Indígenas bloqueiam BR que liga o estado de Roraima a Venezuela contra a PEC 215

December 21st, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

Cerca de 1000 indígenas bloquearam na manhã de hoje, 17, de dezembro, a BR- 174 que liga o estado de Roraima a Venezuela em protesto contra a PEC 215. A manifestação é pacífica e os indígenas do estado de Roraima exigem o arquivamento da medida legislativa.

Neste clima de intranquilidade, os povos indígenas clamam por justiça e pedem pela garantia dos direitos previstos na Constituição Federal. Os povos afirmam que a PEC 215 é inconstitucional e infringe direitos previstos na lei.

Entenda a PEC 215

A Proposta de Emenda Constitucional (PEC 215/2000) é de autoria do ex-deputado federal Almir Sá (RR) que, “acrescenta o inciso XVIII ao art. 49; modifica o § 4º e acrescenta o § 8º ambos no art. 231, da Constituição Federal” para incluir dentre as competências exclusivas do Congresso Nacional a aprovação de demarcação das terras tradicionalmente ocupadas pelos índios e a ratificação das demarcações já homologadas; e para estabelecer critérios e procedimentos de demarcação serão regulamentados por lei”.

No momento, a discussão da PEC 215 está na Comissão Especial da Câmara dos Deputados criada na apresentar parecer. A Comissão é formada na sua maioria por deputados ligados a bancada ruralista que apoiam a PEC 215 e tentam aprovar um Relatório Substitutivo.

O novo parecer além de corroborar o texto original, inclui as piores e inconstitucionais condicionantes do Caso da Raposa Serra do Sol estabelecida pelo Supremo Tribunal Federal (STF). Tais condicionantes foram consideradas pelos ministros do STF como não vinculantes, portanto, não devem se estender a outras terras, mesmo assim a bancada ruralista tenta incorporar no texto da PEC 215.

Além disso, segundo informações publicadas em jornais e pelo Ministério Público Federal, o Relatório Substitutivo a ser discutido teria sido produzido fora da Comissão Especial, por advogado ligado ao CNA pago para atender os interesses individuais dos ruralistas envolvidos em invasão em terras indígenas no Mato Grosso do Sul.

A PEC 215 afronta seriamente os direitos constitucionais. Coloca em risco a sobrevivência física e cultural dos povos indígenas que dependem de suas terras. Somado a isso, contraria os princípios de separação de poderes ao propor transferir para o Congresso Nacional responsabilidades administrativas do governo federal, com absurda interferência clara da bancada ruralista. E o mais grave, os povos indígenas deixados de fora, do processo e das discussões, sem consultas e sem direito de entrar, falar ou defender na casa, considerado do povo, o Congresso Nacional.

As lideranças indígenas de diversas partes do estado de Roraima permanecem na manifestação divulgando suas preocupações e alertando autoridades e a sociedade brasileira sobre o risco de seus direitos.

Conselho Indígena de Roraima

17 de dezembro de 2014

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San Carlos Apache Tribe ask you to sign petition against Southeastern Arizona Land Exchange and Conservation Act

December 21st, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

To All:

On this Sunday, I ask everyone to pray with the San Carlos Apaches, other
Tribes, and other organizations to ask our Creator God to make Congress
understand that the Southeastern Arizona Land Exchange and Conservation Act
is a bad deal for Apaches, Arizona, and America.

I ask you to sign the petition below and join us in making our voices heard
in Washington, DC. On behalf of my people, all Indian Tribes across the
United States, and other people that believe in what we believe in, thank
you from the bottom of my heart. Please share with others.

Terry Rambler, Chairman
San Carlos Apache Tribe

Stop Apache Land Grab | We the People: Your Voice in Our Government
SIGN PETITION

Watch Video ” Save Oak Flats Sacred and Holy site on the San Carlos
Apache Reservation” here

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Sign on petition to stand with CONAIE for the rights of Indigenous Peoples

December 21st, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

We call upon all of our brothers and sisters of the world community to stand with
CONAIE for the rights of Indigenous Peoples, communities and Nations.

Go to this petition site now and take action today:thepetitionsite

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CONAIE Indigenous Organization Evicted from Headquarters by Ecuadorian Government

December 21st, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

Written by Marc Becker   

The Ecuadorian government has announced that it is giving an Indigenous organization two weeks to abandon the headquarters it has held for almost a quarter of a center.
A December 11 letter from the Ministry of Economic and Social Inclusion informed the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE) that it needed their building to use as a center for homeless children addicted to drugs and alcohol.

The CONAIE leadership says that they will refuse to leave. They demanded that they be given title to the building that they have used since 1991.

Jorge Herrera, president of the CONAIE, declared that the building “has been a symbol of the construction of a relationship between the state and Indigenous peoples.” He denounced their removal as a colonial act on the part of the government, and categorized the government’s action as “persecution of the Indigenous movement struggle.”

According to Herrera, in the building “we drafted proposals for a new constitution, we gave life to the proposal for a plurinational state.” He said, “in this building we have defended democracy.” The building belonged to everyone, and Herrera said they would not allow the government to kick them out.

