Perspective

Asian supply chain
November 14, 2012
The impact of the media coverage of Foxconn on Apple should act as a stark reminder to companies to carefully analyze both their supply chains and how they engage them. Incidents, challenges and tragedies can have a long-lasting impact on both corporate reputations and the resilience of the supply chain itself. Unfortunately, the last few years have seen a decline in creative approaches and investment in strong supply chain engagement programs.
CNOOC, Nexen and Canada's oil sands
November 12, 2012
The economic turmoil of the financial crash saw China being feted as a white knight with drawbridges being lowered to investment from Chinese companies. This has turned to bitterness, like a liberating army becoming an occupying force. Even with struggling solar and wind sectors, China has become the dominant global power it terms of renewable energy companies. This has resulted in the US Department of Commerce increasing tariffs to between 23.75 and 250 percent on solar cells which it calls a way of offsetting subsidies provided by China through one mechanism or another.
Kai Tak Metropark
November 08, 2012
Hong Kong’s new government recently averted another political firestorm when it shot down its own trial balloon proposing last-minute changes to development plans for the former Kai Tak Airport. The waterfront site in the heart of densely built-up East Kowloon has lain largely dormant since the old airport closed in 1998. In July, the new Chief Executive CY Leung came to office promising to tackle Hong Kong’s soaring home prices, and his administration indicated that Kai Tak’s plans would be reviewed with an eye to boosting the housing supply.
Obama Greenpeace catastrophic climate change campaign
November 06, 2012
It was like an elephant in the corner of the room as Hurricane Sandy came roaring through the Northeast United States, disrupting the lives of millions while chalking up to USD45 billion worth of damage, and yet neither presidential candidate mentioned climate change or flagged it as a policy imperative. Throughout the latter weeks of the campaign trail it became painfully obvious that neither Obama nor Romney were willing to utter policy pledges on climate change or anything environmental that could be considered hippy yogurt-weaving scare mongering.
PRD 2020 vision
November 01, 2012
According to the Outline of the Plan for the Reform and Development of the Pearl River Delta (PRD) for 2008 -2020, formulated by the National Development and Reform Commission, cities in the PRD are progressively converging into one urban cluster, forming the most densely populated urban corridor in China. The nine prefectures in the region were home to 56.15 million people at the end of 2010, according to the Guangdong Statistic Book 2010. Given that Guangzhou alone expects to have 20 million people by 2020, it is entirely possible the total population of the PRD could double by that time.
Demonstration offshore wind turnine off Chōshi, Japan
October 30, 2012
Read Full Story Japan is beginning to take the development of an off-shore wind industry seriously as shown with the unveiling last week of a 126-meter-tall turbine – the country’s largest to date – off the coast of Chōshi, the easternmost city in the Greater Tokyo Area. A variety of Japanese experts have championed the development of marine wind turbines which they say have much more potential than their land-based counterparts in this small mountainous country.
Cabon tax
October 29, 2012
Recent studies have highlighted that sizable amounts of carbon emissions are transferred between world regions in the form of traded goods and services. That is, considerably more emissions are generated for the production of imports to countries, such as the EU and US than those associated with their exports. This observation has frequently been regarded as an indication that energy-intensive industries are being relocated from industrialized to developing and newly industrializing countries, especially to China.
Solar business balance
October 24, 2012
Read Full Story The October 10 ruling by the US Department of Commerce against PV modules containing Chinese-produced solar cells is just the most recent development in a string of trade disputes that stretch across the globe. Until now, much of the discussion has focused on the details of each case, the potential effect on different manufacturers, technology types, etc. But perhaps the bigger question is how these issues collectively will affect the main issue confronting the PV industry today: the supply/demand imbalance. Supply/demand issues are not simply confined to upstream (manufacturer stock levels) and downstream (warehouse/distributor) inventory levels.
Illegal ivory seized in Hong Kong
October 23, 2012
Hong Kong's seizure of nearly four tonnes of smuggled ivory, worth about USD3.4 million, highlights once again China's significant role in the global trade of endangered species. According to Hong Kong's customs officials, they made their biggest ever haul of endangered species product following a tip-off from mainland Chinese police. While the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Crime scorecard says China is making some progress in key aspects of compliance and enforcement of rhino and tiger trade, it is flagged for failing on key aspects of compliance or enforcement for the illegal trade in elephant products, primarily ivory.
IUCN World Conservation Congress 2012 Red Hot Debate
October 11, 2012
Business and ecosystems are linked. All businesses affect ecosystems and rely on the services they provide. However, 60 percent of the world’s ecosystems have been degraded over the past 50 years. From food, to fuel, to freshwater – nature provides the fundamental infrastructure needed for our societies to survive and prosper, but we are destroying the source of these vital ingredients for life. We can no longer rely on the current economic model, which originated in the Industrial Revolution, to doing things. We must work with nature rather than against it.