Nurses to Send Message to President Obama Nov. 3,
March on Treasury Department, G-20
October 21, 2011
With a growing international call for a tax on financial transactions to heal global economies, National Nurses United will bring the demand to the doorstep of the U.S. Treasury Department November 3 calling on Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and the Obama administration to get on board, and to end lobbying efforts at home and abroad against a Wall Street tax. Read more
Nurses to Obama: Push for a Global Financial Transaction Tax, Now!
October 20, 2011
Will President Obama be the main holdout when world leaders, under growing pressure from the occupy Wall Street protests across the world and demand building for a tax on international financial transactions, meet early next month at the G-20 summit in France? Read more
NO CUTS. TAX WALL STREET.
Tell Congress there's a sensible tax on Wall Street that would help solve our budget problems.
When reckless trading on Wall Street crashed the global economy, American taxpayers bailed out the big banks to the tune of $4.7 trillion. That is trillion with a “T”.
Today, Wall Street is booming. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Chase, and Wells Fargo executives are earning just as much as they did before the financial crisis. In 2010, the CEOs of these three banks made $52 million dollars combined.
Yet on Main Street family incomes are tanking, job creation has stalled, and 42 million people are living in poverty - more than at any other time in the last 50 years.
We have done our part, now it’s time for Wall Street to do more – through a tiny sales tax on each Wall Street trade called a financial transaction tax.
Right now Congress is considering huge cuts to Medicare and Social Security as well as other important programs in health, education and housing.
Enough is enough! We know where the money is. It’s time for Wall Street to start Paying US Back! A tiny tax on financial services can generate billions of dollars. (read more)
* * * * *
PETITION TO CONGRESS
The deficit issue that we face today was in large part created by the world financial crisis, a crisis caused by Wall Street speculation. Now it’s time to call upon Wall Street to start paying its fair share to help us out of the hole they dug.
A small tax on financial market transactions has the potential to raise significant revenue and simultaneously limit reckless short-term speculation that can threaten financial stability. We are writing to ask you to support such a tax, and to request that it be part of any new budget plan.
Financial transaction taxes have a long track record both in the United States and globally. The United States had a transfer tax from 1914 to 1966. The UK levies a transaction tax on stock transfers and has done so for many years. The European Union is on the edge of approving a small transaction tax of ten cents per $100 on stock transactions. This tiny tax is estimated to raise over $70 billion annually. A similar transaction tax in the United States would raise even more money, as our financial markets are larger.
We join over 1,000 economists who recently signed an open letter advocating a financial speculation tax as "technically feasible" and "morally right."
It’s time to ask Wall Street to do more.
Will Wall Street Become Seattle on Steroids?
When Marines march with peaceful protesters against Wall Street avarice, we see a new day dawning in America. The Forbes 400 may be fearful, but the world’s most marginalized peoples, and our precious planet, should find hope.
IFG now sees that a major October 13 meeting we began organizing months ago—which aims to align activists’ energy around a set of ultra-rich global elites who have too much power—can contribute greatly to what’s going on with Wall Street today.
J.P. Morgan CEO, Jamie Dimon’s attacks against regulators for proposing tighter rules on capital, and his enabling attacks against peaceful protesters by his timely and unprecedented gift to the NYC Police Foundation, show that some are still willing to violently defend record wealth inequality at any cost.
What will happen next on Wall Street is unknown, but we do know that peoples’ movements must not allow that mistake of the media to happen again; messaging is paramount. (read more)
IFG's New Treasurer Arrested at White House
IFG Board Treasurer, Bing Gong, was arrested in Washington DC on Monday, August 22nd for his participation in the civil disobedience action against the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. He was released after paying a $100 citation.
The 1,700 mile pipeline would transport Canadian Tar Sands "dirty" oil from Alberta through the US heartland to Gulf Coast refineries and ports. Because the pipeline crosses the international border, the US State Department, and ultimately, President Obama, makes the final decision to approve or deny the permit to build the 7 billion dollar pipeline. It does not have to go through Congress.
This is a defining moment - whether we continue on the path of business-as-usual use of fossil fuels, or change course in the direction of developing renewable energy - wind and solar.
More than 2,000 people have come DC to protest from August 20 through September 3, and risk being arrested in front of the White House to urge Obama to deny the permit.
Footage from DC by Bing Gong
Bing interviews protesters on why they were opposing the pipeline.
Tar Sands Action, Janet Redman (IPS), August 24, 2011
The ever-worsening news from Fukushima has blown the lid of off decades of nuclear industry disinformation about the perils of nuclear power. Country after country is rethinking nuclear expansion, including Japan itself.
Written by award-winning journalist Gar Smith, edited by Ernest Callenbach, with a foreword by leading Japanese anti-nuclear activist, Aileen Mioko Smith, Nuclear Roulette is a rigorously researched and compelling rebuttal to every single misleading claim the nuclear industry and government boosters have made about its viability, sustainability, and safety.
IFG has been a leader in exposing and critiquing the false solutions to the world energy crisis posed by big industry, international trade organizations, and complicit governments. In previous reports, we’ve exposed industrial agriculture and bio-fuels. We’ve also shown that without system-wide energy conservation, and global economic transition, no menu of so-called alternative energy sources can replace the current fossil fuel-based paradigm.
Now we want to publicize and distribute this report as widely as possible, to tell analysts, policymakers and the public, not only that the proposed “nuclear renaissance” must be abandoned, but more importantly, that there is another way. Conservation, renewables, peaceful co-existence, and a new paradigm to replace the infinite growth paradigm that is destroying our global habitat will make the old dirty energy society, with its accompanying wars and rampant inequalities, obsolete.
We need your help to make this happen. Please send a contribution to IFG today, and your support will help us get the word out, and build an even stronger groundswell demanding that governments and industries find safe, healthy, and truly sustainable ways to meet society’s energy needs.
Your past support has helped us so much. Send a contribution of $100 or more and we’ll send you a signed copy of Nuclear Roulette as our thanks.
Thank you for supporting IFG, and for all that you do for a better world,
Founder and Distinguished Fellow
Support IFG When You Buy or Sell a Home
June 8, 2011
The International Forum on Globalization is introducing a mechanism that gives our supporters the power to generate big donations—at zero cost--when they buy or sell property.
Our new partnership with My Broker Donates raises funds by tapping real estate commissions. This market-based fund-raising model helps non-profits recoup a financial return on the investment of time, energy and money they’ve made in communities over the years.
Here’s how it works: If you’re thinking of buying or selling a home, My Broker Donates connects you with real estate agents who are qualified to handle your particular transaction. Then you choose the agent you like best.
When the transaction closes, your agent or broker donates 15% of their commission to IFG. My Broker Donates guarantees that upon closing of your transaction the donation comes to IFG straight from your escrow company.
To learn more, visit the My Broker Donates How It Works page.
The size of your donation can be remarkable—a purchase or sale worth $500,000 generates a gift of more than $2,000 for IFG. That’s money that can fund vital activities including research and outreach at IFG.
IFG’s Board of Directors and staff convened earlier this year for an urgent three-day assessment of converging crises in the global economy and environment. We determined how IFG should respond to this situation over the next 2-3 years, and help to revitalize a global movement for sustainability, equity and justice.
Here are some highlights of our new program plan:
• ADVANCING FAIR GLOBAL RULES FOR CLIMATE, ENERGY AND RESOURCES We are accelerating our groundbreaking work to address the Triple Crisis, demanding that ecological limits must be recognized in all global economic activity, and applying standards of Indigenous Rights and the Rights of Nature in global governance. Read more
• NEW: NAMING THE NEW POWERS IN TODAY'S GLOBAL ECONOMY Our “Plutonomy” Project raises awareness about the rising influence networks and political activities of the emerging ultra-rich class of global billionaires, with clear intentions of undermining democracy and reversing the gains of progressive and environmental movements over the last half-century, in the U.S. and abroad. Read more
• NEW: HONOLULU TEACH-IN: THE ASIA-PACIFIC BATTLEGROUND The world’s new geo-political battleground is the Asia-Pacific. U.S.-China struggles for economic and political hegemony threaten all of us. At the APEC/TPP global trade summit in Honolulu this November, we will co-host a public teach-in to raise awareness of the issues, and show attending heads-of-state the world is watching. Join us there. Read more
• NEW: CROSS-SECTORAL ACTIVISM & ORGANIZING The “Opening Silos” Project is launching new cross-regional, multi-disciplinary, intergenerational dialogues to stimulate new leadership, coherence, energy and collaboration in global movements that have lately fallen into narrowly focused “silos.” Read more
* NEW: NUCLEAR ROULETTE Our new 100-page report in the False Solutions series demands an end to nuclear power generation as far too dangerous, costly, inefficient, and polluting. After Fukushima, the insanity of nuclear power is clear; this report makes an exhaustive case against it. A $100 donation gets you a free signed copy. Read more
U.S. Groups Join Global Call to Tax Speculators
February 16, 2011 · By Janet Redman
Over 30 national organizations signed this letter urging President Obama to take action at home and abroad to stop rampant financial speculation.
