Greenwash & Public Relations

The world has moved backward on environment and development since Rio. Governments surely bear primary responsibility for this failure. However, global corporations are at the root of many of the most intractable problems and have hamstrung governments preparing for Earth Summit II in Johannesburg, South Africa.
108 heads of state from 172 countries were busy saving the planet at the earth summit Rio. It is difficult to say how the earth summit has improved the environment and helped those most in need. But it is much easier to say that in 1992, the web was a toddler in contrast to the speeding giant of mass communications it now is, giving a voice to all who can get online.
While the world's biggest CEOs and politicians gather in Davos, Switzerland to network and negotiate, activists and NGO-workers meet halfway around the world in Porto Alegre, Brazil to imagine other, more humanity-focused possibilities.
The world's leading ozone destroyer takes credit for leadership in ozone protection. A major agrichemical manufacturer trades in a pesticide so hazardous it has been banned in many countries, while implying it is helping feed the hungry.
This paper, ''Partnerships for Development or Privatization of the Multilateral System?'' was presented at a seminar organised by the North-South Coalition in Oslo, Norway.
Conservation International is working to protect endangered species in Guyana, but in practice may have fomented conflict between tribes there. The Troubled Marriage of Environmentalists and Oil Companies Carmelo Ruiz-Marrero reports on CI's questionable partnerships.
Activists, businessmen and government leaders met on Tuesday in the shadow of the U.N. Millennium Summit, agonizing over the future of economic globalization following the disruption of the WTO in Seattle and how to narrow the widening gap between rich and poor.
Some 50 multinationals joined 12 labor associations and watchdog groups to sign a ''global compact'' that commits them to support human rights, eliminate child labor, allow free trade unions and refrain from polluting the environment wherever they do business.
A flagship rice plantation in Tanzania run by UK investors has allegedly destroyed the livelihoods of local smallholder farmers, driven them into debt and impacted the local environment, according to a new report published by the Oakland Institute. The report was co-authored with Greenpeace Africa and Global Justice Now.
BOSTON -- In a letter sent to Bill and Melinda Gates today, the national corporate accountability organization Infact urged the couple to help end Philip Morris's involvement in the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN). Today, the Gates Foundation is announcing the launch of the new alliance, which includes Kraft Foods as well as UN agencies, to increase access to nutrient-fortified foods in developing countries. Kraft is a subsidiary of Philip Morris, the world's largest and most profitable tobacco corporation. The tobacco giant has been exposed for using its Kraft Foods division in efforts to undermine the World Health Organization-initiated Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), a global treaty. Infact is one of dozens of NGOs around the world working to ensure a strong and enforceable FCTC.