The Ecologist

 
«
||
»

Comment

The battle for the future of farming - why is the World Bank on the wrong side?

The Rules & the Oakland Institute

18th April 2015

A farmer and cattle herder in Lawra village, Ghana - the kind of person the World Bank claims to be working for, while promoting a corporate model of agriculture that leaves them landless and destitute. Photo: Photo: P. Casier /CGIAR via Flickr (CC BY-NC- The World Bank exists to fight poverty. So why does it promote a profit-driven model of agriculture that enriches corporations at the expense of the small farmers who provide most of the world's food, creating poverty by stealing their land and water, depleting resources and undermining sustainable livelihoods? more...

TTIP won't stop public services being run for ordinary people? Tell that to Argentina

Nick Dearden

17th April 2015

A 2009 protest in Argentina's Santa Fe province against water privatization to Suez. Photo: International Rivers via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA). Now it's Argentina's turn to be sued in a secret 'free trade' court run by the World Bank, writes Nick Dearden. After bringing a profiteering water company that was missing all its service and quality targets back into public ownership, the country has been ordered to pay $405 million 'compensation'. more...

#JeSuisNasheed - standing with the green 'Mandela of the Maldives'

Anders Henriksen & Lykke Friis

16th April 2015

President Nasheed meets the press after the Worlds first ever underwater cabinet meeting held at Girifushi island, 17th October 2009. Photo: Mauroof Khaleel / Presidency Maldives via Flickr (CC BY-NC). After restoring democracy to the Maldives in 2008 President Nasheed became a world leader on climate change. But four years later the old regime deposed him in a coup, and now he has been imprisoned for 13 years on bogus 'terrorism' charges. Now we must stand with Nasheed - by starving the island state of its tourism revenues. more...

To save 30,000 British lives a year, the Government must act now on air pollution

James Thornton, ClientEarth

15th April 2015

Just taste the poly-aromatic hydrocarbons! London Air Pollution View from Hackney, 10th April 2015. Photo: DAVID HOLT via Flickr (CC BY-SA). The UK Government will be in the Supreme Court tomorrow accused of 'dragging its feet' over an EU air pollution law that should be saving tens of thousands of British lives a year, writes James Thornton. Instead of defending its inaction, the Government should make an immediate start on cleaning our filthy air. more...

Thank you Greens! Now other parties too must keep us safe from pesticides

Georgina Downs

14th April 2015

A tractor spraying unknown chemicals in the British countryside. Photo: Billy Ridgers, author provided. The Green Party manifesto, published today, pledges to enact long overdue restrictions on the use of toxic pesticides to protect rural residents and children from adverse health impacts, writes Georgina Downs. Now all political parties must follow where the Greens have led. more...

TTIP: Europe's food, farms and animals at risk from EuroParl backroom deal

Molly Scott Cato MEP

13th April 2015

Conditions in US factory farms are even worse than those in the EU. Now will MEPs vote to make the higher of EU and US standards apply under TTIP? Or the lower? Photo: Farm Sanctuary via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). MEPs vote tomorrow on Green measures to ensure that TTIP 'harmonisation' on food and farming means applying the highest standards, not the lowest, writes Molly Scott Cato. But will MEP's put farmers, food and animals before corporate profit? more...

To protect our seas, first we must reclaim them from 'Big Fishing'

Horatio Morpurgo

10th April 2015

Small fishing boats at Lyme Regis, Dorset, where England's first big marine Protected Area was designated. Photo: Sue Hasker via Flickr (CC BY-ND). There's strong public support for protecting marine wildlife, writes Horatio Morpurgo - so why aren't politicians championing the cause? Labour and Tories alike fear to challenge the big fishing companies that have come to believe they own Britain's offshore waters and seabed. Now it's up to use to prove they're wrong. more...

Nuclear weapons are more likely to annihilate the UK, than to save it

Oliver Tickell

9th April 2015

A Dassault Super-Etendard aircraft of the kind that sunk the UK's HMS Sheffield with an Exocet missile in the 1982 Falklands war. But after the UK extracted secret codes from the French, it could disarm them in mid air. Just like the US will surely be abl The eruption of nuclear weapons into today's election campaign should ignite a real debate over the UK's Trident missile system, writes Oliver Tickell. The notion that the UK is more secure with nuclear weapons than without is a dangerous illusion. The truth is the reverse - they are far more likely to make the UK a nuclear target, than to protect it. more...