Dear President Obama,
We, the undersigned faith, labor, environmental, health, education and development organizations, write to urge you to join with French President Nicholas Sarkozy and a growing number of other world leaders and members of Congress in support of a miniscule tax on speculative financial transactions. The benefits are two-fold: discouraging destabilizing speculation while raising billions in revenue for critical needs at home and around the world.
We call on you to support the Investing in Our Future Act of 2011, which would generate new funds to help cut the U.S. deficit and secure financing for life-saving health, climate resiliency, and low-carbon development programs in impoverished countries. This would be accomplished through a 0.005% levy on foreign currency exchange transactions by large-scale investors, such as investment banks and money center banks, in the U.S.
We ask that you promote this proposal both in the U.S. Congress and in the G8 and G20 meetings this year. The United States should join the call for what President Sarkozy described recently as a “moral and ethical tax.”
While big banks report massive earnings and pay their executives exorbitant bonuses, the foreign exchange market remains largely untaxed and the U.S. deficit continues to grow. The Investing in Our Future Act would tap lightly into Wall Street’s overflowing profits, but would have little impact on middle class investors. Rather than cut social-safety net programs and increase the burden on working families, a speculation tax simply requires Wall Street bankers and speculators to pay their fair share.
At the same time, a speculation tax can play an important part in helping the U.S. keep its global promises. Smart investments in global health can save millions of lives and lift entire communities out of poverty. U.S. scientists are leading the way toward defeating HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Yet addressing these — along with growing the global health workforce; improving maternal, reproductive and child health; and combating neglected diseases — will require increased investment.
Similarly, a tax on financial speculation can help the U.S. keep its promise to provide funding to help build resiliency to climate change and aid the necessary transition to clean energy economies in developing countries. Meeting our financial commitments is essential to reduce global poverty, ensure human security and demonstrate our country’s leadership.
Predictable, sustainable financing is needed to address deficit, climate and global health needs. The Investing in Our Future Act creates such a source by establishing a tiny levy that would generate billions while curbing risky speculation. We urge you to support this initiative at home, and champion a financial speculation tax at the G8/G20.
AIDS Policy Project
AIDS Treatment News
Border Agricultural Workers Project
Center for Food Safety
Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE)
Center of Concern
Chesapeake Climate Action Network
Faith and Money Network, Inc
Family Care International
Food & Water Watch
Franciscan Action Network
Friends Committee on National Legislation
Global AIDS Alliance
Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives
Health Alliance International
Holy Cross International Justice Office
Institute for Policy Studies, Sustainable Energy & Economy Network and Global Economy Projects
International Forum on Globalization
Labor Network for Sustainability
Leadership Conference of Women Religious
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
Medical Mission Sisters Alliance for Justice
Partners In Health
Pax Christi USA
Sister of Mercy of the Americas - Institute Justice Team
Sisters of Mercy - Mid-Atlantic Justice Office
Sisters of the Holy Cross - Congregation Justice Committee
Tax Justice Network USA
The Affording Hope Project
Treatment Action Group
United Methodist Church, General Board of Church and Society
World Wildlife Fund
CC: Timothy Geithner, Secretary, Department of Treasury
Gene Sperling, Director, National Economic Council
Lael Brainard, Under Secretary of International Affairs, Department of Treasury
Nancy Sutley, Chair, White House Council on Environmental Quality
Todd Stern, Special Envoy for Climate Change
Jonathan Pershing, Deputy Special Envoy for Climate Change
Michael Froman, Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security
Adviser for International Economic Affairs, Sherpa to the G20
IFG joins allies in pushing for democratic process at new UN Green Climate Fund
Feb. 14, 2011: Cancun's COP 16 created a new UN Green Climate Fund (GCF), as an important alternative to the World Bank for financing climate justice. IFG and hundreds of allies called for the creation of such a fund over two years ago. Now, after Cancun, begins the tough task of making sure that the Climate Convention's financial mechanism works as it needs to. Click here to read the recent letter to UNFCCC by civil society groups on the Transitional Committee of the GCF.
