Analysis


Rio+20: Governmental Dead-end versus Social Convergence at the People’s Summit

28 June, 2012

Press Statement, Alternatives

(RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL)- June 21st 2012 – While the assembled heads of state were clearly exhibiting a lack of will to act at the United Nations Conference on sustainable development (Rio+20), Québec civil society representatives were meeting with social movements activists from around the world at the Peoples Summit for Social and Environmental Justice.

Peoples’ Dialogue

23 June, 2012

People’s Summit Closing Press Conference

The Peoples’ Summit ended on Friday in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with a press conference similar to the plenary sessions and assemblies organized in the past days and it ended in a « people’s dialogue » with the media.

For a Future without Fracking!

22 June, 2012

Statement of Anti-fracking groups at the Cupula Dos Povos

Gathered in Rio de Janeiro on Thursday 22nd June 2012 during the Peoples’ Summit, we, activists and campaigners engaged in the struggle against shale gas and shale coal and shale oil from around the world affirm our determination, our categorical opposition against all extraction of shale gas and shale oil and every use of hydraulic fracturing and other associated extractive industries such as frack-sand mining on our territories.

Indigenous Peoples International Declaration on Self-Determination and Sustainable Development

20 June, 2012

People's Summit

Indigenous Peoples from all regions of the world met at the “Indigenous Peoples International Conference on Sustainable Development and Self Determination,” from June 17th – 19th 2012 at the Museu da República in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

At Rio+20: Values versus prices

18 June, 2012

Patrick Bond, Climate and Capitalism

[RIO DE JANEIRO, JUNE 18, 2012] – Given the worsening world economic crisis, the turn to ‘Green Economy’ rhetoric looms as a potential saviour for footloose financial capital, and is also enormously welcome to those corporations panicking at market chaos in the topsy-turvy fossil-fuel, water, infrastructure construction, technology and agriculture sectors.
On the other hand, for everyone else, the Rio+20 Earth Summit underway this week in Brazil, devoted to advancing Green Economy policies and projects, appears as an overall disaster zone for the people and planet.

Global Alliance of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities on Climate Change against REDD+

16 June, 2012

People's Summit

After more than 500 years of resistance, we, Indigenous Peoples, local communities, peasant farmers, fisherfolk and civil society are not fooled by the so-called Green Economy and REDD+ because we know colonialism when we see it.

Indigenous Peoples must haves at the Río+20 Conference

14 June, 2012

People's Summit

Honour our Peoples, Honour our Mother
Indigenous Peoples around the world have a special connection to their lands and resources arising from long standing relationship to their territories. Within this room, we all have a moral and legal obligation to ensure future generations have an abundance of resources needed for their long-term survival and wellbeing. We must respect the rights of mother earth, and protect the web of life which supports us all.

The Amazon: Dirty dams, Dirty Politics and the Myth of Clean Energy

6 June, 2012

Brent Millikan, International Rivers

A growing trend in Brazil and other countries is to portray large hydroelectric dams as a source of “clean energy” critical to powering a “green economy.” This catchphrase is resounding at a number of international bodies, including Rio +20, which seeks to prioritize market solutions that reflect the interests of powerful economic and political groups. The risk, now being borne out in Brazil’s dam industry, is the undermining of protections for human rights, ecosystem health and democratic decision-making.

The people of the world confront the advance of capitalism: Rio +20 and beyond

6 June, 2012

La Via Campesina Position Paper

Governments from all over the world will meet in Río de Janeiro, Brazil from June 20-22 2012, to supposedly commemorate 20 years since the “Earth Summit,” the United Nations Conference on the Environment and Development, that established for the first time a global agenda for “sustainable development.”

Disempowering Women through the Green Economy

5 June, 2012

Clarissa Militante, People's Summit

“The Future We Want,” the text being discussed by governments for Rio+20, promotes rhetoric of empowering women but in reality, it not only disempowers them further, it also gives more rights and access to corporations.

A JUST TRANSITION NOW – NO TO “GREEN ECONOMY”

5 June, 2012

People's summit

The statement was adopted by participants at the conference Celebrate! Resist! Transform! in Gothenburg, May 18 to 20
On 20-22 June 2012 NGOs, governments and businesses gather at the UN World Summit on Sustainable Development held in Rio de Janeiro. Simultaneously social movements from around the world organise an alternative meeting with focus on human rights and environmental justice on 15-23 June.

