Climate Change and Commercial Banking
Is the world slipping into more pronounced levels of madness? If so, what is the medicine?
Symptoms of insanity loom large in a recent announcement that Australia’s CSIRO is planning to ‘rationalise’ its finances with a plan to halve the number of researchers working on climate monitoring and modelling. According to recent news articles, almost 3000 scientists from nearly 60 nations have appealed to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and other Australian leaders to halt CSIRO’s new plan – a plan based on imposed financial constraints.
Al Gore weighs in with this plea:
“CSIRO’s research has been vital to the world’s understanding of how our climate is changing and it has helped to build a foundation on which we can anticipate future change and risk. For many years, CSIRO’s contributions to climate observations and modeling have been globally recognized and respected, and the decision to cut this effort from CSIROshould be revisited at the highest levels of the Australian Government. Further development of climate modeling and observations by CSIRO and colleague scientific organizations is essential to planning for climate mitigation and adaptation to global warming. This effort needs strengthening, not weakening, after the Paris Agreement in December.”
Meanwhile, as climate scientists grapple with the idea of early retirement (or career change), the financial world is digesting news that Deutsche Bank AG has had its riskiest debt downgraded by Standard & Poor’s due to concerns that potential losses at the bank could restrict its ability to pay its obligations. The DB’s recent history has attracted gossip concerning its derivative position, and Bloomberg reports that:
“S&P reduced the grade on the bank’s Tier 1 securities to B+ from BB-, according to a statement Thursday. The new rating is four levels below investment grade. Perpetual Tier 2 instruments were cut to BB- from BB.”
Does anybody out there understand how the derivatives market actually works?
The bigger issue that relates to the above climate and banking stories, is that of Public Banking and an urgent need to create global financial liquidity for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and reforming the world economy. By avoiding climate science, governments and oligarchs are able to continue with ‘business as usual’ and avoid thinking about the ‘off the book’ carbon debt (that is the carbon debt of fossil fuel consumption, concrete manufacture, and deforestation).
Is there a policy solution to this ‘head in the sand‘ response of governments to climate change? Is there an alternative to debt-based banking and speculative finance? How about a policy for a world currency for climate mitigation that is supported by central banks and managed as public banking? In effect, this is what the Global 4C policy is all about. Global 4C is a policy for global public banking that is effective, decentralised, and transparent.
Below are recent interviews concerning money and banking, and some medicine for the global madness. Note that at 33:33 minutes into the interview, Charles Eisenstein says that he hopes for a new economy based on emergent trial-and-error solutions, rather than one new and clever policy or model. Here we have potential for emotional conflict, because Global 4C proposes a relatively complete and definitive structure for economic reform – or does it? Does Global 4C conflict with Eisenstein’s vision of emergent beauty? Who has the authority to decide which economic model or structure is sufficiently diverse or sufficiently structured? Is this a matter of popular vote?
The Global 4C approach does specify an economic restructure based on natural laws for money, markets, and systems; but Global 4C does not specify how society and individuals should respond to it in terms of participation. Social response remains open to the infinite possibilities and the potential of society within the context of a changing climate system and overall system complexity. Given that anthropogenic global warming is in effect an imposition of rising heat and entropy, there is a scientific basis for proposing a specific structural reform (by design) in an attempt to avoid abrupt climate change and civilisational collapse. Does Eisenstein fully appreciate the risks and damages posed by abrupt climate change, or is he seeking to satisfy his own personal desire for economic beauty? The Global 4C policy is based on the general assumption that there needs to be a balance between planned structure and spontaneous response within civilisation, in order for humanity to survive the 21st century with dignity intact.