Thursday, March 22, 2012

On heavily polluted cities

The article I came across this morning is 'The 10 Most Air-Polluted Cities in the World' is found here.

Quoting from the article:

'...The most polluted cities tend to be found in developing countries. No surprise there—poorer countries tend to have dirtier cars, factories and power plants, and rarely have or enforce the kind of environmental regulations that have—over the course of decades—become common in the developed world. But what’s interesting is that the urban areas with the worst air aren’t the sort of Dickensian megacities one usually hears about: Beijing, Chongqing, Bangkok, Mexico City. The losers are smaller cities, many of them in Iran or South Asia, and none of them economic dynamos.
What do these cities all have in common, aside from the fact they’re not likely to show up on a travel agent’s? For the most part, they’re fairly poor—though the presence of a city from the African nation of Botswana on the list, where the per-capita income is over $8,000, shows that even middle-income countries can suffer from grievous air pollution. Residents often burn heavy, polluting fuel for heat and energy—including firewood or even dung, which can produce heavy, thick smoke. Add in old, diesel-powered cars that belch black carbon and growing population density in urban slums—plus weather conditions like Ulan Bator’s extreme cold, which worsens air pollution—and you have an ugly mess.'

Interesting reading for negative externalities, sustainability, common pool resources as well as the distincion between the 'pollution of affluence' and the 'pollution of poverty' (see the Tragakes Economics for the IB Diploma (second edition) textbook, p. 123)

Amazing pictures from industrial pollution are found here.


Monday, March 19, 2012

This is what schools are all about...

They are all lovely!

Vote for the best:

AP 2012 Music Video Competition


and many more.....!

It's been a loooong time...

Well, sorry to any who have been logging on to this IB Economics blog lately as it was a waste of time... No posts for a bit over a year...

Reason? I was (very) busy writing the two OUP books: The new Skills and Practice as well as the 2nd edition of the Study Guide.

They're out (and doing well - thanks!) so I've decided to start posting again anything that seems interesting and worth reading to IB (and not only) economics students.

This is an article on the IMF from The New Republic which describes the about face at the IMF concering its stance on fiscal issues. Interesting as it describes a bit of history and it is quite relevant to what is going on in the world now.

Here it is: How the IMF Got Its Keynesian Groove Back

At the IB teachers dedicated forum a great colleague (Russ Steponic
of the Bahrain School in Manama, Bahrain) started a while ago a forum with recent articles/ links that are of interest. I will re-post some that I find particularly useful to you guys.

Here is one that's great on how San Fransisco is dealing with parking (that Russel posted a few days ago):
A Meter So Expensive, It Creates Parking Spots

Common pool (access) resources are in the new syllabus and this artcle is good to show the issues involved:
In Mackerel's Plunder, Hints of Epic Fish Collapse

This one is on pollution in the oceans and it is scary to read:
The world's rubbish dump: a tip that stretches from Hawaii to Japan

That's all for now!