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The earth or the pits: The global campaign to pay Ecuador to keep its oil in the soil

This program celebrates a remarkable environmental strategy proposed by civil society that is now the preferred option of the Ecuador's President. Ecuador will keep nearly a billion barrels of oil in the ground if the international community pay it $350 million in compensation each and every year for the next 10 years. The proposal has clear environmental and social benefits for Ecuador. The Yasuní National Park - a part of the Amazon rainforest with an extraordinary but fragile ecological significance - will be saved from the often devastating consequences of mining. The international community also gains from the proposal, with the atmosphere avoiding a potential 500 million tonnes of carbon emissions. The German and Spanish Governments are supporting the proposal. So too is the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). New Internationalist co-editor Vanessa Baird joins the Radio New Internationalist team to explore the Yasuní proposal and its relevance to mining everywhere.
  • As share prices shoot up during mining booms, uncritical media give glowing guarantees that whole countries will be able to ride on the resources being prized from the earth. Patricia Feeney - Executive Director of the NGO Rights and Accountability in Development (RAID) - explains why mining's the pits by pointing out the African people and places buried under the mineral wealth.

  • Carlos Larrea - one of Ecuador's leading economists - reports on the yet-to-be settled technical details of the Yasuní proposal and the emergence of a world first: legally enforceable rights for flora and fauna.

Today's stories move from Africa to Latin America. So does the music. The Afro-beats from a slave-bound past struts its stuff on Colombia's Caribbean coast as Colombi-africa: the Mystic Orchestra perform their Voodoo Love Inna Champeta-Land CD.

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