La Via Campesina at Cancun

La Via Campesina and its friends are traveling in caravans from across Mexico and converging on Cancun. The caravans will stop at various places of peasant, social and environmental struggles, as well as at the world alternative Forum and for a large demonstration taking place in Cancun as well as in the rest of the world, on December 7th. The alternative conference at Cancun, The Global Forum for Life and Environmental and Social Justice, will focus on small-scale and diverse solutions in contrast to the unremitting march of carbon-emitting, neoliberal globalization.

La Via Campesina and its allies will propose alternatives to the climate crisis and to the lack of responsible agreement between governments. A press release from La Via Campesina gives a schedule of highlights during The Global Forum for Life and Environmental and Social Justice. It'll be a great week wrapped up with a speech by Evo Morales of Bolivia.

The International Peasant Movement, will attempt to make two basic points:

1. That industrial agriculture is by far the biggest source of carbon emissions is based on a recent study that looked at all emissions from the global food system. Surprisingly, one-third of the emissions come from food processing and transport. The bulk of emissions come from land use changes - conversions of forest and grasslands - and from direct agricultural production like fuel use, fertilizers and tillage.

2. The potential rates of carbon sequestration due to improved range land management practices have been shown to rise from 50 to 150 (kilograms carbon per hectare per year). If farmers could make the transition to organic farming the land base could, passively, become a significant sink or sequestration pool for greenhouse gasses, literally sucking excess greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere and sequestering them safely in the soil, where they belong.
Organic Farming Sequesters Atmospheric Carbon and Nutrients in Soils "The extent of carbon sequestration found and the impressive ability of organic systems to capture carbon are important results that should be used by policy makers when planning future agriculture development." Paul Hepperly, The Rodale Institute's research manager.

Cancun, and more Consequential C Words - Considering climate change, Copenhagen, Cochabamba, the coming calamity, and most controversial: capitalism.