The purpose of this systematic review and meta-analysis is to determine the effect of lockdowns, also referred to as ‘Covid restrictions’, ‘social distancing measures’ etc., on COVID-19 mortality based on available empirical evidence. We define lockdowns as the imposition of at least one compulsory, non-pharmaceutical intervention (NPI). We employ a systematic search and screening procedure in which 19,646 studies are identified that could potentially address the purpose of our study. After three levels of screening, 32 studies qualified. Of those, estimates from 22 studies could be converted to standardised measures for inclusion in the metaanalysis.
Meanwhile, evidence is mounting of the long-term consequences of quarantining the country during lockdown. There were warnings at the time that keeping people under a form of house arrest would lead to rising loneliness, mental illness, domestic abuse and childhood obesity; a growing school attainment divide between pupils from rich and poor homes; an increase in hospital waiting lists and a rise in undiagnosed cases of cancer. All of which have come to pass. Only last month, for example, a report by the House of Commons Library expressed concern that the estimated rate of absence from school in the current academic year was 7.8% – compared with 4.8% in 2019-20.
SOUTHEND Council has ruled out ever signing up to a 15-minute city scheme which restricts residents’ ability to travel freely across the city.
Councils across the country are signing up to a net zero 2030 scheme and some are including plans for 15-minute cities where residents have everything they need within a 15-minute walk, cycle of public transport ride.
LTN schemes emerged from ‘15-minute city’ ideology: “a residential urban concept in which most daily necessities can be accomplished by either walking or cycling from residents’ homes”. A lovely idea, but if you can’t cycle all your food shopping home, or lug it back because you’re too old or burdened with toddlers, you become a casualty of environmental piety.
Up to 100 times more may have been spent on preventing each Covid death than on preventing each non-Covid death
[T]he British people must do something that goes against the grain. We must break free of the coercive control exercised over us by the NHS. We are not to blame for putting it under pressure. We are not at fault for expecting a feverish child or a 90-year-old with a broken hip to receive prompt attention. The NHS is to blame.
It isn’t mad, however, to regard the WEF as a dangerous force in global politics. The WEF is a dangerous force in global politics. To adapt Joseph Heller, just because you are paranoid, doesn’t mean the WEF isn’t after you. A shared distrust of the WEF brings together anti-capitalists on the left and culture-warriors on the right. But that distrust is based on a misunderstanding of what the WEF is these days really all about.
For many WEF critics, the vileness of the organisation can be encapsulated in one word: ‘neoliberalism.’ It’s a term that conjures up images of plutocrats and untrammelled markets ravaging the planet and exploiting blue-collar folk in the name of profit. Funnily enough, Chairman Schwab agrees with that assessment of the world’s ills. Once upon a time, the WEF prioritised the necessity and benefits of economic globalisation. That has not been the case for many years, however. In October 2020, Schwab stated that:
[S]hibboleths of our global economic system will need to be re-evaluated with an open mind. Chief among these is the neoliberal ideology. Free-market fundamentalism has eroded worker rights and economic security, triggered a deregulatory race to the bottom and ruinous tax competition.
In a world of fossil fuels and expensive energy, the only solution is tightly planned and controlled urban transport.
This video released on the animator’s channel on 23 September 2011. A full archive of the Forum for the Future article published 25 Mar 2010 can be found below:
Megacities on the move
For the first time in history more than half the world’s population is living in towns and cities. We passed this milestone in 2008 and by 2040 two thirds of us are expected to live in urban environments.
Urbanisation presents us with a wealth of new opportunities and huge challenges. It has the potential to further economic development and innovation, but also threatens to exacerbate key global problems, including resource depletion, climate change, and inequality.
Megacities on the move sets out to find solutions to one of the biggest challenges – how billions of city-dwellers can access what they need without putting intolerable strains on the planet.
Our definition of mobility embraces all the ways in which people will access goods, services and information and make contact with each other. It ranges from transport to ICT solutions and innovative urban design.
The project is a multi-stakeholder futures initiative designed to help policy makers, industry and civil society organisations, such as NGOs and community groups, understand the complex challenges that lie ahead and to collaborate to find sustainable solutions.