Nina Pacari, former Minister of Foreign affairs, member of the United Nations Forum for Indigenous Peoples, and Judge of Ecuador’s Supreme Court, defined the eviction as direct persecution against Indigenous peoples.

Former CONAIE president Humberto Cholango proclaimed that if the government threw them out they would return. He criticized Correa’s actions as part of an ongoing campaign against the CONAIE, including its bilingual education and collective rights campaigns.

International supporters have denounced the government’s decision. In an open letter to president Rafael Correa, Portuguese sociologist Boaventura de Sousa Santos wrote “the legal justifications aside, kicking the CONAIE out of its building is an unjust and politically imprudent act.”

A quarter century of struggle

The CONAIE was founded in 1986 to unify all Indigenous peoples and nationalities in Ecuador into one unified movement.

In 1990, the CONAIE emerged as the primary leader of a massive social uprising that challenged the social, economic, and political exclusion of Indigenous peoples in Ecuador.

At the time, Democratic Left (ID) president Rodrigo Borja said he could not understand why the movement had revolted because no government had done as much for Indigenous peoples as had his administration.

After strikes and negotiations, in July 1991 the Ministry of Social Welfare signed an agreement to let the CONAIE use the building until 2021. Over time, Indigenous activists expanded a simple building into a three-floor complex.

The CONAIE headquarters have been a center for social movement struggles against oppressive neoliberal economic policies. Repeated protests and campaigns, as well as positive proposal and initiatives, have come out of the building.

Rafael Correa

The CONAIE has had tense relations with current leftist president Rafael Correa since the beginning of his political career in 2006.

Initially some activists dreamed of an alliance between Ecuador’s strong social movements that had opened up political space for a progressive government and Correa. The future president had gained renown as a dissident voice as minister of finance in a previous administration.

Talks between Correa and social movements broke down when he refused to run in the vice presidential slot with an Indigenous candidate at the head of the ticket.

During Correa’s almost eight years in power, relations with what should have been his strongest social movement allies have slowly degenerated.

Indigenous activists have been particularly vocal in their criticism of the government’s extractive policies. Repeated protests have denounced the government’s reliance on gold and copper mining and petroleum extraction, and have defended community access to water rights.

Seemingly the final straw for the Correa administration was when the CONAIE joined a reinvigorated Unified Workers Federation (FUT) protest on November 19 against reforms to the labor code.

In 1938, maverick General Alberto Enríquez Gallo promulgated a very progressive labor code that borrowed heavily from Article 127 in the landmark 1917 Mexican constitution.

Labor activists, together with their social movement allies in the CONAIE, opposed the revisions that would outlaw the creation of public sector labor unions.

Correa claimed that the almost eighty-year-old labor code was in need of updating to meet the realities of the twenty first century.

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A lógica perversa do capitalismo verde

December 17th, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

By Pravda.ru

Para entender como e por que o capitalismo verde avança sobre os territórios indígenas e das populações tradicionais é necessário reconhecer os paradoxos da água. Ou seja, a água é vida e morte, liberdade e escravidão, esperança e opressão, guerra e paz. A água é um bem imensurável, insubstituível e indispensável à vida em nosso planeta, considerada pelo Artigo 225 da Constituição Federal, bem difuso, de uso comum do povo.
Fonte da notícia: Jornal Porantim – Edição Especial “NÃO à Economia “Verde”
“Tudo o que é financeiro, lamentavelmente, é econômico. Mas nem tudo o que é econômico é financeiro”
Por Amyra El Khalili
Nesse sentido, a recente descoberta do que pode ser o maior aquífero de água doce do mundo na região amazônica, o Alter do Chão, que se estende sob os estados do Amazonas, Amapá e Pará, exige atenção e cuidado por parte da sociedade brasileira[i].

O aquífero Alter do Chão, que chega a 86 mil quilômetros cúbicos, possui quase o dobro da capacidade hídrica do Aquífero Guarani, com 45 mil quilômetros cúbicos. Sendo assim, ele atrai, inevitavelmente, a cobiça dos países do hemisfério Norte, que já não têm mais água para o consumo, e pode tornar-se a causa de enfrentamentos geopolíticos. Processo similar acontece no Oriente Médio, com disputas sangrentas pelo petróleo e gás natural.

O controle sobre esta riqueza hídrica depende exclusivamente do controle territorial. As águas são transfronteiriças e avançam sobre os limites entre municípios, estados e países. O recorde histórico da cheia do Rio Madeira neste ano de 2014, que inundou cidades na Bolívia, além das trágicas inundações nos estados de Rondônia e no Acre, é um bom exemplo desta característica das águas.

De modo geral, a água está sendo contaminada com a mineração e com o despejo de efluentes, agrotóxicos e químicos, e poderá ser poluída também com a eminência da exploração de gás de xisto, onde a técnica usada para fraturar a rocha pode contaminar as águas subterrâneas.

Terra à venda

Segundo estimativas de um relatório do projeto Land Matrix, que reúne organizações internacionais focadas na questão agrária, mais de 83,2 milhões de hectares de terra em países em desenvolvimento foram vendidos em grandes transações internacionais desde 2000. Os países economicamente mais vulneráveis da África e da Ásia perderam extensas fatias de terras em transações internacionais nos últimos 10 anos, sendo que a África é o principal alvo das aquisições, seguida da Ásia e da América Latina. Estas compras são estimuladas pelo aumento nos preços das commodities agrícolas e pela escassez de água em alguns dos países compradores, que o fazem para a exploração da agricultura, mineração, madeira e do turismo[ii].

