Daily Archives: September 25, 2016

The Climate Cost of Free Trade – TPP

How TPP and trade agreements undermine the Paris climate agreement

By Ben Lilliston
Published September 6, 2016

On Earth Day 2016, the U.S. joined 175 countries in signing the United Nations Paris climate agreement setting a path forward to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.1 A few months earlier, the U.S., along with 11 other countries, signed the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade and investment deal.2 Remarkably, neither agreement acknowledged the other. The Paris agreement was silent on trade, and the TPP ignored the climate. As countries take action to protect the climate, conflicts between trade rules and climate goals will escalate. The intentional separation of these two global priorities is becoming increasingly untenable.

In this paper we’ll look at real world examples of how trade rules already conflict with climate goals, and dig into the TPP more deeply to project how the proposed deal creates barriers for countries trying to meet their Paris climate pledges. Along the way, we will review a variety of trade reform proposals designed to address our dysfunctional and climate-damaging trade regime.

At the heart of the Paris climate agreement are national-level plans, called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs), to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.3 Though these INDCs are voluntary, they are considered a critical first step for an agreement designed to progressively ratchet up national commitments to collectively limit a global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial age levels. Within each INDC are goals, policies and strategies to reduce GHG emissions and adapt to climate change in various sectors.

The goals for trade agreements including the TPP are much different, and often conflict with climate objectives. Trade agreements are first and foremost about expanding trade, often in highly extractive, energy-intensive sectors. They are also about protecting the rights of corporations and financial firms, undermining and lowering regulations intended for the public good, dictating government spending, and strengthening intellectual property rights. In other words, trade agreements set broad-reaching rules for the economy and government policy that often adversely affect the climate.

In almost every respect, the TPP and other trade deals like it are in deep climate denial. For example, climate concerns are completely absent in the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (considered the template for future free trade deals),4 as they were in the formation of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1995.5 We are now dealing with the consequences of that neglect.

The era of modern trade deals has had a profound impact on the global economy. The value of world trade has more than quintupled, from $8.7 trillion in 1990 to more than $46 trillion in 2014, according to the World Bank.6 World export volume has grown 32-fold between 1950 and 2010, according to World Trade Organization data.7 Global trade has skyrocketed in fossil-fuel intensive sectors like agriculture, forestry, and the energy sector itself.

…(read more).

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

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TPP Will Effectively Kill Climate Treaties


TheRealNews

Published on Sep 25, 2016

The Trans-Pacific Partnership will undermine the ability of countries to control polluting and extractive industries, says Ben Lilliston

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

African American museum officially opens in Washington, DC


Al Jazeera English

Published on Sep 25, 2016

A museum dedicated to the history of African-Americans has opened in the US capital.
President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle were among the guests at the inauguration ceremony in Washington.
Al Jazeera’s Rosiland Jordan reports.

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

President Obama at the Grand Opening of Smithsonian National Museum of African American FULL SPEECH


USNews

Published on Sep 24, 2016

National Museum of African American History and Culture. Grand Opening American History TV presented live coverage of the grand opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Speakers included President Obama and the museum’s founding director Lonnie Bunch. First lady Michelle Obama, former President George W. Bush and Mrs. Laura Bush, U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, Representative John Lewis (D-GA), and Smithsonian Secretary David Skorton were also in attendance. Jazz musician Wynton Marsalis performed a composition created for the opening.

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

Obama opens US black history museum


euronews (in English)

Published on Sep 25, 2016

President Obama has formally opened the US National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington – nearly 100 years after it was first proposed by black civil war veterans.

Together with Ruth Bonner – the daughter of a man born a slave in Mississippi – they rang a bell from one of the first churches organised by black people.

The president told a dedication ceremony that the Smithsonian Museum was a “remarkable tribute”, adding that the story of black America was the story of A…
READ MORE : http://www.euronews.com/2016/09/24/ob…

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

What Are Transition Studies? Steps Toward a Just and Sustainable Future | EV & N – 224 | CCTV

Transition studies focuses on how to move from where we are to where we need to be to survive the Anthropocene.

http://ecoethics.net/2014-ENVRE120/20160925-EV&N-224-Link.html

https://www.cctvcambridge.org/node/427217

https://www.cctvcambridge.org/user/3723/history

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

Rhodes Service and Leadership Programme


The Rhodes Trust

Published on Mar 11, 2016

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice