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1AC - Steel - Roho BP

The United States federal government should substantially increase its
engagement with the People’s Republic of China by offering to liberalize its
steel trade.
Contention 1 is Manufacturing
Steel tariffs are destroying the manufacturing and construction sector – rising
prices damage the economy and don’t sustain the US steel industry
Whiting ’16 – research assistant in The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Trade
and Economics (Tori, September 12, “The U.S. Steel Market Needs Free Trade,
Not Favoritism,” http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2016/09/the-ussteel-market-needs-free-trade-not-favoritism)
Since 2012, the global economy
has been experiencing average growth rates of less than 3 percent.
As a result, demand for steel has weakened. Despite the procyclical nature of the global steel market, some nations,
most notably China, are producing large amounts of steel, thereby driving down the price.∂ In response to alleged unfair trade
domestic steel producers are advocating for broad import restraints and immediate
action by the U.S. government to protect the domestic industry. The federal government possesses a wide
variety of tools to address these claims, but caution is required, because special interest tariffs for the steel
industry will have negative consequences elsewhere in the domestic economy.∂ The U.S.
manufacturing and construction industries rely on domestic and foreign steel to create
finished products. Tariffs on steel imports limit choices and increase costs for these industries.
Those costs are ultimately borne by American consumers and act as a tax on everyday goods made from steel, such as lawn mowers,
washing machines, and microwaves.∂ Available
tools to combat alleged unfair trade practices under
domestic trade rules are permissible and viable options according to international norms, but
showing favoritism for one industry at the expense of others can do far more harm than good. It
is time for the U.S. government to stop implementing special interest, protectionist tariffs for
domestic steel producers and embrace the principles of free trade to expand economic
opportunity for all.∂ Technology Driving Changes in Steel-Making∂ Over the past century, technological advancements to
increase efficiency and improve product quality have driven exponential change in the U.S. steel industry. Steel-making in the United
States has traditionally been dominated by integrated steel mills: mills that use raw materials to produce steel products. Since the
1980s, however, greater emphasis has been placed on using recycled scrap metal to produce new steel, leading to the emergence of
mini-mills in the U.S.∂ Since 1870, integrated mills have used two types of furnaces to process iron ore and produce steel. The openhearth furnace (OHF), used as the domestic best practice from 1870 to 1965, was attractive for its high capacity, but required
hundreds of thousands of workers to operate. In 1952, the basic-oxygen furnace (BOF) was introduced, allowing steel producers to
decrease production time while maintaining high capacity like the OHF, but requiring far fewer workers. In 1965, U.S. firms began to
invest in BOF technology, and in just five years the furnaces accounted for approximately 50 percent of U.S. steel production.[1]∂
The electric-arc furnace (EAF), which existed as early as 1880, uses recycled scrap metal to produce new steel products. Due to its
smaller capacity, efficiency, and adaptability, the EAF is the primary technology used in mini-mills. U.S. companies began establishing
mini-mills in the late 1960s, and their popularity has surged since the 1980s. Today, mini-mills are responsible for producing more
than 60 percent of all domestic steel.[2]∂ Not All Steel Is the Same∂ As steel-consuming industries have become more advanced, the
demand for specialized steel products has grown. The majority of steel products used around the world today did not exist two
decades ago.[3] EAF technology has allowed mini-mills, and even integrated mills, to meet the changing demands of steel
consumers. According to Andy Harshaw, president and CEO of ArcelorMittal USA:∂ Historically,
integrated producers
enjoyed a competitive advantage, uniquely capable of providing high-quality, value-added
products that mini-mills couldn’t match. Today, mini-mills such as Steel Dynamics and Nucor are expanding their
capabilities to target growth in our core markets, including automotive. As an example, Nucor is providing exposed panels for some
new BMWs; a thought that was unheard of just five years ago.[4]∂ Manufacturers operating
in the “downstream”
stage of production,[5] which use advanced steel products, require special types or grades of steel to
produce their finished goods more easily. Domestic fastener manufacturers, for example, use a specific type of steel
called cold-heading quality (CHQ) wire rod. “Most steel companies producing wire rod do not have dedicated CHQ production, but
rather shift from ‘industrial quality’ or IQ wire rod to CHQ based on a variety of factors. This can lead U.S. fastener manufacturers to
seek raw material from suppliers outside North America when U.S. production of CHQ is not available,” explained Rob Harris of the
Industrial Fasteners Institute in recent testimony.[6] Harris
goes on to explain that different steel-consuming
industries need different products, and that the domestic steel industry is not capable of
supplying everything that all industries need.∂ Steel Employment and Wage Changes∂ BOF and EAF technologies
have not only driven change in the type of steel produced, but also in the number of workers required in the steel industry.
Approximately 147,000 individuals were directly employed in steel manufacturing in 2015,
representing a much leaner and more streamlined industry: Labor productivity has improved from an average
of 10.1 hours per ton of steel in the 1980s (when 514,518 workers were directly employed) to just 1.9 hours per ton last year.[7]∂
These advances have also led to a highly skilled workforce and increased average annual wages for steel workers. The steel industry
demands aptitude in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics subjects, and many employees possess a two-year technical
training degree or higher.[8] As demonstrated in Chart 1 the average annual steelworker wage in 2015 was approximately $71,000,
and wages for steelworkers have been steadily increasing over the past few decades.∂ Mini-mills, which use electric-arc furnaces,
have increased competition within the domestic steel market. They did so partly by capitalizing on opportunities in southern states
in the 1980s. Because of their lean nature, as well as relatively low initial capital requirements compared to integrated mills, minimills surged in a region where worker unions were less common, scrap metal was abundant in largely untapped markets, and the
mills could tap into niche-market needs.[9]∂ Current State of the Global Steel Market∂ Global steelmaking capacity was estimated by
the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to be approximately 700 million metric tons more than global
demand last year.[10] Many
individuals in the domestic steel industry argue that this overcapacity is a
major problem because it results in a global steel surplus. This surplus stems from a variety of factors, but most
notably the simple fact that the steel industry is inherently procyclical.∂ When the global economy is thriving,
consumers often have the ability to purchase a new car or other luxury goods they may not have
been able to afford during an economic downturn. Governments, too, have more money to
invest in major infrastructure projects, like building bridges. Simultaneously, the production of
steel and manufactured goods made from steel grows to meet this increased demand.∂ Since 2012,
global gross domestic product (GDP) has been growing annually by less than 3 percent, a significant reduction from previous
years.[11] At the same time, steel demand
has weakened, falling by 3 percent last year, as shown in Chart 2.
The World Steel Association estimates that demand for steel products will increase in the next two years,
but that growth will happen slowly.[12]∂ Despite these slowdowns, many countries, such as China, are
continuing to produce large amounts of steel, creating a surplus and driving down the global
price of steel. Chinese steel producers, which are primarily state-owned enterprises, use future
infrastructure plans in emerging markets as justification for continuing to produce excess
steel.[13]∂ Requests for Protection∂ Domestic steel producers have long argued that it is the duty of the federal government to
protect the domestic market from alleged unfair international competition. The current discourse is no different as
stakeholders in the U.S. steel industry are advocating “broad-based import restraints” and
immediate action by the government in response to the behavior of China and other steelproducing nations during this global economic slowdown.∂ In arguing this position, steelmakers have
filed countless petitions under U.S. trade law ranging from temporary, product-specific and
nation-specific tariffs, to overarching tariffs affecting a wide range of imports from around the
world. While the government does possess a broad array of tools to combat unfair trade practices, all technically permissible
under the World Trade Organization charter, it is crucial to use caution when engaging these tools. Tariffs
meant to protect one industry can, and often do, have significant damaging effects on other
domestic industries.∂ Anti-Dumping Duties. Anti-dumping duties, permissible under the Tariff Act of 1930,[14] are the most
common tool used to combat alleged unfair trade practices. These special tariffs are imposed by the U.S.
