17 May 2013. Source: The Guardian
US National Strategy for the Arctic Region prioritises corporate ‘economic opportunities’ at the expense of everyone else
Shell’s drilling rig Kulluk aground on the southeast shore of Sitkalidak Island about 40 miles southwest of Kodiak City, Alaska, January 4, 2013. Photograph: Zachary Painter/USCG
One week ago, the Obama administration launched its National Strategy for the Arctic Region, outlining the government’s strategic priorities over the next 10 years. The release of the strategy came about a week after the Office of Science and Technology Policy within the Executive Office of the President at the White House Complex hosteda briefing with international Arctic scientists.
Despite giving lip service to the values of environmental conservation, the new document focuses on how the US can manage the exploitation of the region’s vast untapped oil, gas and mineral resources in cooperation with other Arctic powers.
US hinges success of Arctic strategy on diminishing sea ice
At the heart of the White House’s new Arctic strategy is an elementary but devastating contradiction between what President Obama, in the document’s preamble, describes as seeking “to make the most of the emerging economic opportunities in the region” due to the rapid loss of Arctic summer sea ice, and recognising “the need to protect and conserve this unique, valuable, and changing environment.” Continue reading
By Leonor Hurtado, May 15, 2013. Source: Food First
On May 10th, the Guatemalan Court of Justice convicted the ex-dictator General Ríos Montt to 80 years in prison for the massacres of indigenous people during the 1980s . Many Guatemalans hope that the judicial process against the criminals of the country’s “dirty war” will continue .
But while the Guatemalan people celebrate the conviction, the processes of genocide initiated 30 years ago by Ríos Montt’s massacres still continue by other means.
In the last decade, the expansion of oil palm plantations and sugarcane production for ethanol in Northern Guatemala has displaced hundreds of Maya-Q´eqchi´ peasant families, increasing poverty, hunger, unemployment and landlessness in the region, confirms Alberto Alfonso-Fradejas in the new Food First report, “Sons and Daughters of the Earth: Indigenous Communities and Land Grabs in Guatemala” . There is a tremendous contradiction here: at the same time that the ex-General Ríos Montt is convicted for genocide, the state allows the oligarchy, allied with extractive industries, to displace entire populations without taking into account the human cost, and in many cases, resulting in the murder and imprisonment of rural people who resist the assault. The genocide against the indigenous peasant population in Guatemala no longer has the face of a military dictatorship supported by the United States…. Now it is the corporations, the oligarchy and the World Bank who push peasants off their lands. Continue reading
Note: Anne Petermann, Executive Director of Global Justice Ecology Project and coordinator of the Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees, will be a featured speaker at the May 25 “March Against Monsanto” event in Asheville, North Carolina.
Activists from across the region are descending on Asheville to confront a major Tree Biotechnology conference held from May 26-June 1. Especially targeted will be South Carolina-based ArborGen — originally formed as a partnership with Monsanto — which has a pending request to plant billions of Genetically Engineered eucalyptus trees in monoculture tree plantations across the US South.
Learn more at http://www.treebiotech2013.org
-The GJEP Team
Source: OpEd News
March Against Monsanto has announced that on May 25, tens of thousands of activists around the world will “ March Against Monsanto .” Currently, marches are being planned on six continents, in 36 countries, totaling events in over 250 cities, and in the US, events are slated to occur simultaneously at 11 a.m. Pacific in 47 states.
Tami Monroe Canal, lead organizer and creator of the now-viral Facebook page, says she was inspired to start the movement to protect her two daughters. “I feel Monsanto threatens their generation’s health, fertility and longevity. I couldn’t sit by idly, waiting for someone else to do something.” [The full March Against Monsanto mission statement can be read here.]
An organizer for the march in Athens, Greece, Roberta Gogos, spoke about the importance of the events in austerity-impacted South Europe. “Monsanto is working very hard to overturn EU regulation on obligatory labeling (questionable whether it’s really enforced in any case), and no doubt they will have their way in the end. Greece is in a precarious position right now, and Greece’s farmers falling prey to the petrochemical giant is a very real possibility.” Continue reading
May 8, 2013. Source: Indigenous Environmental Network
Indigenous Peoples and allies from Chiapas and the Amazon protest California REDD in Sacramento in front of the capital building, after a California Air Resources Board hearing where they testified on the adverse impacts that the possible inclusion of REDD was already having on communities. October 18, 2012. Photo: Jeff Conant/Friends of the Earth-US
From Africa to the Amazon, from Chiapas to Siberia, global civil society is raising an international outcry to resoundingly reject California’s proposed forest offset scam called REDD, which would let climate criminals like Chevron and Shell off the hook, cause human rights abuses and worsen global warming. May 7, 2013, was the last day for public comments on the draft California REDD Offset Working Group recommendations regarding linking California’s cap-and-trade program with a program to supposedly reduce deforestation in Chiapas and Acre, Brazil.
