Critics say Morales’ rhetoric belied by his actions


Bolivian President Evo Morales. (Photo courtesy of United Nations)

In April of 2010, Bolivian President Evo Morales hosted the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, a meeting in which representatives of civil-society groups and governments from around the world converged on the central city of Cochabamba. Four months earlier, the UN Conference on Climate Change in Copenhagen had ended in disappointment, a consensus on limiting greenhouse-gas emission having proved elusive. In Cochabamba, Morales condemned industrialized nations for that failure and called for the rejection of capitalism, which, he said, “poisons our rivers and lakes.” The conference culminated in a call for “economic systems that are in harmony with Mother Earth,” and in the creation of an International Rights of Nature Tribunal (IRNT), a global panel that would weigh in symbolically on key environmental questions. Morales, who since 2008 had been speaking out in favor of clean energy, didn’t stop there. In... [Log in to read more]

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