Friday, November 30, 2012

A Plea for an Ecological Reconstruction of Marxism

By Daniel Tanturo
Presentation at the Historical Materialism Conference
November 10, 2012

For the first time in history, humanity has to conceive our emancipation under a global ecological constraint, unsurpassable by an increase in labor productivity.

Global warming exemplifies this constraint. In order to stabilize the climate system, the final energy consumption should fall by 50% in the European Union, and 75% in the US, by 2050 (UN, World Economic and Social Outlook 2011). Such objectives cannot be achieved without a reduction in material production and transportation, at least in the so-called “developed” countries. It’s not enough to limit growth.

At the most, the energy system based on fossil fuels must be replaced by another one, renewable, completely new and different. A huge mutation must be carried out within two generations. It requires investments and thus additional energy consumption. In other words, the transition itself, at least in the beginning, will be an additional source of emissions and these must absolutely be compensated. Therefore, a plan is necessary, based on energy efficiency, not cost-efficiency.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Canada, the surprise 'pariah' of the Kyoto protocol

Some Canadians doubt whether their country should have any say in negotiating the second Kyoto protocol after it became the only nation to reject the first one

By Isabeau Doucet in Montreal

26 November 2012 

Oil city: steam rises from refineries outside Edmonton, Alberta. Photograph: Andy Clark/Reuters

Of all the delegations in the room in Doha, the Canadians adopt the lowest profile. Some question whether they should be there at all: The country's first and only Green party MP, Elizabeth May, said: "HavingCanada in the room negotiating to weaken the second Kyoto, when we have already signalled that not only will we not be participating in taking on new targets in the second period but we're legally withdrawn from the protocol, should make us pariahs."

"I can't imagine how anybody would want us in the room."

Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Link between Emission Cuts, Right to Development and Transformation of Capitalist System

By Pablo Solon
Pablo Solon holds at COP 17 protest banner
Focus on the Global South

Humanity is running out of time. If there are no deep and real cuts in the next five years the impacts of climate change will lead to a situation ten times worse than what we have seen with hurricane Sandy and other climate change related events in India, Russia, Philippines and Africa in this past year.

That’s what happens with 0.8ºC of global warming, and the current climate negotiations are leading us to a 4ºC to 8ºC scenario.

More than two-thirds of coal, oil and gas should be left under the soil

Different studies say that to limit the increase in temperature to 2ºC, all countries can only emit 565 gigatons of CO2 between 2010 and 2050[1]. At the current rate of 31 gigatons of global CO2 emissions per year, we are going to expend that budget in 15 years.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

New NYC Booklet on Medicare


Medicare's Birth in Saskatchewan: 50th Anniversary of a People's Victory

The two articles re-published in this pamphlet were written to address the 50th anniversary of North America's first public healthcare system for all citizens initiated in Saskatchewan on July 1, 1962.

We were researching the prolific resources and books available on the subject in preparation for a forthcoming book on the fight for medicare in Saskatchewan and wanted to raise the profile of the anniversary as the actual anniversary approached.

This pamphlet is intended as a short and quick resource for labour and health care activists as we celebrate 50 years of medicare.

- Lorne Brown, Doug Taylor

Purchase HERE.