Economic development. It was the fundamental challenge of the post-colonial era, embodying an economic, political, moral imperative: How could the poor world in the global south become as rich as the rich nations of the north? The question was never satisfactorily answered. Strategies hawked from opposite ideological corners mostly failed to deliver.
Then the question changed. As the heads of state and government filing in from around the world to Sharm-El-Sheikh in Egypt for the United Nations’ 27th climate change summit might put it, the new challenge of global development can be posed as: How can the poor south become as rich as the rich north without broiling?
Climate change poses a stark challenge to the development imperative. Floods and