Outros países são alvos desta ofensiva fundiária, como a Indonésia, Filipinas, Malásia, Congo, Etiópia, Sudão e o Brasil, que teve mais de 3,8 milhões de hectares vendidos para estrangeiros somente nos últimos 12 anos. É importante salientar que, até aqui, estamos falando de terras que podem ser adquiridas, em tese, através da compra. Porém, as terras indígenas e de populações tradicionais são terras da União e, não podem ser negociadas e nem alienadas, pois estão protegidas por leis nacionais e internacionais.

Acontece que são justamente estas as terras que estão preservadas e conservadas ambientalmente e são as mais ricas em biodiversidade, água, minério e energia (bens comuns). E, portanto, são nessas áreas que ocorre o avanço desenfreado do capitalismo verde que nada mais é que o velho e desgastado modelo colonialista, extrativista e expansionista neoliberal com uma roupagem atualizada, que visa a apropriação dos bens comuns. Esses bens são definidos como “recursos naturais”, assim como os trabalhadores são considerados pelo sistema como “recursos humanos”. Tudo neste modelo “verde” é usado ilimitadamente e no curto prazo.

Essa concepção utilitarista do “capitalismo verde” já é confrontada com outros modelos de vida, como o Bem Viver, dos povos das florestas, a economia socioambiental, a economia solidária e a agroecologia, dentre outras que estão florescendo.

Para a implementação deste modelo com purpurina verde, algumas leis estão sendo aprovadas com o claro propósito de beneficiar o mercado financeiro. Paralelamente, outras leis são desmanteladas para institucionalizar e legitimar a ocupação de estrangeiros, empresários e banqueiros em territórios latino-americanos e caribenhos, como é o caso dos direitos fundamentais dos povos indígenas, do Código Florestal e dos direitos trabalhistas.

Confundir para se apropriar

Desse modo, contratos unilaterais e perversos são assinados por atores com forças políticas totalmente desiguais, em que confunde-se, propositadamente, “financiar” com “financeirizar”.

Aqui cabe uma elucidativa exemplificação: financiar é, por exemplo, permitir que uma costureira compre uma máquina de costura e consiga pagá-la com o fruto de seu trabalho, tornando-se independente de um empregador para que venha a ser empreendedora.

Já, financeirizar é fazer com que a costureira endivide-se para comprar uma máquina de costura e jamais consiga pagá-la, até que o credor possa tomar a máquina da costureira por inadimplência (não cumprimento do acordo mercantil)

A financeirização faz com que uma parte do acordo, a descapitalizada, fique endividada e tenha que entregar o que ainda possui, como as terras indígenas. E, assim, são desenhados perversos contratos financeiros e mercantis com a finalidade de vincular as terras ricas em bens comuns para que essas garantias fiquem alienadas e à disposição da parte mais forte: a capitalizada.

Nestes termos, as populações indígenas e os povos das florestas deixam de poder usar o que lhes mantém vivos e o que preservam há séculos para as presentes e futuras gerações, as florestas e as águas, para que terceiros possam utilizá-los, além de que estes passam também a controlar seus territórios.

É esta a lógica perversa do capitalismo verde, sustentado pelo argumento de que as florestas “em pé” somente serão viáveis se tiverem valor econômico. O que é uma falácia, pois valor econômico as florestas “em pé” e as águas sempre tiveram. O que não tinham, até então, era valor financeiro, já que não há preço que pague o valor econômico das florestas, dos bens comuns e dos “serviços” que a natureza nos proporciona gratuitamente.

O capitalismo somente avança nas fronteiras que consegue quantificar. Porém, jamais conseguirá se apropriar do que a sociedade puder qualificar.
O bem ambiental é definido pela Constituição como sendo “de uso comum do povo”, ou seja, não é bem de propriedade pública, mas sim de natureza difusa, razão pela qual ninguém pode adotar medidas que impliquem gozar, dispor, fruir do bem ambiental ou destruí-lo. Ao contrário, ao bem ambiental, é somente conferido o direito de usá-lo, garantindo o direito das presentes e futuras gerações.
Somente qualificando o bem comum, ao dar-lhe importância econômica pela garantia da qualidade de vida que nos proporcionam e nos recusando a colocar-lhes preço (financeirizando-o), é que poderemos impedir o avanço desenfreado do capitalismo verde sobre os territórios indígenas e das populações tradicionais.
Não podemos nos omitir nem deixar de nos posicionar em favor daqueles que são os guardiões das florestas e das águas. Se o povo, o proprietário hereditário dos bens comuns, decidir que o ouro, o petróleo e o gás de xisto, dentre outros minérios, devem ficar debaixo do solo para que possamos ter água com segurança hídrica e alimentar, que sua vontade soberana seja cumprida.

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Panel finds corporations, United Nations and governments guilty of violating nature’s rights

December 13th, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

By Indigenous Environmental Network.

