Wednesday, December 30, 2015

The richest 10% are responsible for 50% of global emissions. We have a duty.


The poorest half of the global population are responsible for only around 10% of global emissions yet. Full report by Oxfam.

These poor people earn money to have food, clothes, a car, a place to live.
Some also spend money on some small extras and go on holidays with kids once a year.
Can we ask these people to consume less, eat organic food, stop using their car, use less heating, not really? Not really. It's pretty indecent.
Even if the reduce their consumption, will it change a lot the situation? Not really.

The richest 10% of people in the world are responsible for around 50% of global emissions. Full report.
It's the 10%th duty to consume less.
Yes, it's our duty. We are lucky enough to be "rich" in comparison to the rest of the world.
It's a duty to spend our money wisely.
Why?
Because we have enough money to switch to low carbon, often more costly consumption of local food, handmade products, less energy consuming houses, etc.

I will hurt them, it won't hurt us.
We have no excuses.




Thursday, December 24, 2015

2016: I see the "Human" label coming

I love labels. Handmade, low carbon footprint, carbon compensated, organic, fair trade, gluten free, vegan, etc.

I see a new label in the future, "human".

In a post COP21 world, trying to get less addicted to fossil fuel, "human" will mean: 
- Made by humans and not by machines.
- Not harmful for the planet and its inhabitants.
- Not harmful for people.
- Not shipped using fossil fuel.

Rich people, the 10% (see below), will have to take their responsibility, consuming human products, even if they are more expensive.
Indeed, we, the 10% are responsible for half of carbon emissions. If we all make an effort, we'll create another world, human friendly. We'll transfert a lot of money to companies focused on taking care of humans.

The way we spend our money is a weapon. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

French Council of the Muslim Faith - le Conseil Français du Culte Musulman - must hire digital marketers

After the 13th November, I was shocked by one thing. French Muslim's voice was not in the media, in social media.
Why?
Islam is the 2nd biggest religion in France. We have a huge Muslim population in France.

Is there a kind of censorship?
Or is it a problem of communication.
I did a quick research comparing social media presence of the two major religions in France, and the result is remarkably clear.

We don't hear the voice of peaceful French Muslims, the 99,99% of the community because Muslim faith leaders in France did not yet built a structure to spread the word on the web and to the press, to spread the true message of the Muslim community in France. They need to hire brilliant digital marketers, and I'm sure that a lot would be happy to help the community!

When you google "Catholique France Facebook", you see official properties:
Eglise Catholique en France Facebook page: 52000  fans
Eglise Catholique en France: Twitter page: 7000 followers (600ish following)

When you google Notre Dame de Paris Facebook, you land on:
Notre Dame de Paris Facebook page, 188 000 likes.
Same for Twitter.  First link is the official Twitter page (5000 fans) and the second is the catholic Parisian official account (4000 fans).
You can also see the official Facebook page of the cardinal of the cathedral (16 000 fans), André Vingt-Trois, and its Twitter account, 7000 followers.

Then...

When you google "Islam France Facebook", you see... private properties:
Islam France, personal Facebook page: 8000 fans - pretty neutral content
Islam Première Religion de France, personal Facebook page: 3200 fans - pretty offensive material (blood on the homepage).
Communauté Musulmane de France ou d'Ailleurs: 10 000 fans - neutral
Conseil des ex-musulman de France (!): 6000 fans - anti-musllim
Information Clulte Musulman: 290000(!) fans - regional page, neutral.

If you want to find official sources, you have to google: "Mosquée de Paris" or "conseil français du culte musulman" (French Council of the Muslim Faith), pretty expert search.
And you'll get:
Grande Mosquée de Paris fan page: 10 000 fans. Information is posted on the page sometimes: 1 or 2 times a month.
Note that this page is not the one referenced on the Grande Mosquée de Paris website (nice website by the way!). The one referenced has only 300 fans but more frequent updates.
The Grande Mosquée de Paris doesn't have a Twitter account.
When you google "Grande mosquée de Paris Twitter", you see long lists of official  local mosques accounts
Dalil Boubaker (French Council of the Muslim Faith - Conseil Français du Culte Musulman - CFCE's leader) Twitter page: 700 followers, one post the last 12 months, the account is not used, and the design is not very pro (see this "certified Halal" background image in low def).
Dalil Boubaker doesn't have a Facebook page.
The CFCE doesn't have a Facebook page or a Twitter account. It only has a website, not interactive, with a pretty old design and with a 2010 copyright.

Do you understand what I mean? Muslim leaders in France are not social media savvy and thus inaudible.

Hoping press relation would be better, I google "cfce musulman communiqué de presse" (cfce Muslim press release) and it showed something not very positive. Please have a look. The only link pointing to the CFCE website land on the homepage, other links lead to more or less amateur and unofficial sites.

