Producers or Consumers-
Where does the responsibility for Climate Change lie?
Word Count: 3626
GLOBALSIATION AND CLIMATE CHANGE
PRODUCERS OR CONSUMERS – WHERE DOES THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR CLIMATE CHANGE LIE?
Globalisation is a terminology that can be defined in numerous ways but the underlying concept is it’s a “system of interaction amongst countries of the world in order to develop the global economy” (http://hubpages.com). There are many global processes that have driven globalisation and the “world becoming more interdependent and integrated” (Moynagh and Worsley, 2008). The drivers of globalisation all have an affect on every aspect of life – economic, political, social, cultural and environmental. However, it can be argued that although globalisation has created an intergraded advanced world and provided global opportunities, there is the alternate outlook that it has threatened the environment, and been a major contributor to one of the largest global problems – climate change. It is however argued that it is the consumer that initiates the production processes that ultimately cause environmental impacts. Therefore one can question “can a shift of environmental policy towards the consumer lead to greater reductions in greenhouse gas emissions” (http://www.cicero.uio.no/).
“’Almost everyone everywhere wants all the things they have heard about, seen, or experienced via the new technologies” (Levitt, T 1983) The demand for goods and services is constantly increasing and this is partially due to the fact there is continuous development in technology and the liberalisation of trade has made it easier for new and upcoming products on the market to keep progressing. This has caused the societies needs and desires to grow, in turn increasing consumers demand. To meet the demands of consumers, there needs to be a high supply therefore production increases.
“Since the end of World War II, the world has seen major advances in communication, information processing and transportation of technology” (Hill, M). Developments in technology are one of the main drivers of globalisation and have played an immense role in the global integration process which has allowed the economy and society to be what it is today. Advanced technology has meant that “information between governments, organisations, consumers and institutions is now so easy that it has major implications for countries that can’t in keeping up with technology” (Perrons, 2000). The levels of technology being constantly updated have facilitated organisations, governments and countries around the world to gain competitiveness and to compete globally. This increase in competition has therefore placed a lot of pressure on producers and exporters to use the best technology available to create products and services to satisfy consumer needs. According to Moynagh and Worsley, 2008, technology has also allowed ‘multiplication of networks’ which has enhanced communications globally enabling people across to world to become well connected therefore reducing time and space. It has become a lot easier to transfer information since the development of technologies such as telephones, blackberries, emails and the revolutionary World Wide Web. For example, “Between 1930 and 1998, the cost of a three minute phone call between New York and London fell from $244.65 to 36 cents for consumers, and there were much lower rates for businesses” (Hill, C 2009). This therefore demonstrates that more advanced technology became, the more options there were made available for people to communicate with one another. Communication companies, in this case, are therefore evidently consumer driven as prices were reduced so that the companies are able to remain competitive in the market. It is fair to say that producers therefore base their actions according to the consumers interests - meaning in order for...