Lima, Peru (Dec. 7, 2014)– The International Tribunal for the Rights of Nature judged twelve international and domestic cases; examining the violation of the rights of peoples and nature committed by corporations, The United Nations, and governmental entities. The judgments reference the legal framework of the Rights of Nature and the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth. The cases were reviewed on Dec. 5th and 6th in Lima’s Gran Hotel Bolivar.

According to Alberto Acosta, president of the Tribunal and former president of the Constitutional Assembly of Ecuador, the rights of nature must have a universal validity. “This ethical tribunal arises when States fail to fulfill their obligation to preserve the lives of living beings,” said Acosta. “As long as nature is seen as property in law, there can be no justice for communities, the climate or nature.”

Acosta led the 13 judges through 12 cases

The Tribunal was dedicated to Shuar leader, José Tendentza, who was found murdered just days before the Tribunal. Tendentza of Southern Ecuador was scheduled to present the Condor Mine case. Acosta led the 13 judges through 12 cases that were determined by the judges to demonstrate egregious violations to rights of nature and human rights. Cases included:

-False Solutions related to Climate Change and REDD+;
-Peruvian cases: Conga Mine, Bagua Massacre – Defenders of Earth, 4 River Basins of Peru;
-Ecuadorian cases: Condor Mine, Chevron/Texaco, and Yasuni ITT
Brazil: Belo Monte Dam
-USA and Bolivia: Hydraulic fracturing “fracking”
-Oceans: BP Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill, coal mine and other threats to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

Of the cases, the oil exploitation of the Yasuni territory of Ecuador was condemned in addition to the relentless persecution Yasunidos are facing for their dissent. Since 2013, the Ecuadorian government green-lighted oil drilling in Yasuni National Park, one of the most biodiverse areas in the world and home to two indigenous nations in voluntary isolation.

In protest, a group of young Yasunidos joined together to claim the rights of nature, which are guaranteed in the Constitution of Ecuador. They collected more than 800,000 signatures to call for a referendum on the oil exploitation, but their request was rejected by electoral institutions. The Yasunidos are now suing the Ecuadorian government, led by President Rafael Correa, and are waiting for their complaint to be reviewed by the tribunal of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH).

Additionally, the Tribunal for the Rights of Nature found Chevron-Texaco in Ecuador to be guilty of using inappropriate technology and causing irreversible damage to the environment. They determined that the corporation must fully compensate those affected by the environmental impact.

The Peruvian cases of Conga and Bagua were accepted as threats of violation to the rights of nature. An international special commission was appointed to visit the impacted Amazonian basins to collect more information on the contamination.

The case of the mining project in the Cordillera del Condor was found by the Tribunal to be in direct violation of the rights of nature. They determined that mining must be suspended and those affected must be compensated. They urge the state to investigate and punish those responsible for the death of José Tendentza, the prominent social activist that was in opposition to the mining.

A widow of one of the four murdered activists shares her testimony

The Peruvian cases of Conga and Bagua were accepted as threats of violation to the rights of nature. An international special commission was appointed to visit the impacted Amazonian basins to collect more information on the contamination.

Shannon Biggs, director of Movement Rights, shared testimony on the impacts of fracking , a process of extracting natural gas from shale rock layers deep within the earth. “You cannot do safe fracking,” said Biggs. “This technique should have never been invented. It is one of the most destructive activities against the environment ever seen.”

According to Biggs, 800,000 active oil and gas wells are being fracked in the United States, producing roughly 300,000 natural gas barrels per day. Severe water pollution and earthquakes have been linked with fracking. “We die from fracking. The population is suffering from cancer; my sister has died,” said Casey Camp-Horinek (Ponca) of Oklahoma in her testimony. “The water is contaminated; we cannot fish. We are in danger of extinction.”

Plans to develop large-scale hydraulic fracking in Bolivia were reported by Martin Vilela of Platform Climate Reaction. In recent years the country has increased the production and export of natural gas. 82.4% of its production is exported, generating more than six billion dollars a year. Bolivia has 8.23 trillion cubic feet of gas, and YPFB plans to invest over 40 million dollars between 2013 and 2015. Vilela explained that in 2013 this corporation signed an agreement for fracking in the Chaco area, a region with water scarcity to extract 48 trillion cubic feet of shale gas. Estimates determine that this would consume between 112 and 335 billion liters of water.

Nnimmo Bassey, a Nigerian architect, environmental activist presented on the contamination and temperature rise affecting Nigeria. According to Bassey, oil fields and pipelines have caused deep environmental degradation, deforestation, and countless oil spills. Life expectancy in these impacted areas is 44 years.

Bassey warned that climate change will have catastrophic consequences. “For every degree the temperature rises globally, in Africa it will rise an additional 50%.” In 2012 floods in Nigeria led to the relocation of 6 million inhabitants. Bassey speculates that in 2030 Africa violent conflicts will increase by 54% due to the lack of access to natural resources.

At the hearing on “false climate solutions,” geoengineering techniques that seek to manipulate climate without changing the conditions that cause climate change were reviewed.

REDD+ was also put on trial. President of the Huni Kui people of Acre, Brazil, Ninawa Kaxinawá (Hunikui) testified that “REDD is a lie. We do not accept putting nature on market because it is our soul and spirit; it is priceless, it is our voice.”

