Political changes brought about by by the Arab Spring were largely cosmetic, but scratch beneath the surface and one finds the same deadly combination of environmental, energy and economic crises.
Food prices were one of the fundamental triggers for the uprising. The first sign that things were sour happened in 2008 when a rise in global food prices combined with a shortage of staple foods like rice, triggered riots.
This year, the food price index remains at 210, and experts believe is the threshold beyond which civil unrest becomes probable. With key issues like climate change and oil dependence, economies wracked by debt, these issues create the perfect storm for problems in the foreseeable future.
There is some good news for educators and students looking to foster environmental and energy awareness. Schools across the United States and the world are using green buildings as classrooms, like Rosa Parks elementary school in Portland.
Other than using green design like natural light, photovolatic electrical panels the center serves as both public and private space. The building includes a new K-6 school, boys and girls club and community center all donated by the housing authority of Portland.
And that's your Green Report for this week.