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Eradicating ecocide could create conditions for business to flourish, but company leaders often offer knee-jerk response to environment campaigners
Thursday, 21, February 2013 – Guardian Sustainable Business – The Eradicating Ecocide campaign calls for ecocide – the extensive destruction of ecosystems – to be recognised in international law as the fifth crime against Peace. Lawyer Polly Higgins’ compelling argument is that the abolition of ecocide requires business leadership as surely as the campaign for the abolition of slavery did.
One of the paradoxes for environmental campaigners in developed nations is that we are often fighting for the rights of others – for other species, people in other nations, people not yet born. Like the abolitionists we may not personally benefit from our victories and indeed may be disadvantaged in the short-term. This produces a complex moral and psychological field to work in, one that frequently produces unintended consequences like my conversation with the business leaders. Angry denial, studied indifference and projection of blame are just a few of the responses that leave campaigners shell-shocked and puzzled as they struggle to engage both the public and the powerful in the struggle for a truly sustainable future…. http://www.guardian.co.uk/sustainable-business/eradicating-ecocide-business-leaders-challenge
ALSO SEE: AN URGENT MEMO TO THE WORLD
Resource speculation driven by financial markets, climate change and biofuels threatens starvation for the world’s poor.
Submitted by: Hazel Henderson Posted: Nov 29, 2012 – 09:16 AM EST CSRWire
Recent spikes in prices of rice, soy, wheat and corn have driven many poor people in developing countries into hunger and malnutrition. In 2011, then World Bank president Robert Zoellick estimated that 44 million people fell into poverty in 2010 due to rising food prices, adding, “Food price inflation is the biggest threat today to the world’s poor…one weather event and you start to push people over the edge.”
The United Nations (UN) FAO Food Price Index jumped 25 percent in 2010.
The dots connecting world hunger, weather events and speculation on global financial markets are obvious. Yet, well-meaning officials at UN agencies, including the FAO, World Bank and IMF, are curiously blind. Instead, their many urgent meetings over the past three years have focused on raising more money to pay these rising prices for food staples, urging more productivity from agriculture and opposing nations curbing exports to protect their domestic foods …. MORE A VIP READ: The Economics of Curbing Speculation In Food, Water and Vital Resources
Via Earth Policy Institute: Adapted from World on the Edge by Lester R. Brown. Full book available online at www.earth-policy.org/books/wote.
“The archeological record indicates that civilizational collapse does not come suddenly out of the blue. Archeologists analyzing earlier civilizations talk about a decline-and-collapse scenario. Economic and social collapse was almost always preceded by a period of environmental decline….
“No previous civilization has survived the ongoing destruction of its natural supports. Nor will ours. Yet economists look at the future through a different lens. Relying heavily on economic data to measure progress, they see the near 10-fold growth in the world economy since 1950 and the associated gains in living standards as the crowning achievement of our modern civilization….More….Two Views of Our Future: Science Versus Mainstream Economics : TreeHugger.
The citizens of Mt. Shasta have developed an extraordinary ordinance, set to be voted on in the next special or general election, that would prohibit corporations such as Nestle and Coca-Cola from extracting water from the local aquifer. But this is only the beginning. The ordinance would also ban energy giant PG&E, and any other corporation, from regional cloud seeding, a process that disrupts weather patterns through the use of toxic chemicals such as silver iodide. More generally, it would refuse to recognize corporate personhood, explicitly place the rights of community and local government above the economic interests of multinational corporations, and recognize the rights of nature to exist, flourish, and evolve.
Mt. Shasta is not alone. Rather, it is part of a (so far) quiet municipal movement making its way across the United States in which communities are directly defying corporate rule and affirming the sovereignty of local government.
Read Rest of Article: Corporate Control? Not in These Communities by Allen D. Kanner http://www.yesmagazine.org/
“The Earth is Full” Op Ed by Thomas Friedman – New York Times
The conflict between humankind and nature has never been as serious as it is today
The Great Disruption offers a stark and unflinching look at the challenge humanity faces – yet also a deeply optimistic message. The coming decades will see loss, suffering, and conflict as our planetary overdraft is paid; however, they will also bring out the best in humanity can offer; compassion, innovation, resilience, and adaptability
Subscribe to Paul Gildings Blog: The Cockatoo Chronicles http://paulgilding.com/view/cockatoo-chronicles
Economic progress does not have to come at the expense of environmental health.
A new UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme) report imagines a future where agriculture is no longer a main emitter of greenhouse gases (GHGs)—agriculture emits anywhere from 13 to 30 percent of total GHGs worldwide. Greening agriculture, states the report, could change agriculture to “a GHG sink, while reducing deforestation and freshwater use by 55 percent and 35 percent.
Investing just two percent of global GDP each year can create a new “green economy,” according to Towards a Green Economy: Pathways to Sustainable Development and Poverty Eradication (MORE.. via UN Report Highlights Agriculture’s Role in the Transition to a Green Economy.
Britain and other countries face a collapse of their economies and loss of culture if they do not protect the environment better, the world’s leading champion of nature has warned.
“What we are seeing today is a total disaster,” said Ahmed Djoghlaf, the secretary-general of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity. “No country has met its targets to protect nature. We are losing biodiversity at an unprecedented rate. If current levels [of destruction] go on we will reach a tipping point very soon. The future of the planet now depends on governments taking action in the next few years.” (read article)
A decade ago, Nobel Prize-winning scientist Paul Crutzen first suggested we were living in the “Anthropocene,” a new geological epoch in which humans had altered the planet. Now, in an article for Yale Environment 360, Crutzen and a coauthor explain why adopting this term could help transform the perception of our role as stewards of the Earth.
It’s a pity we’re still officially living in an age called the Holocene. The Anthropocene — human dominance of biological, chemical and geological processes on Earth — is already an undeniable reality. Evidence is mounting that the name change suggested by one of us more than ten years ago is overdue. It may still take some time for the scientific body in charge of naming big stretches of time in Earth’s history, the International Commission on Stratigraphy, to make up its mind about this name change. But that shouldn’t stop us from seeing and learning what it means to live in this new Anthropocene epoch, on a planet that is being anthroposized at high speed. …. more
COCHABAMBA, Bolivia — A fundamental critique of capitalism as the source of climate change pervaded the People’s World Conference on Climate Change, from the opening speech of Bolivian President Evo Morales
The main cause of climate change is capitalism. As people who inhabit Mother Earth, we have the right to say that the cause is capitalism, to protest limitless growth. … More than 800 million people live on less than $2 per day. Until we change the capitalist system, our measures to address climate change are limited.” (read rest of article…
UN Deputy Secretary-General Migiro
The United Nations Deputy Secretary-General has called for greater investment to ensure the health and wellbeing of women, stressing that healthy women can lead to better families and societies, and help achieve the globally agreed development targets with a 2015 deadline. (read the rest of this article…Investing in women can lead to progress on all development goals, says Migiro.
Rich Foreign Countries are Buying up Big Ahead of Anticipated Coming Food Crisis
In the last few years richer countries like China, India, South Korea, and Saudi Arabia have been buying up huge tracts of productive farmland and oil rich acres in poor countries like Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Zambia. These deals are usually in the millions of acres and often come with 99 year lease terms.It’s modern colonialism.