Global Trade

The Methanex Corporation, a Canadian chemical company, stumbled today in its attempt to sue the U.S. government for almost $1 billion over a crucial California clean water law. The Sierra Club welcomes the decision by a tribunal under the North America Free Trade Agreement of the Americas (NAFTA). But we are concerned that the narrow procedural ruling left the door open for future anti-environmental decisions by this tribunal or by NAFTA tribunals in other cases.
At the same moment the new U.S. Trade Representative, Robert Zoellick, was urging Congress to grant President Bush new international trade powers, a lawsuit was filed against him down the street in U.S. District Court.
This 1997 report for the Third Trinational Conference in Defense of Public Education, held in Vancouver, Canada, explains Mexico's education crisis in the context of structural adjustment.
Patrick Daniel, the CEO of Enbridge Inc, is bullish about the future of unconventional oil from Canada's massive tar sand deposits. His company not only operates North America's longest crude oil and liquid pipelines, but transports 12 percent of the oil that the U.S. imports daily. Canada's bitumen, or dirty crude, lies under a forest area the size of England and is arguably the world's last remaining giant oil field.
Workers at a factory in American Samoa that made apparel for the J. C. Penney Company and other retailers were often beaten and were provided food so inadequate that some were ''walking skeletons,'' a Labor Department investigation has found.
Bradley C. Birkenfeld was sentenced to 40 months in prison for helping rich Americans dodge their taxes, his sentence reduced in turn for informing on Swiss banking giant UBS. Now, with the help of the National Whistleblower Center, he and his lawyers hope to use a new federal whistle-blower law to claim a multibillion-dollar reward from the American government.
Issuing a landmark ruling that opens the way for compensation claims against oil conglomerates, a court in Nigeria has declared the flaring of natural gas illegal.
A confidential Ernst & Young audit of labor and environmental conditions inside a Nike factory in Vietnam was leaked to the Transnational Resource & Action Center (TRAC) in 1997. This is the first time that an accounting firm's labor and environmental audit of any apparel company has ever been made public. This internal audit reveals that Nike workers continue to work in hazardous and unjust working conditions. TRAC's report, Smoke From A Hired Gun is an analysis and critique of the Ernst & Young audit that shows that things are even worse than Nike admits.