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LES ECHOS

Why Economists Study War In Times Of Peace

Compared to ancient times, the world is a relatively peaceful place right now. Strangely, this has begun to push economists to study the historical costs and returns of war.

Counting cash in peaceful Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Counting cash in peaceful Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Jean-Marc Vittori

TOULOUSE Strange days, as we mark the beginning of the end of World War II in Normandy, just before commemorating the outbreak of World War I. These dreadful conflicts were first of all military and political moments. They also had deep economic consequences — millions of men killed at the dawn of their working lives, thousands of factories destroyed, fields abandoned to battles, mass public debt.

Economists, however, have long ignored the topic of war, as if it were too serious to be left in their hands and mathematical formulations. That time is over. They now provide many perspectives on the question, including those at the recent Tiger Forum at the Toulouse School of Economics in southern France.

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Economy

The Bogus Concept Of "Carbon-Neutral" Oil

The Colombian president recently said that the country had exported one million barrels of carbon-neutral or offset oil. But in an unregulated carbon market, such a claim is pure greenwashing.

People walk in the streets of Bogotá

María Mónica Monsalve Sánchez

-OpEd-

BOGOTÁ - In March this year, various national and corporate leaders met in Houston, Texas, for CERAWeek, an annual conference to discuss the world's energy challenges. Colombia's President Iván Duque took the opportunity to remind participants that his country produced just 0.6% of the world's carbon emissions even as it had raised crude production to one million barrels a day.

He said oil should not be seen as an enemy, since the fight was really against greenhouse gas emissions. He also revealed at the event that the country's national oil firm, Ecopetrol, had sold the Asian market its first million barrels of carbon-neutral or offset crude, consisting of the entire extraction, production and exportation chain.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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