Videos above (in order of most recent): 1,2) Democracy Now interview with Dr. David Suzuki. 3) People's Summit sit-in: "We reject this text!" 4,5) People's March: "No war. No warming. Build the people's' economy!" 6,7,8) Democracy Now coverage. 8) Includes the renowned speech to delegates at the first UN Earth Summit (Rio, 1992 -- 20 years ago!) by 12-year-old, Severn (now Cullis-)Suzuki (daughter of David), plus an interview with her about her thoughts today. 9, 10) World Development Movement's, 'Great Nature Sale' protest. 11) a 6-minute animated summary of the crimes against survival / betrayal of life committed by the forces intent upon the total privatization / financialization / commodification of nature for short-term profit.
Vandana Shiva ~ In June (20-22) 2012, world leaders along with thousands of participants from governments, NGOs and environmental groups as well as the private sector will come together in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil for Rio+20 (website) 20 years after the Earth Summit was organised by the UN in 1992, to address urgent ecological challenges such as extinction of species, erosion of biodiversity and climate change.
The world has changed radically since 1992 and, sadly, not for the better. Ecological sustainability has been systematically sacrificed for a particular model of economy, which itself is in crisis...
...Whereas the Rio principles — shaped by ecological movements, ecological science and by sovereign governments — were informed by values of ecological sustainability, social justice and economic equity across and within the countries, (in 1995) the WTO (introduced the paradigm of global corporate rule, changing the values and structures of governance and decision-making through free trade agreements (World Trade Organisation) between nations.
Conservation of the earth’s resources and equitable sharing were over the years replaced by greed and the grabbing and privatisation of resources across the globe. Sustainable economies and societies were replaced by non-sustainable production systems and a relentless drive to spread the virus of consumerism. Decision-making moved into the hands of global corporations, both directly and indirectly. It is, therefore, not surprising that when we meet at Rio+20, the ecological crisis is deeper than what it was at the time of the Earth Summit.
While the corporations wrote the rules of WTO and global free trade, they also subverted the environmental rules that were supposed to regulate their commercial activities to ensure sustainability. They have mutated environmental laws that were supposed to regulate commerce into laws for commercialising and commodifying the earth’s resources and ecological functions. They have subverted the Climate Treaty (derived from UNFCCC) and the Biodiversity Convention (UNCBD)...
...In both the Climate Treaty and the Biodiversity Convention, trade and commerce is replacing conservation and eroding the commons. Rights of corporations are edging out the rights of people...
...A paradigm shift is desperately needed. And it will not come from those who have created the crisis and who are looking for new ways to extend the life of the greed economy by commodifying and privatising all life on earth...
...Movements for ecological sustainability, social justice and deep democracy will come to Rio+20 with another paradigm — one centred on the rights of mother earth, the rights of future generations, of women, indigenous communities and farmers. It is this epic contest between a destructive and dying outmoded paradigm and a life-enhancing emergent paradigm that will be the most significant aspect of Rio+20. The outcome of this contest will determine the future of humanity.
None of us are immune from the crisis or the response to it. None of us are bystanders. We are all immersed in the processes that are either threatening the planet and our own future, or finding creative ways to shape a sustainable and a just future. Every day is an earth summit in our lives. And each of us is negotiating our collective fate on earth.
..."I am very concerned and worried because the draft final document of the Rio+20 (website) conference does not give proper attention to climate change," says former Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev in a press statement. "It looks like there is backsliding on this issue and that is what worries me so much because without addressing climate change, all of the other problems and tasks that will be set by the final document [of the Rio+20 conference] will not be accomplished and will become meaningless."
..."We see a lopsided victory of weak words over action words—with the weak words winning out at 514 to 10," Lasse Gustavsson, World Wide Fund for Wildlife (WWF)'s Head of Delegation, said over the weekend.
Despite the well-known perils of climate change, and the fact that little progress has been made on the issue over the past two decades, Rio+20 has sidelined the issue from the beginning...
..."Twenty years after the original Rio conference, there is overwhelming evidence that the state of the climate and the environment has been treated with a woefully insufficient business-as-usual approach," Alexander Likhotal, President of Green Cross International, which hosts the CCTF, said. "There has been a breakdown in the multilateral political system that has replaced global good with national greed, and given a free hand to unchecked use up of natural resources. These are the key causes of the climate crisis and the unsustainable system of development that is wracking the world and condemning people all over the world—especially in the poorest parts—to lives of vulnerability, desperation and suffering." (ecoSanity - 2009 Climate Change Human Impact report: 100s of millions suffering; 4 billion vulerable NOW)
Only EMERGENCY international action at EMERGENCY speed *may be* proportional enough to confront the scale, scope and urgency of what is already the greatest crime against humanity, most life and most future life EVER (Compilation: Betrayal of Life).
If the umbrella crisis of climate breakdown / disruption / destabilization is not tackled fast, its impacts -- severe threats to fresh water scarcity, global agriculture and multi-regional insecurity and instability -- will make it impossible for us to address ALL other global issues and causes, let alone to thrive or survive.
The leaders of rich nations and the economic and other entities they aim to appease must alter humanity's current, 'business as usual' course.
Instead, they must take the choice and moral imperative to value, prioritize, preserve and defend life -- and all that is necessary in nature to sustain it -- over short-term politics, narrow interests, consumption, growth, wars and profit NOW, FAST, TODAY, before it's too late.
Get informed. Get inspired. Get involved and help to motivate bold, new, transformative approaches and 'just', resilient, EMERGENCY RESPONSES to the climate crisis FAST.
Rio+20 UN Earth Summit: Summaries and best collections / sources
ecoSanity Founder Glenn MacIntosh is a film / TV industry escapee turned organizer, activist, advocate for emergency action at emergency speed to confront the climate, energy, population, democracy, justice crises. A proponent of peaceful civil disobedience / direct action, Glenn has been an arrested participant in Greenpeace protests outside Cdn PM Stephen Harper's residence, and the federal Parliament buildings. He also reads. A lot.