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People not profit must drive Green Economy
By Pio Verzola Jr., John Paul Corpus and Galileo Burgos Jr.

The concept of Green Economy (GE) has gradually emerged and caught the attention of global policy bodies in recent years. In December 2009, the UN called for a conference to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1992 Rio Earth Summit, and later identified “green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication” as one of its two major themes.

Then in February this year, after an extensive threeyearstudy, the UN Environmental Program (UNEP)came up with a 626-page Towards a Green Economy:Pathways to Sustainable Development and PovertyEradication, commonly known as the Green EconomyReport (GER). 1

Just this May, the Organisation for Economic Cooperationand Development (OECD) published itsown Green Growth Strategy (GGS), on which it willbase its policy positions in the Rio+20 conference,building from its earlier “Declaration on GreenGrowth” in June 2009.2 Other major development actors have declared their positions or critiques, in oneform or another, on the Green Economy. 3

Defining GE is a challenge because the concept is stillevolving, and in different directions at that due to theinfluence of several streams of discourse and practice.But social movements must closely follow its evolutionso they can critique it, or try to influence its shape andcourse.

 

Background

One obvious influence behind the GE concept is thatof sustainable development, expressed through UNprocesses from the 1972 Stockholm Conference andthe 1987 Brundtland Report towards the 1992 RioConference on Environment and Development. The1992 summit had come up with a 27-point Declarationof Principles and a 40-chapter Agenda 21, whichimplementation were left to the voluntary action ofstates and were soon overrun by the globalizationsteamroller of the Washington Consensus.

There was one other stream of discourse and practicethat gradually ran in parallel with UN processes:that of pursuing green business, with the 1989 bookBlueprint for a Green Economy as an early pioneer.4Developed countries especially in Europe beganto develop “environmental technologies” or “ecoindustries,”i.e., low-carbon and small-footprintenergy and production systems that offered room forgrowth while helping to satisfy their UNFCCC-Kyotocommitments, and which were given positive marks inan EC-commissioned 2006 study.5

The growing Northern interest in ecosystems-basedeconomics took a crucial turn when the G8+5’s 2007Potsdam ministerial meeting launched a strategic studyled by senior banker Pavan Sukhdev of Deutschebankto measure environmental disruption and weighgreen alternatives in hard-nosed money terms. In May2008, the Sukhdev team presented The Economics ofEcosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB)’s Phase I reportat the UNEP-linked CBD meeting in Bonn.6

Five months later, responding to the triple whammyof financial, food and fuel crises that year, UNEP andleading economists launched the Green EconomyInitiative (GEI) to refocus the global economy“towards investments in clean technologies and ‘natural’ infrastructure such as forests and soils,” andthus create green business and job opportunities.7The UNEP study team, also led by Sukhdev, releasedthe monumental Green Economy Report (GER) inFebruary 2011, just as the Rio+20 agenda began totake detailed shape.

 

GREEN ECONOMY OVERVIEW

We focus on the UNEP-GER since it is by far the mostdetailed official document on how the world economy, entire countries, businesses and communities can turngreen.

 

What is a Green Economy?

If we go by the UNEP-GER, a green economy inits simplest terms does the following: (a) producelow greenhouse gas emissions; (b) use resourcesmore efficiently; (c) continue to generate growth,income and jobs; and (d) observe social equity andinclusiveness. In the GER’s words, it is one that “resultsin improved human well-being and social equity,while significantly reducing environmental risks andecological scarcities.”8

How can the world achieve a transition to GE? Thesteps seen as most crucial are:

  • to measure the monetary value of theenvironment and its resources (which areoften called “ecosystem services”), so that theycan be treated as a form of capital, called “naturalcapital,” on the same plane as physical-technical,human, and financial capital, and which canalso be depleted and lost, or built up and madeproductive;
  • to prove the viability and profitability ofenhancing this natural capital and related smallfootprinttechnologies as a “new engine of growth”so that it can replace “business as usual” while alsosatisfying social goals; and
  • to create the enabling conditions — such aspolicies and market mechanisms — for such“public and private investments to incorporatebroader environmental and social criteria.”9

The GER contrasts its green model with “browneconomies” where the engine of growth is physicaltechnologicaland financial capital (also called“built capital”), and wealth comes at the cost of  overreliance on fossil fuels, resource depletion andother environmental losses. A green economy, byrefocusing on natural capital, “can generate as muchgrowth and employment as a brown economy, andoutperforms the latter in the medium and long run,while yielding significantly more environmental andsocial benefits.”10

Take note, however, that the GER does not faultbrown economies for riding on economic and socialinequities to create wealth, such as by exploiting laborand by taking advantage of market, trade and financialmechanisms. The green-versus-brown distinctionboils down to a choice of investment and technology:those that enhance natural capital as against those thatdeplete it. The roles of finance capital, markets, andlabor appear to be retained, whether in brown or greeneconomies.