According to Ruth Nyambura, of the Biodiversity Network Africa, says that in Kenya, evictions are occurring as a result of REDD. “Four indigenous people were arrested,” said Nyambura. “A woman was hit by the forest service because she was outside of her land.”

The Tribunal is calling for a special hearing in Paris in 2015 to coincide with the upcoming UN COP 21 summit.

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Carbon Trade Watch Newsletter 2014/1

December 13th, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

While governmental leaders in Lima meet to trade away the climate, we would like to share some publications and multimedia work published in 2014 by CTW. Some key highlights include: Support for resistance in Brazil against pre-salt offshore oil drilling, research into natural gas and other energy conflicts in Europe, and uncovering further financialisation of nature plans such as biodiversity offsetting, and the new Natural Capital Finance Facility.

Publications:

The Natural Capital Finance Facility: A window into the green economy
This new publication aims to break down the complexities of emerging “nature” financing by exploring a new pilot facility put forward by the European Commission and the European Investment Bank, called the Natural Capital Finance Facility. The authors discover the lack of transparency and power relations behind the NCFF and outline in clear language how natural capital financing functions, where the money comes from, how profits are made and how public funds are leveraged. In addition, the publication explores how funding mechanisms emerge before policy has been decided and links this to REDD+ and the carbon markets. This paper outlines the dangers to this approach and explores what is lost when financial mechanisms are given priority over grant-based projects.
To order

A Tree for a Fish: The (il)logic behind selling biodiversity
Putting a price on ecological systems has been around for several decades, although it was especially heightened during the UN climate negotiations with the introduction of the carbon market, a system which places a monetary value on the carbon-cycle capacity of nature for trade in financial markets. The carbon market quickly became “the only game in town” that policy-makers and multilateral agencies would discuss and implement regarding climate change policy. Following this logic, the 2010 UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) called for “innovative financial mechanisms’” to deal with biodiversity loss, making biodiversity offsets the standard buzzword within conservation debates. At the same time, people have been resisting projects that claim to compensate for biodiversity destruction and continue to demonstrate how this concept fails to address the drivers of environmental and social damage.
To order
En español

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This Greenpeace Stunt May Have Irreparably Damaged Peru’s Nazca Site

December 13th, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

By George Dvorsky

The Peruvian government is planning to file criminal charges against Greenpeace activists who may have permanently scarred the Nazca Lines World Heritage Site during a publicity stunt.

As The Guardian reports, the Nazca lines “are huge figures depicting living creatures, stylized plants and imaginary figures scratched on the surface of the ground between 1,500 and 2,000 years ago.” The figures, which can only be seen from the air, are believed to have had ritual functions related to astronomy.

The ground around the site is so sensitive and so sacred that Peru has even forbidden presidents and top officials to walk where the Greenpeace activists went. Peru’s Deputy Culture Minister told the BBC: “You walk there, and the footprint is going to last hundreds or thousands of years.” Tourists generally get to see the site from the air, or, on rare occasions, are equipped with special foot gear.

“They are absolutely fragile. They are black rocks on a white background. You walk there and the footprint is going to last hundreds or thousands of years,” said the minister. “And the line that they have destroyed is the most visible and most recognized of all.”

Several Greenpeace activists entered into the prohibited area beside the figure of a hummingbird where they laid big yellow cloth letters reading: “Time for Change! The Future is Renewable.” They were also sure to leave a signature. The message was intended for delegates from 190 countries at the UN climate talks being held in Lima.

Peru is planning to file criminal charges against the activists before they leave the country.

Yesterday, Greenpeace apologized for the stunt, saying it was sorry if the protest at the historical site on Monday caused an “moral offense” to the Peruvian people. The environmental activist group said it would collaborate with the government to determine if any damage was done to the site, and that it would stop using photos of the protest in its campaigns. Greenpeace is also sending its Executive Director Kumi Naidoo to Lima to apologize in person to the Peruvian government.

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Obama des Etats-Unis et Xi de Chine ont signé un accord climatique bilatéral

November 18th, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

Obama des Etats-Unis et Xi de Chine ont signé un accord climatique bilatéral. De nombreux media britanniques et américains et de nombreux Démocrates en Amérique ont présenté ce traité comme un grand pas en avant. Beaucoup de Républicains américains l’ont attaqué sous prétexte qu’il irait trop loin.

On peut penser que si les Républicains sont contre, alors cela peut être une bonne chose ? Et bien non, en fait il s’agit d’un accord désastreux.

Regardons d’abord les chiffres.

Les Etats-Unis ont accepté de réduire leurs émissions de gaz à effet de serre par 28% en dessous du niveau 2005 d’ici à 2030. Mais 2005 a été l’année où les émissions des USA ont été les plus élevées. Elles ont déjà diminué de 10% en 8 ans. Obama maintenant promet qu’elles diminueront encore de 18% en 15 ans.
La Chine a signé pour atteindre ses émissions maximum d’ici 2030. La croissance économique chinoise est actuellement 10% par an. Si cette croissance continue, les émissions chinoises en 2030 seront quatre fois plus élevées qu’elles ne le sont maintenant. Mais la croissance économique ne va pas continuer ainsi et il y aura d’ici-là des progrès sur l’efficacité énergétique. Malgré cela, il s’agit en fait d’une promesse de doubler les émissions chinoises pour 2030.

