Commodifying the Environment

While the half-hearted climate talks drag on in Cancùn, World Bank president Robert Zoellick has announced that his organization will be creating a fund of $100 million to encourage developing countries to establish carbon markets.  Cynically enough, funds for adaption to the destructive impacts of climate change sweetens this bitter pill.

This new fund is rather like the US banking system: despite having crashed and thereby demonstrated its deep structural flaws, it continues to make money hand over fist for Wall Street insiders.  Similarly, the European Union’s carbon trading mechanism has been plagued by fraud and has crashed several times, and yet here comes the World Bank with a plan to extend this scheme to the rest of the globe.

Zoellick, it should be noted, as a US trade representative and deputy secretary of state under George W. Bush.  Why, one wonders, would anyone doubt the integrity of his motives as World Bank president?


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