Friday, February 14, 2014

We have moved!

The new Ecosocialism Canada website is

No new posts will appear here, but the archive will remain online, in memory of Doug Taylor

Click here for the new Ecosocialism Canada site

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Doug Taylor, 1956 - 2014

Dear friends:
I am sorry to have to report that Doug Taylor passed away on January 13, with his family at his bedside. I visited him just hours before he left us. He was in very good spirits, was not at all afraid of death, and still had his sense of humour and hearty laugh. We discussed books we liked. His funeral was held at Lakeview United Church on January 17. Doug spent his adult life doing everything he could to improve the lives of those less fortunate, to expand the democratic movement, and to try to save the environment from human destruction. We will surely miss him.
John W. Warnock

Thursday, November 21, 2013

For a Left Strategy on Climate Change

The Editors
November 2013

There is a pressing need for a coherent left strategy on climate change and in relation to the planetary environmental threat in general. The current scientific consensus indicates that we have at best several decades before the earth’s average surface temperature rises by 2°C, viewed as the point of irreversible climate change. This means that decisive action must be taken quickly if the world is not to go off the planetary climate cliff.

We therefore read with considerable interest Christian Parenti’s article, “A Radical Approach to the Climate Crisis” in the Summer 2013 issue of Dissent. Parenti’s main thesis is that since the time with which to address the climate change problem is so short, “it is this society and these [existing capitalist] institutions that must cut emissions. That means, in the short-term, realistic climate politics are reformist politics, even if they are conceived of as part of a longer-term anti-capitalist project of total economic re-organization.”

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Thompson, William Morris and Ecosocialist Tasks

By Rafael Bernabe
Nov./Dec., 2013

AS I LOOK back on E.P. Thomp­son’s work and the impact it had on me, his biography of William Morris — William Morris, From Romantic to Revolutionary (1977) — stands out brighter than all other texts, including his deservedly acclaimed The Formation of the English Working Class.

It was the genius of William Morris to prefigure and express many concerns that today must be part of an ecosocialist synthesis, and it was the genius of E.P. Thompson to detect the originality and relevance of this 19th century poet, craftsman, designer, conservationist and socialist for the present.

Ecosocialism today, as the term indicates, implies a fusion of ecological and anti-capitalist perspectives. To be truly meaningful, this encounter must be not a mere mechanical addition, but a transformative integration: neither partner can or should emerge the same from the encounter.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Canada reveals climate stance with praise for Australian carbon tax repeal

Canada discourages other industrialised nations from following through on their own climate change commitments

Suzanne Goldenberg 

US environment correspondent
Wednesday 13 November 2013

A protester holds a placard during a rally in Sydney against carbon tax. Photograph: Greg Wood/AFP/Getty

Canada has dropped any remaining pretences of supporting global action on climate change by urging other countries to follow Australia's example in gutting its climate plan.

In a formal statement, the Canadian government said it "applauds" the move by Australia this week to repeal a carbon tax on the country's 300 biggest polluters.

"Canada applauds the decision by prime minister Abbott to introduce legislation to repeal Australia's carbon tax. The Australian prime minister's decision will be noticed around the world and sends an important message," the formal statement from Paul Calandra, parliamentary secretary to Canada's prime minister, Stephen Harper, said.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Capitalism and the destruction of life on earth: Six theses on saving the humans

By Richard Smith
Real World Economics Review, Issue 64, July, 2013

‘Today, the world’s richest 1% own 40 percent of the world’s wealth. Tell me again where Karl Marx was wrong?’

When, on May 10, 2013, scientists at Mauna Loa Observatory on the big island of Hawaii announced that global CO2 emissions had crossed a threshold at 400 parts per million for the first time in millions of years, a sense of dread spread around the world – not only among climate scientists.

CO2 emissions have been relentlessly climbing since Charles David Keeling first set up his tracking station near the summit of Mauna Loa Observatory in 1958 to monitor average daily global CO2 levels. At that time, CO2 concentrations registered 315ppm. CO2 emissions and atmospheric concentrations have been climbing ever since and, as the records show, temperatures rises will follow. For all the climate summits, the promises of “voluntary restraint,” the carbon trading and carbon taxes, the growth of CO2 emissions and atmospheric concentrations has not just been relentless, it has been accelerating in what scientists have dubbed the “Keeling Curve.”

