Rapid population growth, lack of access to food and water and increased exposure to natural disasters mean more than 1 billion people face being displaced by 2050, according to a new analysis of global ecological threats.Compiled by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), a think-tank that produces annual terrorism and peace indexes, the Ecological Threat Register uses data from the United Nations and other sources to assess eight ecological threats and predict which countries and regions are most at risk.With the world’s population forecast to rise to nearly 10 billion by 2050, intensifying the scramble for resources and fuelling conflict, the research shows as many as 1.2 billion people living in vulnerable areas of sub-Saharan Africa, Central Asia and the Middle East may be forced to migrate by 2050. While some, such as India and China, are most threatened by water scarcity in the coming decades, others like Pakistan, Iran, Mozambique, Kenya and Madagascar face a toxic combination of threats, as well as a diminishing ability to deal with them.”These countries are broadly stable now but have high exposure to ecological threats and low and deteriorating ‘positive peace’, which means they are at higher risk of future collapse,” the 90-page analysis found.Killelea said the world now has 60% less fresh water available than it did 50 years ago, while demand for food is forecast to rise by 50% in the next 30 years, driven in large part by the expansion of the middle class in Asia.Those factors, combined with natural disasters that are only likely to increase in frequency because of climate change, mean even stable states are vulnerable by 2050.The IEP said it hoped the register, which may become an annual analysis, would shape aid and development policies, with more emphasis and funding going towards climate-related impacts.Topics : By comparison, ecological factors and conflict led to the displacement of some 30 million people in 2019, the report said.”This will have huge social and political impacts, not just in the developing world, but also in the developed, as mass displacement will lead to larger refugee flows to the most developed countries,” said Steve Killelea, IEP’s founder.The register groups the threats into two broad categories: food insecurity, water scarcity and population growth in one; and natural disasters including floods, droughts, cyclones, rising sea levels and rising temperatures in the other.The result is an analysis assessing how many threats each of some 150 countries faces and their capacity to withstand them.
The Dutch government is set to introduce a proposal to embed the amended European Pensions Directive – known as IORP II – into local law.EU member states have to implement the changes by January 2019 at the latest.The law amendment was mentioned in a planning letter for 2018, which Minister of Social Affairs Wouter Koolmees and State Secretary Tamara van Ark sent to the Netherlands’ House of Commons last Friday.The Netherlands will have to align the Dutch Pensions Act, its act concerning compulsory membership of occupational pension funds and its Financial Supervision Act (WFT) on several points with the amended IORP Directive. The previous government sent the Commons an overview of articles to be changed in spring last year, before the Netherlands’ general election. According to the list the impact will be minor. The concrete translation into law will follow in the next quarter. The proposal has been sent to the Council of State (RvS) before being put before parliament.There are currently two other legislative proposals waiting to be dealt with at the Dutch House of Commons. The first allows for the merger of mandatory industry-wide pension funds with a ringfenced equity base for each of the merger partners. The Dutch pension industry heavily objected to the proposal in its current form.The second legislative proposal was a draft initiative from MP Martin van Rooijen of 50Plus, the Dutch political party for the elderly, to amend the discount rate for liabilities in order to stop pension funds from having to cut benefits. The parliamentary debate on this is scheduled for this week.The planning letter did not contain a single word on reforms of the pension system, which were a major talking point of last year’s election.The letter did, however, announce various assessments, such as the final evaluation of the Pension Equalisation Act (Wet verevening pensioenrechten) and the evaluation of the amended financial assessment framework (FTK). Both are on the agenda for the first quarter. This also applies to the evaluation of the act to strengthen pension fund governance structures (Wet versterking bestuur pensioenfonds).Later this month another letter is expected regarding pension fund communication. This is expected to clarify how many schemes have published their recovery plan on their website. Dutch Parliament buildings in the Hague, the Netherlands
Indianapolis, IN—Race car driver John Andretti died Thursday, Jan. 30 after a long, courageous battle with colon cancer. He was 56.Andretti, a member of the famed Andretti racing family, drove and won at the highest levels of North American motorsports in Indy cars, stock cars and sports cars. He also competed in top-level drag racing and short-track open-wheel racing. His career included 12 starts in the Indianapolis 500 and 11 starts in the Brickyard 400 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.But his tireless, selfless work on behalf of various charities, even after his cancer diagnosis became public in April 2017, earned him even more respect and loyalty from a legion of worldwide admirers than his significant talent behind the wheel. Andretti co-founded the “Race for Riley,” an annual go-kart race in Central Indiana that has raised nearly $4 million for the Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis since its inception in 1997.In a statement from Penske Entertainment Corp. President & CEO Mark Miles, on behalf of INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, about veteran driver John Andretti: John Andretti’s skills behind the wheel of any kind of race car were admired by his millions of fans around the world, and he always returned that loyalty and kindness to become one of the most popular drivers of his generation. But John’s true mission was helping others, whether through his countless hours of charity work, especially with Riley Children’s Hospital here in Indianapolis, or by the colon screening campaign he started in April 2017 after he was diagnosed with cancer. John’s positive attitude and selflessness throughout his brave fight inspired all of us and will be a legacy that will continue forever. We extend our deepest condolences to his wife, Nancy, their three children and the entire Andretti family.The Indianapolis Motor Speedway paid tribute to Andretti with their pylon. Fans are encouraged to continue Andretti’s legacy through regular colon screenings and by sharing the #CheckIt4Andretti hashtag on social media.