- Published on Wednesday, 22 June 2011 15:10
Letter to Rajendra K. Pachauri, Chairman of the IPCC
The undersigned organizations would like to express our concerns about the upcoming IPCC joint working group expert meeting on geoengineering to be held in Lima, Peru, June 20-22, 2011.
Geoengineering, the intentional large-scale manipulation of the Earth’s systems to modify the climate, is one of the most serious issues the international community will face in the decades ahead. The prospects of artificially changing the chemistry of our oceans to absorb more CO2, modifying the Earth’s radiative balance, devising new carbon sinks in fragile ecosystems, redirecting hurricanes and other extreme weather events are alarming. The potential for accidents, dangerous experiments, inadequate risk assessment, unexpected impacts, unilateralism, private profiteering, disruption of agriculture, inter-state conflict, illegitimate political goals and negative consequences for the global South is high. The likelihood that geoengineering will provide a safe, lasting, democratic and peaceful solution to the climate crisis is non-existent.
The IPCC aims to be “policy relevant” and “policy neutral,” and must take great care not to squander its credibility on geoengineering, a topic that is gathering steam precisely when there is no real progress on mitigation and adaptation. The IPCC’s announcement of the expert meeting already suggests that geoengineering has a place in the portfolio of legitimate responses to climate change (a highly contestable claim), and that the role of the IPCC is to define what that role is. Permit us to stress that this is not primarily a scientific question; it is a political one. International peasant organizations, indigenous peoples, and social movements have all expressed outright opposition to such measures as a false solution to the climate crisis.
- Published on Tuesday, 21 June 2011 13:30
(Paris, June 20, 2011) Hundreds of civil society organisations, including farmers' movements, women's groups and non-governmental organisations, will launch a global appeal against farmland grabbing during the G20 meeting on Agriculture in Paris on June 22 and 23.
Over 500 organizations from around the world (1) have joined the "Dakar Appeal Against Land Grabbing" that was originally drawn up at the World Social Forum in Dakar last February (2).
While agriculture ministers from the world's 20 richest countries are discussing what to do about food price volatility and the growing hunger crisis, millions of hectares of fertile land, along with their water resources, are being grabbed from peasants, pastoralists, herders, fisherfolk and indigenous peoples to be converted into massive agribusiness operations by private investors who want to produce food supplies or agro-fuels for international markets. As a consequence, millions of peasant families and other rural and indigenous folk are being thrown off their lands and deprived of their livelihoods.
- Published on Monday, 20 June 2011 11:40
Press release - La Via Campesina
Only peasant sustainable agriculture can feed Africa!
(Masvingo, 18th June 2011) - African farmers’ organizations, members of the International Movement of Peasants, La Via Campesina, and allied organizations denounce every attempt to adopt genetically modified organisms, GMOs, as being a false solution to the food crisis in Africa.
According to the farmers, all of the myths promoting GMOs as a “miracle” to increase productivity are false, as they threaten the genetic integrity of the local varieties that are the basis of African food security. Only organic food production, based on local knowledge and skills, can feed the continent, as diversified, agroecological farming systems actually produce more total food per hectare than does industrial monoculture. Furthermore, small-scale farmers and sustainable peasant agriculture are cooling down the Earth, because they do not engage in the greenhouse gas emitting practices of industrial agriculture.
- Published on Friday, 17 June 2011 09:28
(Topora, 14 June, 2011) – In Topora, a village of Masvingo province in Zimbabwe, farmers are proud of being one of the successful examples of agroecology practice in the country. Their pride has a reason: the crops they produce are completely organic and produced with local knowledge and traditional skills. They use no chemical fertilizers and their production skills are not imported.
The village shares a demonstration vegetable garden of agroecology where farmers learn and practice agroecology collectively, called the Topora Demo field. It is an area of about a hectare, where farmers from different villages around Masvingo district meet at least twice a week to practice and exchange their agroecology knowledge.