From the author of the now-classic Resource Wars, an indispensable account of how the world's diminishing sources of energy are radically changing the international balance of power
Recently, an unprecedented Chinese attempt to acquire the major American energy firm Unocal was blocked by Congress amidst hysterical warnings of a Communist threat. But the political grandstanding missed a larger point: the takeover bid was a harbinger of a new structure of world power, based not on market forces or on arms and armies but on the possession of vital natural resources.
Surveying the energy-driven dynamic that is reconfiguring the international landscape, Michael Klare, the preeminent expert on resource geopolitics, forecasts a future of surprising new alliances and explosive danger. World leaders are now facing the stark recognition that all materials vital for the functioning of modern industrial societies (not just oil and natural gas but uranium, coal, copper, and others) are finite and being depleted at an ever-accelerating rate. As a result, governments rather than corporations are increasingly spearheading the pursuit of resources. In a radically altered world— where Russia is transformed from battered Cold War loser to arrogant broker of Eurasian energy, and the United States is forced to compete with the emerging "Chindia" juggernaut—the only route to survival on a shrinking planet, Klare shows, lies through international cooperation.
Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet surveys the energy-driven dynamic that is reconfiguring the international landscape, and argues that the only route to survival in our radically altered world lies through international cooperation.
"Klare's superb book explains, in haunting detail, the trends that will lead us into a series of dangerous traps unless we muster the will to transform the way we use energy." -- Bill McKibben