I believe that if the CFCE spend more on digital and social media, France will be an even greater country. 
Far right in France is good at marketing (unfortunately, as I don't like what they promote).
Extremists and criminals saying they commit crimes in the name of Islam - Daech - are excellent at marketing and communication.
I think moderate and non-peaceful Muslims, the vast majority of the community in France, must be better at marketing too! People all over the country must hear their voice, their official.

Friday, December 18, 2015

The only reason why people join DAECH, vote for Trump or Le Pen in France

Inequity!
The concentration of resources in the hands of fewer and fewer people.

You wonder why people are desperate enough to risk their lives, joining Daech?
Nothing to do with religion.
They're just poor and desperate.

The 1% richest people own 50% of the world GDP.
The 10% richest persons own 87% of it.
The 20% of richest persons own 94,5% of it.
The 50% richest persons own 99% of it.

The trend is rich people are getting richer; poor the people are getting poorer. And this trend is exponential/accelerating. If you're part of the 50% poorest people who have nothing and have less every year, yes, you get extreme.

Another example from an excellent source of info, CFR, in Congo:
"Lack of economic opportunity boosts recruiting for armed groups, and competition for land and other natural resources often leads to violence."

You wonder why people vote for far right party in France?
Nothing to do with racism.
People are just poor, afraid of getting poorer, move out from middle-class. 

The 1% richest people own around 40% of the French GDP.
The 10% richest persons own 50% of it.
The 60% richest persons own 98% of it.

Far right promise them jobs and the return of "the good old France". They buy it.
Other parties don't really focus on inequity and did not resolve the inequity challenges for the last decades, German press spotted it.

And why people vote for Donald Trump?
That's the same story.
They are afraid of being "declassed", poorer... and they're right. The US middle class is getting poorer and die younger, even white people. Guys got a Nobel prize, doing a research proving this.

Conclusion
This figure always used in media is "the 1%". This group is basically the bad guys team, responsible of everything. People love to have a black sheep to criticize.
But the issue is not the richest 1% or the poorest 1%, the problem is the concentration of resources in the hands of fewer and fewer people.

There are tons of reasons why inequity is getting bigger.
There are tons of ways to reduce inequity, solve this resource concentration issue.
It could be the greatest challenge of the next decade.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Climate Change: 5 simple and macro ways to overcome it

To limit climate change, there are 3 ways:

People consume less:

1 - Everybody consume less.
I'm not sure that the carbon emissions of a coal mine miner in China and even the emissions of a French people earning the French minimum wage are so bad for the planet, but we can all do something for the planet consuming less:
Smaller cars, less travel, less meat, smaller and more expensive houses, more expensive clothes.

2 - Top consumers and companies consume less.
The good old Pareto law applies there. A pool of companies is responsible for most carbon emissions and a pool of rich people responsible of most of carbon emissions.
We can force rich people and rich companies to act with a classic weapon: tax! and maybe incentives (to make them renovate buildings, use sustainable energy sources, choose clean, light and less powerful cars, etc.)


Fewer people consume:
Yes, it's Malthusianism.
Please don't think I want to kill other people. I just say people must have fewer kids.

3 - We can force people to make fewer kids.
See China (I know, they just stopped forcing people having only 1 kid to boost growth...).

4 - We can educate them. to make fewer kids.
People educated do fewer kids. It's easy to identify heavy kid makers and spend tons on money on education.

We consume things producing less pollution.
Politics and media love it. It's call decarbonisation.

5 - In a nutshell, we consume the same, growth rate is the same, stock prices are the same, our system is the same BUT, GDP units necessitate fewer carbon emissions. 
So far, solar, wind and water-based energy sources are not sufficient. to replace oil and gas. Only nuclear can really help at scale and it will last dozens of years before facing new challenges. Inputs about it. You can also read Jancovici.
Issue: it does not work.
A) Even with ambitious decarbonisation targets, if we do not lower growth, we'll beat the 2-degree objective.
B) Nuclear rely on stuff you find underground: Uranium. And guess what it's not unlimited. Our nuclear plant will quickly face a Uranium shortage if we rely nearly only on it. We should improve our nuclear technologies. And as a bonus: find a way to secure plants and handle nuclear waste.

So what do we want?
What do you prefer? 1, 2, 3, 4, 5?
A bit of everything?

Let me know! Seriously, I'd love to know.

Personally....
I don't believe in 1. I do it personally, but I don't think I represent the majority. People are programmed to get richer and our society programmed to sell more stuff to more people. To change that, we need to focus on  something else than GDP.
I like a LOT 2 but don't see how it could be done with our current system where companies and rich people finance lawmakers. I count on NGOs and supra-national organizations to make governments agree on something #COP21
I like 3, but it's very touchy. 1 kid per couple for me is ok. For a lot of people, it's not... Even if it's possible,
4: I don't know. Hans Rosling may know Africa is an example where development happens, but the demographic transition does not happen. But it's very long term.
5 It's a mandatory one. We have to clean our energy production. I don't see how we can avoid nuclear, but I'd love to be wrong.





