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Dedicated to interviewing leading edge experts, practitioners in their field, and people who are living examples of sustainability. Covers environmental subject matter that is not readily discussed in depth in mainstream media.
December 2010 Posts
This agreement if signed will affect virtually every New Zealander for the rest of this century. It basically takes away our sovereignty and we become pawns in a globalist corporate agenda. What are its affects?The TPPA would be an agreement that guarantees special rights to foreign investors. If these negotiations succeed they will create a mega-treaty across 9 countries that will put a straight jacket around what policies and laws [NZ] governments can adopt for the next century – think no GM labelling, overriding our Laws on foreign investment, shackling PHARMAC, increasing price of medicines, no regulating info on cigarette packs, and not regulating dodgy finance firms, less NZ content on TV, private prisons, privatising education, land acquisitions, mining, fishing, high rise hotels at NZ beaches? …
As the secret Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations have been completed in Auckland, an alliance of civil society groups in participating countries have announced a “release the text” campaign ahead of the next round of talks in February 2011 in Chile.The co-ordinated campaign aims to mobilise central and local government lawmakers, civil society organisations and ordinary citizens to demand an end to the shroud of secrecy around the negotiations.“The negotiators themselves say this is not an ordinary free trade agreement. It would reach deep behind the border into the realm of domestic policy and regulation, super-imposing enforceable constraints over decisions for which our elected parliaments and local councils are currently responsible.”If this TPPA really is so good for us, why are they scared to release the draft text and open it to scrutiny?There are now draft texts on the table on financial services and investment, and possibly more. Negotiators have flatly refused to release them at any stage in the negotiations, claiming there is no precedent in a free trade negotiation.It is nonsense to claim that releasing draft texts is unprecedented. All nine countries are Members of the WTO, which now routinely posts country position papers and draft texts in progress on its website.The New Zealand government itself recognised in its paper on IP, leaked earlier in the negotiations, that “groups are acutely aware of what they see as ‘secret’ negotiations to strengthen IP rights under FTAs and other international instruments.” After repeated leaks of the draft texts, the parties to the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) negotiations eventually released them for public scrutiny.“We are repeatedly told this is a 21st century agreement; yet the secrecy that surrounds it is redolent of the Star Chamber. We would never tolerate such a blatant rejection of transparency and accountability in our domestic legislation, so why here?”“If this TPPA really is so good for us, why are they scared to release the draft text and open it to scrutiny?”, asked Professor Kelsey.“The challenge then is for Parliament to convene an inquiry before the process has reached the stage where irreversible commitments have been made where we can test out the arguments for and against a TPPA and New Zealanders, including MPs, can know what we are signing up to for the next century”.
http://tppwatch.orghttp://www.nznotforsale.orgAnd digest site for researchers http://www.tppdigest.org
Originally from Stanford Research Institute and University of California, San Francisco in the USA with a considerable knowledge in chemistry and an expertise in statistical inference in complex systems they have focused recently on the aerial poison drops of 1080 to kill possums. 1080 is called Sodium mono-fluoro-acetate and as a poison like cyanide, is toxic to all air-breathing organisms, but it is not an evil in itself. The problem is with the way DoC the Department of Conservation is using it by blanketing the forest with food laced with 1080 that is attractive to most native and feral animals, everything from worms, beetles, and wetas to wekas and horses. Clean green New Zealand is unique in the world in its use of aerial 1080. No other country is doing anything remotely similar to this. New Zealand uses over 85% of the world’s supply of 1080, a poison that is toxic to all animals, that is banned or severely restricted in most countries, and that is classified “1A, extremely hazardous” by the World Health Organization. In response to this, DoC the Department of Conservation asserts that New Zealand is in a unique ecological position, but this is simply not true.
For example, the State of Hawaii has an almost identical problem with feral mammals threatening native birds, and we learned from Miles Nakahara, Forest & Wildlife branch manager that Hawaii would not even consider such a practice. “You are pretty cavalier using a poison like that … you will destroy the forest … you will lose the very thing you are trying to save.” Similar circumstances exist on many of the Pacific islands, and similar comments have been made by every non-Kiwi scientist that has been consulted. The perception here is that ecologists and ecological considerations are being overturned, by marketing and accountancy factors, and that a true understanding of what blanket covering of the ecology by 1080, does not qualify as ‘right practice’ or the ‘precautionary approach.’ Especially when the science is not robust. With 70 million possums nation wide being unacknowledged as a resource they are instead being poisoned and left to decompose on the forest floor. There are other ways to resolve this troublesome problem and a robust public debate needs to be convened to bring clarity as soon as possible. www.stop1080poison.comwww.thegrafboys.orgwww.kaka1080.co.nz
IUCN is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental network - a democratic membership union with more than 1,000 government and NGO member organisations, and almost 11,000 volunteer scientists in more than 160 countries.Listen as to why with such a huge membership, we hear virtually nothing about the IUCN and how that is now changing?That the imperative for our global population is to realize that we are still putting huge amounts of pressure on our planet’s ecosystems, everywhere - yet we are not educating ourselves about the challenges that immediately need addressing.
There is a reluctance of governments to lead, as they appear to only follow polls of where the citizen’s consciousness or lack of consciousness currently is. That the media in clean green NZ are not at the forefront of ecology and environment and looking at our collective footprint, plus they are not championing innovative green technologies and know how. Why?That there are so many critical challenges facing us as a human species, there needs to be urgent action on multiple fronts, if we are to protect our children’s future. The sad realisation that in NZ there are no 'stand out leaders' in the environmental movement. That had Sir Peter Blake been alive today, he would have been 'head and shoulders' above everyone in this region and out in front of parliament, leading NZ to a world summit on ecological and environmental action yesterday! But Alas … there is only a vacuum.Diana mentions Prosperity Without Growth by Tim Jackson as a new book that sets out another way to work on sustainable solutions for a planet with a burgeoning population.Diana Shand IUCN Regional Councillor – Oceania Chair – N.Z Committee of IUCNhttp://www.iucn.org
OceansWatch is an international not-for-profit organisation that works with sailors, divers and scientists worldwide to help coastal communities conserve their marine environments, develop sustainable livelihoods and ensure access to primary schools. OceansWatch offers resources, in the form of ocean-going research vessels and expertise, such as marine biologists, members training, project management and support crew.
Marine Conservation Coral reefs are some of the most ancient and biologically diverse ecosystems that exist on earth. They serve an important role to coastal communities as a source of seafood, to generate income from tourism and to provide a buffer against storms. Many reefs have already been destroyed and understanding the state of health for the rest is in its infancy. Our vision is for there to be long term sustainable fisheries for coastal communities in developing countries and wider scale megafauna protection. International Head Office is in New Zealand with an Office in North America. Focus up until now has been in Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and the Niue Islands. www.oceanswatch.org