The Rise of the South – New NDP Report

HDR2013_Cover The UN Development Programme releases a report every two years or so. The latest one is entitled, rather melodramatically, ‘The Rise of the South’. The full report is available online.

For those who’ve been battling poverty over the last 10, 20, 30 , … 50 years, it’s good news. Yes, some countries are moving out of  poverty and into wealth. Here’s the evidence (and note no-one just counts GDP anymore – health, education and gender equality all count too). Educators, take a bow!

For those of us in the ecojustice and sustainability movements, not everything is rosy. AT WHAT COST have we achieved this ‘progress’ (as we used to call it)? I invite you to read the summary and search for where the environmental impact is mentioned – let alone costed.

For those with a knowledge of history, the report may have been better titled ‘The Return of the South’. Until the 1500s, China and India were major representatives of the ‘developed’ world. History has its cycles too, and is not always represented by a single rising arrow.

For all of us, facing the natural limits of our planet and climate change, we may be interested in what the newly wealthy countries spend their money on! And when will the old wealthy countries pay their (environmental) bills?

Among many things we celebrate at Easter, Jesus resting ‘three days in the heart of the Earth’ is just one image. But I like it!

Moy Hitchen cfc

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