Read more HERE.

As COP19 Gets Underway: Time for a Revolution to Save Ourselves from Fossil Fuel

By Glenn Ashton
The South African Civil Society Information Service
12 Nov 2013

Picture credit: cuipo

This week the latest round of climate negotiations, the 19th Conference of the Parties (COP19) is meeting in Warsaw Poland, to grapple with the stalled Climate Change Convention. At the opening of the conference Dr Alicia Illinga, a Filipina delegate highlighted how her country had already been hit by 22 typhoons this year. The devastating Typhoon Haiyan, the most powerful typhoon to have ever made landfall, hit the Philippines on the eve of the conference, causing over 10 000 fatalities and affecting up to 10 million people. Climate change is implicated in these events, despite ill-informed denials. Natural weather disaster costs are at record levels. So why are we so slow to take action on climate change?

Friday, November 1, 2013

Naomi Klein: How science is telling us all to revolt

Is our relentless quest for economic growth killing the planet? Climate scientists have seen the data – and they are coming to some incendiary conclusions.


Is our relentless quest for economic growth killing the planet? Climate scientists have seen the data – and they are coming to some incendiary conclusions.

Waste land: large-scale irrigation strips nutrients from the soil, scars the landscape and could alter climatic conditions beyond repair. Image: Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto/ Flowers, London, Pivot Irrigation #11 High Plains, Texas Panhandle, USA (2011)

In December 2012, a pink-haired complex systems researcher named Brad Werner made his way through the throng of 24,000 earth and space scientists at the Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union, held annually in San Francisco. This year’s conference had some big-name participants, from Ed Stone of Nasa’s Voyager project, explaining a new milestone on the path to interstellar space, to the film-maker James Cameron, discussing his adventures in deep-sea submersibles.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Epochal Crisis: Converging economic and ecological contradictions

By John Bellamy Foster, Monthly Review, October 2013

It is an indication of the sheer enormity of the historical challenge confronting humanity in our time that the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, sometimes now called the Second Great Depression, is overshadowed by the larger threat of planetary catastrophe, raising the question of the long-term survival of innumerable species—including our own.
An urgent necessity for the world today is therefore to develop an understanding of the interconnections between the deepening impasse of the capitalist economy and the rapidly accelerating ecological threat—itself a by-product of capitalist development.
Read more HERE.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

What Would an “Eco-Socialist” Politics Look Like?

Thoughts on The Ecological Rift: Capitalism’s War on the Earth by John Bellamy Foster, Brett Clark and Richard York

By Andy Feeney 
April 20, 2013 

As many Americans prepare to observe Earth Day this year, democratic socialists who are paying attention might want to contemplate two possibly disagreeable questions.

The first is: what if anything can we contribute to the understanding of climate change and other urgent environmental problems that countless green activists haven’t already discovered themselves – and long before us? The second is: what unique contribution can socialists make – if any – toward fixing what’s wrong?

When around 17 million Americans attended the first Earth Day events some 43 years ago, an easy answer to both questions was: “not much.”

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Eco-Feminism for Another Possible World

A rich exchange is required between ecology and feminism

Presse-Toi A' Gauche
April 23, 2013
(google translation)

Puleo Alicia García Doctor of Philosophy at the University Complutense of Madrid, Professor of Moral Philosophy at the University and Board Member of the Chair of Gender Studies at the University of Valladolid. She recently published "Eco-feminism for another possible world", Madrid, Cátedra, 2011.

Juan Tortosa - What is eco-feminism?

Alicia García Puleo - I understand that as the encounter between feminist consciousness, environmental, animal rights and peace in the twenty-first century, when it becomes necessary to revise our understanding of the place of humanity in our land.Eco-feminism is not only the conservation of endangered species. Eco-feminism combines the concern for justice for the human social ecology. I must, however, emphasize that I answer the question from my proposal eco-feminist. But there are different ways of thinking about eco-feminism, for example, some do not care about the "other animals."

That everyone shares is the concern for environmental issues that affect mostly women. We women are biologically and hormonally vulnerable to toxic chemicals currently in use, and we are concerned both as consumers as producers.