Shifting from brown to green is therefore not so mucha fundamental paradigm shift as a shift in emphasis.At the same time, GE is more strongly presented asa corrective to prevent the recurrence of crises suchas those of recent years as while ensuring long-termgrowth.

The UNEP-GER implicitly blames the 2008-2009crises on wrongly deployed capital in the past 20 years,stating that “at a fundamental level they all share acommon feature: the gross misallocation of capital[into] … property, fossil fuels and structured financialassets with embedded derivatives” while little wasinvested in “renewable energy, energy efficiency, publictransportation, sustainable agriculture, ecosystemand biodiversity protection, and land and waterconservation.”11

 

Key sectors and policy measures for greening

According to the GER, the green economy is to beachieved by “greening” eleven key economic sectors.

Four sectors—agriculture, fisheries, forests and thewater sector—are identified by the GER as “derivedfrom natural capital.” As the frontliners in the greeningprocess, these sectors will need “more sustainable andequitable management” and also more investmentsthat rebuild or maintain the ecosystem services onwhich they are based.

Seven sectors that could be characterized as “builtcapital”—energy, manufacturing, waste, construction,transportation, tourism and cities—are traditionallyconsidered “brown.” In these sectors, the GER callsmainly for adopting technologies and processeswhich are low-carbon and more energy- and resourceefficient.

The GER suggests a range of policy measures thatserve as enabling conditions to encourage the greentransition, especially in the eleven sectors:

First, the GER calls for prioritized investment andspending to stimulate the greening of sectors. Publicexpenditure and investment incentives are needed totrigger the transition, but “the bulk of green economyinvestment will ultimately have to come from theprivate sector.”

Based on its T21 projections (for an explanation ofthe T21 model, see Box No. 1), the GER calculates theinvestment needed for the transition to be from a lowend of $1.2 trillion to a high end of over $3.4 trillionannually, from 2011 to 2050. This amounts to around2% of global GDP.12

Second, the GER sees taxes and market-basedinstruments (e.g., taxes on polluters, and tradablepermit schemes and payments for providing ecosystemservices) as “powerful tools to promote greeninvestment and innovation.”

Third, the GER wants reform on subsidies andother “poorly managed government spending” inenvironmentally harmful activities, such as fossil fuels,because they “can encourage inefficiency, waste andoveruse” and “can also reduce the profitability of greeninvestments.”

Fourth, the GER calls for a framework of laws,regulations and enforcement at the national levelto reduce business risks and to increase confidenceamong green investors and markets.

Fifth, the GER sees investment in capacity-buildingand training, both for governments and nationalworkforces, as essential to the green transition.

Box No. 1: GREEN ECONOMY PROJECTIONSBASED ON T21 MODELLING

The GER’s main analyses are based on an economic modelthat largely drew on the Threshold 21 (T21) modelingframework created by the Millennium Institute. The T21is described as a large and complex mathematical model,which includes “200 stock variables and several thousandfeedback loops” organized into 80 modules.

Using the T21-World model, the UNEP team firstestablished baseline scenarios (“business-as-usual” orBAU) that replicated the world’s economic history over theperiod 1970-2009, then projected two BAU scenarios forthe period 2010-2050 that basically showed increasinglyworse environmental, economic and social indicators

Next, two “green investment scenarios” were simulatedfor the same 2010-2050 period. The first (G1 scenario)assumed that 1% of global Gross Domestic Product(GDP) was to be invested equally across all sectors inthe green transition. The other (G2 scenario), whichthe UNEP preferred as “more relevant and coherent,”assumed a bigger investment of 2% of world GDPand prioritized climate change, water scarcity and foodsecurity. The mostly positive indicators of economicgrowth, employment, poverty reduction, nutrition, wateraccess, and biocapacity from year to year until 2050 arefinally presented as clear proof that the green investmentscenario—especially G2—is desirable and viable.

 

Source: UNEP” 13

 

Finally, the GER is pushing for strengthenedinternational governance, based on multilateralagreements and related processes, to promote a greeneconomy.