government on a specific foreign import that is believed to be priced unfairly and thus causing
injury to a domestic market.[15]∂ The U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC)
conduct formal investigations of alleged unfair trade practices, typically following a petition from a domestic entity. The Commerce
Department must determine whether the product in question is, in fact, being sold below fair market price, while the ITC determines
if the corresponding industry is injured by the “dumped” product. Approved duties are required, under the Uruguay Round
Agreements Act of 1994,[16] to go through a review investigation by the Commerce Department and ITC every five years to
determine if the tariff is still necessary.[17]∂ Steel
industry leaders claim that these special tariffs are needed
to “create a level playing field” for domestic producers, yet they also admit to their lack of
effectiveness in achieving that goal. Leo Gerard, international president of the United Steelworkers (USW), explicitly
stated in submitted testimony that “[USW] has supported dozens of trade cases—primarily antidumping and countervailing duty
cases—to try and address the flood of unfairly priced steel…but they have not been sufficient.”[18]∂ Currently, the U.S. has 75 antidumping and countervailing duty orders in place for iron and steel mill imports. Twenty-two have been ordered in the past two
years alone, and the remaining 53 have undergone review investigations more than once. One order in particular, on stainless steel
wire rod from India, has been in place since 1993.[19]∂ Alden Abbott, a senior legal fellow at The Heritage Foundation, states that
is in fact a form of special-interest cronyism that imposes high costs on
Americans and thwarts beneficial competition.”[20] Despite their intended use as temporary
tools to decrease injury to the domestic market, anti-dumping duties like this one against India
are being used to “protect” domestic steel producers from having to compete with foreign
companies.∂ Section 201 Tariff. An investigation of foreign trade practices under section 201 of the Tariff Act of 1930, also
known as a safeguard investigation, is used to determine if an import is causing harm or injury to a corresponding domestic
industry.∂ Imposing a tariff through section 201 requires action by the President following an investigation by the ITC. The ITC must
prove that “there is clear evidence that increased imports of the article are a substantial cause of serious injury, or the threat
thereof, to the domestic industry producing an article like or directly competitive with the imported article.”∂ U.S. steel industry
leaders like Mark Millet, president and CEO of Steel Dynamics, claim that because anti-dumping duties are not solving the problem
of cheap steel imports, “a Section 201 proceeding may be the only viable solution.”[21]∂ The use
of a section 201
investigation to combat unfair trade practices is not common, and, when it is used, tends to
result in “unintended consequences” for other domestic industries. In 2001, the ITC investigated the impact
of all steel imports on the U.S. steel industry, and recommended that President George W. Bush impose tariffs of up to 30 percent
on many steel imports.[22]∂ These tariffs, which went into effect in 2002, had serious negative effects on steel-consuming industries
in the U.S. The
decision to impose tariffs on steel also resulted in complaints by several nations at
the World Trade Organization.[23] President Bush ordered the tariffs to be removed in December 2003.∂ As
demonstrated in Chart 3, study by the Consuming Industries Trade Action Coalition (CITAC) found that 200,000 individuals in
steel-consuming industries lost their jobs in 2002 because of higher steel prices, amounting to
about $4 billion in lost wages.[24] The tariffs provided minimal relief to steel producers, but
resulted in higher steel prices for American companies that rely on steel as a means of
production. The cost of higher steel prices was not only borne by the companies, but also by
every American family that purchased any product made from steel.∂ Section 232 Tariff. Under section 232
of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962,[25] the federal government has the ability to investigate foreign trade practices to determine
the effects of imports on U.S. national security.∂ Imposing a tariff through section 232 requires action by the President following an
investigation by the Secretary of Commerce, who has the authority to self-initiate an investigation. A section 232 investigation can
also commence following a petition from an interested party or request from a department or agency head. The Secretary is
required to find whether imports threaten to impair U.S. national security. The Secretary submits his recommendations to the
President, who has 90 days to act. Section 232 tariffs are very uncommon and few have been ordered by the President following an
investigation.∂ In 1999, the Secretary of Commerce found that petroleum imports were threatening to impair national security:
Domestic oil reserves and production were low, and non-OPEC substitutes for petroleum did not exist. Despite these findings, the
Commerce Department did not recommend the President exercise his authority under section 232. Like similar investigations in
1988 and 1994, it was concluded that “the costs to the national security of an oil import adjustment outweigh the potential
benefits.”[26] The same would certainly be true in the case of steel.∂ Picking Winners and Losers∂ As demonstrated in the previous
examples, using tariffs to protect one industry can have severe consequences on other parts of the domestic economy. To put this
impact in perspective: The
U.S. steel industry employed approximately 147,000 people in 2015; yet
scores of other domestic companies need the steel produced by these individuals to create
finished goods. In fact, steel-consuming manufacturers employ about 6.5 million people each
year, and the construction industry supports another 6.3 million jobs.[27]∂ Because raw materials
represent a significant portion of the finished product for downstream manufacturers, it is crucial that these
manufacturers receive the best products at the lowest costs. For some industries, that means
buying foreign-made steel. When import tariffs are placed on this foreign steel, the industries
that employ those 12.8 million Americans are on the losing end of this government
favoritism.∂ Steel-consuming industries are not the only losers in this scenario. While stakeholders in the U.S.
steel-making industry are shouting at the top of their lungs about China, Japan, South Korea,
and other countries offering “unfair” steel prices, everyday Americans are struggling to afford a
new washing machine or a refrigerator when the old one breaks down. Many of the goods they purchase,
from lawn mowers to grills, are made of steel, and import tariffs raise the price of those goods. The special interest tariffs
that steelmakers plead for are really just another tax on Americans and one more thing that
makes it harder for average families to get by.∂ America Needs the Right Trade Policy∂ The debate between
protectionist and free trade policies is not new in the United States. As President Ronald Reagan once put it:[28] ∂ [W]e’re
determined to press on with the right trade policy and, most important, to do all we can to shift the political focus away from
negative, protectionist legislation to positive, pro-growth policies—policies like comprehensive tax reform and spending reduction….
The main question is not how to shelter the American economy but how to bring it into still wider contact with the rest of the world;
not how to protect it from competition but how to release our boundless talent, creativity, and know-how so that America comes
out of the competition a winner. After all, it’s not protectionism but economic growth that in the past [3.5] years has created more
than 10 million American jobs.∂ Reagan’s words find strong support each year in the Index of Economic Freedom,[29] which confirms
that countries with greater levels of trade freedom enjoy higher levels of economic prosperity .
Citizens in countries with low tariff rates and few non-tariff barriers enjoy higher per capita incomes, lower rates of hunger, and do a
better job of protecting the environment. While
the average tariff rate in the United States is 1.5
percent,[30] special interest tariffs and non-tariff barriers for steel and several other industries,
which can be as high as 300 percent, hinder Americans’ freedom to trade.[31]∂ While steel
industry leaders argue that it is the duty of the government to protect them from unfair
competition, the duty of the government to reject favoritism for a specific industry over others and ensure a level playing field
within the U.S. is even more crucial. Rather than immediately turning to protectionist tariffs for steel producers, the U.S. Trade
Representative, the ITC, the
Commerce Department, and Congress should work together to find
solutions that keep U.S. markets open to innovation, competition, and economic opportunity
for all.
Scenario 1 is the economy
Higher steel prices ripple throughout the entire economy, crimping growth in
multiple sectors
Jacoby 16 – Jeff Jacoby, Columnist for the Boston Globe, "Welcome Cheap
Chinese Steel, Dump Tariffs", The Boston Globe, 5-22,
CHINA PRODUCES MORE than 820 million tons of steel per year, of which about 100 million tons
are exported and sold at a discount overseas. Only about 3 percent of those exports go to the
United States, but American steel producers bristle at the competition. So in keeping with the timehonored practice of the US steel industry — “the backbone of American manufacturing,” as it proudly calls itself — domestic
producers are rising to the challenge.∂ Are they doing so by making their operations more efficient? By improving the quality of the
steel they sell? By cutting their prices to maintain market share in the face of a tough competitor?∂ Not exactly. They’re
the federal government to punish American consumers.∂ “The United States on Tuesday said it would impose
duties of more than 500 percent on Chinese cold-rolled flat steel, widely used for car body panels, appliances, and in construction,”
reported Reuters. “The
Commerce Department said the new duties effectively increase more than
five-fold the import prices on Chinese-made . . . steel products.”∂ American steel producers complain that
their counterparts in China are dumping cheap steel on the US market, benefiting from Chinese tax subsidies to undercut other
companies’ prices. Because of these “unfairly traded imports,” lament Thomas Gibson and Chuck Schmitt of the American Iron and
Steel Institute, some US steel mills have had to be shuttered, and 12,000 steel-making jobs were lost during the past year.∂ It is
always painful when workers are laid off and once-thriving facilities have to be closed. But the steel industry is far from unique.
