Article06 December

Hamba Kahle

Photo from the Nelson Mandela Foundation

Photo from the Nelson Mandela Foundation

Sergio Abranches

He fought an oppressive, violent, and illegitimate regime. He wouldn’t comply with laws that were unacceptable, because they promoted institutionalized racism and segregation. He got a life sentence based on those laws, and spent 27 years in jail. The apartheid regime and the tyrannical political system that supported it were defeated by the persistent resistance of the majority he inspired. When he was elected to be South Africa’s first black president Nelson Mandela has chosen to be democratic and communitarian on the best tradition of his Xhosa people. He refused to be vindictive and resentful, as so many others have been in similar circumstances. He was incomparable. The Xhosa tradition is based on Ubuntu that says that sharing and relating with others is the core of our humanness. An isiXhosa saying Umuntu Ngumuntu Ngabantu means that the person becomes a person through other persons. Our fulcrum is our humanness which is realized only through other humans. More »

Article13 May

Brazil en route to becoming a global clean powerhouse

Brazil has all it takes to become a global clean energy powerhouse. More »

Article19 December

The Climate Convention has lost relevance and hinders local initiatives

Sergio Abranches

A balance of the decisions made at the Climate Convention (UNFCCC) since Bali, in 2007, would show that there has been little more than formal progress. The most concrete outcome so far has been the result of the frustrated COP15 held in Copenhagen, in 2009. Large emitters outside the Kyoto Protocol have pledged to reduce their carbon emissions for the first time. Among them The United States, China, India, and Brazil. More »

Rio+20: still in search of ambition

Sergio Abranches

Brazil wants an ambitious outcome to the Rio+20 summit. Diplomats say, however, that they will work to prevent this outcome from being exclusively oriented towards environmental issues.

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Article02 March

G20 looks at green economy and disaster risk reduction

Sergio Abranches

G20’s Finance ministers and Central Bank governors met last week, February 25-26 in Mexico City to discuss global economic troubles. In their communiqué they have conceded a few words to the green economy, and to disaster risk management. Should we see it as a sign that there is hope they’ll someday get smarter?

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Article25 January

China braces for a carbon market

Sergio Abranches

Last week, China’s National Development and Reform Commission reportedly directed seven regions to set overall emissions control targets and submit proposals for how caps should be allocated. The directive, which encompasses the cities of Beijing, Chongqing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Tianjin and the provinces of Guangdong and Hubei, aims to establish cap-and-trade pilot projects for the country’s carbon market, meant to be in place by 2015. More »