Canadian government gutting environment protection

1 June, 2012

Climate and Capitalism

Although Canada’s Conservative Party won only 40% of the popular vote in the last election, it captured an absolute majority of the seats in the House of Commons. This gives Prime Minister Stephen Harper the ability to pass any legislation he wishes – the opposition parties don’t have enough votes to stop him, and no member of the ruling party dares vote against the leader’s wishes.

Why the Green Economy is a wrong path to restore the equilibrium with nature: What Are the Alternatives?

31 May, 2012

Pablo Solon, Toronto Bolivia Solidarity

Twenty years after the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992, the environmental crisis continues to worsen. The unsustainable development model that gained dominance in the world resulted to grave loss of biodiversity, melting of polar ice caps and mountain glaciers, alarming increase in deforestation and desertification and the looming danger of an at least 4ºC increase in temperature, which will threaten life as we know it. Science is saying that we are approaching a point of no return that will change the way our planet has behaved over 650,000 years”

Why an oceans rescue plan must be agreed at Rio

27 May, 2012

Richard Page, Greenpeace International

It’s only a few weeks until the Rio+20 Earth Summit and although the countdown has started, the world’s politicians still don’t understand that our long-term future is at stake.

Thousands Join Black Out Speak Out Campaign

25 May, 2012

Greenpeace

Every day more Canadians and organizations stand with environmental groups against the federal government’s attacks on nature and democracy.

Rio+20: The Future We Want versus the Powerpoint they negotiate ...

25 May, 2012

Daniel Mittler, Greenpeace

Over the last six months I have been away from home a lot watching our governments editing a powerpoint in windowless rooms. Sounds sad, I know. But the document entitled "The Future We Want" is not just any powerpoint. It´s supposed to be a future worth choosing that the world commits to at the Rio+20 Earth Summit to be held from June 20th to 22nd. We have uploaded the latest text for all to see here - it´s your future that governments are talking about after all. Negotiators are meeting from May 29th to June 2nd to try and agree this vision for the next 20 years.

Report from the International Joint People’s Summit for Social and Environmental Justice in Rio

16 May, 2012

Group’s international joint People’s Summit for Social and Environmental Justice

For the unity and mobilization of the people in defense of life and the common good, social justice and environmental against the commodification of nature and “green economy”

Less Than Zero

9 May, 2012

From Real World Radio/Friends of the Earth, People's Summit

As a result of several disagreements around the so called “green economy”, the United Nations was forced to extend another week the negotiations on the final document for the upcoming conference on Sustainable Development, dubbed Rio+20.

Rio+20: INTERNATIONAL CAMPAIGN OF STRUGGLES: Peoples of the World against the Commodification of Nature

8 May, 2012

Via Campesina

La Via Campesina calls on all the peasant organizations of the world and their allies to organize actions in the month of June.

System Change – Tom Goldtooth

3 May, 2012

Tom discusses Indigenous knowledge, the rights of nature, and the need for all peoples to work together in ending unsustainable energy and resource consumption

Labour’s Response to Climate Change

3 May, 2012

Jacklyn Cock

24 October 2011

The ecological crisis is deepening. Despite 17 years of negotiations there is no binding global agreement on the reduction of carbon emissions and such an agreement is unlikely to emerge from COP 17 in Durban in December. In fact carbon emissions are rising which means climate change will intensify and have devastating impacts – particularly on the working class – in the form of rising food prices, water shortages, crop failures and so on. Africa will be the worst affected.

Harper Pushing Extractive Industry in Latin America But Communities Are Pushing Back

30 April, 2012

Raul Burbano

At the Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia, Stephen Harper spoke to CEOs from across the Americas and unveiled Canada's plans to expand into Latin America with vigor. Trade and investment, especially in the resource extraction sector, will be the engines driving this expansion. Canadian mining companies already have a significant presence in the region, with two-thirds of all mining projects in the Americas.

Rio+20

28 April, 2012

André Abreu, 
International Policy Advisor
, France Libertés Foundation


Right to water is affirmed in the Rio +20 text, but social rights and Rio principles are still under threat in the definitions of the green economy.

