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The wandering planet and the green chimera of Rio +20

The wandering planet and the green chimera of Rio +20


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By Javier Rodríguez Pardo

Pharaonic dams displacing thousands of indigenous people from the Amazon, hydrocarbon pipelines, hydrological alterations and dredging of river passages are, with the bi-oceanic corridors, a strategic part of an extractive model that depletes water sources and consumes huge volumes of energy. Water, fertile soils and critical and strategic minerals are scarce common goods extracted through an energy matrix that generates atmospheric emissions that affect global warming.


Two decades after Rio 1992, the planet has experienced the sordid handling of violated international treaties. The reduction of greenhouse gases was the first to mark different degrees of responsibility between two different worlds: on the one hand, the world of industrialized countries and, on the other, that of poor countries or countries in the process of growth turned into utopia. .

The mistakes around the Kyoto protocol of 1997 marked the imprint of a development model that proved its failure. The concepts of development and sustainability became a mere declarative purpose wielded by the great powers, more concerned with controlling and preserving world trade organizations and the guiding interests of a globalized world. For this reason, carbon dioxide emissions reached their highest historical level in the last two years (2009/2010).

Along these lines, the protection of biological diversity proposed by one of the United Nations Framework Conventions was not only breached but was decimated by an intensive extractive wave in the southern countries and the expansion of the agro-toxic frontier. The domain of biodiversity allowed the hegemonization of biotechnology in the power of the laboratories of the North, which also developed new strategies on native forests and native communities in pursuit of the knowledge of molecular assets and the registration of their patents.

In the last two decades, desertification has increased, despite the agreement signed in 1994 by the United Nations Convention (UNCCD). In this period the impacts of global warming were estimated with greater frequency and rigor, allowing to document an indubitable change in climate patterns. Rio + 20 appears in 2012 in an increasingly rebellious scenario, with social movements that reject the impositions orchestrated by the corporations of global power.


In the last decade, Latin America has been subjected to projects conceived within the framework of the Initiative for the Infrastructure of South American Regional Integration (IIRSA) and the extension of the Puebla Panama Plan for Central America. Both designs were forged with the clear objective of facilitating the extraction, circulation, and communication of common goods (natural resources) that make up the loot of the looting of transnational corporations. If Rio + 20 is a call to sanity for the rescue of a dying planet, the IIRSA projects are not the best answer to prevent its agony.

Pharaonic dams displacing thousands of indigenous people from the Amazon, hydrocarbon pipelines, hydrological alterations and dredging of river passages are, with the bi-oceanic corridors, a strategic part of an extractive model that depletes water sources and consumes huge volumes of energy. Water, fertile soils and critical and strategic minerals are scarce common goods extracted through an energy matrix that generates atmospheric emissions that affect global warming.

For all these reasons, the Latin American response to Rio + 20 is one of rejection and reflects the unease offered by a path flawed from its origin by those who do not abandon consumerism and waste. It is also the hope of countless social movements that rise up in rebellion on a single continental border that unites them. They are indigenous peoples and communities that make up the critical mass that tries to stop the course towards the destruction of the only possible habitat: this planet.

Developing a “green economy” in an associative framework of sustainable development will not avoid avoiding the rules of the corporations that hegemonize global power. The history of the last two decades shows the hegemonic role of the nations that concentrate and consume 80 percent of the wealth and that, at the same time, are the main generators of climate impact. Due to this dominance and its specific harmful effects, it is chimerical to think that we will ever return to the historical average of the Earth's temperature.

In fact, it will be impossible to return the polar ice that has been melting, to bring the oceans back to their previous level and to repair the ongoing decrease in the glacial mass of the mountain ranges. An endless list of consequences of climate change has failed to convince the reigning political supremacies and we do not believe that this will be reversed in the next fifty years. It is the plan of a global power that projects its economy in the same direction of supply and demand, of waste and consumption, of competitive ferocity.

As for the supposed green economy associated with the concept of sustainable development, it should be noted that it differs completely from the political thought that advocates a declining economy, more concerned with meeting human needs than those of markets. Rio +20 will theorize wrapped in a utopian sustainability that reiterates in our understanding the erratic and wasteful path that caused this mess. On the other hand, controlled production, reducing consumption and thinking in economic terms of decrease (noting a shortage of common goods absent in nature on the verge of extermination) could mean the beginning of a new world. How to install this culture is the most difficult task. For now, it is to be assumed, in light of its antecedents, that Rio +20 will formulate with greenish tones, the continuity of the old ways towards immolation.

Javier Rodriguez Pardo, Buenos Aires, May 3, 2012.

MACH - RENACE - Union of Citizen Assemblies (UAC)

Note:

A few years ago we prevented the use and exploitation of 250,000 hectares of native forests, located in Alto Río Senguer, southwest of the Chubut mountain range (1999/2001). We avoided that 50,400 hectares of native forest on the shores of the Fontana and La Plata lakes were used as carbon dioxide sinks and that suspected degraded lenga, ñieres and cohiues trees ended up in the North cabinetmakers. The project was promoted by a European environmental organization (Prima Clima), the German Technical Cooperation Agency (GTZ), the Argentine government and the Province of Chubut through the Center for Research and Extension Forestal Andino Patagónico. Three agreements and two contracts brought together an army of professionals, including forestry engineers from five southern provinces, Patagonian universities, national parks, INTA and Conicet. We regionalized the struggle with mobilizations and caravans and installed the objections of our peoples in Bonn. German television cameras broadcast the protest and accusing voices of Mapuche-Tehuelche communities paraded through the central European media, days before the new agreements of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change were signed. In August 2001, the commitments signed in Bonn definitely overthrew the aspirations to use native forests as carbon dioxide sinks and stipulated that the forestry work and management plans do not qualify for carbon fixation certificates. (Ref .: La Patagonia de Pie: Ecology vs. negotiated, chapter 9, “Political power, logging and green bonds”, authors Javier Rodríguez Pardo and Lucas Chiappe, editions Lemú (2003/2004).


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