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The Race for What's Left

Seminar Center for Global Humanities Lecture/Seminar Series

Michael T. Klare

Five College professor of peace and world security studies, and director of the Five College Program in Peace and World Security Studies

Future world prosperity requires an ever-expanding supply of vital raw materials - oil and natural gas, copper and iron, food and water, and many others. At present, we rely for our supplies of these materials on sources that were discovered and developed in past decades and centuries; however, many of these reserves are now facing depletion at a rapid pace, and so future growth requires the development of new reserves. With most of the world's known resource reserves already in production, this is producing a desperate search for new deposits in those few areas that have hitherto escaped full exploitation - the Arctic, the deep oceans, inner Africa, and war zones like Iraq and Afghanistan. This search will itself prove dangerous, given the desperate need for supplies and fragility of many of the target habitats, but also raises an even more frightening peril - the eventual depletion of all readily accessible natural resources. Unless steps are taken now to develop a new industrial paradigm based on renewables, conservation, and efficiency, we could witness the wholesale collapse of industrial civilization.


Michael T. Klare is the Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies (a joint appointment at Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith Colleges and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst) and Director of the Five College Program in Peace and World Security Studies (PAWSS), positions he has held since 1985. Professor Klare has written widely on U.S. defense policy, the arms trade, and global resource politics. He is the author of several books, including, most recently, The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources (2012), Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet: The New Geopolitics of Energy (2008), Blood and Oil: The Dangers and Consequences of America's Growing Dependency on Imported Petroleum (2004), and Resource Wars (2001). He has contributed articles to these journals and many others, including Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Harper's, Newsweek, and Scientific American. Professor Klare is the Defense Correspondent of The Nation magazine and is a Contributing Editor to Current History. He also serves on the board of directors of the Arms Control Association and the National Priorities Project.

Assigned Reading

Michael T. Klare, The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources (Metropolitan Books, 2008)


A reception will be held at 5pm at the UNE Art Gallery


Center for Global Humanities


(207) 221-4335

6:00 PM
WCHP Lecture Hall

Portland Campus

Free and open to the public