Saturday, December 5, 2015

Does healthy food tsunami hit France yet?


France gastronomy is listed as a UNESCO world heritage.
Does it means France eat real and healthy food?
Well, yes and no. Let’s check together.

French are fitter...  but get bigger

Obesity prevalence in France is one of the lowest of OECD. Amazing point for France.
Our food heritage has a lot to do with it, for sure. Taking time to eat, always eat sit down with family, no snacking habits, love of local food, Sunday markets in every cities, we have great basis.
However, about 30% of French are overweight (as a comparison, in the US it’s about 70%). But the trend is not as good: French men are 68% bigger and women are 89% bigger than 15 years ago.

It definitely shows that unhealthy habits are rising, even in France.

Need a proof? What’s the second most profitable country for McDonald's after US? France!
Yes, people who have a UNESCO blessed gastronomy consume processed food in fast foods and even in classic restaurants! French government created in 2014 an “home made” (fait maison in French) label to help restaurants using raw, fresh and homemade food differentiate from others. Different sources mention that 70% or 80% (links in French) of restaurant use processed foods, without mentioning it of course. According to the government it was too much! This label is far from being perfect but it’s definitely a great way to raise awareness of consumers on the importance of eating real food.

French awareness on healthy food practice increase

As we just saw, French heritage is endangered but French are also paying more and more attention to what they eat. Google search trends for “no sugar”, “gluten free”, “vegan” and “vegetarian” in France is a good way to visualize it. It’s definitely rising, slowly but surely.

Moreover, organic food sales show a 10% increase (link in French) last year. In the UK, organic food sales growth rate is “only” 4%.

Other proof of awareness rising: The bestseller of nutrition books for the last 10 months (!) on Amazon.fr is “Eat”. It’s a 320 pages book costing 28 euros written by Gilles Lartigot (see below) on healthy food. Here is the pitch: “We live in a toxic society. The food we eat is making us sick. Pollution, stress, and chemical contaminants are a part of our everyday lives. These facts, we cannot deny. Fortunately, it's not too late…” The media coverage of the book is big.
 
A star journalist from Elle magazine, Danièle Gerkens, wrote a book about her 1 year experience of a “no sugar” life. It also raised a lot of awareness on the impact of refined sugar on health.

Finally, even if French government is not very vocal on nutrition habits as obesity is not an issue here, they recently proposed to impose  a vegetarian menu in school canteens, which would be kind a revolution in the country of “pot of feu” and “blanquette de veau”!



Thanks Facebook & the world, you rehabilitated French flag

15 days ago, in Paris,130 people were shot by a criminal organization called DAESH.

I don't really know why, but the world reacted immediately and at scale.
France flag colours, blue white red, bleu blanc rouge were everywhere.
Facebook surfed on this trend and suggested a temporary French flag was proposed.
A lot of people used it. Outside and inside France.



Before the 13th, November, French people did not like much their flags, except in a sports context.
The French flag was associated to nationalism, fascism, our collaborationist past.
Before the 13th, putting a french flag layer on your Facebook profile was quite touchy, except if you support French sports teams.
Now... it's ok.

I wrote 2 years ago that Republic needs marketing. Extract:
"It's not natural to like France, to believe you're part of a nation, respect and love French flag, know the national anthem.
I saw a tombstone last day in Père Lachaise cemetery (famous in Patris). It was written on it: "Motherland" with the french flag just below. The tomb was 150 years old. It's impossible to see that today. Why? Because the only time when most people really feel French, it's when France has good results in sport.
The government must oblige young generations to follow civic education courses, maintain a light and pedagogical military service, put French flags everywhere in public administration, in the streets, write "Liberty Equality Fraternity" on Administration offices walls, public communications, send better singers to the Eurovision (joke), train any Administration officer like a representant of the state, modernize Administration."


I still believe it.
Facebook, the world did what the government did not and rehabilitated our flag.
DAECH attacked France to have an enormous press coverage, they got it. They attacked France to create divisions in the country, generate tensions between non-Muslims and the French Muslim community. Not sure they succeed.
French people now realize that they were part of a nation, a nation with people coming from different part of the world and following different religions.
They realized that their way of life, full of holiday, cafés, terrasses, music, was something extremists wanted to destroy.

DAECH successfully transform a country a bit ashamed of its flag into a symbol and into a nation.

Now, I think Imams of France must improve their marketing too. I'm sure they do not support DAECH crimes. When you Google "Islam en France", "Musulman en France" you find low-quality content. French mosque has 200 fans... seriously. 8% of the French population is Muslim and the Great Mosque of Paris has fewer fans than my local bakery. It's not normal.
Islam is the 2nd religion worldwide. It must improve its communication.
Without that, they'll more and more suffer from stigmatisation.
That's another story.