russia, USA and EU)
— in 2007, the Russians used a submarine to place a Russian flag on the seabed at the North Pole, which inflamed tensions
— since then the number of 'scientific' expeditions to the Arctic has increased, as countries seek to have a greater presence in the areas
— both Russia and Canada have created dedicated 'Arctic Forces' to protect their interests
Arctic oil and gas
Tensions are likely to rise further as global warming makes the Arctic increasingly accessible to shipping for longer periods of the year, and oil and mineral exploration becomes easier.
And as oil reserves elsewhere run out, Arctic oil will look increasingly tempting.
In theory, the UN will decide whose claims stand and whose do not.
Russia's western border
Following he 1991 collapse of communism and the independence of former Soviet republics, several newly independent countries in this sphere have raised the possibility of joining the EU and/or NATO.
Russian's western border : increased tensions between Western Europe and Russia have implications for people and economics:
-EU and US economic sanctions following the 2014 Ukraine/Crimea crisis have isolated Russia economically, but also affected EU exporters who can no longer sell to Russia. Russian consumers have also suffered as imports have dried up.
-the open conflict in Crimea, eastern Ukraine and Georgia led to the forces displacement of tens and thousands of people, as well as hundreds of deaths
-NATO deployed additional air and ground forces to its eastern border in Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Bulgaria
—— speculation of a new Cold WR between Russia and the Western allies has increased since 2008
Developing countries: opportunities and threats
Existing superpowers have often been accused of having unfair relationships with developing countries. This means relationships based on:
-unfair terms of trade
-there brain drain of skilled workers from developing countries to boost developed-world economies
-local wealthy elites, who control imports and exports in developing countries, benefitting from the neo-colonial relationship but having no interest in changing it
China's Africans adventure
Since 2000, China has looked beyond its own borders and has become a source of FDI, not just a destination for it. Africa has become a major trading partner for China.
China's FDI has increased and it provides economic and development aid to Africa each year. Has also built railways and roads.
China's involvement in Africa has created created interdependence
-China relies on African oil from Angola, Nigeria and Sudan - as well as mineral such as Zambian copper, and even sugar and biofuels grown in Africa, to fuel its growing economy
-Africa increasingly imports Chinese-manufactured goods and relies on Chinese investment in infrastructure like roads, rails and ports
Concerns about the environmental impact of Chinese investment and resource exploitation:
-Chinese imports of tropical timber have been linked to widespread illegal deforestation in Mozambique
-oil spills linked to Chinese-funded oil wells have been reported in Chad, Sudan and Angola
-the extraction of the metallic ore coltan in the Democratic Republic of Congo has led to widespread forest loss and river pollution, but is vital to Chinese mobile phone and computer manufacturers
*Shell for example has similarly been accused of pollution the Niger Delta in Nigeria for decades
China's relationship with Africa: now-colonial challenge?
-infrastructure investments ensure China can export raw materials as cheaply and efficiently as possible
-skilled and technical jobs are often filled by Chinese migrant workers
-cheap Chinese imports have undercut local producers and forced them out of business
-much of the FDI brings only temporary construction jobs
-aid from China is tied to FDI: allow investment and China provides some aid
Pressure of resources from rising consumption: development opportunity?
-China has invested heavily in roads, railways and ports to export raw materials - it can be used by Africans themselves
-vital jobs are created which modernise the economy (industrial, transport and energy projects)
-Chinese factories and mines bring modern working practices and technology to Africa
-Chinese finance has funded 17 major HEP projects since 2000
-investment deals are often accompanied by aid, so the benefits of Chinese money are more widely spread
The centre of gravity shifts
-between 1820 and 1913, the Industrial Revolution in the UK rapidly pulled the world economy towards Europe
-following WW2, the dominant US economy pulled it across the Atlantic, but the subsequent rise of the EU edged it back East
-since 1990, the centre had shifted dramatically back towards Asia, especially China
-India and China may see the shift back to Asia as a return to their rightful position held between AD1 and 1500
Uncertainty for existing superpowers (USA and EU)
USA is arguably in a stronger position than the EU:
1. Although consisting of 50 states, the differences between states are minor so they're more likely to agree, unlike the 28 countries making up the EU
2. The USA is not ageing as fast as the EU and has a higher birthdate so its population will be youthful for longer
Uncertainty for existing superpowers (USA and EU)
Both face the ongoing costs of economic restructuring
Traditional manufacturing cities have lost jobs and required major investment in regeneration as well as the social costs of coping with rising unemployment
The 2007-8 global financial crisis dealt a severe blow to the EU, and to a lesser extent the USA.
The costs of bailing out collapsing banks and then collapsing countries has made the EU more inward looking and focused on its many problems.
—more likely China will fill the gap where the EU was, in the future
Challenges for the EU and USA: Economic
-debt in the eurozone in 2016 amounted to 90% of the annual GDP
-debt is a drag on economic growth
-EU unemployment was close to 10% in 2016
-national debt in the USA in 2016 was $19 trillion, but the US dollar's status as the global currency of choice makes it less vulnerable to economic shocks
-the USA has many large, innovate, global TNCs
Challenges for the EU and USA: demographic
-workforce will drop
-population will fall post 2035
-ageing less fast
-social costs aren't paid for by the government usually
Challenges for the EU and USA: political
-nations don't all agree
-tensions (e.g. UK voting to leave)
-strained relationships with Russia
-immigration is an increasing issue
-race relations are strained in parts and political deadlock between Democrats and Republicans
-US values are fairly universal and projected to a global audience
Challenges for the EU and USA: resources
-energy security is a key issue, as it relies on imported oil and gas, some of which comes from Russia
-increasingly energy secure as a result of fracking and oil
-water insecurity = problem in the southwest
Challenges for the EU and USA: social
-youth unemployment in the EU was 22% in 2015
-long-term youth unemployment risks a lost generation of young people
-health spending swallows 17% of the USA's annual GDP and is a huge cost to families and government
-74% of adult Americans are overweight adding to healthcare costs
Costs of being a superpower: UK's nuclear arsenal
-225 nuclear warheads, delivered by submarine-launched Trident 2 ICBMs with a range of 12,000km, bought from USA
-4 UK-built Vanguard class nuclear-powered submarines, at least one of which is at sea at all times
The future? Stability
Arguably the 'regional mosaic' structure is inherently unstable as broadly equal powerful countries make complex and competing alliances, with no countries acting as the 'global police'. A new Cold War could lead to a period of tense stability.
The future? Resources
The 'Asian century' scenario would see strong economic and population growth in Asia, but continued demand for resources in the old West. An expanding Asian middle class is likely to lead to a 35% increase in demand for food, a 40% increase in demand for water and a 50% increase in demand for energy by 2030 - risking shortages and unrest/conflict over remaining resources
The future? Military
A new arms race is a possible outcome for the new Cold War scenario. As chine expands its global reach with naval and air power, the USA and its allies may need to react with naval and air power, the USA and its allies may need to react by diverting resources away from economic growth and social programmes and into guns and ships
The future? Economics
The Asian century scenario would cause a fundamental shift in the world's economy; global economic well-being would depend on the health of NICs in Asia rather than the economies of Europe and North America
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