People's Summit Rio+20: Mobilizations, let’s get together in June 5th and 20th

24 April, 2012

People's Summit
Mobilization will be a central aspect of the People’s Summit. We, the movements and social organizations, must mobilize on our scopes of reference, on a coordinated and articulated way.

Corporations, Climate and the United Nations

21 April, 2012

By Sabrina Fernandes and Richard Girard

November 24, 2011 - In time for COP 17 in Durban, South Africa, the Polaris Institute has prepared a report outlining how multinational corporations and their lobbyists have infiltrated the United Nations and are influencing the outcomes of climate negotiations. The report uncovers and describes where corporations influence the United Nations in the build up to and during climate change negotiations and how this corporate interest is the driving force behind the preferred market based initiatives that are emerging from the UNFCCC process.

Urgent Action needed to protect the Human Right to Water and Sanitation!

11 April, 2012

By The Polaris Institute

As you read this, The United Nations’ historic 2010 recognition of the Human Right to Water and Sanitation is coming under severe threat from a number of governments at the United Nations who want to see the recognition disappear. Canada is one of the countries leading this assault by pushing for the removal of any mention of the recognition of the Human Right to Water and Sanitation from the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio + 20, Earth Summit) negotiating text which will frame the discussions at the Rio + 20 conference in June.

NEWS: Right to water in Rio+20 text under threat in New York this week

11 April, 2012

By Brent Patterson

Afrique en ligne reports, “The United Nations said that negotiations on the outcome document for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, known as ‘Rio 20′, resumed on Monday in New York, with countries advancing many new proposals that will shape the direction of how the world will move the sustainable development agenda forward.”

Registration for the People’s Summit will open in April, see program

2 April, 2012

By Cupula Dos Povos

Report of the Brazilian Civil Society’s Facilitator Committee for Rio +20

The Green Economy and Corporate Concerns in Rio+20

30 March, 2012

By Tamkinat Mirza

Rio+20, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on 20-22 June this year, will mark the 20th anniversary of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, also know as the Earth Summit (UNCED).

Deleting our Rights, Bracketing our Future

26 March, 2012

By Paul Quintos

I think the best way to appreciate the People’s Summit in Rio is to look at what’s happening here in this hall over the last few days.

In Defense of Food Sovereignty: Stop Water Grabbing!

22 March, 2012

Declaration of La Via Campesina in the Alternative World Water Forum

We, as peasants’ and farmers’ organizations from countries all over the world, members of La Via Campesina, met between the 12th and 17th of March 2012, for the Alternative World Water Forum in Marseille, France. Among others, the testimonies from Turkish, Brazilian, Bangladesh, Madagascar, Portugal, Italy, French, and Mexican delegates gave voice to the distress of “environmental victims”, making known the plight of people affected by dam construction, by the shale gas and mining industries, by the grabbing, commodification, scarcity and widespread pollution of water, and by the repression and murder of activists who are defending water.

Some thoughts on World Water Day from the UN

22 March, 2012

By Anil Naidoo

This World Water Day, as many around the world will be ‘celebrating’ water, I am calling on all who care for water, nature, our communities and rights to act rather than celebrate.

RIO Summit 2012: What to expect? Interview with Tariq Banuri

21 March, 2012

Interview by Angela Zarro

Conversation with Tariq Banuri, then at the UNDESA, on his expectations for Rio plus 20 summit to be held in 2012.

Posted on March 21, 2012 Ocean damage from climate change will cost $2 trillion a year

21 March, 2012

By Climate and Capitalism

Uniting an analysis of the ways multiple threats interact in the ocean with a global economic analysis of the comparative consequences of action or inaction on global environmental change, and in particular climate change, is a major and ongoing challenge.

EU Tar Sands Lobby-Busting Tour: Countering Canada’s Confuse and Bully Campaign

19 March, 2012

The Canadian Government, along with industry allies and the Alberta Government, have launched a coordinated lobby attack on the European Union Fuel Quality Directive. This attack, run as part of a tar sands advocacy strategy, led by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, is dangerous and irresponsible in the face of global climate change. To counteract these lobbying efforts, the Council of Canadians, Climate Action Network Canada and the Indigenous Environmental Network recently held a series of successful meetings with Ottawa-based European Union Embassies.

