Celebrating the Earth in the plurinational workers’ paradise, from the Guardian:
Bolivian President Evo Morales launched the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth on Tuesday, welcoming over 10,000 people from 135 countries and dozens of social organizations to what he declared to be an alternative to the United Nations climate talks.
In a moving multicultural ceremony in a stadium outside Cochabamba, amautas — indigenous cultural leaders — performed an official ceremony opening offering a gift to mother earth “Pachamama”.
A written goal of the conference is “to save the planet,” and Morales, who opposed the U.S.-backed Copenhagen Accord during the last international climate conference, was clear about where he’d like to start.
“We can not have equilibrium in this world with the current inequality and destruction of Mother Earth,” Morales told the crowd. “Capitalism is what is causing this problem and it needs to end.”
And what’s an enviro confab without a little green-on-green hostility?
Off the official summit campus, visitors can find Workshop No. 18 and another set of concerns.
Workshop No. 18 is a self-declared rebel workshop.
Morales’ government doesn’t want to hear the demands of the social organizations there because they are exposing environmental problems caused by extractive activities like mining, new projects hydroelectric dams and water legislation within Bolivia, participants said. Mining is likely to expand and cross paths with the global push for sustainability because Bolivia holds huge deposits of lithium, used in manufacturing lithium-ion batteries used in electric cars. At the same time, Bolivia faces a danger of water shortages as its glaciers melt.
“The social and environmental issues that we are raising must be addressed by government,” Secretary of Extractive Industries of the Confederation of indigenous Aymara Rafael Quispe said.