Les USA et la Chine produisent entre eux presque la moitié des émissions CO2 mondiales (45%). Si les USA les réduisent par 18% et la Chine double ces émissions, cela signifie que le total augmentera par un tiers.

Malheureusement, la réalité est encore plus alarmante : même s’ils réduisaient leurs émissions par deux, ces deux pays continueraient à augmenter les quantités de CO2 émises dans l’atmosphère chaque année et donc la planète continuerai de réchauffer. Mais, au contraire, ils se sont mis d’accord pour augmenter la quantité de CO2 émise ! C’est une promesse de continuer à réchauffer la planète encore plus vite chaque année !

Mais ce n’est pas tout. Après quinze ans d’augmentation des émissions, nous allons devoir réduire ces émissions encore plus vite pour retourner au niveau de départ. Même si ces deux pays réduisent leurs émissions aussi vite qu’ils les augmentent pour le moment, nous ne pourrions retourner au niveau présent qu’après 2040. Et ces émissions présentes, tout le monde est d’accord qu’elles sont trop élevées.

Et il y a encore pire ! Toutes ces promesses, ne sont que des promesses. Rien de légal ne force ces pays à les tenir. Et ces promesses sont à propos de 2030. Ce ne sont même pas des promesses de réduire les émissions par 1% l’an prochain !
Mais, enfin, le plus pire du tout, c’est le fait que ce soit un accord entre les USA et la Chine. Deux hommes représentant deux pays prennent les décisions pour le reste du monde. Ils ont confiance que tous les autres pays, c’est- à-dire sept milliards d’humains, les suivront.

Leurs personnels ont négocié cet accord dans le plus grand secret. Toute la panoplie de négociations des Nations Unies, le traité de Kyoto, toutes ces réunions, ces experts, ces négociations, tous: redondants. Le Président des Etats-Unis et le Président chinois décide l’avenir du monde. Et ils ont pris la mauvaise décision.

C’est pour cela que la «Campaign Against Climate Change» fait campagne pour un million d’emplois climatiques, un véritable investissement dans l’emploi qui peut réduire les émissions et créer des emplois. Comme l’a dit Naomi Klein, nous avons besoin de mouvements sociaux de masse pour agir contre le changement climatique. Et c’est pourquoi, comme beaucoup, nous cherchons à mobiliser les gens pour des manifestations importantes le 7 Mars 2015 et durant le COP à Paris en Décembre 2015.

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Press Conference by United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein

October 22nd, 2014 by EARTH PEOPLES

16 October 2014

Good morning

It is a pleasure to meet you, six weeks after taking up this post. I feel extremely honoured to have been appointed High Commissioner for Human Rights – a position that has been gaining in strength through the tenure of each and every one of my predecessors.

Together with my staff, we have a mandate to “protect and promote” human rights for everyone everywhere. That is a truly daunting responsibility, especially when – by comparison with the needs – our capacity to deliver is paper thin.

I have to say I am shocked.

Shocked that just six weeks into this job, I am already having to look at making cuts, because of our current financial situation. This comes at a time when our operations are stretched to breaking point in a world that seems to be lurching from crisis to ever more dangerous crisis.

Human rights are currently under greater pressure than they have been in a long while. Our front pages and TV and computer screens are filled with a constant stream of Presidents and ministers talking of conflict and human rights violations, and the global unease about the proliferating crises is palpable. The UN human rights system is asked to intervene in those crises, to investigate allegations of abuses, to press for accountability and to teach and encourage, so as to prevent further violations. Time and time again we have been instructed to do these and other major extra activities “within existing resources” – which is like being asked to use a boat and a bucket to cope with a flood.

Human rights is recognized as one of the three pillars of the UN system, the others being development and peace and security. There has also been the clear recognition, in the Human Rights Up Front initiative, that without good governance, rule of law and human rights protection, peace and development efforts can be seriously compromised. For 2014 and 2015, OHCHR was allocated only about US$ 87 million per year – a small fraction of the regular budget allocations to the peace and security and development pillars. The Swiss population, including all us foreigners living here who love Swiss chocolate, paid over 10 times this amount on chocolate last year.

My Office currently receives around 3 percent of the UN regular budget. This covers about a third of its total expenditures. A number of States are discussing raising our regular budget allocation to an initial 5 percent over the next few years. I heartily endorse this proposal and urge its adoption as soon as possible.

In the meantime, most of our funding depends on voluntary contributions, to cover almost all of our field activities around the world as well as essential support work at headquarters, and even some core mandated tasks, as well as substantial hidden costs arising from others. However, the current level of voluntary contributions is insufficient to cover this level of activity.

By “mandated tasks” I mean our support for the ever more active Human Rights Council, for which we act as Secretariat; our support for the growing number of Special Procedures mandate-holders and to the human rights Treaty Bodies; and our support for the increasing number of commissions of inquiry and fact-finding missions requested by the Security Council or by the Human Rights Council. There are currently no fewer than six of these under way, with a seventh possibly just around the corner. Prior to 2013, it was unusual for there to be even two of these running concurrently.