"Thousands of peasants, indigenous peoples and youth make their voices heard in Cancun, by Luis Hernandez Navarro, La Jornada, December 8, 2010 (pdf in Spanish/English)
Photos from the Mayan Farmer Mobilization outside of COP16, Dec.7, 2010
Mayan forest and farming communities from the region marched at the UN Climate Conference (COP 16) in Cancun to pressure governments to commit to deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions and to ensure that the rights of rural and indigenous communities are protected in any decisions. A deepening drought is disrupting the Mayan’s traditional corn crops and increasing food and economic insecurity in the rural regions surrounding Cancun. Recent US scientific data shows Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula as one of the world’s worst areas where drought is projected to deepen. See policy brief linking greenhouse gas emissions and Mayan corn crops.
IFG partnered in this mobilization with the Organization of Forest Cooperatives of the Zona Maya (OEPFZM) and the National Union of Autonomous Regional Peasant Farmer Organizations-National Coordinator (UNORCA-CN). Other blocks in the day’s march included La Via Campesina, Cancun’s urban movement of marginalized neighborhoods (colonias), as well as climate campaigners, youth and workers’ organizations integrated as Espacio Mexicano. The march began at 10am on 7 December, 2010 in Cancun’s downtown, or El Centro. Marchers met up in nearby poor neighborhoods (colonias) and ended at the Plaza Principal for a program of speakers, music, and traditional indigenous dances.
Mayan march & Sierra Club Board Member Larry Fahn
OEPFZM's Victoria Santos w UNORCA banner of Zapata
Protestors call the Federal Attorney
for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA): executioners
Support the world's rain forests conservation
UNIFIED MOVEMENT. Mr. President Felipe Calderon Hinojosa: WE DO NOT WANT SOCIAL UNREST. WE DEMAND YOU SUPPORT THE WORKERS
With more forest area, climate change's negative effects will be reduced! Pollution affects us all. Let's take steps to eradicate it.
Let's stop global warming
IFG Video Reports from COP 16
IFG Report #13: Assessing COP16 - Victoria Tauli-Corpus
Dec. 11, 2010: Bing Gong interviews Victoria Tauli-Corpus, former Chair of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, who played a key role for 25 years working internationally to pass the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which was approved by the UN General Assembly in September 2007. Vickiy is a board member of the International Forum on Globalization and gives her assessment of the final outcome of COP16 in Cancun from an Indigenous Peoples perspective. For more info: Indigenous Peoples' International Centre for Policy Research and Education
IFG Report #12: Joshua Cooper of U.S. Human Rights Center
Dec. 10, 2010: Bing Gong interviews Joshua Cooper of the US Human Rights Center. Josh trains hundred of indigenous activists on the fine points of the human rights framework empowering them to advocate for themselves in local, regional, national, and international arenas. He teaches political science and journalist at the University of Hawaii.
IFG Report #11: Cancun Crunch Time - 48 Hours Left...
Dec. 9, 2010: IFG's Victor Menotti lays out his analysis of the endgame state-of-play at the COP16 Climate Summit in Cancun with 48 hours remaining in the meeting.
IFG Report #10:
Sarah James Interview
Dec. 10, 2010: Bing Gong interviews Sarah James of the Alaska Indigenous Gwich'in Nation in the Arctic Circle. Sarah is an activist fighting oil companies in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, talks about the impacts of climate change on her community.