The US economy creates and destroys millions of jobs every year. No industry is exempt from
the upheaval, retrenchment, or losses caused by changes in technology, trade, and consumer
demand. The digital revolution has decimated once-formidable companies and careers in fields as different as journalism,
photography, tax accountancy, and recorded music. Would anyone argue that the government should have suppressed the Internet
in order to preserve the employment and production patterns of the 1980s? Should the Commerce Department have imposed taxes
of 500 percent on e-mail services and word-processing software to preserve the viability of typewriters and stenographers?∂ For that
matter, as economist Don Boudreaux has remarked, should the polio vaccine have been taxed into unaffordability for the sake of all
the jobs that were once linked to the care of polio victims?∂ Sooner or later, competition and disruption challenge every industry
and market. The pain they can inflict is real, but far
greater and more enduring are the benefits and
prosperity they generate. American steel mills are understandably chagrined that competitors
from China are beating them on price. But cheaper steel also means more affordable cars,
homes, and appliances for tens of millions of Americans. It means more employment at
General Motors, Boeing, and John Deere. Jacking up steel prices through “antidumping” tariffs
and other protectionist measures makes life more expensive for all of us and jeopardizes far
more jobs than it saves.∂ There is nothing nefarious about Chinese mills selling steel at bargain prices in the United States
and other foreign countries. Companies routinely mark down the price of their merchandise — in clearance sales, as loss-leaders, for
promotional purposes, or simply in response to local conditions. The Commerce Department and the US producers clamoring for
punitive tariffs, claim that Beijing is subsidizing Chinese steel exports. Even if that’s true, why should Americans object? We
aren’t being harmed by China’s gift — we’re being enriched. It is the federal government and its
tariffs that harm us, by deliberately making steel more expensive and thereby making US
consumers poorer.∂ For years, American steel companies have bellyached about foreign competition, and for years
Washington has responded with quotas, tariffs, “voluntary-restraint” agreements, and other restrictions on free trade. The Obama
administration, like the Bush 43, Bush 41, Reagan, Carter, Ford, and Johnson administrations before it, has yielded to the industry’s
unreasonable demand for more trade barriers and corporate welfare. It’s a pity. Nucor, Steel Dynamics, United States Steel, and
other American producers should be told to step up and face their competition in the marketplace. They shouldn’t be rewarded for
hiring lobbyists and publicists to wangle special-interest privileges that no business has a right to claim.∂ It is irrational to attack
foreign exporters for not charging us higher prices. And it is preposterous to whine that Chinese steel is being “dumped” on the US
market. Steel that
enters the United States has been sold by a specific Chinese producer and
bought by a specific American buyer. The transaction is voluntary, the price has been mutually
agreed to, and the benefits ripple outward through the entire economy. If US steel producers want that
US buyer’s business, let them earn it the old-fashioned way, by outperforming their Chinese counterparts on price and quality.
Protectionist tariffs are for crybabies, not for the backbone of American manufacturing.
Economic decline causes diversionary war – Trump makes the risk beyond likely
Foster 12/19 – professor of international studies and political science at the
Virginia Military Institute (Denis M, “Would President Trump go to war to divert
attention from problems at home?,” 12/19/16
If the U.S. economy tanks, should we expect Donald Trump to engage in a diversionary war?
Since the age of Machiavelli, analysts have expected world leaders to launch international conflicts to
deflect popular attention away from problems at home. By stirring up feelings of patriotism,
leaders might escape the political costs of scandal, unpopularity — or a poorly performing
economy.∂ One often-cited example of diversionary war in modern times is Argentina’s 1982 invasion of the Falklands, which
several (though not all) political scientists attribute to the junta’s desire to divert the people’s attention from a disastrous economy. ∂
In a 2014 article, Jonathan Keller and I argued that whether
U.S. presidents engage in diversionary conflicts
depends in part on their psychological traits — how they frame the world, process information and develop plans of
action. Certain
traits predispose leaders to more belligerent behavior.∂ Do words translate into foreign
policy action?∂ One way to identify these traits is content analyses of leaders’ rhetoric. The more leaders use certain
types of verbal constructs, the more likely they are to possess traits that lead them to use
military force.∂ For one, conceptually simplistic leaders view the world in “black and white” terms;
they develop unsophisticated solutions to problems and are largely insensitive to risks. Similarly,
distrustful leaders tend to exaggerate threats and rely on aggression to deal with threats.
Distrustful leaders typically favor military action and are confident in their ability to wield it
effectively.∂ Thus, when faced with politically damaging problems that are hard to solve — such as a faltering economy —
leaders who are both distrustful and simplistic are less likely to put together complex, direct
responses. Instead, they develop simplistic but risky “solutions” that divert popular attention from
the problem, utilizing the tools with which they are most comfortable and confident (military
force).∂ Based on our analysis of the rhetoric of previous U.S. presidents, we found that presidents whose language
appeared more simplistic and distrustful, such as Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower and George
W. Bush, were more likely to use force abroad in times of rising inflation and unemployment. By
contrast, John F. Kennedy and Bill Clinton, whose rhetoric pegged them as more complex and
trusting, were less likely to do so.∂ What about Donald Trump?∂ Since Donald Trump’s election, many
commentators have expressed concern about how he will react to new challenges and whether
he might make quick recourse to military action. For example, the Guardian’s George Monbiot has argued that
political realities will stymie Trump’s agenda, especially his promises regarding the economy. Then, rather than risk disappointing his
base, Trump might try to rally public opinion to his side via military action.∂ I sampled Trump’s campaign
rhetoric, analyzing 71,446 words across 24 events from January 2015 to December 2016. Using a program for measuring leadership
traits in rhetoric, I estimated what Trump’s words may tell us about his level of distrust and conceptual complexity. The graph below
shows Trump’s level of distrust compared to previous presidents. These results are startling. Nearly
35 percent of
Trump’s references to outside groups paint them as harmful to himself, his allies and friends,
and causes that are important to him — a percentage almost twice the previous high. The data suggest that Americans
have elected a leader who, if his campaign rhetoric is any indication, will be historically unparalleled among modern presidents in his
active suspicion of those unlike himself and his inner circle, and those who disagree with his goals.∂ As a candidate, Trump
scored second-lowest among presidents in conceptual complexity. Compared to earlier presidents, he
used more words and phrases that indicate less willingness to see multiple dimensions or
ambiguities in the decision-making environment. These include words and phrases like “absolutely,” “greatest”
and “without a doubt.”∂ A possible implication for military action∂ I took these data on Trump and plugged them into the statistical
model that we developed to predict major uses of force by the United States from 1953 to 2000. For a president of average distrust
and conceptual complexity, an economic downturn only weakly predicts an increase in the use of force.∂ But the
would predict that a president with Trump’s numbers would respond to even a minor
economic downturn with an increase in the use of force. For example, were the misery index
(aggregate inflation and unemployment) equal to 12 — about where it stood in October 2011 —
the model predicts a president with Trump’s psychological traits would initiate more than one
major conflict per quarter.∂ Of course, predictions from such a model come with a lot of uncertainty. By necessity, any
measures of a president’s traits are imperfect. And we do not know whether there will be an economic downturn. Moreover,
campaigning is not governing, and the responsibilities of the Oval Office might moderate Donald Trump. The psychologist Philip
Tetlock has found that presidents often become more conceptually complex once they enter office.∂ Nevertheless, this analysis
suggests some cause for concern about the international ramifications of an economic downturn with a President Trump in the
White House.
Weak economic growth causes war and dangerous multi-polarity
Hillebrand & Closson 15—Evan Hillebrand a PhD in Economics from George Washington U, Professor of International
Economics at the Patterson School of Diplomacy and Int’l Commerce, and Staff Economist & Directorate of Intelligence at the CIA
(1972-2004) // Stacy Closson a PhD in Int’l Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science and Distinguished
Visiting Professor at the Patterson School of Diplomacy and Int’l Commerce [Energy, Economic Growth, and Geopolitical Futures:
Eight Long-Range Scenarios, 2015, p. 43-44]
The second scenario is marked by low energy prices, weak economic growth, and global disharmony. The United States
and the European Union falter because their macroeconomic policies never come to grips with unsustainable budget deficits caused by rising
transfer payments in the face of declining working-age populations. Recurrent financial crises afflict the OECD countries
and wreak havoc on the developing world. China is never able to establish the conditions of
secure property rights, impartial rule of law, and transparent governance for modem economic
The result is high volatility and low-trend economic growth in the world's biggest economies,
which drives down growth abroad and has a debilitating effect on geopolitical stability. Illiberal
trade policies are ramped up everywhere, which slows growth further and breeds ill-will and
mistrust among nations. Weak economic growth leads to low energy demand, which, when
combined with new supplies of conventional and unconventional energy sources, leads to a sharp drop in energy
This is a tumultuous multipolar world. Oil producers in the Middle East resort to desperate
policies to retain power, and Iran emerges as the regional power after a short but exceedingly violent
regional war. After decades of economic decline and rising unrest, Russia experiences a revolution by
disparate groups of aggrieved liberal parties. Asian countries form a new alliance to resist pressure
from an aggressive China. Africa does not reap the expected rewards from oil production. Instead, poor governance
leads to weak economic performance, and many African nations are mired in conflict over water
resources and drought-induced famine. The international community fails to · adequately address
the underlying problems.
