new internationalist
issue 230 - April 1992


Useful addresses, campaigns and events

There are thousands of active environmental groups in the world. In the South the first port of call should be co-ordi- nating groups. Two of the most active are Third World Network, based at the Consumers' Association of Penang, 87 Cantonment Road, 10250 Penang, Malaysia, tel (4) 373511, and Instituto del Tercer Mundo, Miguel del Corro 1461, Montevideo 11200, Uruguay, tel (2) 496 192.

Groups with a Southern perspective in readers' countries are as follows.

Two groups emphasizing the Third World perspective on UNCED are: UNCED Committee, c/o P I R M, P0 Box 10-1 23, The Terrace, Wellington, tel (04) 4738 312 and Trade Aid Education Unit, P0 Box 18620, Christchurch, tel (03) 3887 016. The Voice of the Children International Campaign is an initiative in which students from all nations will participate in organized 'hearings' with leading politicians and environmentalists. Contact Leon Burstein, 515 Marine Parade, South Brighton, Christchurch. VOCIC is not yet operating nation-wide, but the Christchurch group would be happy to help others to start a campaign elsewhere.

Community Aid Abroad, 156 George Street, Fitzroy, Victoria 3065, tel (03) 419 7111, promotes an understanding of the Third World on environment and development issues. Also the Australian Conservation Foundation, 340 Gore Street, Fitzroy, Victoria 3065, tel (03) 416 1455, and the International Environmental Law Centre, Suite 82, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney, NSW 2000, tel (02) 261 3599. A United Nations World Environment Day is earmarked for 5 June.

Probe International, 225 Brunswick Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M5S 2M6, tel (416) 978 7014, is campaigning to stop the commitment of funds to the Global Environment Facility (the 'Green Fund') proposed for the World Bank. The Canadian Environmental Network's delegates to the Canadian Participating Committee for UNCED include: Cultural Survival Canada, 1 Nicholas Street, 420, Ottawa, Ontario K1N 7B7 tel (613) 233 4653, Greenpeace Canada, 185 Spadina Avenue, 6th floor, Toronto, Ontarlo M5T 2C6, tel (416) 345 8408 and Friends of the Earth, 251 Laurler Avenue W, Ste 701, Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5J6, tel (613) 230 3352.

As usual, a good starting point is the World Development Movement, 25 Beehive Place, London 5W9 7QR, tel (071) 737 6215. The Tree of Life - Pledging for the Planet is a campaign to get pledges on changed lifestyles from Northerners, which will be taken to Rio; contact Jonathon Porritt/Gillian Harvey, 30 Grove End Road, London NW8 9LJ, tel (071) 286 2565. May11 to 16 is Christian Aid Week - contact Christian Aid, lnterchurch House, 35 Lower Marsh, London SEl 7RL tel (071) 620 4444. May 16 to 24 is Environment Week - contact Angela Carvill, Civic Trust, 17 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5AW, tel (071) 930 0914. For information on rallies, meetings and other activities leading up to UNCED contact UNA, Whitehall Court, London SWiA 2EL, tel (071) 930 2931.

InterAction, 1717 Massachusetts Avenue NW, 9th Floor, Washington DC 20036, tel (202) 667 8227 is trying to encourage the US Government and the UNCED Secretariat to take action on poverty issues. Also contact The US Citizen's Network on UNCED, 777 United Nations Plaza, New York NY 10017, USA, tel (212) 682 3633.

[image, unknown] More than 50 national broadcasters, mostly from Europe and led by the BBC, have come together to raise public awareness worldwide on the issues and opportunities of the Earth Summit. The core of the programmes is expected to be seen in some 150 countrles durlng May and June.

Developing Stories asked film-makers in the South to come up with their own ideas on the issues they considered most crucial. Six films from Brazil, Burkino Faso, India, Lebanon, the Philippines and the Carlbbean explore these issues through drama, documentary, music and fable.

Happy families follows families in the UK, Japan, Portugal, Germany, Norway and the US making the changes needed for an environmen- tally friendly lifestyle. The programmes use a soap-opera format and focus on what both indi- viduals and governments can do.

Other films include Mpingo, the fight to save the world's last ebony forest; Invisible Entrepreneurs, with Anita Roddick of the Body Shop introducing Southern women entrepreneurs; Pachamama, contrasting biological richness with human poverty in Peru; Greenbucks on industry and the environment; Sex, Drugs and Dinner, Alexei Sayle's satirical look at agribusiness.

One World Day, Saturday 30 May, will see activities all over Europe, and in the UK the culmi- nation of the Tree of Life - Pledging for the Planet campaign. There will be a major evening of enter- tainment and action featuring the voice of young people worldwide.

For further information about linking with One World 92 contact Liz Rowlands, One World Support 92, 2 Ferdinand Place, London NW1 BEE, tel (071) 482 2847.

on the environment and the South

Availability is a real problem. You might ask your library to order Third World Resurgence (from the Third World Network address), which would keep you and others up to date on how the South sees the issues. The most consistently provocative writer is Vandana Shiva, whose latest book, Ecology and the Politics of Survival - Conflicts over Natural Resources in India was published in 1091 by the United Nations University Press, Sage Publications, New Delhi/Newbury Park/London. An engrossing and exemplary piece of work Is Towards Green Villages - a Strategy for Environmentally-Sound and Paiticipatory Rural Development by Anil Agarwal and Sunita Narain, Centre for Science and Environment, 807 Vishal Bhawan, 95 Nehru Place, New Delhi 110 019, India. You'll find that most publications on the environment in the North routinely ignore a Southern perspective, but two honourable exceptions are State of the World 1992, Worldwatch Institute, Washington, 1092; and Costing the Earth - Striking the Global Bargain at the 1992 Earth Summit, World Development Movement London, 1991. Or you could start reading fiction from the South - and there the choice seems limitless.

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