Rio +20 -- saving the Earth, one resort meeting at a time
2012-06-18 0:00

By James M. Roberts | FoxNews.com

Delegates from around the world will descend on Rio de Janeiro, this week for a major United Nations meeting on the environment. Dubbed "Rio+20," the event, will commemorate the 20th anniversary of the first “Earth Summit.”

But, you might say, didn’t 15,000 or so of these same bureaucrats and environmental activists gather at another world class beach resort—in Durban, South Africa— just six months ago to discuss more-or-less the same issues? Why the need for another meeting so soon?

Good question.

The largely redundant Rio meeting provides the perfect occasion to reassess American taxpayer support for several “Green” non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that have been undermining US policies and priorities for well over two decades.

Under the rubric of “Corporate Social Responsibility” many Green groups have asserted that companies have “triple-bottom-line” obligations. This theory insists companies must deliver (1) economic, (2) social and (3) environmental “returns” to justify the theoretical “license to operate” granted to them by society.

One Green NGO, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), will promote its “Report or Explain” policy in Rio. It demands that private companies “report their sustainability performance or explain why if they do not.” GRI wants governments “to provide regulation [emphasis added] and policy that promotes this kind of innovation and creativity.”


[...]

Both GRI and WWF call for a global “green economy” and propose several mechanisms to control and manipulate innovation, commerce, and trade.

For starters they want all tradable goods “certified” to ensure they meet “sustainability” standards. Those standards, of course, would be set by these very same groups. That would give groups such as WWF tremendous influence over the global trade of commodities such fish, paper, cocoa, tropical woods, beef, palm oil and more.

Indeed, last week in Washington, WWF partnered with the Consumer Goods Forum to urge major Western retailers to procure only “sustainably-sourced” palm oil. The utilization of these standards will raise consumer costs and hurt small farmers throughout the world who need unencumbered access to markets. In fact, denying small producers access to world markets would well lead to more environmental damage and increased poverty than would leaving them alone – hence the insidious nature of WWF’s calls for certification.


[...]


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