IFG Report #9:
Ofelia Rivas Interview
Dec. 10, 2010: Indigenous Perspectives - Bing Gong interviews Ofelia Rivas of the O'odham Nation on the border of Southwesterrn Arizona and Northern Sonora, Mexico. Ofelia talks about a proposed project of the Department of Homeland Security / Border Patrol to build a permanent wall across the Arizona/Mexico border - a wall that will bisect the traditional O'odham lands and severely limit the rights of ancestral passage.
IFG Report #8: Interview with Virginia Suarez-Pinlac
Dec. 8, 2010: "Indigenous Perspectives" - Bing Gong interviews Virginia Suarez-Pinlac, an attorney with Unity of Women for Freedom - Phillipines, at a rally and march in Cancun to keep the World Bank out of climate finance.
As talks on long term climate finance for developing countries heat up today in Cancun, campaigners from around the world condemned rich countries' efforts to carve out a special role for the World Bank in managing these funds. (more)
IFG Report #7: Climate Impacts on the Mayan People in Mexico
Dec. 6, 2010 - Marcelo Carreon is interviewed by Victor Menotti, with IFG intern, Karen Abella, translating. Carreon is leading a mobilization to Cancun of over 3,000 members of the National Union of Autonomous Regional Campesino Organizations-National Coordination (UNORCA-CN) in Mexico. Drawing most heavily from the Mayan region that surrounds Cancun, indigenous, forest, and farming communities are coming to COP 16 to pressure governments to agree to ambitious cuts in the dangerous greenhouse gases. They are also demanding that all decisions respect indigenous peoples' and forest communities' rights. Carreon explains how a decade-long drought that are believed to be increasing the intensity and frequency of extreme weather events. The impacts are drying up the traditional corn crops threatening their livelihoods and survival.
IFG Report #6: Climate Impacts on Maasai in Kenya
Dec. 5, 2010 - Two Maasai women from Kenya, Nanta Mpaayei and Julian Naisula, who are in Cancun to work for the rights of indigenous peoples, are interviewed by Victor Menotti. They describe the impact of climate change on their pastoralist communities.
IFG Report #5: Interview with Joseh Ole Simel
Dec. 4, 2010 - Joseph Ole Simel, Executive Director of Mainyoito Pastoralist Integrated Development Organization (MPIDO), an indigenous MaasaI leader from Kenya, is interviewed by Victor Menotti. Joseph gives an insider's view of the UNFCCC negotiations on REDD, Reducing emission from Deforestation and Degradation, that indigenous peoples are concerned that their rights and tradition knowledge are included.
IFG COP Report #4: Civil Society Maps Response
Dec. 3, 2010 - Victor Menotti reports on civil society groups' response to the move by the U.S. and other nations to implement the flawed Copenhagen Accord.
IFG COP Report #3:
Why IFG is in Cancun
Dec. 3, 2010 - Victor Menotti explains why his organization is participating in the COP16 Climate Conference.
IFG COP Report #2
Dec. 1, 2010 - Victor Menotti lays out for interviewers his analysis of the Cancun Climate Summit political and economic state-of-play as international negotiators go to work without the top level participation of the main polluting nations.
Interviewee Victor Menotti, IFG's Executive Director
Videographer Bing Gong, Co-host of Post Carbon on KWMR-FM Produced by EON as a public service.
IFG COP Report #1: Indigenous Organizing for the Planet
Dec. 1, 2010 - Cancun’s Climate Conference is supposed to protect the environment, yet preparations by the Mexican government are mindlessly destroying critical habitat that coastal communities and ecosystems need to counter climate change.
One of IFG’s partners in Cancun, Sinergia Ambiental’s Victor Sumahano, explains in this short clip what they are doing about the government’s destructive actions.
Interviewer Victor Menotti, IFG's Executive Director
Videographer Bing Gong, Co-host of Post Carbon on KWMR-FM Produced by EON as a public service.
"Democracy Now! Questions Chief E.U. Climate Negotiator about WikiLeaks Cables," Dec. 7, 2010 Read more
"Small Farmers Gather for Alternative Global Forum on Climate Change and Social Justice," Democracy Now!,
Dec. 6, 2010Read more
Dec. 1, 2010: Letter to Ambassador Stern, US Dept. of State - The Establishment of a Global Climate Fund at COP16 (pdf)
5,000 expected for day of climate prayer in Cancun
More than 5,000 parishioners of 75 churches, religious organizations and faith groups will gather next Tuesday, November 30, in Cancun to pray for climate action at the United Nations climate conference.