California’s Global Warming Solutions Act, AB32, is posed to include REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation), a false solution to climate change, whereby California polluters could use the forests of Chiapas, Mexico and the Brazilian Amazon as sponges for their pollution instead of reducing greenhouse emissions at home. California REDD is considered a model for the world and if launched will probably be replicated both nationally and internationally.
“The global movement against REDD has been born!” cried Susannah, a delighted volunteer with the No REDD Group Initiative as she tallied letters from all over the world to California Governor Jerry Brown and the California Air Resources Board demanding that REDD be immediately stopped in its tracks. “The world is uniting against California REDD because it may unlock an avalanche of REDD-type projects around the world.” Continue reading
Filed under Actions / Protest, Indigenous Peoples, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Forests and Climate Change, Latin America-Caribbean, REDD, Carbon Trading, False Solutions to Climate Change, Chiapas, Land Grabs, Green Economy, Africa, Commodification of Life, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Rights, Resilience, and Restoration, Forests
Note: Global Justice Ecology Project has been tracking the California-Acre-Chiapas REDD deal since it was unveiled at the UN climate negotiations in Cancun, Mexico in 2010. In 2011, GJEP’s Co-Director/Strategist Orin Langelle and Communications Director Jeff Conant travelled to Chiapas, Mexico to the Village of Amador Hernandez, an Indigenous village in the Lacandon Jungle of Chiapas threatened with relocation due to the REDD project. Langelle took hundreds of photos in the community and the region which were assembled into a poignant photo essay. And GJEP’s work in Chiapas broke the story of and documented the emerging impacts of REDD. In 2012, GJEP released a short documentary from the trip, A Darker Shade of Green: REDD Alert and the Future of Forests, highlighting the California REDD deal.
-The GJEP Team
May 7, 2013. Source: Global Justice Ecology Project
We appreciate the opportunity to submit comments on the REDD Offsets Working Group “Recommendations to Conserve Tropical Rainforests, Protect Local Communities and Reduce State-Wide Greenhouse Gas Emissions” for the state of California. California’s Global Warming Solutions Act, AB32, and the goals of reducing emissions from deforestation of remaining tropical rainforests are important and admirable efforts. However, in order to achieve the goals of AB32 and reducing deforestation we believe that allowing jurisdictional REDD offset credits to meet California’s emissions reduction targets will not be effective. REDD credits threaten to diminish the results of AB32 in California and the efforts of partner jurisdictions, including Chiapas and Acre, to protect their forests. Using subnational REDD initiatives, financed through offsets, to meet the targets of AB32 will be inefficient, ineffective, and create unintended consequences. Continue reading
Filed under Carbon Trading, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Commodification of Life, Corporate Globalization, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Forests, Forests and Climate Change, Green Economy, Indigenous Peoples, Land Grabs, Latin America-Caribbean, REDD, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests
Note: Jeff Conant is a good friend and former Communications Director for Global Justice Ecology Project.
-The GJEP Team
Jeff Conant, International Forests Campaigner for Friends of the Earth, discusses the dangers of including REDD forest offsets in California’s Global Warming Solutions Act. Global Justice Ecology Project teams up with the Sojourner Truth show on KPFK Pacifica Los Angeles for a weekly Earth Minute each Tuesday and a weekly Earth Watch interview each Thursday.
Filed under Carbon Trading, Chiapas, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Commodification of Life, Corporate Globalization, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Forests, Forests and Climate Change, Green Economy, Indigenous Peoples, Land Grabs, Latin America-Caribbean, Pollution, REDD, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests
By Chris Lang, 30th April 2013. Source: REDD-Monitor
Organisations based in Chiapas, Mexico have written to California’s Governor, Jerry Brown, to oppose the inclusion of REDD in California’s Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32).
Young girls in Amador Hernández Photo: Langelle/GJEP-GFC
In March 2011, Global Justice Ecology Project travelled to Chiapas and documented the problems that REDD and other conservation projects were causing for communities in the Lacandón jungle. Jeff Conant, who was then Communications Director for GJEP, wrote a series of articles based on the visit. The articles are collected on GJEP’s blog, Climate Connections. And Orin Langelle, GJEP’s Board Chair, produced a photo essay about the visit to Chiapas.
