John Burroughs is Executive Director, Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy (www.lcnp.org), based in New York City. He represents LCNP in Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty review proceedings, the United Nations, and other international forums. He was a member of the Marshall Islands international legal team in its nuclear disarmament cases in the International Court of Justice. He’s the author of numerous publications related to nuclear weapons including contributing to a report called The Climate-Nuclear Nexus, which we discuss.
A pioneer monument and a lot of state troopers with batons and riot helmets stood between the mostly young native activists and the North Dakota state capitol on Friday afternoon. Many of the activists arriving at the capitol’s vast green lawn hadn’t heard that the Washington DC judge had decided against the Standing Rock reservation Sioux lawsuit. That was the lawsuit asserting that the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) had gone forward without adequate tribal consultation. There was a sign of anguish when the news was delivered by megaphone, and then, a few minutes later, shouts of joy as a young woman with a long black braid standing in the pouring rain announced the victory chasing the heels of that defeat.
Summer is drawing to an end here in the South, but in the region’s prisons—and across the most incarcerated nation on earth—things are just starting to heat up.
Friday marked the 45th anniversary of the Attica Prison Uprising. It also saw the launch of a coordinated series of nationwide work stoppages and hunger strikes by incarcerated Americans, perhaps the largest of its kind in history.
Climate change played a heavy role in the nightmarish storm that brought a three-day deluge to coastal Louisiana last month, triggering floods that killed 13 and left thousands more homeless, research released Wednesday showed.
Most people living in the United States know little about the International Workers’ Day of May Day. For many others there is an assumption that it is a holiday celebrated in state communist countries like Cuba or the former Soviet Union. Most Americans don’t realize that May Day has its origins here in this country and is as “American” as baseball and apple pie, and stemmed from the pre-Christian holiday of Beltane, a celebration of rebirth and fertility.
Indigenous groups from across the world staged a paddle down the Seine river in Paris on Sunday, calling on governments to ensure Indigenous rights are included in the United Nations climate pact currently being negotiated in France.
The United States, the EU, Australia and other states have pushed for Indigenous rights to be dropped from the binding parts of the agreement out of fear that it could create legal liabilities. Indigenous representatives from North and South America, Indonesia and Congo played instruments and led others in prayer amid the smell of burning sage after activists completed the paddle, demanding the protection of water and the environment.
The vast conference complex that is hosting the Paris climate summit opened its doors to the general public this morning, just one day after world leaders launched the talks with a round of rallying statements and promises to combat global warming.
The inauguration of the Climate Generations areas was due to take place three days after the world’s largest climate march, which was canceled by French authorities in the wake of the November 13 terror attacks that killed 130 in and around the French capital.
According to organizers, 360 French and international civil society organizations will help bring the conference center to life during the two-week summit, which is expected to attract 40,000 visitors.
Olivia Teter and her daughter Jacqueline Puliati, 20, had traveled all the way from San Francisco to take part in Sunday’s big climate march, and to add their voice “to those who are putting pressure on world leaders.” But like scores of others, Teter and Puliati were turned away from Place de la République by police blocking access to the square. “I was very disappointed, it wasn’t the right answer,” Teter, a climate activist based in Silicon Valley, said.
Any hopes that Teter and her daughter may have had of joining protests near the conference center have also been dashed, with Paris police authorities announcing Tuesday that protests around the Le Bourget site would be banned until December 13 — two days after the end of the talks.