ECOCIDE The 5th CRIME AGAINST PEACE: Cardiff event
With Polly Higgins
Also faturing the film: The Shock Doctrine: the story of corporate power’
Friday June 8th. 5.00.p.m. – 9.30.p.m.
The Quaker meeting House Charles Street, Cardiff CF10 2GB
Film at 5.00.p.m
Bring food to share and socialise 6.45 p.m.
Polly Higgins explains Ecocide 7.30.p.m.
Join us: Be the Change
Celebrate the Life of Mother Earth
And the Right to Justice of all things living
Discussions, Question and Answer sessions . . .
Share your thoughts, experiences, inspirations . . .
And share some food with us
For more information contact: Diana Marquand:
"The Shock Doctrine" by Naomi Klein: this film tells the story of
the spread of the Milton Friedman/Chicago school doctrine of economics throughout the world: the principle idea behind this theory is that there should be no state provision of services (such as health, education, transport, social services, telecommunications, water supply) and that corporations should control not only economic but social transactions. It was the theory that led to the notion of "Shock and Awe" during the last Iraq war.
This school of thought has implications for environmental as well as social policy: there is currently no law that governs or restricts what corporations can do and we all know that the big corporations are responsible for drilling and spilling of oil, for "fracking" (which has the potential to poison water supplies and to increase CO2 emissions exponentially) and for extraction of oil from tar sands.
Many of us are engaged in activist groups and spend much time lobbying governments about these issues, to try to halt or minimise the damage to the earth's resources, the air and water pollution as well as the earth's climate.
Polly Higgins is a Scots barrister who intends to attend the Earth summit in Rio to put forward a plan for: 1) A Bill of Rights for the earth, which would ensure the earth's right to clean air, clean water, the life of all its eco systems and the right to peaceful enjoyment of all its resources by all its inhabitants. 2) A law of ecocide which would apply to all those who do not respect and preserve these rights.
I hope that you will join with us on June 8th to discuss these issues and to hear what Polly Higgins is proposing.
In Polly's words: ‘Ecocide is the extensive damage to, destruction of or loss of ecosystems of a given territory whether by human agency or by other causes, to such an extent that peaceful enjoyment by the inhabitants of that territory has been severely diminished. Eradicating ecocide is the means for states to meet global sustainability targets and to create a green economy where people and planet come before profit’.
This law also has an important Human Rights aspect: it would oblige developed countries to provide alternative accomodation to those who lose their homes through flooding or other climate change connected conditions.
I also hope that we will be able to discuss together what needs to be done, in terms of raising consciousness of crucial issues and helping each other to make sure that change happens, not only in our own lives, but in terms of the power of corporations and banks. I will be drawing on the work of Michael Northcott of Christian Aid to discuss these issues.
Please contact me if you would like more information, and if you would like the Welsh language or the English language version of the Bill of Rights.
We will be asking for donations for people to attend this event - we have no funding and need to cover our costs. I am suggesting £5/£10 depending on income
I would be very grateful if you could give me some indication if you do wish to attend.
Recommended background reading:
Michael Northcutt, a professor at Edinburgh University, who fully supports the aims of the Ecocide campaign, has written a very comprehensive article on the issues raised above.
Artificial persons against nature: environmental governmentality, economic corporations, and ecological ethics
Michael S. Northcott
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Volume 1249, The Year in Ecology and Conservation Biology pages 104–117, February 2012
Despite the 194 nation-state signatories to the global Convention on Biological Diversity, the conservation effort is failing to halt an ongoing spiral of decline in most habitats and ecological communities on land and ocean. Environmental ethicists argue that the failure to halt the unsustainable predation on the ecosystems that sustain industrial civilization is indicative of a moral as well as a scientific crisis. Principal ethical interventions in ecology include the ascription of value to species and ecosystems, wilderness ethics, and ecological virtue. Ecological virtue ethics identifies agency, character, institutions, and practices as crucial to moral formation and outcomes. However, the dominant role of the economic corporation in ecological destruction subverts a virtues approach. Corporations as fictive persons will not learn ecological virtue absent of legal and regulatory reform and the ecological education of business leaders and owners.
Link to the full article: