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Naomi Klein: Blaming Environmentalists for Climate Change?

Did you read the  interview of  Naomi Klein, author of Shock Doctrine and collaborator with Bill McKibben in the 350.0rg protests against the Keystone XL Pipeline, in which she criticizes environmental groups for having a negative impact on efforts to reduce green house gas emissions?

Klein faults alliances between environmental non-profits and corporations for defeating environmental progress.

“I think it’s by building coalitions with people, not with corporations, that you are going to get those [win-win outcomes]. And what I see [in Green non-profits] is really a willingness to sacrifice the basic principles of solidarity, whether it is to that fence-line community in Richmond, Calif., or whether it’s with that Indigenous community in Brazil that, you know, is forced off their territory because their forest has just become a carbon sink or an offset and they no longer have access to the forest that allowed them to live sustainably because it’s policed. Because a conservation group has decided to trade it. So these sacrifices are made – there are a lot of losers in this model and there aren’t any wins I can see.”

Klein favors cutting emissions to carbon trading, because the action is local and the reduction in local emissions benefits the local grassroots community.

Klein repeats charges of genocide-via-climate change that negotiators from the global South have levelled against the North at climate governance negotiations.   In the habitual deference to a more placid language, one that lacks intent and that focuses relentlessly on the promises of economic development, she sees an inability or unwillingness to state the obvious,

“I feel one of the crises that we’re facing is a crisis of language. We are not speaking about this with the language of urgency or mortality that the issue deserves.”

Klein concludes, “I think the Big Green groups are becoming deeply irrelevant. Some get a lot of money from corporations and rich donors and foundations, but their whole model is in crisis.”

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