从北朝鲜饥荒,看石油顶峰后的世界

本贴主要内容截自《世界各地区对石油顶峰场景的应对》,作者为约尔格弗雷德里希(Joerg Friedrichs),于慕尼黑大学获得博士学位,现在英国牛津大学圣十字学院担任讲师。全文将发表在《能源政策》2010年第8期(总第38期)上。全文较长,不做翻译(2楼将大致介绍全文内容),这里将其中关于朝鲜失去苏联石油供应后的一串连锁反应内容节选并翻译,当然朝鲜失去石油供应是政治和经济原因,并非地质原因,但这与我们这里讨论的话题无关:我们这里就是要通过朝鲜90年代发生的事情,来看看一个工业化和高度城市化的社会失去石油后的景象:



The Great Famine is a paradigm example of how the lack of a key resource such as oil can have momentous repercussions. Most obviously, North Korean land machines depended on oil. Without fuel, tractors and other machines were not running. The next problem was transportation. Fuel was needed to bring fertilizer and other inputs to farms, and agricultural products to urban consumers. Fuel was also needed to ship coal from mines to fertilizer plants, where coal was converted into soil nutrients

Fuel was further needed to get coal to power stations for electricity generation.Thus,electricity was yet another problem. Without sufficient electricity,irrigation pumping and electrical railways became intermittent.This further affected transportation. Without reliable trains,it became even more difficult to bring coal to fertilizer plants or power stations,to transport fertilizer to farms,and to get agricultural products to urban consumers (Williams etal.,2002).

Thus, interlocking energy shortages combined with food shortages and a general decline of infrastructure to produce an almost hopeless situation. While the entire economy was damaged, the consequences were worst in agriculture where there was plummeting food production, considerable loss of arable land, and a rapid depletion of soil fertility. Restoring soil fertility would have required large amounts of lime, which however could not be transported without fuel. In a desperate attempt to replace land machines, draft oxen slowly became more numerous. But, unlike tractors, work animals compete with humans for food. The energy crisis also compelled many poor people to rely on biomass for cooking and heating. Unlike fossil fuel, however, the extraction of biomass reduces soil fertility, which in turn aggravated the agricultural crisis. As a result of such interlocking vicious circles, the production of rice and maize fell by almost 50% between 1991 and 1998. North Korea was thus compelled to apply for international food aid.


略译:




(朝鲜的)大饥荒可以作为关键资源(例如石油)缺失对社会造成冲击的样板。最显而易见的是,朝鲜农用机械需要石油。没有燃料,拖拉机和其他(农用)机械无法运转。接下来的问题是运输。要把化肥以及其他农资运送到田里,需要燃料;把农产品(从农田)运到城镇消费者那里,也需要燃料。另外,要把(作为化肥原料)煤炭运到化肥厂那里,还是需要燃料。

此外,要把煤炭运到发电站那里,没有燃料也不行。因此电力也成了一个问题。没有足够的电力,灌溉用的水泵和电气化铁路就难以正常运转了,这又进一步加剧了运输问题。由于没有可靠的铁路运输,无论是要把煤炭运到化肥厂和发电站,还是把农资运到田地里,或是把农产品运送到城镇消费者,都变得更加困难。

这样,能源短缺、粮食短缺以及基础设施的衰败彼此构成了一个正反馈,造成了近乎绝望的局面。整个经济都受到了严重损害,但农业部门问题最严重,粮食产量急剧下降,大量耕地荒废,同时土壤肥力也在迅速流失。要恢复土壤肥力,需要大量石灰,但没有燃料,这些石灰就无法运输。绝望中的朝鲜人试图用耕牛代替机械化农业,但是,和拖拉机不同,耕牛需要食物(而不是燃料),造成与人争食的情况。另外,能源供给短缺迫使大批人转而用生物质燃料。但是和矿石燃料不同,采集生物质燃料会损害土壤肥力,这又进一步加剧了农业危机。由于这些互相作用因素造成的正反馈,1991-1998年间朝鲜粮食产量下降了50%,最终朝鲜不得不请求国际粮食援助。


80年代朝鲜,是一个高度机械化、城市化的工业国家,同时有丰富的煤炭资源(铀矿也有),但没有石油,其原油供应完全靠苏联。苏联解体后,朝鲜失去了石油供应,尽管有丰富的煤炭资源,但由于石油在运输、重型机械特别是农用机械燃料方面的不可替代性,朝鲜的机械化农业和高度城市化社会还是遇到了非常可怕的危机。现在,煤炭的开采和运输(从煤矿到用户)都离不开石油,因此倘若石油供应出现缺口,我们对煤炭资源的利用就会遇到非常大的限制。


有人可能会说,朝鲜固然碰到了石油供给危机带来的问题,但整个国家到底还没有彻底崩溃或(像90年代不少西方人预计的那样)陷入内战,但我们也要看到,朝鲜固然失去了苏联提供的石油,但90年代以后,他还是从中国和其他国家获得了不少援助(包括粮食和石油)。而当全球石油产量开始下滑时,显然我们不应指望能从那美克星那里得到星际红十字会的援助,因此,我们可以说,当全球原油供给出现问题时(个人认为这并不遥远),各工业国所碰到的危机,至少平均而言,惨烈程度会远甚于上世纪朝鲜90年代所经历的困难。



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