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Gloomy new statistics signify no end to Eurozone’s economic misery
The economic misery of the Eurozone doesn’t seem to have an end. According to a preliminary estimate by Eurostat, the EU’s statistical service, GDP growth in the 19 member state monetary zone during the second quarter of this year was as miser as ever. On top of that, inflation continues to oscillate around zero, while unemployment is always in the double digit region. Let’s take one thing at a time.
It’s stagnation all the way
Starting from the most important variable, the GDP, Eurostat estimates that in the second quarter of this year the euro area economy grew by just 0.3%, on a quarter to quarter base. Compared with the first quarter, GDP growth has halved. During the last four quarters, starting from the third three month period of 2015, economic growth in Eurozone is stuck in the inglorious region of 1.6%-1.7% on a yearly base. Obviously, this is not enough to effectively tackle the unemployment problem, which especially involves the younger generations.
This brings this analysis to the sorry state of the EU labor market, where the overall percentage of workers without a job culminates to 23.3% in Greece and 19.9% in Spain. Of course, the rate of unemployed youths is invariably double the general percentages. In any case Eurostat “estimates that 20.986 million men and women in the EU28, of whom 16.269 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in June 2016”. This is not a socially, economically and politically viable situation and may lead the EU to catastrophic fallout.
By thinking through the periodization of extinction, these questions of power, agency, and the Anthropocene become more insistent. If we are discussing humanity’s role in obliterating the biodiversity we inherited when we evolved as a discrete species during the Pleistocene epoch, the inaugural moment of the Anthropocene must be pushed much further back in time than 1800. Such a move makes sense since the planet’s flora and fauna undeniably exercise a world-shaping influence when their impact is considered collectively and across a significant time span. Biologists have recently adopted such a longer view by coining the phrase “defaunation in the Anthropocene.” How far back, they ask, can we date the large-scale impact of Homo sapiens on the planet?
Already, the government has assumed wider powers of surveillance and house detention under a state of emergency, to limited effect. For now, calls to go still farther up that road are losing out to appeals to defend civil liberties.
A spectacular large-scale attack could yet shift perspectives. But following a bloody 2015, the steady drumbeat of attacks this summer — the largest of which killed 85 people in Nice — has generated fear, but not panic.
$40 Billion In Spending Planned For Canada’s Oil Sands
The oil sands of Alberta have attracted a lot of attention recently, not just because of the wildfires that took a lot of production offline in May, but also because of longer-term issues such as environmental protection and oil price trends. It seems, however, that they have a reasonably bright future ahead of them. A GlobalData report has revealed that total capex investments in the oil sands stand at $82.8 billion, of which $40.6 billion worth of new and expanding projects are seen to come on stream over the next ten years. That’s pretty impressive against the backdrop of divestments and cost cuts that have plagued the local oil industry thanks to the oil price rout. The oil sands are a major contributor to the Canadian GDP. Last month Statistics Canada reported that, because of the wildfires, GDP in May fell by 0.6 percent, which was the […]