Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #157 - The Week That Was: 2014-11-22 (November 22, 2014) Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org) The Science and Environmental Policy Project THIS WEEK: By Ken Haap...
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“Mass migration northwards to new towns in Scotland, Wales and northeast England may be needed to cope with climate change and water shortages in the South East, according to an apocalyptic vision set out by the Government Office for Science.
The Government would ease pressure on the South East by planning to “disperse citizens to three new towns in Dumfries and Galloway, Northumberland and Powys”.
The Government responds by taking control of vast tracts of land and using it to grow wood and crops for biomass power stations. An agricultural productivity Bill requires farmers to increase yields per hectare but most have to sell up because they lack the resources to comply. “The average farm size in the UK increases from 57 hectares to 500 hectares; farms in the East and South East of England increase to 5,000 hectares.”
In another scenario, the Government redefines land as a national resource and the rights of landowners are balanced with “society’s rights to public benefits from the services produced by it”. Home ownership falls as people begin to embrace the idea of “stewardship” of shared natural resources.
THE government’s chief scientist (John Beddington) and his wife have made £500,000 in the past year in a company overseeing commercial fishing that allegedly threatens one of the world’s most pristine marine environments.
Professor John Beddington and his wife, Caroline, are joint shareholders in Marine Resources Assessment Group (MRAG), a London-based consultancy that manages fisheries and provides specialist advice around the world.
Conservationists claim that a fishery managed by the company in British territorial waters in the Indian Ocean has been catching threatened species including blue sharks and manta rays. It is estimated that between 2003 and 2008 more than 120,000 were caught as “bycatch” from commercial tuna fishing.