Bolivian leader Evo Morales, photo: Sebastian Baryli via flickr.
Take this as a sign of how wide a gap exists when it comes to the international discussion of climate change: While the US Congress runs away from any notion of calling acting on climate change about environment--it's all about energy security and jobs, tough things that make you want to pound your chest and think of Old Glory--Bolivia has announced that it will create a Mother Earth Ministry, incorporating a large part of the the current Environment and Water ministry. Yes, a Mother Earth Ministry. Perhaps it's not surprising, considering Bolivia just hosted the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, that a ministry would be created in the spirit of recognizing the intrinsic value of the one planet we've got and recognizing the dependent relationship we have with it.
According to the Economic Times (India), the new ministry will be held accountable for enforcing the Declaration of Cochabamba, the outcome of the WPCCRME.
This is where things could get sticky, in terms of enforcement and concept--good luck...
Declaration Calls For Holding Temp Rise to 1°C, More
In case you missed it (and you probably did as most mainstream news sources seemed to overlook the event, as I'm sorry to say so did this news source to a large degree, mea culpa) the 10-page declaration calls on developed countries to:
Commit to emissions reductions to hold global average temperature rise to 1°C, including a 50% reduction below 1990 levels without resorting to market mechanisms such as carbon offsets, as part of a second Kyoto Protocol commitment period. Finance and ensure technology transfer necessary to compensate developing countries for lost development opportunities due to changing climate. Conclude an international agreement on climate migrants, taking responsibility for them.
The Gap's So Wide We Might As Well Be Talking About Different Issues
I support both the letter and intent of Declaration, and really like the feeling and idea of creating a Mother Earth Ministry, but more than anything this all just reinforces that there are multiple realities at play here, entirely different concerns, attitudes, and mindsets. So wide is the philosophical gap that it seems like it's not even the same issue being discussed. How to close that gap remains the crucial question.
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More on the Global Climate Change:
Bolivia's President: "Capitalism Dies, or Earth Dies"
Iconic Bolivian Glacier Disappears: Melting Increased Three-Fold in Past 10 Years
Never Mind a Climate Treaty, Is It Time to Consider a Universal Declaration of Planetary Rights?