The BBC's silent scandal - the arms magnate at the top

Harry Blain

8th April 2015

BAE Systems 'Hawks' on show at Yeovilton Air Day 2010. They also kill people - among them resistance fighters in East Timor opposing Indonesia's illegal occupation of their country. Photo: Andrew Dennes via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). When seeking a new Vice-Chair for the BBC Trust, would you seek out a distinguished journalist? Or the Chairman of Europe's biggest arms company, one with a murky past of corruption and supplying deadly weapons to despotic governments? For the British oligarchy, writes Harry Blain, the answer is obvious. more...

Vegetarians, ranchers and conscious omnivores of the world, unite!

Ronnie Cummins

7th April 2015

Grass Fed Cattle certified under the USDA's 'Certified Grass-Fed' scheme on a farm in Maryland. Photo: F Delventhal via US Department of Agriculture on Flickr (CC BY). Thinking people of all stripes are agreed in their opposition to cruel, exploitative animal farming, writes Ronnie Cummins. So it's time for them to move beyond sterile 'meat-eater versus vegetarian' debates, and unite in their opposition to the daily atrocities of industrial agriculture. more...

Embracing 'radical hope' in our fight to save the Earth

Paul Hoggett

5th April 2015

Hope - life is still beautiful! Photo: Iqbal Osman via Flickr (CC BY). Radical hope is not just about determination and courage in the face of darkness, writes Paul Hoggett - it is also about love and a re-finding all that is benign in the world. And this is the spirit we need to muster to confront the serious challenges that lie before us - in the Paris climate talks and beyond. more...

Easter rising - progressive politics is reborn!

Oliver Tickell

3rd March 2015

Still from the introduction to ITV's Election 20125 Leaders' Debate with Ed Miliband, Leanne Wood and Nicola Sturgeon, with presenter Julie Etchingham. Photo: ITV. The real significance of last night's TV debate was the vigorous assertion of a new progressive politics in Britain, expressed by the 'trimulierate' of female party leaders from the SNP, Greens and Plaid Cymru - the three sharing a positive vision of a green, fair, inclusive future in which all participate in the nation's prosperity. more...

To dump nuclear waste, first they must dump democracy!

Marianne Birkby

2nd April 2015

Boreholes being drilled at Beckermet, Cumbria. For future disposal of radioactive waste? So locals fear, but no one is telling. Photo: Radiation Free Lakeland. In the last act of the dying Parliament, MPs quietly voted to dump democratic planning processes to expedite a 'facility' for the high level nuclear waste in geologically fractured Cumbria, writes Marianne Birkby - so over-ruling strong and highly effective local opposition. Shame on them! more...

EPA fail: refuses to ban 'brain damage' pesticide

Patti Goldman / Earth Justice

1st April 2015

A helicopter of the San Jose Vector Control Agency spraying an unknown pesticide in the Don Edwards National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: Don McCullough via Flickr (CC BY-NC). The US Environmental Protection Agency has just failed farm workers and their families by refusing to ban a neuro-toxic pesticide that causes severe brain damage in utero and to exposed children, writes Patti Goldman - imposing only weak, inadequate restrictions based on flawed science. It must do better! more...

Health professionals call: ban fracking for five years

Paul Mobbs

31st March 2015

Donna Ann Ward, co-founder of CoWatchingOil LA, overlooks the Murphy Oil fracking site in residential Los Angeles. She and many other Angelinos believe that fracking wells in the city are responsible for severe public health impacts. Photo: Sarah Craig / Medact, the organization of health professionals for a safer, fairer and better world, has called for a five year moratorium on fracking due to its serious hazards to public health, writes Paul Mobbs. Their new report is a powerful challenge to government policy that cannot be ignored. more...

