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Something for your children to think about?

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Galex, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. I was at a meeting tonight and one of the speakers was talking about the possibility of Australia being like Nauru in 50 years time.

    For those unaware, Nauru was "blessed" with a lot of phosphate rock, see this extract from Wikipedia:

    On January 31, 1968 Nauru became the world's smallest independent republic. Phosphate rights were acquired from Britain in 1970 and the Nauru Phosphate Corporation was established. Money gained from the exploitation of phosphate was put into the Nauru Phosphate Royalties Trust and gave Nauruans the second highest GDP Per Capita (second only to the United Arab Emirates) and one of the highest standards of living in the world.

    Modern-day Nauru

    By the close of the twentieth century, the phosphate supplies were fast running out. Nauru finally joined the UN in 1999.

    As its phosphate stores began to run out (by 2006, its reserves were exhausted), the island was reduced to an environmental wasteland. Nauru appealed to the International Court of Justice to compensate for the damage from almost a century of phosphate strip-mining by foreign companies. In 1993, Australia offered Nauru an out-of-court settlement of 2.5 million Australian dollars annually for 20 years. New Zealand and the UK additionally agreed to pay a one-time settlement of $12 million each. Declining phosphate prices, the high cost of maintaining an international airline, and the government's financial mismanagement combined to make the economy collapse in the late 1990s. By the millennium Nauru was virtually bankrupt."

    What do you think? We have already just about killed off our manufacturing industry. Is this what is in store for our children?
  2. Australia is not Nauru
  3. Yeah, we've got sheep and various grains.
  4. LOL i wonder what type of meeting this was, i would love to hear the credentials of the speaker talking about macro economics of australia, ill hear that first before adding input into this.

    there are many different perspectives and schools of thought, visions, and also plans for the australian economy, we cannot predict the future, and what used to be planable, insurable is not today (re GFC) (read howard becker 'risk society'), nothing is certain in the future, and the only thing that is certain is that whatever the speaker/economist say will be wrong.......

    however maybe you should rename the thread as "predictions into the future of australia" or 'the guessing game" because anything that is said about the future, and especially economics are always changing.
  5. not to mention a couple hundred years supply of uranium and large supplies of just about every other ore in the ground.
  6. for now. why do you think China is buying our stuff cheaply and leaving their own resources in the ground
  7. I think the more interesting issue here is global phosphate supply. Phosphate is supplied from a few places just like Nauru. It's a non-renewable resource in declining supply. What happened in Nauru is going to happen everywhere else.


    It's estimated in 50 to 100 years phosphate reserves will be depleted. Global agriculture is dependent on continual supply of phosphate fertilizer and there is no substitute.

    We have estimated ~500 years of coal remaining to be mined, so I wouldn't be too concerned about resources from that respect.
  8. Quick, we need to institute a program to feed Ex Lax to the world's seagulls!
  9. Followed by a spoonful of cement to harden up quick!\\:D/
  10. the sky is falling the sky is falling -- please Al Gore save me -- I will pay the world banks 98% of the income from my labours just so you can stop the sky falling
  11. No need to be so negative. I went to a mainstream science meeting and heard something I hadn't thought about before. I thought is was interesting and that it may have been of some interest here.

    Apparently not, but that's OK. Why not go back to the "hoons v riders" thread? It's all over here.
  12. "And with that he took his bat and ball and stormed home "
  13. Just a little bit of food for thought.....a recent report says we have just under 80 years to go at our most abundant coal mine at current consumption rates (info based on 3 year old data).

    No idea on other minerals etc. but it means that in some of our kid's lifetimes, a replacement for coal is definitely needed.

  14. So we could be like Naru.


    Saudi Arabia? ****in' hell, I'll take the gamble.
  15. again, we have over 20% of the worlds uranium underneath the ground.