Today marks the opening of the Cancun talks on Climate Change. They are a follow-up to last year’s Copenhagen discussion which, as everyone knows, did not yield the expected global agreement to effectively reduce greenhouse gases. A review of media coverage leading up to the Cancun event downplays expectations for any significant breakthroughs during this round. And if nothing substantive comes out of this week-long meeting, it will mark another nail in the coffin of the UN’s attempt to establish a globally binding agreement à la Kyoto Protocol. The outlook is not improved by the outcome of the US mid-term … Continue reading
Concern about a land grab in Africa for the production of industrial-scale, ethanol-producing crops may well be justified, which is why bird-dogging the “African agricultural green-rush” is everyone’s responsibility.
The world’s biggest corporations are rushing to grab and convert living plant matter – called “biomass” — into fuel, chemicals, and other profitable products. (…) “Plants, trees and forests are the new oil fields. They’re above the ground, and they’re easy to grab”
Officials stand by as forest burned to charcoal Nov. 2nd, 2010. Planted forests in the south central province of Phu Yen are being ravaged by charcoal and timber sellers. Due to a grave deriliction of duty on the part of the proper authorities, the trees’ planters say they have resorted to begging the wood prospectors to stop. On Wednesday, Thanh Nien witnessed charcoal makers proudly carrying their products from Deo Ca forest as the people who planted the forest stood by aghast. Felled trees lay strewn about on the ground –the victims of loggers who cut down more than they … Continue reading
The pain of knowing that each year 2 million people — mostly women and children — die as a consequence of the inefficient combustion of household cooking and heating fuels, like wood and animal dung, is with good reason, the engine behind the launch of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves this past September. But if the public health impact of indoor air pollution is not enough to convince people of the magnitude of the problem, then the UN’s most recent Human Development Report makes the clearest argument yet that Climate Change and destruction of the environment are the biggest … Continue reading