Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


US Takes Hard Position On Climate Change In TPPA


US Takes Hard Position On Climate Change, Biodiversity & Indigenous Rights In TPPA

Proposals from the US on climate change and biodiversity, tabled as the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement talks resume this week in Singapore, have been leaked by Peru environment group RedGE.


The two provisions are alternatives to text in the environment chapter that Wikileaks posted in February.


‘The US keeps referring to this as a gold standard agreement for the 21stcentury. But its position on climate change and indigenous rights is Neanderthal’, according to Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland.

‘The US can’t even bring itself to use the phrase “climate change”’, Kelsey observed.


Its proposal seeks to replace the Article entitled “Trade and Climate Change” with one headed ‘’Transition to a low-emissions economy”.


‘The existing proposal was hardly robust. But the US wants to remove altogether any reference to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and commitments to cooperate on climate change initiatives.’

‘Whether that is to appease the climate deniers in the Tea Party, whose votes he needs to get the deal through Congress, or some other reason, Obama will be slammed by environmental groups that are strong allies of the Democrats.’

The US also wants to gut the Article on Trade and Biodiversity by removing the more progressive elements and promoting rights, presumably of corporations, to access genetic resources.


The leaked environment chapter was already criticised for failing to meet the obligations of New Zealand and others to indigenous peoples under the Convention on Biological Diversity, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and related instruments. It also fell well short of the Waitangi Tribunal’s recommendations in the WAI-262 claim on indigenous knowledge and resources.


The US is not a signatory to those instruments and opposes any provisions that are explicitly or implicitly linked to them. Its proposal removes a commitment to ‘encourage’ the sharing of benefits from using genetic resources with indigenous peoples in a fair and equitable way.


It also wants to drop the clause that recognises states have sovereign rights over their natural resources and the authority to decide who has access to their genetic resources. That clause also says access to genetic resources for exploitation should be subject to prior informed consent of the state that provides them.


‘New Zealand has already taken the low road in supporting a weak environment text’ according to Professor Kelsey. ‘It has to stand firm with the other governments this week and tell the US to bury its proposals in the mausoleum where they belong’.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Greens Proposal To Gradually Lift The Minimum Wage

Heading into the election home stretch, voters have a clear choice about the best way to help low and middle income New Zealanders. They can do so by gradually lifting the minimum wage (as the Greens propose) or by a small tax cut, as the government seems about to announce.

The minimum wage boost – by 75 cents an hour to $15 in December, and then by gradual annual increments to $18 an hour by 2017 – that the Greens are talking about is just one part of a packet of employment measures that would include scrapping youth rates and the 90 day trial period, introducing a redundancy package of four weeks, offsetting any abatement effect of the policy package for those receiving Working For Families, and finally… ditching the exception made by the government (during the Hobbit negotiations) for workers in the screen industry, which denies them normal workplace safeguards and entitlements. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

2014 General Election: Voting Period Begins

The first votes for the 2014 general election will be cast today, Wednesday 3 September, as advance voting begins ahead of election day on Saturday 20 September. More>>

ALSO:

Two Dead, One Injured: Suspect Charged After Ashburton Shooting

Russell John Tully has appeared in Christchurch District Court. Tully has been remanded in custody on charges of murder of Peg Noble and Leigh Cleveland and attempted murder of Lindy Curtis. More>>

ALSO:

John Key Press Conference: Ashburton Shootings, Judith Collins Inquiry

Prime Minister John Key has delayed the release of Nationals’ fiscal policy in light of this morning’s shooting at a Work and Income office in Ashburton... Key also answered questions about Judith Collins, and confirmed that independent inquiry will be held with regard to allegations made against Collins. More>>

ALSO:

Internet MANA: Georgina Beyer Rocks The Waka

“There is now, and always will be, a range of views about many issues within our movement and members are free to express them, but Georgina’s views on Kim Dotcom are not shared by the MANA Movement leadership or the vast majority of MANA members and supporters around the country” states MANA Candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes. More>>

ALSO:

IGIS Update: Inquiry Into Release Of NZSIS Information

The Inquiry would be conducted in private and individuals would appear before her separately over a period of more than a week. She does not intend to name those summoned to give evidence until her report is published. “I can confirm that all persons summoned will be required to appear under oath...” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On John Key’s ‘Blame It On Judith’ Strategy

Right now, Prime Minister John Key seems intent on limiting the scope of any inquiry into his government’s dealings with Cameron Slater. The declared aim is to make that inquiry solely about Judith Collins’ behavior with respect to the Serious Fraud Office. More>>

ALSO:

Maori Council Lawyers' Statement: Supreme Court Decision On Maori Water Rights

“…the Supreme Court refused to give Pouakani people what they asked for, but may have given them something much, much better instead… the Supreme Court has questioned whether the Crown owns the River at all.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Debate, And The Collins Accusation

Debating is a peculiar discipline in that what you say is less important than how you’re saying it. Looking poised, being articulate and staying on topic generally wins the day – and on that score, Labour leader David Cunliffe won what turned out to be a bruising encounter with Prime Minister John Key last night on TVNZ. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news