This act, unprecedented in the city, will reunite catholics, christians, evangelical and jewish, who will congregate in the Plaza de la Reforma square to lift their prayers.
The prayer was announced at a press conference by religious leaders of more than 500 Cancun temples and the director of Religious Subjects of the City council of Benito Juárez, Hugo González Reyes.
The shepherd of the Presbyterian Church, Samuel May, emphasized that the prayer will be for the Mother Earth so that the man assumes his responsibility with her. Alexander Ramos Hernadez, one of the organizers of the event, revealed that two orations will be included in the prayer: the first for the Earth, and the second for the delegates of each of the 192 participant countries. Organizers will also try to encourage a peaceful atmosphere so that the necessary agreements can be reached during the 12 days of the conference.
Participants in the climate prayer are asked to wear white clothes and gather in the square located in front of the Municipal Palace at 5pm local time. The event is expected to extend up to 4 hours and will also include a performance by the children's choir from the church Cristo Rey.
THREE STEPS TO SUCCESS IN CANCUN
IFG is calling for agreement on at least three key issues at the UN Climate Conference in Cancun (November 29-December 10), where the world must pick up the pieces from last year’s catastrophe in Copenhagen.
We aim to set strong ecological limits on the global economy while ensuring protections for the planet’s most diverse places and peoples. How can you help? Contact key decision-makers to share our message. And please contribute now to IFG.
Here’s what you’ll be helping us to achieve in Cancun:
1. Substitution of small ideas—such as the proposal by US Special Climate Envoy Todd Stern for a “new paradigm” of global climate governance—in exchange for big thinking that truly averts a climate catastrophe. Stern’s approach to Cancun merely operationalizes the controversial Copenhagen Accord, which backtracks from core commitments made by both Clinton and two Bush presidencies, dismissing agreed objectives for ecological integrity and flouting established UN principles for equity. Instead, the US needs to recommit to the current UN Convention’s objective and principles, to accept emissions targets based on science not skeptics, to agree on transparent carbon budgets, and to stand aside if it cannot lead so that the world may move on. Read more
2. Full application of the rights of indigenous peoples in all decisions in Cancun, especially in forest protection. There is no global climate solution without protecting forests, but we must also protect the people who protect the forests. Mexico's experience with local community control over forests can contribute lessons learned to reducing emissions from deforestation. You can help IFG to support the mobilization of thousands of Mayans from the forests surrounding Cancun to the streets at the summit to demand their rights be protected. Read more
3. Creation of a new UN Global Climate Fund and a new UN Technology Body to support developing countries’ low-emissions pathways. Climate finance must be governed by climate authorities, not the World Bank that funds fossil fuels over conservation, efficiency, and renewables. Equally important is creating a new UN entity to share climate-friendly technologies with poor countries and poor communities. Read more
IFG’s sixteen years of work to preserve the global commons-including water, genetic diversity, forests, fisheries—has convinced us that the world desperately needs to agree on democratic global governance mechanisms that stand a chance to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in our shared atmosphere.
If we don’t get commitments soon, we will create atmospheric anarchy. This would permit powerful polluters to continue emitting dangerous gases that poison everyone’s atmosphere, overwhelm the natural world, and overpower the rights of poor countries and poor communities. If there was ever a global crisis that required cooperation by all governments, the climate crisis is it.
True, a comprehensive global agreement may be impossible in today’s political moment, but the unprecedented scale and speed at which the climate crisis is now unfolding demands we persist in finding ways to overcome any international impasse. Key to eventual success is creating effective constituencies in the US to support developing country concerns. An effective alliance has come together to convince congress to support developing countries adaptation to climate change, but other priorities will take much more education and advocacy than we’ve seen since Copenhagen. Indeed, the global climate justice movement is still in its infancy.
You can contribute now to supporting our efforts to grow our "movement of movements."
Please act today.
