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Global Justice Ecology Project

August Update

Please support GJEP’s work to expose and oppose

false solutions to climate change!

New Podcast Tackles the Rise of Green Capitalism

Podcast Miniseries Examines False Solutions to Climate Change

In the run up to the upcoming UN Climate Conference in Glasgow, Scotland, activists and the IPCC alike have called for a fundamental transformation in the way business as usual is conducted, including an end to reliance on fossil fuels.

However, the United Nation’s annual climate conferences are being called out for the disproportionate influence of corporate interests that seek to use the climate crisis as a new source of profits. They are laying plans to monetize nature under so-called “Nature Based Solutions” schemes instead of getting serious about addressing the root causes of climate change.

With proposals such as payments for environmental services, carbon trading, and massive tree planting schemes, green capitalism seeks to allow corporations to continue business as usual under a green veneer.

The newest episode of Breaking Green interviews Dr. Rachel Smolker about some of these schemes. Dr Rachel Smolker also speaks about her father Robert Smolker, co-founder of Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), which was formed in her childhood living room. In the episode, Dr. Smolker criticizes EDF for supporting carbon trading.

Breaking Green is a podcast produced by Global Justice Ecology Project and focuses on false solutions to climate change and other “green proposals” that exacerbate social, ecological and economic injustices.

Two episodes of Breaking Green have been released to date and are available on most podcasting platforms. To find an episode visit our Breaking Green Website.

Global Justice Media Program

Earth Radio

GJEP’s Earth Radio segments, the Earth Minute and the Earth Watch Interview, happen each week in partnership with Margaret Prescod’s nationally syndicated Sojourner Truth Radio show on Pacifica Radio’s flagship station, KPFK in Los Angeles.

You can find all radio segments here: https://globaljusticeecology.org/earth-radio/

Earth Watch: Francisca Stuardo On Land & Water Defenders In Chile & Honduras

16 July 2021-Francisca Stuardo is a Santiago-based consultant for the international climate advocacy group Global Witness. She works on their land and environmental defenders campaign, which highlights threats against activists and pushes businesses, financiers and governments to protect them.

Earth Minute: Heat Wave & Climate Change

14 July 2021-A record-breaking heatwave struck the United States Pacific Northwest last week resulting in nearly 200 deaths. In Oregon, health authorities reported 116 deaths, while Washington state reported 78. This area, known for its mostly moderate climate, is experiencing record temperatures as evidenced by climate change.

Earth Minute: Byhalia Pipeline

7 July 2021-Pipeline developers in Tennessee have announced they are pulling the plug on the Byhalia Pipeline, a proposed pipeline that would have gone through communities across the South to transport crude oil to the Gulf Coast. The pipeline posed a threat to predominantly Black neighborhoods in southwest Memphis that already face disproportionate health burdens.

Global Justice Media News

Reforestation hopes threaten global food security, Oxfam warns

Governments and businesses hoping to plant trees and restore forests in order to reach net-zero emissions must sharply limit such efforts to avoid driving up food prices in the developing world, the charity Oxfam has warned.

New Net Zero Briefing From Amazon Watch

Trading forest protection for continued greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) presents a false and dangerous “solution” to the climate crisis. Instead, emissions must be drastically reduced, forests must be protected for their own sake, Indigenous forest stewardship must be recognized and respected, and the root causes of deforestation – namely commodity extraction and production in forests – must be halted. PDF available to down in English, Spanish and Portuguese.

First Nation’s court victory sets precedent for equitable compensation

More than 90 years after the Lac Seul First Nation’s reserve land was flooded to build a hydroelectric dam, Chief Clifford Bull says his people may finally receive just compensation. The impact of the dam on the Lac Seul First Nation, traditionally the home of the Obishikokaang Anishinaabeg, was severe. It destroyed the nation’s way of life and many people moved away, Bull says.

Photo of the Month

In 2017 GJEP and Chile-based OLCA, the Observatorio Latinoamericano de Confllictos Ambientales (Latin American Observatory of Environmental Conflicts) co-led a delegation into the Chilean countryside to document the impacts of the worst fire season in Chile’s history. The fires were the result of a climate change-induced drought and heatwave, combined with industrial plantations of highly flammable eucalyptus and pine trees. The plantations caught fire then burned native forests and whole communities. You can view the entire photo essay documenting this delegation on the photolangelle.org website and more on the amazing uprising in Chile on the GJEP website.

GJEP was in Chile for a global strategy meeting of the Campaign to STOP GE Trees and toured the fire ravaged region to document and see first hand some of the threats posed by expanding industrial plantations with genetically engineered trees.

Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees

GJEP coordinates the Campaign to STOP GE Trees, a national and international alliance of organizations that have united towards prohibiting the ecologically and socially devastating release of genetically engineered [GE or genetically modified] trees into the environment.

GE Trees and Climate Change

New initiatives are being developed to use genetically engineered tree plantations in carbon storage and carbon offset schemes. The Campaign to STOP GE Trees is researching and exposing these dangerous plans.

USDA Comment Period on GE Trees

The USDA has opened a new comment period on the genetically engineered American chestnut tree, which, if approved, would be the first ever GMO to be released into the wild to spread and contaminate wild relatives. You can submit comments by going to https://www.regulations.gov/document/APHIS-2020-0030-4324

Faces Behind the Campaign

Meet the faces who make up the Campaign to STOP GE Trees. Steve Taylor is the Press Secretary of Global Justice Ecology Project and a member of the Campaign to STOP GE Trees steering committee. Here’s what he had to say about working with the campaign.

“The notion that we may be recoding forests and nature to address the strains of overconsumption by our species is a deeply troubling prospect. I have been a professional communicator for over thirty years with a background in physics and mathematics. I believe that there is an increasing willingness to accept radical and dangerous proposals to recode nature in the face of an increasingly desperate threat of global warming. The further commercialization of life is a move in the absolutely wrong direction.

“The expertise and hope that is expressed by the many advocates for preserving humanity in the face of ecological disaster, but a deep commitment to the preservation of our shared evolutionary legacy and the natural world.

To continue reading visit: https://stopgetrees.org/about-steve/

Take Action!

Organizational Spotlight

GJEP enables small non-profits to focus their energy on their important work by acting as a fiscal sponsor. This helps them minimize bureaucracy so they can focus on their missions. These groups are doing crucial work for ecological and social justice, forest protection and human rights and include BiofuelWatch, North American Megadams Resistance Alliance, Vermont Street Medics, Save the Pine Barrens, A Center for Grassroots Organizing, Canadian Biotechnology Action Network, and REDD-Monitor.

Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN)

The Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN) brings together 16 groups to research, monitor and raise awareness about issues relating to genetic engineering in food and farming. CBAN members include farmer associations, environmental and social justice organizations, and regional coalitions of grassroots groups.

CBAN also opposes genetically engineered trees and is a steering committee member of the international Campaign to Stop GE Trees.

Gene Drives – Engineering the Wild by Lucy Sharratt, CBAN’s Coordinator

So far, genetically engineered organisms have been mostly limited to agricultural use, with partial success. Around the world, a few major crops (mostly corn, soy, and cotton) are genetically engineered, predominantly for herbicide tolerance and insect resistance. However, the newer techniques of genome editing (also called gene editing) mean that a much wider variety of organisms can now be genetically engineered, including for many purposes outside of food and farming.

For more information visit: https://cban.ca

Fillmore Glen State Park in Upstate New York. Photo: Theresa Church

Have a forest inspired photo you want us to share with us? Send it to theresa2@globaljusticeecology.org or tag us!

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