CRITIQUE OF UNEP-GER’S GREENECONOMY SPECIFICS

1. Preferred green scenario falls short of GHGreduction targets

The GER concedes that the G2 scenario (see Box No.2), which is its showcase scenario, “does not fully achievethe emissions reductions projected by IEA as necessaryfor limiting atmospheric concentrations to 450 ppm[parts per million].”14 As derived from energy tables inthe G2 scenario, annual energy-related CO2 emissionsby 2050 will have fallen by over a third against 2011levels, but only by 4-7% relative to 1990 emissions.This is wide off the mark in terms of achieving the conservative target of stabilizing atmospheric CO2 at450 ppm, which is still risky and considered by many asoutdated, not to mention attaining the safer 350-ppmlevels.15 (See Box No. 2 for details.)

The G2 is not a credible strategy for avertingdisastrous climate change, which is the most seriousof the environmental crises faced globally since itcan trigger or worsen many other problems such asbiodiversity loss, land degradation, ocean acidification,sea level rise and so on, all of which of course have direeconomic and social implications. If for this alone, theG2 scenario cannot be a viable pathway to sustainabledevelopment, especially in developing countries thatare most susceptible to climate change.

 

2. GER model does not reconcile 'competingaspirations of rich and poor countries'

The GER recognizes and sees a big challenge inreconciling “the competing economic developmentaspirations of rich and poor countries” in the face ofworsening environmental problems.16 Yet it doesn’ttouch on some of the most intense sources of theseconflicts in recent decades, such as debt, trade, andinvestment inequities—candidly admitting that its T21analysis “purposely ignores issues such as trade andsources of investment financing.” Thus, “the potentialimpacts of a green investment scenario at a global levelare not intended to represent the possibilities for anyspecific country or region.”17 A new green terrain ismerely offered where countries of the North and Southwill still have to compete on unequal ground.

The report attempts to explode a “myth… that a greeneconomy is… a ruse to restrain development andperpetuate poverty in developing countries.” But manyGER critics see warning signs in the proposed enablingconditions that could turn into “green protectionism”or new finance conditionalities against developingcountries.18

 

3. GE offers only limited poverty alleviation, notpoverty eradication

The GER is supposed to give the highest priority tosustainable development and poverty eradication, asimplied in its very subtitle, yet not one chapter is devotedto addressing the root causes of underdevelopment andpoverty on their own terms, especially in developing countries.  Creating green jobs, ensuring access to basic services,and setting up safety nets for poor people whosepresent jobs, livelihoods and consumption might beadversely affected by the green transition are discussedin disparate parts of the GER. They are almost treatedas an afterthought, instead of being hard-wired into theframework of the greening process as a basic premise.

The G2 scenario shows that allotting 2% of globalGDP annually on green investments will grow theglobal economy nearly three times its current sizeand more than double income per capita by 2050,yet it also projects that 8.4% of the global populationor about 750 million people will remain living on lessthan $2 per day.

Green growth is supposed to create green jobs, butmostly in levels that only replace jobs lost in thetransition. In the best-case scenario, jobs are evenexpected to decline around 2030 before they risesagain to equal or to slightly exceed business-as-usualemployment rates by 2050.

 

4. GE favors a big-business approach in greeningagriculture and other sectors

GER carries a presumption that big business will leadthe way because it controls the bulk of capital (whichindeed it does). Take for example the greening ofagriculture. The GER recognizes both “conventional(industrialized) agriculture systems and traditional(subsistence) smallholder agriculture” as two farmingparadigms. On the surface, it seems to emphasizethe drawbacks of both systems, and urges all modesof agriculture to adopt green practices that boostproductivity and efficiency.

But here’s the catch. The GER wants the world’sfarmers to “scale up adoption of green agricultureby partnering with leading agribusinesses,” and forthe world’s top 40 agribusinesses to play this leadingrole, since their investment decisions can determinehow global agriculture could “encourage green andsustainable farming practices.” 19

This represents, at the least, an inadequate analysis ofthe roots of agricultural stagnation and rural poverty.At worst, it is a license for agribusiness giants to extendand deepen further their control of global agriculture.The same bias for big business leadership can be seen in GER’s other sectoral strategies, from energy tomanufacturing to transport.