Stand up for pedestrians - the forgotten travellers

Colin Pooley

30th March 2014

Kentish Town Road, London, at Camden Lock - where the car is king, cyclists are princes, and the thousands of pedestrians have to make do with what's left to them. Photo: Paolo Margari via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). Our road space is dominated by, and planned for, motor vehicles, writes Colin Pooley - leaving while people on foot are crammed on to narrow pavements, obstructed by 'street furniture', made to wait long periods to cross busy roads, and exposed to traffic noise and emissions. It's time put pedestrians first! more...

Lake Powell is dead! Long live Glen Canyon!

Grant A. Mincy

28th March 2015

Glen Canyon beneath the dam, 2008. Photo: Jim Trodel via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0). Drought is returning Lake Powell, impounded behind the Glen Canyon dam on the Colorado river, back to desert, writes Grant A. Mincy - and a fine thing too! As nature turns billions of dollars of infrastructural abomination to junk, this creates the chance to reclaim our commons and recreate ravaged ecosystems. more...

We must 'green' the government machine - and here's how

Duncan Brack

27th March 2015

An annual 'natural resource budget' complete with green box? Why ever not! Photo: HM Treasury via Flickr as partially colour-adjusted by TE (CC BY-NC-ND). A culture of environmental denialism is deeply embedded in the institutions of government, writes Duncan Brack. So how to put that right? How about a powerful new Office for Environmental Responsibility? And an annual 'natural resource budget' complete with bright green box? more...

Profits before whales! To know why TTIP would be a nightmare, look to Canada

Nick Dearden

26th March 2014

Whale watching off Digby's Neck, Nova Scotia, where Bilcon wants to site a massive basalt quarry. Now Canada must pay Bilcon as much as $300 million following a NAFTA judgment that the company's right to profit comes before cetacean survival. Photo: Reigh A series of judgments against Canada in secret corporate tribunals costing taxpayers $100s of millions show that 'free trade' agreements really do restrict governments' right to protect health, environment and endangered species, writes Nick Dearden. more...

Canned hunting is not protecting wild lions!

Dominic Dyer

25th March 2015

Lions being transported for a canned hunt. Photo: Campaign Against Canned Hunting. Two thirds of Africa's lions have been lost in 35 years, and would-be hunters are increasingly shooting captive, farmed and often tame lions in 'canned hunts'. Claims are that this helps to preserve wild lion populations - but Dominic Dyer fears the reverse is the case. more...

Richard Heinberg

Is it time to change 20th century economic paradigms?

Richard Heinberg

5th February, 2009

Clueless_Economists_MAIN.jpg A hundred years ago, markets ruled: fortunes were made, workers abused, bubbles blown. The Austrian School of economists, led by Ludwig von Mises, said this was fine: despite temporary messiness, the market knows best.
more...

Goodbye to growth

Richard Heinberg

7th January, 2009

Goodbye_Growth_MAIN.jpg The contraction of the global economic system bodes nothing but good for global ecosystems. Growth is dead – long live sustainability more...

Jim Thomas

High-altitude windpower: pie-in-the-sky or sound science?

Jim Thomas

1st May 2009

Jim_Thomas Since we don’t have enough land for the renewable technologies we need let’s go stratospheric instead, with a high-altitude solution… more...

What technologies for solving environmental problems will we see in 2009?

Jim Thomas

23rd April, 2009

Big_Fix_MAIN.jpg Somebody somewhere has to have a cunning plan to fix our environmental problems and save the world – right? Jim Thomas sorts through the big tech ideas you’ll be reading about this year more...

Joss Garman

Miliband's leadership on climate is tested

Joss Garman

19th June 2009

Joss Garman The climate secretary has been lauded for his coal-fired proposals, but beyond the smokescreen it’s business as usual says Joss Garman more...

European elections - will Brussels go Green?

Joss Garman

3rd June, 2009

BallotBoxing_MAIN.jpg It probably isn’t too much of an exaggeration to suggest that most people are hard pushed to name a politician they really admire. In Britain, however, one name will come up time and again. more...

Molly Scott Cato

Forget the 'big society'; we just need a co-operative one

Molly Scott Cato

16th August, 2010

Molly Scott Cato Claims that we need a 'big society' to fix our 'broken' one are just Victorian throwbacks - we have the business tools to survive; we just need a co-operative attitude to go with them more...

