Rio+20: The Future We Would’ve Wanted
„Rio+20 – The Future we Want“: don’t trust these words. There’s nothing more misleading than this headline. The future we want is far away from the final document entitled with this bold statement who will certainly be validated by the heads of state present in Rio during the next days.
In summary, the final paper elaborated by the ministers paper endorses „green economy“ as the basic principle for development in the coming years. It calls for „innovative financing mechanisms“ by states in partnership with the private sector and international financial institutions. Together, they believe, the goal of “sustainable development” can be achieved. But all the fine words present in the document really only express one thing: selling the commons, nature and all its elements under the name of “green economy” – the opposite of sustainability.
We weren’t expecting a miracle. Since it became clear from the beginning of the Rio+20 process that the negotiations are used by the G20 countries as a means to overcome the current crisis through the commodification of nature. It is supposed to boost growth but growth might not be what we need. Green growth is an oxymoron if you think about it.
A feeling of disappointment has spread among the civil society present at the summit. But the survival of indigenous peoples and the growing poverty both in the South and in the North are not reason enough for the world leaders to actually listen to the people and to the future they want. When you hear that financial institutions are supposed to eradicate international poverty, there’s not a lot of hope. We already have experience with that in the South and for a more current example let’s look at Greece.
As for the public-private partnerships: the last ten years show how they allow multinationals to cleverly increase their profits while shifting the costs to the states – or with other words us, the people. We are the 99% who pay taxes who then pay off the risky investments and corruption of the 1%. They on the other hand don’t hesitate to allow themselves tax evasion. Nothing is changing. Rio is not bringing us closer to a world livable for all. We need something bigger, a revolution if we want to eradicate poverty.
Who’s coming out of this as a winner? As predicted in yesterday’s post: it is the law of the jungle and it’s still the United States and its allies to be the strongest. Canada and the US can be pleased with the outcome just like the financial institutions because they have been attributed an important role in the Action Plan. Long live debts and future crises! Once again, the people have to make the difference, we have to mobilize and claim our rights to live and let our descendants live. It’s in our responsibility to invent the GENUINE FUTURE WE WANT.