Forum for the Future, working in partnership with Vodafone, the FIA Foundation and EMBARQ, will develop a set of four global scenarios in order to highlight cutting-edge thinking about mobility, identify future challenges and explore sustainable solutions designed for cities.
The scenarios will be piloted in spring of 2010 in workshops held in Mumbai and Istanbul, with a diverse audience of mobility thinkers and practitioners – including public policy decision-makers, planners, automotive companies, architects and technology solution providers.
We will analyse the specific implications of the scenarios for each city, and examine the challenges and opportunities which lie ahead. Our aim is to jointly develop a vision for sustainable mobility in each city, and draft strategic action plans to address key issues.
For more information read a presentation introducing Sustainable Urban Mobility 2040 or a summary of the project.
Latest project news
The project launch and publication is set for November 2010. Stay tuned for further details.
The Megacities on the Move team is back in town after successful city workshops! The first one took place in Mumbai on June 2-3rd, and the second in Istanbul on June 16-17. We had a rich, creative process, with the participants using the SUM2040 scenarios to identify key mobility risks and opportunities facing their cities in the future. They also developed a number of prototype solutions with the aim of creating more sustainable mobility systems in the cities. A big thank you to everyone who came out and contributed their creative thinking to this process! We will be publishing the results of the two workshops along with the rest of the project outputs.
The project was recently profiled at Sustainable City Finance, a conference hosted by the Urban Age Institute in New York in January. Sheila Watson, Director of Environment at the FIA Foundation spoke about the key objectives of the project and the upcoming workshops in Mumbai and Istanbul.
Chris Dewey, Associate
Rupert Fausset, Principal Strategic Advisor
Ivana Gazibara, Senior Strategic Advisor
James Goodman, Head of Futures
Clare Jenkinson, Strategic Advisor
Peter Madden, CEO
Nathalie Nathe, Admin and Events Assistant
Ivana Gazibara, [email protected], +44 (0)207 324 3673
The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, in partnership with WHO and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, conducted Catastrophic Contagion, a pandemic tabletop exercise at the Grand Challenges Annual Meeting in Brussels, Belgium, on October 23, 2022.
The extraordinary group of participants consisted of 10 current and former Health Ministers and senior public health officials from Senegal, Rwanda, Nigeria, Angola, Liberia, Singapore, India, Germany, as well as Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
The exercise simulated a series of WHO emergency health advisory board meetings addressing a fictional pandemic set in the near future. Participants grappled with how to respond to an epidemic located in one part of the world that then spread rapidly, becoming a pandemic with a higher fatality rate than COVID-19 and disproportionately affecting children and young people.
Participants were challenged to make urgent policy decisions with limited information in the face of uncertainty. Each problem and choice had serious health, economic, and social ramifications.
Published: 27 March 2017
The paper presents a simple framework for the analysis of the macroeconomic implications of de-cashing. Defined as replacing paper currency with convertible deposits, de-cashing would affect all key macroeconomic sectors. The overall macreconomic impact of de-cashing would depend on the balance of growth-enhancing and growth-constraining factors. Starting from a traditional saving-investment balance, the paper develops a four-sector macroeconomic framework. It is purely illustrative and is designed to provide a roadmap for a systematic evaluation of de-cashing. The framework is disaggregated into the real, fiscal, monetary, and external sectors and potential implications of de-cashing are then identified in each sector. Finally, the paper draws a balance on possible positive and negative macroeconomic implications of de-cashing, and proposes policies capable of augmenting its economic and social benefits, while reducing potential costs.
ROAD blocks stopping most motorists from driving through Oxford city centre will divide the city into six “15 minute” neighbourhoods, a county council travel chief has said.
And he insisted the controversial plan would go ahead whether people liked it or not.
Rishi Sunak has urged the NHS to embrace the use of robots as the health service prepares to cut its workforce by half in a drastic attempt to cut costs.
All too often, study results were used by experts who dipped into the pandemic – who have now dipped out – to back up positions of certainty. Such dogma led to the breakdown of constructive discussion. Consequently, destructive policies went largely unchallenged.