We scare people off by talking about 'degrowth'

Molly Scott Cato

14th July, 2010

Molly Scott Cato The French have a much better word for it: 'decroissance'. Using ugly and frightening terms like 'degrowth' won't help pave the way for a new and exciting economics more...

Tom Hodgkinson

Tom Hodgkinson: spare a moment for the bang bang men of Chongquing...

29th October, 2010

Tom Hodgkinson Although the rise of mega-cities raises disturbing questions about living standards and livelihoods, the spread of city living is not all bad, says Tom Hodgkinson more...

Starting a business has never been so liberating...

Tom Hodgkinson

25 August 2010

Tom Hodgkinson Find the hidden entrepreneur in you to free yourself from slavery to corporate and state authority, says Tom Hodgkinson more...

Other Comments

Mr Cameron: will it be heating or eating this winter?

John Sinfield

12th November 2013

John Sinfield The MD of Britain's largest insulation company demands: back warm, efficient homes now, or condemn millions to cold, damp and sky-rocketting fuel bills. more...

Peak soil: act now or the very ground beneath us will die

8th November, 2013

Helen Browning

plant and soil The health of our soils is more important now than ever, says the Soil Association’s Helen Browning - especially with the challenges that climate change will bring ... more...

Dan Box

When will Australia 'get' climate change? And will it be too late?

Dan Box

19th July, 2010

Dan Box The upcoming Australian elections will see yet another tussle between industry-supporting climate sceptics, and politicians trying to nudge their electorate towards the real world more...

Will putting a price on nature put environmentalists out of a job?

Dan Box

5th July, 2010

Dan Box The launch of the massive economic ecosystem assessment, TEEB, will help force the natural world onto the corporate balance sheet. It's a step forward. But how will protesters react to the ground shifting under their feet? more...

Bibi van der Zee

Bibi van der Zee: Government 'no more in touch with the countryside than Labour'

Bibi van der Zee

10th March, 2011

Continuing her exclusive series - Coalition Green Watch - Bibi van der Zee further assesses David Cameron's pledge to head the 'greenest government in history' and, whilst the jury may still be out, finds alarming cause for concern... more...

Climate Week is trying to galvanise the green movement – but it is splitting it

Bibi van der Zee

3rd March, 2011

Climate Week The backing of Cameron, Clegg and Kofi Annan isn't enough, say Climate Week's critics, it is blinkered – and RBS-sponsored. Bibi van der Zee reports more...

Deepak Chopra

Keeping Up America’s Reputation in the World

by Deepak Chopra

Deepak Chopra asks whether the American dream is tainted by current day trends in U.S. politics and society....... more...

Satish Kumar

A New Year Message - Be The Change ...

January 3rd, 2012

Satish Kumar

Don’t look at a society and think it is so big, so complex, that nothing can change. Don’t think: “I am one single person, what can I do?” That, says Satish Kumar, is despondency; that is pessimism. Instead, whatever you can do, do it. Step by step. more...

Soil, Soul and Society

December 7th, 2012

by Satish Kumar

Environmentalist and Humanitarian, Satish Kumar introduces the new trinity that he believes captures the essence of his ecophilosophy - one that cares about and for all life more...

Vandana Shiva

Safety as Freedom

February 21st, 2013

by Vandana Shiva

Vandana Shiva challenges the violence against people and Nature in the name of progress more...

A Student Writes

Intellectual Rigidity

March 28th, 2013

by The Interdisciplinary Research Society UEA

Would changes to academic structures help towards solving complex societal problems? more...

Global Extinction Within One Lifetime?

Michael Brown

July 16th, 2012

Environmental chemistry student Michael Brown evaluates how seriously recent claims that global extinction could occur within our lifetime should be taken.... more...

Tony Juniper

Counting the Consequences

January 14th, 2013

by Tony Juniper

We need ideas as compelling as those that embarked the world on its current competition-driven ‘free’ markets spree. We need to ignite a revolution that big, but one based on sustainability, writes Tony Juniper
more...

Previous Articles...

ECOLOGIST COOKIES

Using this website means you agree to us using simple cookies.

More information here...

 

FOLLOW
THE ECOLOGIST