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Rio Carnival

The Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development ended last week having successfully decided ‘The Future We Want’. The conference supposedly focused on the 'development of a green economy', but it lacks any binding commitments or specific targets. Everyone knew from outset that the declarations would be far more influenced by a corporate agenda than the plight of poor communities and natural depletion, you'd be forgiven for wondering why they even bothered.

There's an absence of any measures to regulate the private sector and instead more responsibility is given to private interests to assure sustainable development. This flawed logic, i.e. the disease as our ultimate saviour, was put across through thoughtfully chosen words and concepts. For instance, ‘Right to Water and Food’ became ‘Access to Water and Food'. This minor change means everything in the indigenous issue for example. Indigenous people depend on the forests and their biodiversity and in this new perspective their right of direct control over natural resources is taken away.

Hidden behind the bullshit concept of ‘green’ economy, the commodification and capitalisation of the world’s ecosystems and biodiversity was pushed through. It's proposed that nature and its products will be accounted as part of the GNP of a country- essentially means setting a price tag on scarce natural resources ready to be dominated by the financial sector. This distorted view of development will facilitate further major land-grabbing directly affecting those dependent on the natural ecosystems. Unsurprisingly, the UK was a fierce advocate of ‘natural capital evaluation’, despite of opposition from less developed countries. Kirsty Wright from the World Development Movement described the situation as ‘ridiculous’: "By selling off iconic natural sites such as the Amazon rainforest and Lake District we are simply following the UK's approach that the intrinsic value of ecosystems can now be qualified and that they can be owned, speculated on and ultimately sold off to whoever has the most money."

Tim Jackson, author of ‘Prosperity without Growth’ and Professor of Sustainable Development in Surrey, presented his work at Rio +20 arguing that prosperity is not a consequence of GNP growth, in fact endless growth in a world of limited resources is a dangerous menace to all humankind. What the world needs is for the 190 heads of state involved in Rio+20 lined up and shot. Unfortuantely (and unsurprisingly) our assembled 'betters' plumped instead for ‘sustained economic growth’ – in other words another 20 years of the same bollocks with added greenwash.

Stories about similar subjects...

Anti-nuclear protests in Japan as plants fired up again

Anti-Fracking Protesters on Trial in Preston

Activists began a project of land reclamation in Runnymeade

Climate Siren - a previously unheard of organisation connected to the Campaign Against Climate Change (CACC), stage one of the oddest actions SchNEWS has heard of for a while:a pro-monarchist anti-climate change lock-on

Frack Off campaigners successfully disrupted fracking operations early morning on Monday (18th June) in Derbyshire, when a group of protesters locked on to the gates of Cuadrilla's drilling contractor, PR Marriot.

Anti- Third Runway Land Occupation in Court

Almost 20 years to the day since the Rio Earth Summit in Brazil and the world is no closer to tackling climate change.

One man at least wasn't waiting for the public protest against genetically modified wheat in Rothamsted. According to mainstream news sources Hector Christie scaled the fence on Sunday morning and caused 'significant random damage'.

Twitter: @SchNEWS