WHAT'S NEW IN INES?
Dateline: April 27, 2001
This is the weekly electronic information service of the International Network of Engineers and Scientists for Global Responsibility
Editor: Tobias Damjanov, e-mail:
INES homepage: http://inesglobal.org
INES International Office
INES Chair: Prof. Armin Tenner [Please note that the first "1" in q18 is the number one, while the last "l" is a "L"]
CONTENTS of WNII No. 17/2001
MEMBERSHIP AND PROJECTS' NEWS
Re: INESPE call for solidarity (WNII 16/2001)
Please note the following correction:
For more information, contact Johannes Daniel Dahm at the Berlin INESPE Office: < > or Antje Bultmann: < >
Victim of the Bush administration war against the environment
Dr Frank Meyberg from the INES Project "Spiritual Dimensions of Sustainability" is drawing attention to the case of Ian Thomas, a US cartographer who lost his job at the US Geological Survey (USGS) because of a map he has produced: The map shows a coastal area in Northern Alaska code-named "1002" where, among others, the species of the Caribou is living. So far, this area was protected against oil exploitation. Reportedly, the Bush administration is planning to re-open this area for the oil industries which threatens the wildlife. This is why the environmental organisation "Sierra Club" sees Ian Thomas as "the first victim of the Bush administration war against the environment."
You can find more detailed information at Ian Thomas' website Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Caribou Maps: http://www.maptricks.com
The official Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Site is at: http://www.r7.fws.gov/nwr/arctic
Additional information is provided by the Defenders of Wildlife: Wildlife At Risks: http://www.defenders.org/atrisk
Also note that on 20 March this year, more than 500 leading U.S. and Canadian scientists called on President Bush today to stop trying to change the law that prohibits oil extraction in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The letter (*) urged President Bush to "support permanent protection of the coastal plains significant wildlife and wilderness values." The scientists said oil development could seriously harm caribou, polar bears, muskoxen and snow geese -- among other wildlife. They warned it could disrupt the fragile ecosystem of the coastal plain, which they said could lead to even more widespread injury to wildlife and its habitat.
USA: GRACE Proposal for a Sustainable Energy Agency
The US-based INES member organisation Global Resource Action Center for the Environment (GRACE), Convenor of the Abolition 2000 Working Group for Sustainable Energy, has prepared a "Model Statute for a Sustainable Energy Agency" for the Commission on Sustainable Development, 9th session, NGO Energy and Climate Change Caucus, United Nations, New York, April 19, 2001.
GRACE President Alice Slater stated that the Model Statute has had a very good reception at the Commission on Sustainable Development meetings at the UN. The NGO Energy Caucus is asking to lobby our governments to have the final document of the CSD include a call for the establishment of a Sustainable Energy Agency.
In particular, Alice Slater underlined: "WE ARE ALSO BEING ASKED TO URGE THE US, RUSSIA, CANADA, UK, INDIA, PAKISTAN AND AUSTRALIA TO DROP THEIR INSISTENCE THAT NUCLEAR ENERGY BE INCLUDED AS A SUSTAINABLE FORM OF ENERGY!! (Interestingly, China is NOT a problem and France and Finland appear to be less of a problem than the others. All other countries are opposed.)"
You can obtain the Model Statute as an rtf-formatted email attachment (size: ~ 211 Kb) from the WNII Editor.
For more detailed information, contact Leslie Seff: < >
Abolition 2000 homepage: http://www.abolition2000.org
Grassroots News: http://www.napf.org/abolition2000/news/
New to the Abolition 2000 website
Both documents are downloadable in PDF only from: http://www.abolition2000.org
A VIP letter to Bush re global warming (Source: Time Magazine, http://www.time.com/time/magazine/printout/0,8816,104774,00.html )
Monday, April 23, 2001
Dear Mr. President: No challenge we face is more momentous than the threat of global climate change. The current provisions of the Kyoto Protocol are a matter of legitimate debate. But the situation is becoming urgent, and it is time for consensus and action. There are many strategies for curbing greenhouse-gas emissions without slowing economic growth. In fact, the spread of advanced, cleaner technology is more of an economic opportunity than a peril. We urge you to develop a plan to reduce U.S. production of greenhouse gases. The future of our children-and their children-depends on the resolve that you and other world leaders show.
J. Craig Venter
Edward O. Wilson
On the Kyoto Protocol process
CSD: NGOs on the International Year of Ecotourism
An NGO statement regarding the 2002 International Year of Ecotourism (IYE) has been disseminated among delegates attending the 9th session of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD9) and the first preparatory meeting of the Rio+10 Summit and is being sent to government official's attending the UN General Assembly next September.
The NGO Statement is available as an rtf-formatted email attachment (size: ~ 14 Kb) from the WNII editor.