IFG and Allies Launch Cancun Mobilization for COP 16
Linking local leaders with international allies to drive global decisions
IFG recently convened another landmark meeting near Cancun, where the world’s governments will soon meet to pick up the pieces from Copenhagen’s frustrating failure to forge a global climate deal. UNFCCC’s COP 16 could yield some useful decisions to set real ecological limits on the global economy, but only if the Obama Administration drops its proposed “new paradigm” for global climate governance, insisting that the world abandon the current Convention’s strong principles for ecological integrity and social equity.
IFG has reconnected with old allies who turned out for the 2003 WTO Ministerial in Cancun—and invited in many new ones—to help inform and inspire a diverse “movement of movements” to act for global change. We’re linking our international allies with local leaders from the regions’ indigenous, forest, and farming communities, as well as urban youth, progressive labor, responsible business, and thoughtful government officials. All have vowed to mobilize their members. Cancun’s local media coverage of our activities explained what’s at stake.
Cancun Press Coverage
-Mobilization Agreed—Indigenous and Peasant Farmers in Felipe Carrillo Puerto (pdf)
-A Caravan of Activists is Coming to Cancun (pdf)
Victor Menotti, Executive Director of IFG, flanked by Victor Sumohana, ex-President of the PAN Party of the state of Quintana Roo (to Menotti's right) and Alejandro Ramos, ex-President of the PRD Party of the state of Quintana Roo. Independent of their parties, both political leaders showed great support for IFG's initiative in the region.
Why Cancun cares. How Mexico is mobilizing
Communities in and around Cancun see climate change as an urgent issue. Why? Mayan corn crops are failing due to a decade-long drought, despite the region’s recent floods, fires, landslides, and hurricanes that are also destroying Mayan tropical forests. Increasing ocean temperatures and acidification are bleaching the Caribbean coast’s rare coral reefs, while extreme weather is accelerating the erosion of its endless white sand beaches. IFG is working with these constituencies to help draw the links between these very real local impacts on rural and urban economies and the global decisions governments must make at the UN climate talks.
Indigenous and Peasant Farmers in Felipe Carrillo Puerto, near Cancun
How COP 16 can protect forests, plus the people who protect forests
Foremost among IFG’s priorities for Cancun is the formal recognition and full implementation of the rights of indigenous peoples and forest dependent communities in any and all decisions, especially those aimed at Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (or REDD). Mexico's forest community's success with control over forest resources has provided a lot of lessons learned for how REDD should proceed. IFG’s convening on “Rights in REDD at COP 16” follows on an important consensus we created before Copenhagen whereby non-indigenous NGOs agreed to support the positions of the Indigenous Caucus with respect to indigenous rights in COP 15. IFG aims to keep this consensus, and deepen commitments to the UN Declaration.
IFG Convening on “Rights in REDD at COP 16”
-Proposal for mobilization from Mayan communities -UNORCA-CN Mexico City meeting Nov. 14, 2010 (pdf)
-Full list of participants (.doc)
-Final draft program agenda (.pdf)
*Victoria Tauli-Corpuz - UNPFII/Tebtebba Foundation: REDD Plus and Indigenous Peoples: Opportunities and Risks (.ppt)
*Victoria Santos - Mayan Forest Cooperatives: The Mayan people affected by Hurricane DEAN August 2007 (.ppt)
*Kate Horner - Friends of the Earth (.ppt - forthcoming)
*Liliana Davila - WWF Mexico: Conservación y Pueblos Indígenas/Conservation and Indigenous Peoples (.ppt)
*Claudia Gómez-Portugal M. - Centro Mexicano de Derecho Ambiental: LA IMPORTANCIA DE LA REPRESENTATIVIDAD DE LAS COMUNDADES FORESTALES ANTE LA CONFORMACIÓN DEL MECANISMO NACIONAL REDD (.pdf)
-Summary of key panels (forthcoming)
-Cancun “challenges and opportunities” from 3 working groups (forthcoming)
-Letter supporting the Mayan’s “lucha local” for disaster relief from drought (forthcoming)
-Mayan Crops Fact Sheet (.doc)
-Indigenous Peoples' Recommendations for COP 16 (.doc - English) (.doc -Spanish)
UN Agrees Moratorium on Geoengineering Experiments
Risky Climate Techno-fixes Blocked October 29 2010 www.etcgroup.org
NAGOYA, Japan – In a landmark consensus decision, the 193-member UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) will close its tenth biennial meeting with a de facto moratorium on geoengineering projects and experiments. “Any private or public experimentation or adventurism intended to manipulate the planetary thermostat will be in violation of this carefully crafted UN consensus,” stated Silvia Ribeiro, Latin American Director of ETC Group.
