Climate justice

A note from the editor

Jess Worth

Taking the power back

'Is the economic crisis going to be the end of green?'

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has asked, provoking a furious debate online. I've been hearing such rumblings a lot lately. The financial meltdown has certainly eclipsed climate change as the crisis du jour: and if last month's UN climate talks in Poznan were anything to go by, it's making it even harder to get progress from governments that is anything other than cheap and half-hearted.

This is a most dangerous state of affairs. It's like finding out that you've got cancer, but then delaying going to the doctor's for treatment for a few months because you want to repaint your house. No doubt your house needs a lot of work, but ultimately there's little point if you won't be around to enjoy it.

Stopping climate change must be our number one priority – and this is the main theme of this month's magazine. But how we go about it goes hand in hand with the task of rebuilding a fairer economy, as we highlight in the 'Clean Start' special feature. The same crushing injustices that triggered the financial collapse have been driving global warming. Now, suddenly, we have an opportunity to change the system. Can we seize it?

With this in mind, the NI held a 'Clean Start' event on 15 December. Speakers included NI contributors Walden Bello and Susan George, and the lively discussion ranged from how we got into this global mess, through specific policies that would put us on a fairer greener path, to how we build a movement to make it happen. Don't worry if you missed it – you can watch clips of all the speakers on our website.

The stakes couldn't be higher. I urge you to get involved, at: www.newint.org/cleanstart

Jess Worth for the New Internationalist co-operative.
www.newint.org

The big story

On the move: ‘armed with peer-reviewed science’, climate protesters at Heathrow Airport oppose a third runway. Photo: Jess Hurd / reportdigital.co.uk

The answer is blowing in the wind, yet governments and industry stubbornly continue to expand coal power.

Lucy Nicholson / Reuters

Power politics

Stopping climate change will involve reversing some fundamental injustices, argues Jess Worth.

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In the course of researching this magazine I’ve been charged at by riot police, had a meeting with a Minister and been interviewed on Newsnight, Britain’s most prestigious TV current affairs programme. Why? Because ‘climate justice’ isn’t just another magazine topic to me. It’s the greatest and most urgent challenge of our time – so I’ve thrown myself into the thick of trying to make it happen.

But one thing I wasn’t expecting was to be lobbied by a banker.

It was the laun...




Features

Four principles for climate justice

Social movements around the world are calling for urgent and radical action, broadly based on four main principles.

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Degrees of delusion

Yang Ailun and David Spratt on why politicians are failing.

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Is nothing sacred? An Adivasi indigenous woman listens to speeches against British company Vedanta’s plans for a massive open-cast mine in her ancestral homeland, in the Indian state of Orissa.  Photo by Stuart Freedman / Panos

A million mutinies

Sunita Narain looks to the environmentalism of the poor for answers.

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Climate Justice - The Facts

Climate change is causing human suffering all over the world and it's the poorest of the poor who are going to be worst hit.

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Carbon capitalist: should we really entrust the future of the planet to city traders and bankers who’ve just brought the global economy to its knees?

A timely death?

Patrick Bond foresees a rocky future for carbon trading.

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Leave it in the ground!

Activists Nnimmo Bassey and Mel Evans report from the frontline.

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System error

Apocalyptic comedy from cartoonist Stephanie McMillan.

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Photo by Supri Supri / Reuters

Just or bust

Danny Chivers surveys the options for the Copenhagen climate talks in 2009, and asks if they can deliver climate justice.

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Homegrown energy

In Brazil, communities are forging their own solutions, reports Lucia Ortiz.

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Don't panic: take action!

You can play your part in the global movement for climate justice by getting involved in local and national campaigns wherever you are. Here are a few tips for taking effective climate action.

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Photo by Krishna Murari Kishan / Reuters

A new, green, democratic deal

How the financial, social and environmental crises collide – the opportunities and the dangers. Susan George and Walden Bello get the debate going.

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High-flying window cleaner has no safety net beneath him in Beijing’s central business district. Photo by Reinhard Krause / Reuters

Meltdown South

David Ransom examines the impact so far on the Majority World.

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Figure 2: Responsibility. Cumulative CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion between 1990-2010. The green portion shows emissions that correspond to consumption above the development threshold, which we take as a good proxy for historical responsibility.

The real deal

Unless it is fair, we will never get a successful international climate agreement. Tom Athanasiou has rolled up his sleeves and produced a proposal for how it could be done.

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Currents

Fall-out in Kazakhstan

Fall-out in Kazakhstan

Fall-out from nuclear test zone still killing Kazakhs.

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Hugo's Bank

Hugo's Bank

Latin American Bank held up by its members.

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Remember, remember the fourth of November

Remember, remember the fourth of November

New law gives animal rights campaigners reason to celebrate.

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Healthcare crippled

Healthcare crippled

Millions of African lives lost from shortfall in doctors.

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Diamonds are for never

Diamonds are for never

Swiss mining company grabs Sierra Leone gems

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Regulars

Sock and Awe

Sock and Awe

Take off your shoes to George Dubya?

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Aryan Outfitters

Aryan Outfitters

Business is booming for sinister seamstress

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Tatiana Cardeal

Brazilian photographer Tatiana Cardeal on Kayapó body painting.

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Mikheil Saakashvili

The democratic credentials of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili are in tatters.

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Interview with Jeff Halper

Interview with Jeff Halper

The veteran activist Jeff Halper talks about his part in breaching the blockade of Gaza.

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Concrete dreams

Concrete dreams

India's middle class is becoming more antagonistic to the urban poor, says Jeremy Seabrook.

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No place like home

Cairo's poor show a peculiar brand of camaraderie.

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Belarus

A country at the edge of Europe home to wolves, bears, lynx and Europe's last dictator.

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Film, Book & Music Reviews

Top: Linha de Passe. Middle: The Edge of Heavan. Bottom: Waltz with Bashir.

The Best of 2008

The best music, books and films from 2008

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Mother-Earth! Father-Sky!

Mother-Earth! Father-Sky!

Mother-Earth! Father-Sky! by Huun-Huur-Tu featuring Sainkho

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Che - Part 1, Che - Part 2

Che - Part 1, Che - Part 2

We get to see a lot of Che's iconic look in over four hours of film, but sadly, though long on detail, it's short on insight.

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The White Tiger

The White Tiger

The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

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