Mordechai Vanunu receives Doctor Honoris Causa at Tromsoe University
(Source: Press release by Fredrik S. Heffermehl, IPB-Oslo, 21 April 2001)
Still imprisoned in Ashqelon prison, Israel, nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu, also a Vice-President of the International Peace Bureau since its last year's Triennial Assembly, will be created Doctor Honoris Causa at Tromsoe University, Norway, in a ceremony on May 15.
Announcing the decision, the University President, Tove Bull, stated that the doctorate was awarded for Vanunu´s effort for world peace. "Some may wish to criticise us for giving this honor to a man convicted for treason. We feel that his loyalty was pulled in two directions - loyalty to his own state and loyalty to mankind. He chose the latter, and we think he did right", said Ms. Bull, adding that the decision also was to underline the freedom of speech and the need to struggle against nuclear weapons.
Kaare Willoch, a former prime minister of Norway, praised the initiative and gave his warm support. Pointing to the fact that nuclear weapons may jeopardize Israeli security when other countries get similar capabilities, he added that "this is an important recognition of a man who chose to follow his own conscience and the loyalty to mankind."
"This is good," Mr. Willoch said.
At the official ceremony in Tromsoe on May 15, with the 1995 Nobel laureate Sir Joseph Rotblat (an INES member) as the main speaker, Meir Vanunu will receive the honors on behalf of his brother. An appeal by the University to the Israeli authorities that Vanunu was entitled to his freedom and should be released for the ceremony had been refused. Moreover, the Israeli embassy in Oslo denounced the decision in sharp language, calling it a peculiar action.
Among those who have received honorary doctorates in Tromsoe, are Nobel laureates Mikhail Gorbachev, Desmond Tutu, Rigoberta Menchu.
For further information contact Fredrik S. Heffermehl: < >
VERTIC: Biological Weapons Protocol Proposed (Source: VERTIC Press Release, 23 April 2001)
The draft of a new verification protocol, intended to meet the challenge of biological weapons proliferation, is a modest, but necessary step towards agreement, according to VERTIC, an independent research organisation based in London. Ambassador Tibor Tóth of Hungary, chairman of the negotiations, presented his compromise proposal in Geneva today at a meeting of countries which are parties to the 1975 Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC).
VERTIC supports agreement on a strong protocol this year on the basis of the chairmans draft. Under the new agreement, which would be a protocol to the Convention, states would have to declare some biotechnology, pharmaceutical and biodefence facilities which could then be visited by inspectors. Parties could request more intrusive investigations into suspected clandestine biological weapons programmes or into suspected use of biological weapons.
VERTIC believes, however, that the draft is weighted too much in favour of government and industry. The powers of the international Organisation for the Prohibition of Biological Weapons to be established by the protocol are weak, especially compared with those of the comparable organisations for controlling chemical and nuclear weapons. The protocol should be strengthened. Some of the proposed measures look more like bio-tourism than verification, said Oliver Meier, Arms Control and Disarmament Researcher at VERTIC.
The task of detecting and deterring violations of the BWC has been made more urgent by recent advances in biotechnology, including genetic engineering. The BWC prohibits the development, production and stockpiling of biological weapons. An Ad Hoc Group of parties to the Convention began negotiations on a verification protocol in 1995, spurred on by the discovery of clandestine biological weapons programmes in the former Soviet Union and Iraq. The mandate for the current talks expires in November this year.
For further information, contact: Oliver Meier, Geneva: < > or: Trevor Findlay, Executive Director, VERTIC, London: < >
The Access Initiative
The World Resources Institute (WRI), an independent environmental think tank based in Washington;
the Environmental Management and Law Association (EMLA), an association of lawyers, university professors, scientific researchers, environmental economists and journalists based in Hungary;
Corporación Participa, a Chilean nonprofit organization that promotes informed, organized, and responsible citizen participation in public policies throughout Latin America, and
the Thailand Environment Institute, a non-profit organization working closely with international organizations, government, NGOs, academia, the private sector and local communities to help link policy with action to encourage environmental progress in Thailand...
...have recently launched a new collaborative effort, known as The Access Initiative, to accelerate access to information, participation, and justice in environmental decision-making. You can find more extensive documentation and information on our website, at: http://www.wri.org/governance/AccessInit.html
The Access Initiative is also offering an e-mail list, which was created to help communicate with important and interested stakeholders, provide brief updates on the progress of the Initiative, and to stimulate discussion of specific issues. If you would like to be added to the e-mail list, please visit http://www.wri.org/governance/elist.htm where you will see a place to add your name and click "join." Or you can send an email to < > (no subject heading is necessary, but please put your name and organization in the message field of your email).
Please note that the information that will be shared with you is accessible only in English.
New selected references on NMD and related items
INES WEB AND E-MAIL SERVICE
No new or changed addresses.
All INES e-mail addresses and homepages are available upon request from:
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