Please don’t get me wrong. We welcome these tasks, which are a reflection of the increasing priority being placed on human rights by governments, and their growing willingness to confront violations, to order invaluable in-depth examinations of major human rights crises and to prevent their recurrence. But year after year we have to battle to find the resources to fulfil all these tasks, and more and more often we are having to decline requests to undertake additional activities and to establish new presences to support Governments in their efforts to improve their records. Despite strong backing from many donors, the level of contributions is not keeping pace with the constantly expanding demands on my Office.

The extent of OHCHR’s fund-raising difficulties has grown ever more stark over the past few weeks. To put it bluntly, we are going to be at least US$ 25 million short of our needs for this year.

Resolving this extraordinary disconnect between what we are asked to do and what we are given to do it with, is a top priority. The Office has to be put on a more stable footing if it is to do justice to its extensive and visionary mandate. It seems that we can no longer rely on Governments to match all our needs, let alone fund some of the extra activities we ought to be undertaking if we are to take that mandate seriously. So we will have to push forward the discussion about how to draw on additional sources of funding.

OHCHR has developed a results-based management system to streamline and focus our work. But at present the Office is as lean and tightly run as any organization I have seen. The staff works with impressive dedication and skill, despite extreme hardship conditions in many field operations.

The Office is stretched to its limit, with some desk officers obliged to cover seven or eight countries or to support multiple independent human rights experts and committees; a sprawling, impenetrable web-site that needs a complete overhaul; and not one single staff member focusing full-time on an issue as stark and vital to human rights as climate change – with its multiple implications for displacement, statelessness, land-rights, resources, security and development.

We are already paring back everything we can, and services are starting to suffer. States come to us asking for technical assistance programs, but it is becoming increasingly likely that we will have to turn them down. These include programs to help vet security and police personnel and train them to respect human rights and refrain from torture. We also risk having to turn down some requests for assistance with legal reforms to rewrite unjust and discriminatory laws.

We have asked to open country offices in Honduras and Burundi, and I am far from certain that we will be able to do so. Some states have asked us to retain presences that we may instead have to close down for lack of sufficient resources. And we have dozens of pending requests for human rights advisors to be deployed to UN field presences. This is a deplorable situation. There should be UN human rights offices everywhere they are needed, and certainly everywhere they are wanted.

My predecessor, Navi Pillay, publicly flagged the funding problems back in 2011, but I think that many people at the UN, myself included, failed to grasp the scale of the issue because she and the staff were doing such a remarkable job, despite their threadbare resources. This is not sustainable.

I could list the several-billion-dollar budgets of other UN entities. But I don’t wish to imply that I want to divert funds from them, because humanitarian agencies in particular need every cent they can get, especially when we are now seeing the largest number of forcibly displaced people since World War II. Refugee and migratory movements are predominantly the product of human rights violations, including those that occur during conflicts, as well as persecution, poverty, failure to protect and fulfil social and economic rights, and discrimination. Migratory movements are also often fuelled by a failure to respect the right to development, which encompasses social, economic and civil and political rights.

Again, to put it into a perspective everyone can relate to – without trying to trivialize the following expenditures – a single new highway bridge often costs as much or more than our overall annual budget of around US$ 250 million. We are asking for less than the amount Americans were forecast to spend on costumes for their pets at Halloween – and that includes my family who live in New York. And during the 12 months ending 30 June 2014, the amount spent on iPhones would fund the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights for 391 years. Or put another way, our entire annual budget was the equivalent of one day of iPhone sales during that period.

We are not asking very much. And some Governments – in fact most Governments – of countries with huge economies are devoting very little to the international human rights system, despite talking loudly and proudly about human rights in their foreign policy.

Any number of business tycoons could pay off our missing 25 million without blinking – and I would be very grateful if one did. But, frankly they shouldn’t have to. States created the office of the High Commissioner. They created the international human rights system and they should ensure we have the necessary resources to support it.

When the UN Human Rights Office cannot afford to put people on the ground – to monitor, to report, to train, to advocate – the cost may be high. Much of our work is about contributing to prevention. Prevention of violations, prevention of conflict, prevention of the spread of disease too – something I will come to shortly. When human rights go wrong, the price the people of the world pay in bloodshed, in wrecked economies and paying for humanitarian aid is simply titanic – in the tens if not hundreds of billions. Even one mid-sized crisis averted through good human rights groundwork would pay back the modest UN human rights budgets for decades to come.

I will now turn to two monumental crises which will inevitably cost us all many billions to overcome. The twin plagues of Ebola and ISIL both fomented quietly, neglected by a world that knew they existed but misread their terrible potential, before exploding into the global consciousness during the latter months of 2014.

The ability of Ebola to lay waste to human lives on an immense scale is now being realized. Its potential to devastate the human rights of those who survive, of entire countries and regions, is barely being considered. Underestimating the critical importance of human rights – in particular the right to health, to education, to sanitation, to development and to good governance – played in creating this crisis in the first place has barely been discussed.