The agreement, reached during the ministerial portion of the two-week meeting which included 110 environment ministers, asks governments to ensure that no geoengineering activities take place until risks to the environmental and biodiversity and associated social, cultural and economic impacts risks have been appropriately considered as well as the socio-economic impacts. The CBD secretariat was also instructed to report back on various geoengineering proposals and potential intergovernmental regulatory measures. (read more)
No breakthroughs as US, China climate envoys meet (AFP) – Oct 22, 2010
BEIJING — The US climate envoy said Friday he had "constructive" talks with China this week but indicated that no breakthroughs were made in their dispute over fraught climate change negotiations.
Todd Stern, who met Chinese climate negotiator Xie Zhenhua, also said the prospects of a substantive new deal to address global warming being reached at a world climate gathering in Mexico starting next month were unclear.(read more)
"The Presidency, Chained to the World," NY Times, Sept 11, 2010 - By Matt Bai
PRESIDENT OBAMA tried to seize the moment last week, at the traditional start of the midterm election season, by laying out a series of new economic proposals. And yet, at least politically, there was something almost tangential about Mr. Obama’s latest initiatives, which included $50 billion for infrastructure projects and an extension of the Bush tax cuts for all but the wealthiest Americans. The country’s economic trajectory heading into November is probably unchangeable at this point, which means that nothing the president does now is likely to alter the grim data confronting the electorate. (download the full story)
Intervention by IFG allies in Climate Justice Now! at UN climate talks in Bonn, Aug 2, 2010 pdf
UN Adopts Water as a Human Right!
UN resolution on right to water passes overwhelmingly. 124 yes, 42 abstensions, 0 no!
On July 28, 2010, the United Nations General Assembly overwhelmingly agreed to a resolution declaring the human right to “safe and clean drinking water and sanitation.” The resolution, presented by the Bolivian government, had 124 countries vote in its favour, while 42 countries – including Canada – abstained. (more)
Canada Endorses the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, 12 Nov. 2010 (read more)
The US stands alone once again..
Urge US Support for the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People
The Indian Law Resource Center has asked IFG to contact our allies to urge their support for the Unites States’ immediate adoption of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Please click on the links below to send a letter to the White House today. The deadline for comments to the State Department is October 2010. Thanks for helping to protect the rights of the world’s 370 million indigenous peoples!
State Department Consultations on the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
US Ambassador Susan Rice announced in April that the US was formally reviewing its position and solicited comments; only the US and Canada have yet to adopt UNDRIP, and some believe the US wants to do this before the UNFCCC’s December 2010 COP 16 in Cancun. Message from the Office of the Spokesman, July 7, 2010
July 7, 2010: Tribal Leaders Consultation
1 pm, Department of State, Washington, DC
July 8, 2010: Meeting with Nongovernmental Organizations
10 am, National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, DC
Pig Business: A New Tool for Fighting Industrial Pig Farming
INDUSTRIAL PIG FARMING: A GLOBAL THREAT
Four years ago, seasoned campaigner, eco-warrior and mother of three Tracy Worcester set out to discover who was paying the true price for the cheap imported pork for sale in Britain’s supermarkets. Her high profile documentary Pig Business charts the rise of the factory farm in the USA and the spread of their intensive farming model into Europe. The film focuses on the world's largest pork producer, US-based Smithfield Foods. With 52,000 employees processing 27 million pigs per year in 15 countries, accruing annual sales around $11 billion in 2010, it is the most formidable influence in the pork industry. The film exposes what is wrong with the industrialized farming model, and suggests solutions, so can serve as a powerful resource for advocacy. (more)
Current negotiations are dismantling the global climate regime and risk a 4 degree C rise in global temperatures. (More)
Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Talks in San Francisco June 2010
President Obama’s trade representative hosted trade talks from June 14-18 in San Francisco to advance the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a new framework among eight (8) nations: Australia, Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Vietnam, and the United States. (More on TPP)