 

Box No. 2: WHY UNEP’S GREEN ECONOMYIS AN EPIC FAIL ON GHG EMISSION TARGETS

Analysis in the IPCC’s fourth assessment report (2007)—which is increasingly seen as out of date—says that to holdglobal warming to 2-2.4 degrees, GHG concentrationsmust reach no higher than 400 ppm. To achieve this, GHGemissions have to fall by 50-80% of 2000 levels in 2050, orabout 43-83% of 1990 levels, using the IEA CO2 figures for1990. This target is something like 10 times greater than theemissions reduction that GER’s G2 scenario can achieve.

More recent science calls for 350 ppm as a safer boundaryfor atmospheric CO2 stabilization, and even more rapidand stringent cuts to reach this target. Baer, Athanasiouand Kartha (2009), building on Hansen et al (2008), arguethat to stabilize atmospheric CO2 at 350 ppm by around2100 (we are currently at 391ppm), the feasible pathwayis for emissions to peak in 2011 and decline at an annualrate of 10% to reach zero emissions by 2050. In contrast,in the GER’s G2 scenario, the world would still emit 20Gtin 2050.

Baer et al. recognize a lot of uncertainty, and the possibleneed for emission cuts that are even more stringent than the350 model asks for. But the GER just seems oblivious ofthis, and does not even show pretense to caution by, say,having even slightly higher targets.

Source: Paul Baer, Tom Athanasiou and Sivan Kartha, “A 350 ppmEmergency Pathway,” November 2009, accessed from http://gdrights.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/a-350-ppm-emergency-pathway-v2.pdf

 

5. GER handles 'brown technologies' with kid gloves

While any global economic shift from brown togreen will entail a long transition in which both willhave to coexist in some awkward mix, one wouldexpect a serious sustainable development strategyto consistently push for policies that can drasticallyreduce all destructive brown technologies within thenext 40 years. Yet the GER seems to show trade-offfavoritism in areas such as nuclear power and miningwhere brown business interests are well-entrenched.

GER’s green scenarios (both G1 and G2) bear downhard on fossil fuel use—which is generally positive.On the other hand, they also show an increasing use ofnuclear power from 2011 all the way to 2050—therebyendorsing an implicit yes-nukes policy.20 The GERdisappointingly keeps quiet on phasing out nuclear plants or finding clean solutions to the perennialproblem of nuclear waste disposal.

The GER similarly pampers mining and exempts itfrom merciless dissection. It is concerned about metalore depletion, intense access and supply competition,and growing extraction costs, but merely calls for higherresource efficiency, including recycling technologies,without proposing greener modes of ore extraction andclear-cut policy proposals against destructive (especiallylarge-scale) mining. The iron and steel recycling ratehas dropped from 60% in 1980 to 35% in 2006, butGER hopes the positive trend will resume and attaina 55% recycling rate by 2050, or even higher if pushedby “appropriate policy interventions.”21 More drasticpolicy interventions than the GER dares contemplateare clearly needed to green the mining industry.

 

6. The GER favors REDD+ and carbon markets

The GER paints the REDD approach (reducedemissions from deforestation and forest degradation)in glowing lights, and even wants it included in a multilayeredpayment for ecosystem services (PES) scheme,despite its potentially serious impact on indigenouspeoples, rural communities and biodiversity that havebeen raised since the scheme was first tabled in COP-13 in Bali.

As summarized by Chris Lang in a REDD-Monitorwebsite piece, the main criticisms of REDD (andREDD+) are that impositions by national parksand protected areas may lead to large-scale evictionsand loss of rights for indigenous peoples and localcommunities; forest management programs may beabused by commercial logging firms; and forestedor reforestation-targeted land may be converted toindustrial tree plantations with serious implications forbiodiversity and local communities. 22

The GER is also batting strongly for carbon marketsin general, which are questionable since they don’ttruly reduce global GHG emissions, but only pass theresponsibility to mitigate from one entity to another.Forest carbon markets are increasingly associated withland grabs, as has happened in Africa.23 Worse, carbonmarkets can behave so much like financial derivativesand futures trading, which greatly figured in the 2008crash. The same financial circles who were involved in creating the financial derivates market have also beeninvolved in creating carbon markets. 24

 

7. ‘Get economy right’ but hold on to old paradigms

The GER admits that its best scenario falls short ofthe 1992 Rio vision of sustainable development, butdefends it anyway: “The concept of a green economydoes not replace sustainable development; but thereis a growing recognition that achieving sustainabilityrests almost entirely on getting the economy right.”25