Human rights are not an airy ideal. They address epidemics and similar threats to life very directly. Human rights can prevent disease, and they can also help cure disease. It is vital that human rights be integrated into the response to this appalling tragedy, because only a response that is built on respect for human rights will be successful in quashing the epidemic.

Ebola thrives at the intersection of chronic poverty, failure to deliver adequate public services, and failures of public trust in the authorities. It should be obvious that any response must address those points. We must also beware of “us” and “them”, a mentality that locks people into rigid identity groups and reduces all Africans – or all West Africans, or some smaller, national or local group – to a stereotype. As the international community accelerates its medical assistance, it is also vital that every person struck down with Ebola be treated with dignity, not stigmatized or cast out. Not only is it wrong to dehumanise and stigmatise people; this kind of discourse also drives people who need treatment into hiding, which reduces their chances of recovery and exposes others to risk.

My Office is also drawing up guidelines on quarantine, because, if imposed and enforced injudiciously, quarantine can very easily not only violate a wide range of human rights, but in so doing accelerate the spread of diseases like Ebola. I also want to point out that the introduction of criminal penalties into public health responses is very likely to backfire, by driving the epidemic underground. And placing people who may have the disease in overcrowded prisons will obviously simply compound the catastrophe.

Now to turn to the world’s other most active and destructive agent: ISIL.

ISIL is the antithesis of human rights. It kills, it tortures, it rapes, its idea of justice is to commit murder. It spares no one – not women, not children, nor the elderly, the sick or the wounded. No religion is safe, no ethnic group. It is a diabolical, potentially genocidal movement, and the way it has spread its tentacles into other countries, employing social media and the internet to brainwash and recruit people from across the globe, reveals it to be the product of a perverse and lethal marriage of a new form of nihilism with the digital age.

But ISIL, like Ebola, did not arrive out of the blue. ISIL was able to spread insidiously and then, once it had gathered enough momentum, to storm across borders from Iraq into Syria and from Syria back into Iraq, and from its cameras and computers via YouTube into our homes.

A mission is under way, as requested by the Human Rights Council in its special session on Iraq, to investigate alleged human rights violations and abuses that have been, and are being, committed in the country. And I repeat my call to the Government of Iraq to consider acceding to the Rome Statute, and, as an immediate step, to accept the exercise of the International Criminal Court’s jurisdiction with respect to the current situation.

As well as working with UNAMI to produce regular updates on the terrible situation in northern Iraq, we intend to issue another updated count of reported deaths in Syria before the end of the year. We do not yet know the precise grim tally that statistical analysis will reveal, but I can tell you it will be well over 200,000 reported deaths since the killing of the first innocent protestors by Syrian Government forces in March 2011.

Sadly, Ebola, Syria and Iraq are not the only explosive tragedies affecting the world. Just in the region I come from, there is continuing conflict in Yemen, Libya and recently in Gaza. We are also engaged in serious dialogue about human rights issues in Bahrain and Egypt, as part of our efforts to grapple with long-standing human rights deficits and serious violations in several countries in the region, including the entire occupied Palestinian territory.

In Europe, there is Ukraine, where – as our report last week showed – people continue to be killed despite a tenuous cease-fire.

In Africa, conflicts and violations, including sexual violence, continue in South Sudan, the Central African Republic, Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria and Mali, worsening the already chronic poverty, lack of food security and arrested development. In Asia, the appalling and protracted human rights situation in the DPRK is finally on the international radar thanks to the efforts of the International Commission of Inquiry, and of Navi Pillay who urged the Human Rights Council to set up that Inquiry. We note the recent stated willingness of DPRK to accept for the first time technical assistance in relation to the Human Rights Council.

The migrants of the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean and the Americas – fleeing poverty and hopelessness, conflict and persecution, as well as organised crime and insecurity, continue to die in their desperate efforts to find a better, more dignified life. Or, if they make it, they risk experiencing exploitation, and increasing racism and xenophobia in their destination countries. In parallel, there is an alarming increase in the number of major political parties in European and other industrialized countries proposing, and on occasion implementing, regressive and even abusive migration policies, often forming coalitions with smaller xenophobic parties or co-opting their policies. The voices that protest such policies are increasingly drowned out.

I have painted a bleak picture of the world of human rights facing the new High Commissioner. But it is far from bleak in every respect.

While no country is perfect, I believe – notwithstanding everything I have just said – that human rights are now being widely upheld in more countries than ever before. It seems to me that the broad trajectory of humanity is a positive one, and that in an increasing number of communities and countries, all human beings are seen as fully equal in dignity, and their rights are largely observed. Within families and within nations, despite all the violations and conflicts I listed earlier, violence and discrimination have broadly speaking decreased in the past few decades, and continue to do so.

Credit for that should go to all those countless brave and committed men and women – civil society activists, journalists, lawyers, state employees and politicians – who over the decades have eventually succeeded in firmly rooting international human rights norms in their societies. It is our job, in the UN Human Rights Office, to help them as best we can.

And that is perhaps the biggest privilege that I will experience as High Commissioner. Because what these people have achieved over the past couple of centuries, and what they will continue to achieve in this one, is one of the most remarkable things in the history of mankind. That is something the likes of ISIL will never understand, and for that reason humanity will eventually prevail.

ENDS

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