Thursday, July 16, 2009

Has Economic Twilight Come to the Sun Belt?

This article is nearly two months old, but it's still a good read on the economic woes of the Sun Belt, which is usually considered to lie in the south-to-southwest region of the United States (Arizona, Nevada, Florida, etc.). A main culprit, according to the article, is that all these areas had was their prosperity during the housing bubble. When the bubble popped, so did the prosperity. There was no underlying, sustainable economy that could be built on over the long term. This article delves into that pretty well. But what is just as important, in my opinion, and what is only briefly touched on, is the area's general lack of resources. The Sun Belt has been a prime beneficary of cheap energy, as far back as post-World War II. But it's becoming more and more apparent that this is coming to an end, as I've discussed in the past, and where you can go elsewhere for information. In addition, these areas are running out of water, at the same time that the population is rising. So, in the future, there can be a lack of water, and the high cost of energy can put an end to the widespread use of air conditioners, as well as personal vehicles. Also, I'm no expert on agriculture, but this region would seem like a problematic spot to grow food. So, assuming this happens (and I'd put money on it, if I were a betting man), this relatively rough time might seem like a downright cheerful one for the Sun Belt, as it can be close to unlivable in the future.

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