GJEP also produced a video about REDD: “A Darker Shade of Green”, which includes interviews with communities in Chiapas (the part about Chiapas starts at 10:45). One of the villagers describes REDD from his perspective:
“They see our Mother Earth as a business, and for us you should never see it like that, it’s our Mother, she can’t be sold. Now they’re developing this REDD Project that’s about carbon capture, it doesn’t serve us. We struggle simply to feed ourselves.”
In December 2012, an article was published in Truthout about the impact of REDD on communities in Chiapas. The title is very appropriate: “Colonialism and the Green Economy: The Hidden Side of Carbon Offsets”. The impacts of carbon offsets on the communities in Chiapas, it seems, remain largely hidden from view in California.
Filed under Actions / Protest, Indigenous Peoples, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Forests and Climate Change, Pollution, Latin America-Caribbean, REDD, Carbon Trading, False Solutions to Climate Change, Chiapas, Land Grabs, Green Economy, Commons, Commodification of Life, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Rights, Resilience, and Restoration, BREAKING NEWS, Forests
Note: Anne Petermann is Executive Director of Global Justice Ecology Project, which coordinates the Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered (GE) Trees. Click here for the link to the radio interview, and for info on the upcoming protests, click here: http://www.treebiotech2013.org/.
-The GJEP Team
April 28 2013. Source: The Final Straw Radio
Anne Petermann, of Global Justice Ecology Project, joins us this week to talk about the threats posed by Genetically Engineered Trees getting released into the U.S. as the USDA considers allowing Arborgen to found millions of acres of plantations across the southern U.S. These plantations, reaching from Texas to South Carolina, where the company is based, could destroy forest diversity, kill wildlife, exacerbate droughts, feed fire storms (not Firestorm), and spread quickly with the help of cold-resistant gene modification.
In the last week of May, Asheville will be hosting a Biotech Tree conference. Concurrently, Katuah Earth First! and GJEP (along with other projects) will be holding protests and workshops around the issues of GE Trees to educate the public and grow resistance.
Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Forests and Climate Change, GE Trees, Genetic Engineering, False Solutions to Climate Change, Green Economy, Commodification of Life, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy
Note: Global Justice Ecology Project has worked alongside Indigenous Environmental Network to oppose REDD since its conception, helping break the story about the California-Chiapas-Acre REDD deal following a trip to the Indigenous community of Amador Hernandez in Chiapas, Mexico in March 2011.
Following the trip, GJEP produced a 28 minute film, A Darker Shade of Green: REDD Alert and the Future of Forests — click here to view it.
–The GJEP Team
Source: Indigenous Environmental Network
IEN has been part of the struggle against REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation), a market-based, land grabbing false solution to climate change, since its conception because it threatens the very existence of our Indigenous Peoples, forest-dependent communities, and peasant farmers.
Please sign this petition immediately to reject the inclusion of REDD in the State of California’s Global Warming Solutions Act, AB32. This is a crucial moment in a worldwide battle for climate justice, human rights and the rights of Indigenous Peoples. Please stand with us now!
Sign the petition here: http://www.mynewsletterbuilder.com/email/newsletter/1411712655
Please share widely.
Tom B.K. Goldtooth
Indigenous Environmental Network Continue reading
Filed under Indigenous Peoples, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Forests and Climate Change, Latin America-Caribbean, REDD, Energy, Carbon Trading, False Solutions to Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Chiapas, Land Grabs, Green Economy, Commodification of Life, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Forests
By Chris Lang, April 25 2013. Source: REDD-Monitor
On Earth Day, 22 April 2013, Oilwatch International put out a statement opposing the inclusion of REDD in California’s Global Warming Solutions Act (AB32). Meanwhile, Wildlife Works, a company developing REDD projects in Africa held a “REDD talks” workshop in California, promoting REDD as a carbon trading mechanism.
The positions expressed by Oilwatch and Wildlife Works are at polar extremes in the REDD debate. Oilwatch states that “REDD allows polluters to keep polluting and global warming to get worse.” Wildlife Works tells us that REDD “provides an immediate solution to combatting climate change.”
But as Oilwatch points out, carbon trading allows Shell, one of the most polluting companies on the planet, to buy forest carbon credits and continue burning fossil fuels and emitting pollution. Obviously, this is not a solution to climate change. Continue reading
Filed under Climate Change, Climate Justice, Forests and Climate Change, REDD, Energy, Carbon Trading, False Solutions to Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Green Economy, Africa, Commodification of Life, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Oil, Forests