Archive for the 'global south' Category

Vandana Shiva on How We The Rich World Can Stop Hurting the Poor World

Sharon November 11th, 2009

I really recommend this video, in which Vandana Shiva articulates how people in the Global North can relieve some of the tremendous ecological pressure on people in the Global South. It is couched in the context of Transition Initiatives, but can just as easily apply to neighborhood or personal level actions.

Generally speaking, if we want to reduce pressure on the world’s poor, these are my recommendations, which I think dovetail with Shivas.  The reality is that if we don’t do these things, people *DIE* – and we are in part responsible for their deaths.  So this should be an imperative.

Do not buy or eat any industrial meat – period.  Grain-fed meat raises the price of commodities in the poor world.  Either give up meat or eat only grass-fed meat.

Do not support biofuel production from foodstuffs or on land that is suitable for growing human crops.

Purchase high value, dry shipped luxury goods like spices, coffee, tea, etc… *only* when certified fair trade and grown in responsible ways (ie, shade grown coffee, etc…) 

Don’t buy imported produce.  Shift your diet to eat what’s available in your locality.  Remember, flying produce around the world is using planes to transport water, effectively.  That’s nuts on a whole host of levels.

Begin shifting your “shadow acres” of imported foods, resources and goods to your own locality – buy local when possible, even if it means buying less.  If you can’t produce something in your area, look for substitutes and work to establish local manufacture and production.