“Getting it right” in reality, however, means seeking anearly and solid buy-in from big business, mainstreameconomists, and developed countries. The GER doesthis by framing its greening strategies in terms of capital,prices, cost-benefit analysis, profits and markets. Itscore idea is to treat ecosystems as “natural capital” andas sources of marketable “ecosystem services,” anddefine their role as a “new engine of growth” in thewhole scheme of capitalist business and markets.26

This approach has its virtues, if only to make acompelling case for countries and industries to eitheradopt the most urgent environmental reforms or elsesuffer economic deficits that lead to more crises andsocial instability. But it is flawed in a fundamental waybecause it makes capital—not the environment, notpeople’s rights and needs—still king. Perversely, theenvironment is deemed valuable only as a form ofcapital, as a balance sheet entry.

As George Monbiot cautions about markets: “As soonas something is measurable it becomes negotiable.Subject the natural world to cost-benefit analysis andaccountants and statisticians will decide which parts ofit we can do without. All that now needs to be done todemonstrate that an ecosystem can be junked is to showthat the money to be made from trashing it exceeds themoney to be made from preserving it.”27

This approach risks further ecosystem imbalances. AsHelena Paul said: “[A] resilient ecosystem is a complexwhole, composed of interconnected elements thatcannot safely be prioritised over others and some ofwhich, of course, we do not yet understand. Fragmentingsuch wholes or making a hierarchy of their parts willinevitably degrade them. Fragmentation of ecosystemsincluding forests, is already a major problem that the‘green economy’ looks likely to enhance.”28

Allocating natural resources based on capacity to paypromotes resource grabs and lock out access by thepoor, while big businesses and rich economies areshown escape routes away from radical changes inproduction and resource use. Meanwhile, the socialagenda is relegated to trickle-down poverty alleviation,effectively sidelining issues of redistribution.

 

PATHWAYS TO SUSTAINABLEDEVELOPMENT

We can credit the UNEP-GER, with structuringmassive bodies of data into a comprehensible setof trends and proposals that are relevant to thesustainable development discourse and to specificpolicy questions. At the very least, it provides a mostconvincing corpus of evidence that the world cannotcarry on with business as usual, and that there are somany viable options to avoid the worst environmentalscenarios. One could not but agree with a good numberof concrete measures the GER proposes, which inany case are already gaining ground in some parts ofthe world. Some of these include sustainable farmingmethods by smallholders;29 better ways of generatingrenewable energy; closed-loop manufacturing systemsthat minimize waste; and shifting from private to publicand non-motorized modes of transport.

But the GER model has failed to capture the keyworkings of the present global economy as it reelsfrom one crisis to the next. Its greening strategy risksveering away from the positive directions of sustainabledevelopment taken by Rio and further explored bysocial movements especially those based in the globalSouth. Neither does it express a fundamentally newparadigm that reflects the aspirations of the world’speoples, especially among the poor and marginalizedin developing countries.

If GER’s green scenarios are the best it has to offer,developing countries will have to find radicallydifferent paths to sustainable development. As the debate heats up and specific points are critiquedfurther in the lead-up to Rio+20, social movementsneed to reemphasize in various forums and platformsat all levels, the following at the minimum:

First, to reassert and further elaborate the principlesof sustainable development as first enunciated in Rio1992. These include, among others, the principle ofcommon but differentiated responsibilities, whichaddresses the asymmetries between developed anddeveloping countries; and the preeminence of socialequity in attaining the correct balance among the threepillars of sustainable development.

Second, to revisit Agenda 21, restate the global goalsof sustainable development in ways that recognizediverse national conditions and interests, with astrong emphasis on the needs and aspirations ofdeveloping countries where the majority of the world’spopulations live, and always guided by a human rightsbasedapproach as already enshrined and elaborated inUN and other international instruments including theUDHR, UNDRIP, and CEDAW, among others.

Third, to pursue the discourse on Green Economy,redefined to include a wider array of scenarios andpolicy options, but clearly set within the framework ofthe principles and goals of sustainable development, asbasis for further multilateral and inclusive processes,and with due respect to national sovereignty, countryownership, and full participation by civil society.

There is global recognition that, with crises lingering onmany fronts, a drastic reshaping of social and economicstructures and relations with the environment needsto happen now, and fast. If only because the GreenEconomy is being tabled by the Rio+20 process as thepathway to attaining sustainable development at thisjuncture, the world needs to give this issue some reallyserious and critical thought.

 

Endnotes

 


1 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy: Pathways toSustainable Development and Poverty Eradication(advanced copy online release). February 2011. Accessed

2 October 2011 at http://www.unep.org/GreenEconomy/Portals/93/documents/Full_GER_screen.pdf

2 OECD, “Declaration on Green Growth,” adopted at theMeeting of the Council at Ministerial Level on 25 June 2009,[C/MIN(2009)5/ADD1/FINAL]. Accessed 10 October2011 at http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/58/34/44077822.pdf

3 Martin Khor, “The ‘Green Economy’ Debate: aSustainability Perspective (presentation at the UNmeeting on Rio Plus 20, panel on green economy),”New York, 10-11 January 2011. Accessed 10 October2011 at http://www.southcentre.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1539%

4 David W. Pearce, Anil Markandya, Edward Barbier, Dept.of the Environment (UK), Blueprint for a Green Economy.London : Earthscan, 1989.

5 Ernst & Young, “Eco-industry, its size, employment,perspectives and barriers to growth in an enlarged EU(Final Report),” European Commission DG Environment,September 2006. Accessed 10 October 2011 at http://ec.europa.eu/environment/enveco/eco_industry/pdf/ecoindustry2006.pdf

6 “The Economics of Ecosystems and Diversity (An InterimReport),” Accessed 10 October 2011 at http://www.unep.ch/etb/publications/TEEB/TEEB_interim_report.pdf

7 UNEP, “UNEP Launches Green Economy Initiative toGet the Global Markets Back to Work,” 22 October 2008.Accessed 10 October 2011 at http://www.unep.org/documents.multilingual/default.asp?documentid=548&articleid=5957&l=en

8 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 14.

9 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 14.

10 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 623-624.

11 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 14.

12 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 586.

13 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 505.

14 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 225.

15 UNEP, “Why a Green Economy Matters for the LeastDeveloped Countries,” jointly published by the UNEP,UNCTAD and UN-OHRLLS for the LDC-IV Conference,May 2011. Accessed 6 October 2011 at http://www.unctad.org/en/docs/unep_unctad_un-ohrlls_en.pdf

16 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 14.

17 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 23.

18 Khor, “Green Economy Debate.”

19 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 52.

20 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 532-534.

21 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 261.

22 Chris Lang, “Forests, Carbon Markets and Hot Air: Whythe Carbon Stored in Forests Should not be Traded,” REDDMonitorwebsite, 11 January 2010. Accessed 22 October2011 at http://www.redd-monitor.org/2010/01/11/forestscarbon-markets-and-hot-air-why-the-carbon-stored-inforests-should-not-be-traded/

23 The Gaia Foundation, Carbon Trade Watch, andTimberwatch. 2011. “Africa’s pollution and land grab threatfrom UN Carbon market”. Accessed 22 September 2011at http://www.carbontradewatch.org/articles/africa-spollution-and-land-grab-threat-from-un-carbon-m.html;See also: World Rainforest Movement. 2011. “Forest carbonproject in Parana, Brazil: Reduction of deforestation andpersecution of local communities.” Accessed 21 September2011 at http://www.wrm.org.uy/bulletin/169/viewpoint.html; and: Climate and Capitalism. 2011. “Carbon Tradingin Europe: An expensive and Harmful Failure”. Accessed21 September 2011 at http://climateandcapitalism.com/?p=4112

24 Lang, “Forests, Carbon Markets and Hot Air.”

25 UNEP, Towards a Green Economy, 16.

26 Another heavyweight study, The Economics of Ecosystemsand Biodiversity (TEEB), is devoted entirely to this exercise.Launched during the Nagoya biodiversity summit in 2010,it describes an approach to the economic valuation ofbiodiversity and ecosystems services, which then couldlead to policy reforms that

27 George Monbiot, “A Ghost Agreement,” November 1,2010, http://www.monbiot.com/2010/11/01/a-ghostagreement/

28 Helena Paul, Forest Cover, No. 37, pp. 5-6, as posted onthe Econexus website, March 2011. Accessed 27 October2011 at http://www.econexus.info/publication/rio20-green-economy-and-real-priorities

29 Olivier De Schutter. 2010. “Report submitted bythe Special Rapporteur on the right to food”. Accessed21 September 2011 at http://www.srfood.org/images/stories/pdf/officialreports/20110308_a-hrc-16-49_agroecology_en.pdf