Canada undermines the human right to water at World Water Forum

17 March, 2012

By Maude Barlow, Chair, Council of Canadians,
and Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director, Food & Water Watch
Marseille

The 6th World Water Forum this week, despite lagging attendance and Sarkozy reneging on his promise to attend, has still been an opportunity for multinational water corporations to solidify their plans to further privatize nature at Rio+20.

Spirituality and Water: Have We Reached a Utopia?

17 March, 2012

The 6th World Water Forum

“Marseille Water Ethics” is a new initiative announced on 15 March by Kathryn Kintzele, Co-Chair of the Biosphere Ethics Initiative of the International Union for Conservation of Nature. This is a living project designed to enhance sustainable attitudes and ethical issues associated with water resource utilisation and management.
Jean Conrad, from the Catholic International Education Office, started his presentation with “Everyone who drinks this water will become thirsty again, but everybody that drinks the water I give him will never thirst" John 4:13. Then he elaborated that when water policies, laws and economics derive from that ethical basis, we are better able to have an authentic debate about the values that the concerned communities want to uphold.

The Meta-Industrials, WSF, Occupy, and Rio+20

14 March, 2012

By Ariel Salleh

Whereas the official pitch for Rio Earth Summit 1992 was "our common future", the Rio+20 meeting in Brazil this June speaks to a negotiating text called The Future We Want.[1] The question of course, is who is this "we"? Is it the 1% again?

Yes to EU FQD, no to tar sands: Countering Canadian lobbying against European climate policy

12 March, 2012

The Council of Canadians

The Harper government’s foreign policy is increasingly about protecting corporate interests in the Canadian tar sands, including challenging policy that will help address climate change.

How You Can Virtually Occupy the World Water Forum

6 March, 2012

By Meera Karunananthan

The Council of Canadians, Food and Water Watch, and Focus on the Global South invite you to virtually Occupy the World Water Forum – a corporate trade show aimed at giving the world’s largest water multinationals privileged access to high-level policy making behind closed doors!

The Post-Durban and Rio+20 Civil Society Organizations Preparatory Workshop

6 March, 2012

By The Pan African Climate Justice Alliance

Limbe Declaration

In the city of Limbe, Republic of Cameroon, on 6 March 2012, We, Delegates of African Civil Society Organisations, in this workshop of post Durban assessment and Rio plus 20 preparations which was organised and hosted by the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance.

12 Major oil companies, including Shell, ban together to greenwash the Tar Sands

1 March, 2012

By Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation and the Tar Sands

Today 12 oil companies have joined together to create the Canadian Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA). The groups state the purpose of COSIA is to share and conduct research and technology development in several key areas of environmental performance in the tar sands. These areas include greenhouse gases, land disturbance, water, air emissions and management of tailings, the toxic effluent produced by tar sands. For more information please see the report in the National Post.

Is the "Green Economy" the new Washington consensus?

8 February, 2012

By Christophe

Today, capitalism is launching a fresh attack that combines the old austerity measures of the Washington Consensus — as we are witnessing in Europe – with an offensive to create new sources of profit and growth through the “Green Economy” agenda. Although capitalism has always been based on the exploitation of labour and nature, this latest phase of capitalist expansion seeks to exploit and profit by putting a price value on the essential life-giving capacities of nature.

Durban climate talks end with weak deal: local action needed!

13 December, 2011

By Andrea Harden-Donahue

The UN climate talks came to an end this past Sunday. Mainstream media has by and large reported a positive outcome. “A hard fought agreement on a far-reach program” says the Canadian Press, the Durban talks, “should be regarded as very much a success,” says the UK Guardian. The cbc notice on my ipad came up as a “breakthrough” agreement in Durban. The official UNFCCC release is along the same lines, “Durban conference delivers breakthrough in international community’s response to climate change.”

African Land Grabs - Fueling Water and Climate Crises

1 December, 2011

The Role of False Climate Change Solutions

By Polaris Institute for the Oakland Institute

In the trend of large-scale agricultural land acquisitions in Sub-Saharan Africa “green investments” such as the production of agrofuels and agroforestry developments, are upheld as climate solutions, and are being used to justify, promote, and accelerate massive land grabs. Yet, even as research indicates that the expansion of industrial agriculture on African soil is likely to aggravate the heating of the planet, market mechanisms like carbon trade and carbon credits are providing a “green cover” for current land grabs