Then about three years ago, I started to notice that green energy programs – the strong ones that are needed to lower global emissions fast – were increasingly being challenged under international trade agreements, particularly the World Trade Organization’s rules.
In 2010, for instance, the United States challenged one of China’s wind power subsidy programs on the grounds that it contained supports for local industry that were considered protectionist. China, in turn, threatened to bring a dispute against renewables subsidies in five U.S states.
This is distinctly bizarre behaviour to exhibit in the midst of a climate emergency. Especially because these same governments can be counted upon to angrily denounce each other at United Nations climate summits for not doing enough to cut emissions, blaming their own failures on the other’s lack of commitment. Yet rather than compete for the best, most effective supports for green energy, the biggest emitters in the world are rushing to the WTO to knock down each other’s windmills.
Naomi Klein, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate
An excerpt from Naomi Klein’s new book. Full excerpt is online at the Globe and Mail. Like her other books, Naomi Klein looks deep into the actions of corporations to discover a hidden, frightening truth. It looks like an another excellent read from her and will be published later this week.
Naomi Klein is the author of several excellent books and has been a favourite author of mine for a long time. The Shock Doctrine is about disaster capitalism and how corporations take advantage of horrible natural disasters. No Logo was cultural analysis about our branded world and a political manifesto for a new generation.
One of my favourite things she has done was a documentary with her husband, Avi Lewis, about the retaking and repurposing of factories in Argentina, titled The Take. It’s both incredibly fascinating and inspirational for people looking to do more instead of following the orders of their superiors.