Scenario 2 is agriculture
Manufacturing industry is key to agricultural technology advances and precision
Lind and Freeman 12 - policy director of New America's Economic Growth
Program and a co-founder of the New America Foundation AND program
associate in New America's Economic Growth Program (Michael and Joshua,
April, "Value Added: America's Manufacturing Future," New America Foundation,
Advanced manufacturing is not limited to new, emerging∂ sectors; even manufacturing
tied to one of the most∂
“traditional” industries, agriculture, has heavily incorporated∂ technology into its new products.∂
The need for more accurate and efficient farming, as∂ well as the rise of “precision agriculture”—
the utilization∂ of technology to accommodate variations within∂ a field—has changed the agricultural
manufacturing∂ industry.i∂ Agricultural equipment manufacturers are∂ now creating products
that are a far cry from the farm∂ equipment of earlier generations. Replete with LED∂ alerts, touchscreen
monitors, and GPS-enabled systems,∂ a modern farm equipment brochure looks like a consumer∂ electronics guide.∂ John Deere, the
iconic American tractor and agricultural∂ equipment manufacturer based in Moline,∂ Illinois, has embraced the use of new
technology in∂ its products, as has one of its leading competitors,∂ Case IH, headquartered in Racine, Wisconsin. This∂ advanced
agricultural manufacturing does not necessarily∂ require creating completely new technology
but∂ rather finding ways to adapt and utilize existing technology∂ that has previously only been
applied in other∂ industries.∂ GPS can tell farmers in real time exactly where they∂ are in a field or the specific location of a
problem up∂ to an accuracy of plus or minus 2 centimeters. GPS∂ combined with geographic information systems (GIS)∂ gives
farmers the ability to map their fields and treat∂ sections independently. Pesticides, water, or
other∂ treatments can be varied, depending on the needs of∂ different segments of the field,
which minimizes waste∂ and improves productivity. As agricultural equipment∂ manufacturing continues to
advance, experts also see∂ continued growth in farming telematics—the integration∂ and
communication of all of this data.∂ In a modern tractor, for example, a farmer controls∂ much of the operations on one
or more small touchscreen∂ displays that take information from GPS∂ inputs. Depending on the software installed, a farmer∂ can
vary application rates of seeds, water, or nutrients;∂ the tractor can guide itself, realigning its trajectory if it∂ moves off of a specified
path; the tractor can make its∂ own turns at the end of a row of crops; and a farmer can∂ see behind the tractor through video.
Some harvesting∂ can be done “hands-free” without the tractor operator∂ needing to drive the machine. Beyond operations in∂ the
cab of the tractor itself, telematics software tracks∂ all of the data and incorporates it into a program that∂ can be run on a personal
computer. These innovations∂ come with names that befit their technology: at John∂ Deere, names include iTecPro (hands-free
turning),∂ iGuide (off-track prevention), StarFire SF2 (GPS differential∂ correction), and GreenStar 3 2630 (display).∂ The
shift to
high-technology manufactured goods∂ also means that these products will need to be serviced.∂
As with other industries, evidence points to a∂ decreasing distinction between the
manufacturing of∂ farm equipment and farm equipment services: John∂ Deere’s telematics system, JDLink,
allows farmers to∂ track machine productivity and schedule preventative∂ maintenance from a computer, and Case IH recently∂
introduced 24-hour availability for support services∂ for its Advanced Farming Systems products.
Precision agriculture solves biodiversity loss – allows for production on smaller
land plots and spares land
Kinver ’16 – environment reporter for BBC news, citing a Cambridge study (Mark,
“Boosting food crop yields 'can protect biodiversity,'”
Increasing crop yields could help meet the rising global demand for more food while sparing
land to protect biodiversity, a study has suggested.∂ The expansion of agriculture is deemed to be one
of the main drivers for global habitat and biodiversity loss.∂ Researchers from the UK and Brazil say that
boosting yields could help - but only if policies such as incentives or land-zoning are implemented as well.∂ Their findings have been
published in the journal Science.∂ "The
least bad way we can reconcile the rising demand for food
production over the next 50 years with the need to protect the environment... is through this
notion of land-sparing, which is pursuing sustainable but high-yield farming on farmland," said coauthor Andrew Balmford, professor of conservation science at the University of Cambridge.∂ "By doing that, we can meet our
needs but on a relatively smaller footprint of land and spare intact or restored natural habitat
for other creatures or for the benefits we get from nature that we rely upon."∂ Four mechanisms∂ He told BBC News that it
was probably the "least bad" option in terms of of a policy approach for food security and environmental protection - if it was
possible to deliver.∂ "The problem is that if we leave it to market forces alone, increasing yields will not provide enough incentive for
farmers to restrict their footprint," Prof Balmford explained.∂ "Prices might
come down, which would increase
demand. On the other hand, profits might go up and this might increase the incentive to expand
farming rather than restrict it."∂ In their policy briefing, the team of scientists from the UK and Brazil identified four
categories of land-sparing mechanisms that were currently being used in some parts of the world.∂ The four categories were:∂ Landuse zoning: "Zoning some land for conservation and some for agriculture limits agricultural expansion," the scientists explained.
However, they added that there was a risk of "leakage", which referred to the displacement of food production to areas outside the
zoned region. The authors cited an example in Costa Rica where the government said forests were off-limits for agricultural
expansion, and thus halved the rate at which mature forests were being cleared.∂ Economic instruments: These include payments,
land taxes and subsidies. The authors said they could be tailored to stimulate yield increases or to discourage habitat conversion. An
incentive scheme in Himalayan India, for example, delivered an area set aside for a snow leopard recovery programme in exchange
for payments for shepherds and technical assistance to reduce the loss of livestock to snow leopards.∂ Strategic
of technology: By focusing assistance on existing farmlands, the authors said, yield-enhancing
measures - such as soil, nutrient and water technical advice - would not indirectly stimulate
agriculture in areas rich in natural habitats.∂ Standards and certification: Voluntary standards could help deliver
results through a series of steps, including a requirement to protect natural habitat, and rewarding good performances through a
price premium and access to markets, the authors suggested.∂ Prof Balmford said that extra policy mechanisms were needed to
couple high-yield farming to safeguarding or restoring natural habitats.∂ "This paper is a first attempt really to try to consider what
those mechanisms might look like," he explained.∂ "We have looked around at what, in principle, might be possible, and trying to
find a few examples of what is happening already in different parts of the world.∂ "This is not a complete set of all the opportunities
that might be pursued - some of these ideas might work in some places but not in others, and there will be other ideas that we have
not thought about at all."∂ He added: "This paper is a stimulus to talk about how high-yield farming might be most effectively
coupled, through policy, to land sparing."
Biodiversity loss causes extinction—makes life unsustainable
Torres 16 (Phil Torres, Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, Phil is the founder of the X-Risks Institute, an affiliate scholar at the
Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, , “Biodiversity loss: An existential risk comparable to climate change”.
The sixth extinction.
The repercussions
of biodiversity loss are potentially as severe as those anticipated from climate change, or even a
nuclear conflict. For example, according to a 2015 study published in Science Advances, the best available
evidence reveals “an exceptionally rapid loss of biodiversity over the last few centuries,
indicating that a sixth mass extinction is already under way.” This conclusion holds, even on the
most optimistic assumptions about the background rate of species losses and the current rate of vertebrate extinctions. The group
classified as “vertebrates” includes mammals, birds, reptiles, fish, and all other creatures with a backbone.
The article argues that, using its conservative figures, the
average loss of vertebrate species was 100
times higher in the past century relative to the background rate of extinction. (Other scientists have
suggested that the current extinction rate could be as much as 10,000 times higher than normal.) As the authors write, “The
evidence is incontrovertible that recent extinction rates are unprecedented in human history and
highly unusual in Earth’s history.” Perhaps the term “Big Six” should enter the popular lexicon—to add the current extinction to the
previous “Big Five,” the
last of which wiped out the dinosaurs 66 million years ago.
But the concept of biodiversity encompasses more than just the total number of species on the planet. It also refers
to the
size of different populations of species. With respect to this phenomenon, multiple studies have confirmed that
wild populations around the world are dwindling and disappearing at an alarming rate. For example, the 2010 Global
Biodiversity Outlook report found that the population of wild vertebrates living in the tropics dropped by 59 percent between 1970
and 2006.
The report also found that the population of farmland birds in Europe has dropped by 50 percent since 1980; bird populations in the
grasslands of North America declined by almost 40 percent between 1968 and 2003; and the population of birds in North American
arid lands has fallen by almost 30 percent since the 1960s. Similarly, 42 percent of all amphibian species (a type of vertebrate that is
sometimes called an “ecological indicator”) are undergoing population declines, and 23 percent of all plant species “are estimated to
be threatened with extinction.” Other studies have found that some 20 percent of all reptile species, 48 percent of the world’s
primates, and 50 percent of freshwater turtles are threatened. Underwater, about 10 percent of all coral reefs are now dead, and
another 60 percent are in danger of dying.
Consistent with these data, the 2014 Living Planet Report shows that the global population of wild vertebrates dropped
by 52 percent in only four decades—from 1970 to 2010. While biologists often avoid projecting historical trends into the future
because of the complexity of ecological systems, it’s tempting to extrapolate this figure to, say, the year 2050, which is four decades
from 2010. As it happens, a 2006 study published in Science does precisely this: It projects
past trends of marine
biodiversity loss into the 21st century, concluding that, unless significant changes are made to
patterns of human activity, there will be virtually no more wild-caught seafood by 2048.
Catastrophic consequences for civilization. The
consequences of this rapid pruning of the evolutionary tree of life
extend beyond the obvious. There could be surprising effects of biodiversity loss that scientists are
unable to fully anticipate in advance. For example, prior research has shown that localized
ecosystems can undergo abrupt and irreversible shifts when they reach a tipping point.
According to a 2012 paper published in Nature, there are reasons for thinking that we may be approaching a
tipping point of this sort in the global ecosystem, beyond which the consequences could be
catastrophic for civilization.
As the authors write, a
planetary-scale transition could precipitate “substantial losses of ecosystem
services required to sustain the human population.” An ecosystem service is any ecological process that benefits
humanity, such as food production and crop pollination. If the global ecosystem were to cross a
tipping point and substantial ecosystem services were lost, the results could be “widespread social unrest,
economic instability, and loss of human life.” According to Missouri Botanical Garden ecologist Adam Smith, one of
the paper’s co-authors, this could occur in a matter of decades—far more quickly than most of the
expected consequences of climate change, yet equally destructive.
Biodiversity loss is a “threat multiplier” that, by pushing societies to the brink of collapse, will
exacerbate existing conflicts and introduce entirely new struggles between state and non-state
actors. Indeed, it could even fuel the rise of terrorism. (After all, climate change has been linked to
the emergence of ISIS in Syria, and multiple high-ranking US officials, such as former US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and
CIA director John Brennan, have affirmed that climate change and terrorism are connected.)
we are entering the sixth mass extinction in the 3.8-billion-year history of life on Earth, and the
impact of this event could be felt by civilization “in as little as three human lifetimes,” as the
aforementioned 2012 Nature paper notes. Furthermore, the widespread decline of biological populations could
plausibly initiate a dramatic transformation of the global ecosystem on an even faster timescale:
perhaps a single human lifetime.
The reality is that
The unavoidable conclusion is that biodiversity
loss constitutes an existential threat in its own right. As such,
it ought to be considered alongside climate change and nuclear weapons as one of the most
significant contemporary risks to human prosperity and survival.
Precision agriculture solves global food shortages – saves billions
García ’15 – SDSU Extension Agriculture & Natural Resources Program Director (Alvaro, April
26. “Precision Agriculture: Food Security Without Overburdening the Environment,”
It is estimated that by 2050 the US will have a population of 402 million, 25.2% greater than today (U.N. 2015). In
order to feed
this population and sustain the country’s economy through commodities exports, agricultural
output needs to increase by a similar amount by that year. These figures are projections based on current
population and food production dynamics. Significant changes in any of these two parameters can accelerate or slowdown these
trends. From what is currently being experienced globally it seems
population growth will maintain if not
increase momentum. During the last decade cereal grains production in the world seems to be fairly aligned with utilization
(Figure 1). Any
disruption in cereal grain production in the food-producing nations (i.e. climate
challenges) will challenge global food security. ∂ Today’s US population is very urbanized, with 81% as of 2014
residing in cities and suburbs, compared to 54% in the rest of the world. This detachment of the population from
agriculture has oftentimes resulted in increased questioning of technologies that attempt to
boost food production. Agricultural advances of the 1960’s involved research in genetics, plant breeding, plant pathology,
entomology, agronomy, soil science, and cereal technology. It was through the work of Midwest native Norman Borlaug "father of
the Green Revolution”, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal, that
agricultural production increased and saved from starvation over a billion people, one third of
the world population at that time. Borlaug always advocated for the need to increase crop yields to reduce
deforestation. Agricultural economists labeled this the "Borlaug hypothesis": To increase the productivity of agriculture on the best
farmland to help control deforestation by reducing the demand for new farmland. He also went as far as to remind agricultural
scientists of their moral obligation to warn
the public that global food insecurity will not disappear without
new technologies, and that ignoring this would lead to global food insecurity and make future
solutions more difficult to achieve. Although referenced deforestation of certain parts of the world the same can be
said about the Upper Midwest grasslands as an ecosystem that needs to be maintained. For this to happen there is a
need to rely on production systems that pay special attention to agricultural sustainability. From
this perspective “precision agriculture” seems to be positioning itself as a modern answer to
this challenge.∂ Precision Agriculture: New way of farming∂ Crop fields can be thought of as a living organism, they exchange
oxygen and carbon dioxide, have specific nutrient requirements and deficiencies, and there’s the potential to contract diseases.
When a physician treats a patient for a health problems the expectations are he or she will only treat the organ or system affected,
and not use wide-spectrum drugs “just in case”. Similarly, precision
agriculture can be considered a toolbox of
measures, and practices that lead to rational, precise, and optimum management of the fields.∂
Most agricultural recommendations of the past were done considering farms as a uniform unit.
With individual farms growing in size the likelihood of them showing different areas within fields
has increased. Treating them as a unit can result in excessive use of fertilizers, pesticides, and
herbicides, and losses in potential productivity. Different areas merit “site specific” recommendations to optimize
resources, yield and profitability. Using chemicals at only the minimum necessary concentrations and only where warranted,
reduces also the possibility of environmental contamination.∂ Modern changes in the world of electronics and remote monitoring
have made some of these changes possible. The use of Global Positioning System (GPS) for example allows farmers to map their
fields with precision; even subdivide them into single acre plots that can be managed independently. The Geographic Information
System (GIS) consists of a computer that captures, stores, checks, and displays data related to different positions on the field surface
located with the GPS. This enables farmers to analyze and understand patterns and relationships more easily. Today, GPS and GIS
are coupled with sensors, monitors and controllers for different pieces of the agricultural equipment.∂ Precision Agriculture: The
process∂ Precision agriculture
goes beyond the purchasing of high-tech equipment. As mentioned
is a toolbox of practices that is combination of information acquired from the field and the
response of the crops respond to management practices. The process starts with a soil analysis for nutrient
content early in the spring, right before planting. Farmers today can select crop genetics from a wide array of hardy to high-yield,
developed to better fit a specific environment. Choosing the right varieties to plant is critical since it is less expensive and more
environmentally sound to adapt the crop genetics to the environment than to modify the latter.∂ Once
planting starts
variable seeding rates can be used across a field that can also be accompanied with different
fertilizer recommendation (variable rate application: VRA) according to soil test results. In modern planting equipment the
farmer can pre-program this variable seeding rate. After the plants emerge the fields are scouted searching for problems (i.e. weeds,
pests, etc.) which are loaded into a GIS which then compares it to other data. Through the results of these periodic evaluations the
farmer decides if the specific site requires application of variable rate of chemicals.
This functionality of precision
agriculture is critical since it permits to use the right amounts of chemicals at the right locations
within a field which results not only in savings, but also in less environmental impact.∂ Until a few
years ago monitoring yields was exclusively performed by weight once the crop was harvested. Modern yield combines use sensors
to monitor grain flow rate and speed of the equipment. This information combined with the location from the GPS, creates a yield
map within a GIS. By combining yield maps, soil test data, chemicals applied, and other information, farmers can prepare site specific
optimum recommendations. This allows the assessment of variable yield results throughout the field to determine what has worked
and what not during the current season or even helps select plant varieties that perform better in that particular environment.
Learning to use these technologies is important, but even more important is to know how to apply the information obtained this
year, to optimize production in the next. This information helps farmers and agricultural consultant alike understand that fields
differ in soil types, topography, water needs, and microclimates. After
carefully evaluating the variability within a
field then the farmer can use the yield map to confirm what was suspected and make
amendments for future crops.
Scenario 3 is shipbuilding
High steel prices destroy the shipbuilding sector
Matthews ‘8 – business writer for the Wall Street Journal (Robert Guy, May 15, “Fast-Rising
Steel Prices Set Back Big Projects,” http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB121080981399493567)
The impact of high steel prices is rippling through industries from shipbuilding to energy
exploration. Shipbuilders, who buy vast quantities of high-end plate steel are getting
hammered, and analysts say steel-supply problems are slowing the pace of construction,
especially at smaller shipyards like South Korea's Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co.∂ In April, an executive
of Royal Dutch Shell PLC told a House committee that steel, which is needed to make drilling equipment and
pipelines, and other raw-material costs were hampering efforts to find new energy sources. These
costs "are a major challenge for oil and gas companies and are contributing to the delays and postponements of many projects,"
according to Cambridge Energy Research Associates, a leading energy-research company.∂ Cellphone users could eventually feel the
pinch. Eric Steinmann, development manager at wireless carrier NTCH Inc., which operates under the Clear Talk brand, says steel
costs for each of the about 100 cellphone tower poles his company builds annually doubled to about $30,000 last year.∂ Robert
Griggs, owner of Missouri-based Trinity Products Inc., a maker
of steel pipes, tubes and rebar for bridges, said
he tells his customers he can only guarantee prices for two weeks. Last year, it took six months for steel prices
to rise $100 a ton, he said. Now, prices are moving that much in a month.∂ Shifting to lower cost materials isn't an
easy option for steel buyers, either. It takes years to retool auto and appliance stamping and dye
machines, currently engineered for steel products. Also the cost of alternatives, such as
aluminum and certain plastics, is increasing.
