The Carbon Bubble: What Happens to Us When It Bursts

The Carbon Bubble: What Happens to Us When It Bursts

by Jeff Rubin


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As the price of oil falls, bestselling author and economist Jeff Rubin takes us to the epicentre of the bursting global carbon bubble, and dares us to imagine a new engine for growth that does not run on oil.

For a decade, the vision of Canada's future as an energy superpower has driven the country's political agenda, as well as the fast-paced development of Alberta's oil sands and the push for more pipelines like Keystone XL across the continent to bring that bitumen to market. Anyone who objects to pipelines and tanker-train traffic, north or south of the US border, is labeled a dreamer, or worse--an environmentalist: someone who puts the health of the planet ahead of the economic survival of their neighbours.
     In The Carbon Bubble, Jeff Rubin compellingly shows how an economic vision that rests on oil is dead wrong. Changes in energy markets in the US--where domestic production is booming while demand for oil is shrinking--are quickly turning the oil dream into an economic nightmare. Like U.S. coal stocks, the share values of oil-sands producers have been drastically reduced by falling fuel prices and are increasingly exposed to the world's efforts to reduce carbon emissions.
     Rubin argues that there is a lifeline to a better future. The very climate change that will leave much of the country's carbon unburnable could at the same time make some of Canada's other resource assets more valuable: its water and its land. In tomorrow's economy, he argues, Canada won't be an energy superpower, but it has the makings of one of the world's great breadbaskets, as everything from the corn belt to viniculture heads to higher latitudes. And in the global climate that the world's carbon emissions are inexorably creating, growing food will soon be a lot more valuable than mining bitumen.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345814708
Publisher: Random House of Canada, Limited
Publication date: 05/17/2016
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

JEFF RUBIN is the author of Why Your World Is About to Get a Whole Lot Smaller, a #1 national bestseller and the winner of the National Business Book Award. His second book, The End of Growth, was also a #1 bestseller and made multiple best-book-of-the-year lists in 2012. Rubin was the Chief Economist at CIBC World Markets, where he worked for over twenty years. He is a Senior Fellow with the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) and lives in Toronto.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Pop Goes the Bubble ix

Part 1 You Are Here 1

Chapter 1 Running Out of Time 5

Chapter 2 Grow Green or Don't Grow 21

Chapter 3 Pariah 31

Part 3 Danger Ahead 53

Chapter 4 The Frackers 57

Chapter 5 Pipe Dreams 67

Chapter 6 Tick, Tick, Tick 87

Chapter 7 Hollowed Out 101

Part 3 The Best-Laid Plans… 121

Chapter 8 Shifting Goalposts 124

Chapter 9 Mean Reversion 140

Chapter 10 Save Your Portfolio Before You Save the World 154

Part 4 Opportunity Knocks 173

Chapter 11 Breadbasket 177

Chapter 12 Waterworks 195

Chapter 13 Power Plays 213

Chapter 14 Franklin's Dream 224

Conclusion: Embracing Change 233

Source Notes 245

Acknowledgments 281

Index 283

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