Short Report from the Peoples’ Summit in Rio
In relation to the pressure to go back behind Rio (“Rio-20”) the restatements of achievements of Rio 1992 was positive. So the notion of “common but differentiated responsibility” which was contested by the USA and some European countries was not cancelled. And also the panacea of a “green economy” intended to replace sustainable development was downgraded. But in relation to necessary clarifications and also further challenges in the last 20 years the official earth summit was a failure.
The conclusion is: When governments are not able any more to make progress then movements have stronger responsibilities; and some regions can and shall go ahead on the sustainable and low carbon way.
Parallel to the official summit based separately very distant from the centre the Summit of the Peoples was in the centre of Rio. Basically this was a platform of a great variety of social and socio-ecological movements. The naturally dominating Brazilian movements were very impressive with about 700 panels and meetings, and hardly to overview. Europe was present only partly, also transform!europe.
The great demonstration at the beginning of the official conference had a clear anticapitalist apperance. Many other actions, e.g. of indigenous peoples or directly at financial centres had high reflections in media.
The segmented structure of the megacity of Rio is more than symbolic: Without fundamental bridging the gaps there will be no progress in peace with nature.