Material costs are the crucial internal link
HeeWon ’10 Duck. Masters Science MIT, BS Management Studies Seoul National University. “A Study of Korean Shipbuilders’
Strategy for Sustainable Growth” June 2010 MIT Sloan School of Management
The main portion of shipbuilding costs is material costs that can be broken into steel¶ and
equipment costs. As such, the increase of steel price can have a detrimental effect on the¶ profit of
shipbuilders. Steel costs are approximately 15% of COGS and 13% of sales, which¶ means that a 10% increase in
steel price can decrease gross margin by 1.3%. Unlike exchange¶ ratio, steel is a difficult commodity for the
shipbuilder to hedge against the volatility of the price. Material costs consist of more than 50%
of total costs approximately. (Based on Schedules of Cost of Goods¶ Manufactured of Korean shipbuilders in 2004)
Vital internal link to naval power – steel affects every sector
NLUS ’12 (Navy League of the United States, Since 1902, the NLUS has sought to provide a stronger sea voice to Congress and to the American
people, “America’s Maritime Industry: the foundation of American seapower.”, May 2012 http://www.navyleague.org/files/americas-maritimeindustry.pdf)
The American Maritime Industry also contributes to our national defense by sustaining the
shipbuilding and repair sector of our national defense industrial base upon which our standing
as a seapower is based. History has proven that without a strong maritime infrastructure—shipyards, suppliers,
and seafarers—no country can hope to build and support a Navy of sufficient size and capability to
protect its interests on a global basis. Both our commercial and naval fleets rely on U.S. shipyards and
their numerous industrial vendors for building and repairs. The U.S. commercial shipbuilding and repair industry also
impacts our national economy by adding billions of dollars to U.S. economic output annually. In 2004, there were 89 shipyards in the major shipbuilding
and repair base of the United States, defined by the Maritime Administration as including those shipyards capable of building, repairing, or providing
topside repairs for ships 122 meters (400 feet) in length and over. This includes six large shipyards that build large ships for the U.S. Navy. Based on U.S.
Coast Guard vessel registration data for 2008, in that year U.S. shipyards delivered 13 large deep-draft vessels including naval ships, merchant ships,
and drilling rigs; 58 offshore service vessels; 142 tugs and towboats, 51 passenger vessels greater than 50 feet in length; 9 commercial fishing vessels;
240 other self- propelled vessels; 23 mega-yachts; 10 oceangoing barges; and 224 tank barges under 5,000 GT. 11 Since the mid 1990’s, the industry
has been experiencing a period of modernization and renewal that is largely market-driven, backed by long-term customer commitments. Over the sixyear period from 2000-05, a total of $2.336 billion was invested in the industry, while in 2006, capital investments in the U.S. shipbuilding and repair
industry amounted to $270 million.12 The
state of the industrial base that services this nation’s Sea Services is
of great concern to the U.S. Navy. Even a modest increase in oceangoing commercial
shipbuilding would give a substantial boost to our shipyards and marine vendors. Shipyard facilities at the
larger shipyards in the United States are capable of constructing merchant ships as well as warships, but often cannot match the output of shipyards in
Europe and Asia. On the other hand, U.S. yards construct and equip the best warships, aircraft carriers and submarines in the world. They
unmatched in capability, but must maintain that lead. 13 Defense Industrial Base: Seafarers & Shipyard Labor
Maintaining a strong industrial base supporting the seagoing elements of the U.S. Merchant
Marine and U.S. Navy includes having the trained and experienced manpower necessary to crew
the vessels comprising the commercial merchant fleet and the skilled shipyard workers needed to build and repair both
Navy and commercial ships. Thus seafarers and shipyard labor are key elements in maintaining U.S.
maritime superiority.
Naval power solves great power war
Conway, Roughead, and Allen 07 – a. Commandant of the Marine Corps, b. Chief of Naval
Operations, c. Commandant of the Coast Guard [James T. Conway, Gary Roughead, & Thad W.
Allen, A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower, October,
The expeditionary
character and versatility of maritime forces provide the U.S. the asymmetric
advantage of enlarging or contracting its military footprint in areas where access is denied or
This strategy reaffirms the use of seapower to influence actions and activities at sea and ashore.
limited. Permanent or prolonged basing of our military forces overseas often has unintended economic, social or political
The sea is a vast maneuver space, where the presence of maritime forces can be
adjusted as conditions dictate to enable flexible approaches to escalation, deescalation and deterrence of conflicts. The speed, flexibility, agility and scalability of
maritime forces provide joint or combined force commanders a range of options for responding to crises.
Additionally, integrated maritime operations, either within formal alliance structures (such as the North Atlantic Treaty
Organization) or more informal arrangements (such as the Global Maritime Partnership initiative), send powerful messages to
seapower will
be globally postured to secure our homeland and citizens from direct attack and
to advance our interests around the world. As our security and prosperity are inextricably linked with
would-be aggressors that we will act with others to ensure collective security and prosperity. United States
those of others, U.S.
maritime forces will be deployed to protect and sustain the peaceful global
system comprised of interdependent networks of trade, finance, information, law, people and
governance. We will employ the global reach, persistent presence, and operational flexibility inherent in U.S. seapower to
accomplish six key tasks, or strategic imperatives. Where tensions are high or where we wish to demonstrate to our friends and
allies our commitment to security and stability, U.S. maritime forces will be characterized by regionally concentrated, forward-
deployed task forces with the combat power to limit regional conflict, deter major power war, and should deterrence fail, win our
Nation’s wars as part of a joint or combined campaign. In addition, persistent, mission-tailored maritime forces will be globally
distributed in order to contribute to homeland defense-in-depth, foster and sustain cooperative relationships with an expanding set
of international partners, and prevent or mitigate disruptions and crises.
Regionally Concentrated, Credible Combat Power
Credible combat power will be continuously postured in the Western Pacific and the Arabian Gulf/Indian Ocean to protect our vital
interests, assure our friends and allies of our continuing commitment to regional security, and deter and dissuade potential
adversaries and peer competitors. This combat power can be selectively and rapidly repositioned to meet contingencies that may
arise elsewhere. These forces will be sized and postured to fulfill the following strategic imperatives:
Limit regional
conflict with forward deployed, decisive maritime power. Today regional conflict has ramifications far beyond the area of
conflict. Humanitarian crises, violence spreading across borders, pandemics, and the interruption of vital resources are all possible
when regional crises erupt. While this strategy advocates a wide dispersal of networked maritime forces, we cannot be everywhere,
Where conflict threatens the global system and our
national interests, maritime forces will be ready to respond alongside other elements of national and multiand we cannot act to mitigate all regional conflict.
national power, to give political leaders a range of options for deterrence, escalation and de-escalation. Maritime forces that are
persistently present and combat-ready provide the Nation’s primary forcible entry option in an era of declining access, even as they
provide the means for this Nation to respond quickly to other crises. Whether over the horizon or powerfully arrayed in plain sight,
maritime forces can deter the ambitions of regional aggressors, assure friends and allies, gain and maintain access, and protect our
Critical to this notion is the maintenance of a
powerful fleet—ships, aircraft, Marine forces, and shore-based fleet activities—capable of selectively
controlling the seas, projecting power ashore, and protecting friendly forces and civilian populations from attack.
citizens while working to sustain the global order.
Deter major power war. No other disruption is as potentially disastrous to global
stability as war among major powers. Maintenance and extension of this Nation’s
comparative seapower advantage is a key component of deterring major power war.
While war with another great power strikes many as improbable, the nearcertainty of its ruinous effects demands that it be actively deterred using all elements of
national power. The expeditionary character of maritime forces— our lethality, global
reach, speed, endurance, ability to overcome barriers to access, and operational agility—provide the joint commander with
a range of deterrent options. We will pursue an approach to deterrence that includes a credible and scalable ability to
retaliate against aggressors conventionally, unconventionally, and with nuclear forces. Win our Nation’s wars. In times of war, our ability to
impose local sea control, overcome challenges to access, force entry, and project and sustain power ashore, makes our
maritime forces an indispensable element of the joint or combined force. This
expeditionary advantage must be maintained because it provides joint and combined force commanders with
freedom of maneuver. Reinforced by a robust sealift capability that can concentrate and sustain forces, sea control and power projection enable
extended campaigns ashore.
Contention 2 is Neon
Ukraine war puts neon and semiconductor supply on the brink
Reisch ’16 – (Marc, March 7, “Trouble brews for chip makers as neon shortage
looms: Delays in development of neon-free lasers means chip makers will
continue to rely on older neon-enabled photolithography,” Chemical and
Engineering News, Volume 94, Issue 10,
A looming shortage of neon gas threatens to create problems for manufacturers of
semiconductors and the devices they power beginning in 2017.∂ Producers of the latest computer and cell
phone chips use a laser-enabled photolithography technique to create transistors and other device features. Deep ultraviolet lasers,
which contain neon gas as a buffer, have made it possible to pack an increasing number of transistors on chips that now boast
features as small as 14 nm wide.∂ Semiconductor makers had
hoped to transition by this year to extreme
ultraviolet lasers, which enable even smaller features but don’t require the noble gas. But delays
in that technology mean the industry will continue to rely on neon-consuming lasers, “pushing
up demand for neon beyond what the supply chain can support” by 2017, says Lita Shon-Roy, CEO of
Techcet, a consulting firm that issued a report on the problem.∂ Chip makers, which account for more than 90% of
global neon consumption, are already experiencing high prices and some shortages stemming
from the Russian conflict with Ukraine, Shon-Roy says. The war, which started in 2014, interrupted global
supplies of the gas, about 70% of which comes from Iceblick, a firm based in the Ukrainian city of Odessa.∂ Iceblick gathers
and purifies neon from large cryogenic air separation units that supply oxygen and nitrogen to steelmakers. Most of the air
separation units equipped to capture neon, which makes up only 18.2 ppm of the atmosphere by volume, are in Eastern Europe.∂
James Greer, president of PVD Products, a provider of
pulsed laser deposition systems for academic
research, says he expects the shortage to get worse. Greer’s customers are among the smaller users who also
depend on neon.∂ The cost of a cylinder containing a mix of neon and other gases used in such
systems has increased in the past two years from $1,200 to as much as $12,000, Greer says. Wait
times for delivery have gone from four weeks to eight months.∂ Others who are likely to feel the effect of a
neon shortage are ophthalmologists, who employ lasers for LASIK vision correction surgery; makers of superconducting wire; and
manufacturers of neon lighting.