So we have one more casualty of the Covid 19 pandemic: science. This is based on free, civilised discussion and recognition of the presence and role of uncertainty – the vital ingredients for its progress. Following “the science” was not a potent force for effective policymaking when so much of the “science” was flawed.
It is famous as the home of Britain’s oldest university and students on bicycles — but Oxford is known to its residents for its gridlocked traffic.
Now the council is fighting back with plans to divide the city into six districts from next August with strict rules on how often motorists can drive outside their neighbourhood.
Duncan Enright, the Oxfordshire county councillor leading the policy, said: “Oxford is a medieval city with roads that I can’t even believe were that brilliant during the days of horse and cart. The traffic problems in Oxford are not new, and we are determined to do something about it.”
Its 150,000 residents will be allowed to use their cars as much as they like within their district and will be given free permits allowing them to drive to other districts on 100 days a year. If they exceed this limit, they will be fined, possibly £70 a journey or a day.
“SARS-CoV-2 is not causing mass illness and death.”
On today’s show Mike Yeadon chats about the COVID era and his journey, including whether or not SARS exists. He has evolved a bunch of his views.
GUEST OVERVIEW: Mike Yeadon was chief scientist and vice-president of the allergy and respiratory research division of Pfizer.
Published January 2019
Four specific strategies for delivering 21st-century protein
through to 2030 have consequently been identified,
illuminating the most effective “drivers of change” within this context. These strategies suggest a roadmap for delivering 21st-century protein:
1. Highlighting the multiple benefits to society of
transforming today’s protein systems
2. Promoting pathways to achieve cost parity across
choices that deliver on multiple benefits
3. Pursuing an intentional “Transition Decade” using
4. Developing innovation ecosystems and
collaboration platforms for research and action
Alternative content-maker ‘The Politico Guy‘ explains the disastrous economics behind Covid lockdown furlough money.
Much of the hunger literature talks about how it is important to assure that people are well fed so that they can be more productive. That is nonsense. No one works harder than hungry people. Yes, people who are well nourished have greater capacity for productive physical activity, but well-nourished people are far less willing to do that work.
“The stakes could not be higher, and it has never been more essential to seriously engage with uncomfortable possibilities – even if that means interrogating explanations that move beyond reducing what we are all experiencing to blunder and incompetence.”—Dr Piers Robinson
We welcome to the programme Dr Piers Robinson—co-director of the Organisation for Propaganda Studies—for an in-depth interview on his recent article: “Cock-up or Conspiracy? Understanding COVID-19 as a ‘Structural Deep Event’ “.
As debate over “The Science” has intensified, increasing numbers of people are coming to question the Covid-19 Event. What best explains the often bizarre, and sometimes frightening, responses by authorities over the last two and a half years? Irrational panic by well-intentioned but incompetent politicians and health experts? Profiteering and power seeking by corporate and political vested interests? Or might we be looking at something more—a “structural deep event”—in which globally powerful actors might have harnessed (or even instigated) the Covid-19 Event in order to drive deep structural changes in society? Arguing that all possible explanations need to remain firmly on the table, Dr Robinson appeals to all thinking people to ask such difficult and uncomfortable questions, because to understand the past and the present is to guard the future and “the stakes could not be higher”.
From April 2020 through at least the end of 2021, Americans died from non-Covid causes at an average annual rate 97,000 in excess of previous trends. Hypertension and heart disease deaths combined were elevated 32,000. Diabetes or obesity, drug-induced causes, and alcohol-induced causes were each elevated 12,000 to 15,000 above previous (upward) trends. Drug deaths especially followed an alarming trend, only to significantly exceed it during the pandemic to reach 108,000 for calendar year 2021. Homicide and motor-vehicle fatalities combined were elevated almost 10,000. Various other causes combined to add 18,000. While Covid deaths overwhelmingly afflict senior citizens, absolute numbers of non-Covid excess deaths are similar for each of the 18-44, 45-64, and over-65 age groups, with essentially no aggregate excess deaths of children. Mortality from all causes during the pandemic was elevated 26 percent for working-age adults (18-64), as compared to 18 percent for the elderly. Other data on drug addictions, non-fatal shootings, weight gain, and cancer screenings point to a historic, yet largely unacknowledged, health emergency.