Category: COVID-19

Governments have identified commodities essential to economic and military security 3/31/2021

Governments have identified commodities essential to economic and military security

Payne Institute Faculty Fellow Rod Eggert and Director Morgan Bazilian contribute to this article about obtaining critical minerals necessary to break the U.S. dependence on foreign production. The U.S. Defense department will help facilitate the building of facilities to process rare earths, part of an effort to secure supply independent from China.  March 31, 2021.

The COVID-19 Pandemic: Energy Market Disruptions and Resilience 3/30/2021

The Covid-19 Pandemic: Energy Market Disruptions and Resilience

Payne Institute Fellow Alex Gilbert and Director Morgan Bazilian write about the direct risks and indirect effects from the COVID-19 pandemic that have impacted the operations and resilience of global energy markets.  This article considers several aspects of the impacts and responses of these markets as well as energy sector resilience.  March 30, 2021.

Climate Change Must Be Tackled as a Global Security Risk 3/10/2021

Climate Change Must Be Tackled as a Global Security Risk

Payne Institute Fellow Joshua Busby, Director Morgan Bazilian, and Florian Krampe write about how when the United Nations put out emergency appeals for modest amounts of money to help Syria with the drought that preceded its civil war, they were dramatically underfunded—member states only provided a quarter of the amount requested in 2008, and a third in 2009. The United States did not contribute.  We live in an age of “actorless threats”—where challenges to peace and security come not only from agents intentionally trying to do us harm, but also from climate change and pandemics whose impacts are no less severe.  March 10, 2021.

Actorless Threats 2/26/2021

Actorless Threats

Payne Institute Fellow Andreas Goldthau, Franz Haniel Professor at the Willy Brandt School of Public Policy, and Research Group Leader at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies; and Kirsten Westphal, a Senior Analyst at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, and Director Morgan Bazilian write about our age of the “actorless threats”. As Bazilian and Hendrix argued in a recent essay, “Mitigating or adapting to slow-onset, actorless threats like climate change…requires a reimagining of our national security priorities and architecture.” Climate change gives rise to cascading risks of habitat destruction, infectious disease outbreaks or biodiversity loss. These threats have already started to cause loss of life at significant scales. They have added friction to various aspects of geopolitics and the relationship between states and people.  February 26, 20201.

Why a trickle-down approach to vaccine access is not a viable strategy 2/25/2021

Why a trickle-down approach to vaccine access is not a viable strategy

Payne Institute Advisory Board member Mimi Alemayehou writes about how it’s probably understandable that many people missed the news earlier this month that the AU had secured 300-million doses of Covid-19 vaccine.  That’s a reflection of much of the way in which the pandemic in Africa has been covered. While the pages of the world’s press has been gripped by the way in which the world’s richest and most powerful countries have grappled their way through the pandemic, the continent with some of the world’s poorest countries has largely been left to face the crisis alone. February 25, 2021.

Welcome to the Era of Competitive Climate Statecraft 2/8/2021

Welcome to the Era of Competitive Climate Statecraft

Payne Institute Fellow Carolyn Kissane writes an opinion piece about how in trade, finance, development, and security, governments are racing to get closer to net-zero.  The varying and shambolic responses illustrate the global system’s dysfunction when seeking to respond to a worldwide crisis. Will climate change be a different story?  February 8, 2021. 

A Big Year for Transformational Change 1/25/2021

A Big Year for Transformational Change

Payne Institute Fellow Dolf Gielen and Director Morgan Bazilian write about how despite the virus, 2020 was a great year for climate commitments. While COP26, the UN Climate Change Conference, was postponed to 2021, many large economies announced net-zero emissions goals for mid-century. 2021 will be the year that these ambitions need to be translated into action.  January 25, 2021.

Rethinking energy solutions: Energy demand and decentralized solutions 1/22/2021

Rethinking Energy Solutions: Energy demand and decentralized solutions

Payne Institute Fellow Dolf Gielen, Advisory Board member David Victor, and Director Morgan Bazilian and others collaborated on this paper that identified three areas for rethinking energy solutions for immediate action. All three are designed to address the drivers of demand and consumption through measures like remote working, digitalization, and the reshaping of urban spaces and their use; maximizing sustainable energy independence at local and individual levels through, for instance, decentralized renewable energy solutions and efficiency enhancing measures; and influencing behavior towards responsible consumption such as encouraging new trends in mobility, less material consumption, and sharing vs. ownership models.  January 22, 2021.  

Why even a pandemic couldn’t stop the renewable energy boom 1/11/2021

Why even a pandemic couldn’t stop the renewable energy boom

Payne Institute Advisory Board member Nawal Al-Hosany writes an opinion article on how investor interest in clean energy is soaring, and the world needs to seize the moment.  Despite being generally accepted as one of the most difficult years on record for many industries, 2020 demonstrated the inherent resilience of renewable energy solutions.  January 11, 2021.

Biden’s climate plan will not address gender and racial inequality 12/28/2020

Biden’s climate plan will not address gender and racial inequality

Payne Institute Senior Research Associates Greer Gosnell and Sara Hastings-Simon write an opinion piece on how women and minorities have suffered disproportionately from the pandemic recession and must be part of any comprehensive recovery program. The Biden administration’s quest to green the American economy promises to create millions of good jobs “filled by diverse, local and well-trained workers, including women and people of color.” But these jobs will exacerbate long-standing and worsening economic injustices due to their concentration in male-dominated fields.  December 28, 2020.