Steel tariffs deck the neon and semi conductor industry –
Hurd ’16 – writer specializing on semi conductors and technology involving noble
gases (Brooks, May 27, “U.S. Imposes 266% Duty on American Manufacturers
Buying Chinese Steel Imports, EU May Follow - An Unexpected Result Could be
Reduced Neon Supplies,” https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/us-imposes-266-dutyamerican-manufacturers-buying-chinese-brooks-hurd)
On 17 May 2016, the
Obama administration’s Commerce Department announced tariffs on Chinese
steel imports to the US. The total penalties on some Chinese steel products exceed 500% (266% anti-dumping tariff plus
266% government support tariff). If these were not a harsh enough cost to the American consumer, the EU is discussing tariffs on
Chinese steel and may act soon now to increase steel costs for European consumers. According to Bloomberg, ”U.S. Customs and
Border Protection will be instructed to require cash deposits based on the subsidy rates.” During the Chinese National Peoples'
Congress on February 29th this year, Yin Weimin, Minister of Human Resources and Social Security, announced that some steel
plants and coal mines would be shut down over the next 2 years as part of China's economic
restructuring. These shutdowns will put 1.8 million Chinese out of work and substantially reduce
China’s steel production. These massive tariffs can only exacerbate existing Chinese steel
industry problems while increasing costs for US consumers. An unintended consequence of
these U.S. and EU tariffs could mean problems for the semiconductor industry. The production of
semiconductor chips requires Excimer Lasers which produce the Deep Ultra Violet light which is
used to create processors and memory for cell phones, tablets, automobiles, and all modern
technology. These lasers use gases which are composed of >95% Neon, a gas that is a byproduct of
steel manufacturing. Since some important sources of Neon gas are Chinese steel mills, a
consequence of reducing Chinese steel production is a reduction of Neon supplies. Therefore
reducing Chinese steel imports to the US and the EU could lead to a worse Neon shortage for the
semiconductor industry then the one the industry experienced in 2015.
Scenario 1 is electronic warfare:
Semiconductors are key to military supremacy – electronic warfare is key
Yinug ’16 – director of industry statistics and economic policy at the
Semiconductor Industry Association (Falan, January 28, “HOW U.S.
BATTLEFIELD,” http://blog.semiconductors.org/blog/how-us-semiconductortechnology-strengthens-our-military-on-the-battlefield)
SIA frequently points out that semiconductors
play a critical role in strengthening our country,
including our national security. A concrete example comes from a new semiconductor developed by the
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) that gives our military a measurable
advantage in one critical arena of the modern battlefield: electronic warfare. As DARPA explains, the
advance is an exceptionally high-speed analog-to-digital converter (ADC) that is enabled by 32 nanometer
silicon-on-insulator (SOI) semiconductor technologies. This advance allows the ability to operate spectrumdependent military capabilities such as communications and radar without allowing the
enemy to disable or “jam” them. The development of this new semiconductor-enabled DARPA technology has a
couple critical implications for policymakers. First, it underscores the strategic nature of the U.S.
semiconductor industry to our country’s national security. As a recent Washington Post article describes,
other “near peer” adversaries have strong electronic warfare capabilities, so to maintain global
U.S. military leadership semiconductor technology will continue to play a critical role. As a result,
the U.S. semiconductor industry must continue to maintain global industry leadership. Second,
policymakers need to increase federal investment for university-based, pre-competitive
research at DARPA, NIST, NSF, and DOE, as well as implement and support research programs to advance semiconductor
technology and innovation. Doing so will help ensure a vibrant U.S. semiconductor industry, which in
turn will promote a strong and technologically advanced U.S. military and give our men and
women in uniform the tools they need to succeed.
US-Russia tensions are flaring in the Baltics—Requires US to maintain a credible
deterrence policy
Silva 12/1 (Christina, staff writer for IB Times, “War In Europe: Russia Tensions Mean NATO Must Increase
Military Spending, Baltic States Warn” http://www.ibtimes.com/war-europe-russia-tensions-mean-nato-mustincrease-military-spending-baltic-states-2453332 )
tensions between Russia and NATO
continue to flare up, two senior Lithuanian officials told The Associated Press this week. The
Europeans must increase military spending to protect peace and independence as
officials said President-elect Donald Trump's remarks during his campaign that NATO members must pay up if they want support from the U.S. are spot
on.¶ ‘"President Donald
Trump said that Europe in general should put more attention on defense and we
fully agree," Defense Minister Juozas Olekas said Monday. "The peace and independence of our country is very important and we should put
attention on that and not only waiting and relying for everything on the United States." ¶ In a separate interview with The Associated Press ,
Lithuania's foreign minister said he didn't think the U.S. would actually turn its back on NATO
members under a Trump administration. "I hope and believe — and I can't imagine otherwise — that the U.S.
will remain a key player in the world and also a leader of NATO," Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius said Tuesday.¶
Russia has been particularly assertive about holding military drills near the Baltic region in
recent months after military operations in Georgia, Ukraine and Syria, prompting nations such as
Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, to debate increased military spending.¶ "We need a credible
deterrence policy in the Baltic region to influence the Russian calculus to make the costs of
interference too high," Estonia's President Toomas Hendrik Ilves warned in May. He has seen been replaced by President Kersti Kaljulaid. ¶
NATO requires its 28 members to spend 2 percent of GDP on defense, but few do. The median NATO member spending in 2015 was 1.18 percent of
GDP, while the U.S. spends 3.7 percent of its GDP on defense. Lithuania plans this year to spend 1.8 percent on defense after reintroducing compulsory
military conscription last year.¶ "Frankly it was true and Europeans must deliver more," Linkevicius said of Trump's call for NATO members to increase
spending.¶ NATO
troops are holding military drills in Lithuania this week, while NATO leaders have
called on Russia to maintain peace in the region.
Russian electronic warfare dominance causes US nuclear first use – Russia wins
the conventional war and US has no other option
Duclos ’15 – writer for All News Pipeline, an online news source covering all
variety of issues, Duclos is citing Russian news sources including Sputnik as well
as other news sources regarding the USS Donald Cook (Susan, March 6, “Has
Russia Just Changed The Future Of Warfare Completely, And Rendered US HighTech Weapons Systems Inoperable?”
Via a tip from an ANP trusted source, we
see a few pieces of a puzzle that when added to the big picture
offers us insight to what could be one of the biggest game changers in history, putting the
Russian military in a position of total dominance over the US military in any upcoming war,
which as was explained in an earlier article, is rapidly approaching.∂ Back in early November 2014, the Intenet was abuzz
with talk of a story titled "What frightened the USS Donald Cook so much in the Black Sea?," where it
was claimed that an incident in April 2014 "demoralized" the crew of the USS Donald Cook,
when a Russian Sukhoi-24 (SU-24) fighter jet buzzed the the USS Donald Cook, not carrying
bombs or missiles, but rendering them completely inoperable with the use of an "electronic
warfare device."∂ As the Russian jet approached the US vessel, the electronic device disabled all radars,
control circuits, systems, information transmission, etc. on board the US destroyer. In other words,
the all-powerful Aegis system, now hooked up - or about to be - with the defense systems installed on NATO’s most modern ships
was shut down, as turning off the TV set with the remote control.∂ The
Russian Su-24 then simulated a missile
attack against the USS Donald Cook, which was left literally deaf and blind. As if carrying out a training
exercise, the Russian aircraft - unarmed - repeated the same maneuver 12 times before flying away.∂ Without any reports at all from
any MSM source or confirmation from Russia, people waved this away as rumor, speculation or an outright hoax, but in March 2015,
Russian News agency Sputnik, which is owned an operated by the Russian government,
announced that Russia had unveiled a new "revolutionary electronic warfare system."∂ Russia's new
Richag-AV radar and sonar jamming system can be mounted on helicopters, ships and other military equipment to jam potential
adversaries' weapons systems from distances of several hundred kilometers away; it has been hailed by developers as having no
analogue anywhere in the world.∂ Sounds
a lot like the type of advanced technology that was described in
the November report about Russia's ability to completely render one of America's most
advanced missile destroyers completely inoperable, doesn't it?∂ Russia is also reportedly
advancing their naval capabilities, including the addition of 50 new vessels in 2015 alone:∂ The Navy is continually
developing their ocean strategy, aimed at protecting government interests and its economic activity in deferent regions of the
world.∂ “The Navy is able to meet the requirements, with surface ships and nuclear-powered submarines, to accomplish a range of
tasks for the purpose from different remote basing points,” said Chirkov.∂ In March 2015, Sputnik
also specifically
highlighted a "catastrophic event" when a US military satellite, after suffering a "sudden spike in
temperature," exploded, sending dozens of chunks of debris hurtling into Earth's orbit.∂ Was this a shot across
the bow from Russia, showing exactly what they could do, not only to our warships, planes and
submarines, but to our satellite systems as well?∂ Our source tells us this is "actually the biggest story in the
world," because if Russia is capable of disabling the USS Donald Cook and the entire US Navy
with their "revolutionary electronic warfaresystems," then Russia has already won any type of
traditional war.∂ This would leave the US one option, the nuclear option and as was explained in the
previous article, Russia is already preparing for that as well.
U.S.-Russia war leads to extinction – even a limited nuclear exchange would
devastate the planet
PTV, 13. PressTV, an international news network, citing Ira Helfand, co-president of
International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War and a past president of the
organization's U.S. affiliate, Physicians for Social Responsibility. “US-Russia nuclear war to end
human race: Study.”12/10/13 http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/12/10/339285/usrussianuclear-war-to-extinct-human-race/ -- clawan
American nuclear scientist Ira Helfand has warned that a
nuclear war between the United States and Russia
could lead to the extinction of the human race. "With a large war between the United States and
Russia, we are talking about the possible -- not certain, but possible -- extinction of the human race,” Helfand, the
co-president of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, said in a report released on Tuesday. "In this kind of war,
biologically there are going to be people surviving somewhere on the planet but the
chaos that would result from this
will dwarf anything we've ever seen," he added. There are currently more than 17,000 nuclear warheads which have
been ignored since the Cold War ended in 1991, according to the study called “Nuclear Famine: Two Billion People at Risk?" Helfand
said modern
nuclear weapons are far more powerful than the atomic bombs the US used against
Japan in 1945 which killed more than 200,000 people. The scientist warned that even a limited nuclear
war-- involving just less than 0.5 percent of the world's nuclear arsenal-- would put 2 billion lives
at grave risk with more than 20 million people losing their lives within the first week of the
explosions. The ecological consequences of a nuclear war would put the survival of the entire
planet at risk, according to the study. The firestorms caused by such a war would send
approximately 5 million tons of soot into the atmosphere, blocking out sunlight and dropping
temperatures across the planet. Helfand painted a scenario where this climate hazard would cause “a
nuclear famine” across the world. Hundreds of millions of people would face severe food
shortages for years.
Scenario 2 is disease:
New semiconductor research key to DNA sequencing and cell sorting
Handy ’13 - industry analyst covering the semiconductor market for Forbes (Jim,
October 23, “How Healthcare Will Drive Semiconductors,”
Semiconductor companies are placing significantly more emphasis on healthcare lately. This makes
sense. There are some pretty significant changes going on in life sciences, and these changes
require a lot of data processing, and data processing currently accounts for about 50% of overall
semiconductor consumption. During her keynote at September’s Intel INTC +1.17% Developer Forum (IDF) Intel president
Renee James presented this post’s graphic, a chart that compares the rates of decline in the cost of sequencing a human a genome
to the historical price declines typical of Moore’s Law. The chart is originally from US’ National Human Genome Research Institute
(NHGRI). Ms. James pointed out that one
person’s genomic map contains about a petabyte of data, which
in 2000 took years to calculate. Today the duration of this process has fallen to two weeks, and
in the future that should be pushed down to a matter of hours. Although sequences run in 2000 each cost
$70 million to perform, today’s cost is about $5,000 and is projected to fall below $1,000, making sequencing a viable tool for
doctors and hospitals to use to tailor treatments to the patient’s precise requirements. (Readers will note that the lower curve,
showing genome sequencing costs, becomes impressively steeper than Moore’s Law in 2008. NHGRI explains: “the sudden and
profound out-pacing of Moore’s Law beginning in January 2008… when the sequencing centers transitioned from Sanger-based to
‘second generation’ DNA sequencing technologies.”) But Intel
is by no means the only semiconductor firm
focusing on life sciences. At the beginning of this month I attended the imec Technology Forum (ITF). I have written about
the imec research consortium in an earlier post. This organization is not only researching semiconductors,
and how to push them into the next couple of decades, but imec also has very strong R&D
programs in life sciences. Microfluidic cell counting systems based on semiconductor processing
techniques are being developed at imec to visually identify cells and sort them for analysis. The life
sciences labs at imec are using very advanced parallel computing systems to try and perform a full simulation of the DNA of simple
life forms. Half of the ITF presentations covered life sciences projects underway at imec, and all of them involved semiconductors or
data processing as their backbone. Researchers
explained their goal: to detect diseases far earlier than is
currently practical. When a patient notices symptoms most cancers are very advanced. Using imec’s
research doctors should be able to scan billions of blood cells to find a single cancer cell which
can then be analyzed to determine a cure, possibly years before the disease would otherwise
be detected.
Genetic sequencing solves diseases –
May ’16 – writer for BioCompare, a leading news source for life scientists, their
articles are all written by scientists with expertise in the area about which they
are writing (Mike, May 31, “Sequencing Emerging Diseases,”
According to the World Health Organization (WHO): “An
emerging disease is one that has appeared in a
population for the first time, or that may have existed previously but is rapidly increasing in
incidence or geographic range.” One of the most recent concerns is the Zika virus, which comes from
an infected mosquito—specifically one from the genus Aedes. Adults bitten by such mosquitoes might not feel bad enough to even
suspect an infection, and death is extremely rare. If one of the infected mosquitoes bites a pregnant woman, however, it can trigger
defects in the brain of her fetus, including microcephaly. Although scientists discovered the Zika virus in 1947, it really started to
spread in the past few years. For example, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states on its website: “On
February 1, 2016, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Zika virus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern
(PHEIC). Local transmission has been reported in many other countries and territories. Zika virus will likely continue to spread to new
areas.” With
this emerging disease and others, scientists and clinicians benefit from knowing as
many details about the disease as possible, and genetic sequencing can reveal its mechanism of
action and guide the development of treatments. As Jeremy Foster, staff scientist at New England Biolabs (NEB),
explains, “Unlocking the secrets of a pathogen’s genome paves the way for potential
development of new diagnostic tools, vaccine approaches and chemotherapeutic approaches.”
He adds, “In addition, sequencing of multiple strains of pathogen from different geographic locations
can address questions of genetic variation in populations and how the organism responds to
factors such as drug pressure.” According to Jonas Korlach, chief scientific officer at Pacific Biosciences, “One of the key
benefits is that sequencing is a hypothesis-free method. You don’t need to know what you’re looking for.” The genetic
sequence gives the complete blueprint for the source of a disease.
Diseases cause extinction – defense doesn’t apply
Arturo Casadevall 12, M.D., Ph.D. in Biochemistry from New York University, Leo and Julia
Forchheimer Professor and Chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Albert
Einstein College of Medicine, former editor of the ASM journal Infection and Immunity, “The
future of biological warfare,” Microbial Biotechnology Volume 5, Issue 5, pages 584–587,
September 2012, http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1751-7915.2012.00340.x/full
In considering the importance of biological warfare as a subject for concern it is worthwhile to review the known
existential threats. At this time this writer can identify at three major existential threats to humanity: (i) large-scale
thermonuclear war followed by a nuclear winter, (ii) a planet killing asteroid impact and (iii) infectious disease. To this trio
might be added climate change making the planet uninhabitable. Of the three existential threats the first is deduced from the
inferred cataclysmic effects of nuclear war. For the second there is geological evidence for the association of asteroid impacts with
massive extinction (Alvarez, 1987). As to an existential threat from microbes recent
decades have provided
unequivocal evidence for the ability of certain pathogens to cause the extinction of entire
species. Although infectious disease has traditionally not been associated with extinction this
view has changed by the finding that a single chytrid fungus was responsible for the extinction of
numerous amphibian species (Daszak et al., 1999; Mendelson et al., 2006). Previously, the view that
infectious diseases were not a cause of extinction was predicated on the notion that many
pathogens required their hosts and that some proportion of the host population was naturally
resistant. However, that calculation does not apply to microbes that are acquired directly from the
environment and have no need for a host, such as the majority of fungal pathogens. For those types of
host–microbe interactions it is possible for the pathogen to kill off every last member of a species
without harm to itself, since it would return to its natural habitat upon killing its last host. Hence, from
the viewpoint of existential threats environmental microbes could potentially pose a much
greater threat to humanity than the known pathogenic microbes, which number somewhere near 1500 species
(Cleaveland et al., 2001; Taylor et al., 2001), especially if some of these species acquired the capacity for pathogenicity as a
consequence of natural evolution or bioengineering.