Teach-In: Greens vs. the Third World

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ACSH has repeatedly lamented the green/environmentalist movement's opposition to life-saving chemicals such as DDT, and we see that the civil rights group CORE will protest this tragedy today:

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Contact: Cyril Boynes, Jr. 212-598-4000

Press release: January 15, 2004; event: January 20, 2004

CORE to hold teach-in, demand end to "Eco-Imperialism"; Greenpeace co-founder to denounce his former colleagues

NEW YORK. The Congress of Racial Equality, one of America's premier civil rights organizations, will convene a teach-in on Tuesday, January 20, at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers, to condemn the global green movement's oppression of poor people in the Third World.

"The environmental movement I helped found has lost its objectivity, morality and humanity," says Greenpeace co-founder and conference panelist Dr. Patrick Moore. "The pain and suffering it inflicts on families in developing countries can no longer be tolerated."

Moore will be one of eight experts from around the world will demonstrate from first-hand experience how environmental extremists deny destitute nations electricity, and deepen the poverty, malaria, malnutrition, tuberculosis and dysentery that kill their people.

"We intend to stop this callous eco-manslaughter," says CORE national spokesman Niger Innis. "The green movement imposes the views of mostly wealthy, comfortable Americans and Europeans on mostly poor, desperate Africans, Asians and Latin Americans. It violates their most basic human rights. CORE will lay down the gauntlet. Eco-imperialism may not be a household word yet, but it will be after this conference, the first one to address these issues."

Every year, malaria makes 200 million people so sick that they cannot work, attend school, cultivate their fields or care for their families. Most of the cases are in sub-Saharan Africa, leaving that region one of the most destitute on Earth. Two million people a year die from malaria - half of them children, and 90 percent of them in Africa.

A major reason for the malaria epidemic is the radical environmentalists and World Health Organization's near-total ban on DDT, perhaps the most effective mosquito killer and repellant in existence. "Europeans and Americans can afford to deceive themselves about malaria and pesticides. But we can't," says Fiona Kobusingye, who came all the way from Kampala, Uganda to participate in the event and tell her personal story.

The average European cow gets a $250-a-year subsidy. Meanwhile, a billion people struggle to survive on just $200 a year, Innis notes. More than 2 billion have neither electricity nor running water, and none of the basic necessities and conveniences Americans take for granted - all because of the greens' ideological opposition to energy and economic development in the Third World.

"We must put humanity back into the environmental debate," says Innis. "We all want to protect our planet. But we must stop trying to protect it from bogus or illusory threats - and on the backs, and the graves, of the world's most powerless and impoverished people."

WHAT: Eco-Imperialism: The global green movement's war on the developing world's poor

WHEN: Tuesday, January 20 - 1:00 to 4:00 pm

WHERE: Conference Room D, Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers, 53rd Street & 7th Avenue

WHO: Roger Bate, Africa Fighting Malaria, UK; Cyril Boynes, Jr., CORE, USA; Paul Driessen, author of Eco-Imperialism: Green Power á Black Death, USA; Niger Innis, CORE, USA; Fiona Kobusingye, businesswoman, Uganda; Patrick Moore, Greenspirit, Canada; Deroy Murdock, Atlas Economic Research Foundation, USA; CS Prakash, Tuskegee University, USA and India.

At the teach-in's conclusion, journalists and other attendees can meet and interview the experts, who will also be available for print, TV and radio interviews during their time in New York.

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Every year, 500,000 children around the world go blind, as a result of vitamin A deficiency, notes Dr. CS Prakash, professor of plant genetics at Tuskegee University and a native of India. Two million die from problems directly related to this simple lack of a common vitamin, often because they are so malnourished they cannot survive the malaria, dysentery and other diseases that also afflict them. "Golden rice" could help end these problems, but radical greens oppose its use, because it was developed using precise genetic engineering methods.

"Environmental activists who've never had to worry about starvation, malaria and simple survival have no right to impose their fears, prejudices and ideologies on the world's poor," Dr. Prakash says. "By orchestrating unfounded scare stories that biotech crops are unsafe or untested, they put huge road blocks on the development of plant genetic engineering that could bring economic prosperity to the rural poor in Uganda and Bangladesh."

To a significant degree, Innis stresses, these problems have been prolonged and worsened as a direct result of eco-centric policies that oppose the use of pesticides, biotechnology and fossil fuels. This cannot be allowed to continue, he and the other panelists will demonstrate.

"Eco-imperialism perpetuates poverty and misery. It's hypocritical and immoral, unethical and socially irresponsible. Worst of all, it's lethal. It simply has to end," adds panelist Paul Driessen, author of Eco-Imperialism: Green Power Black Death, and himself a former member of the Sierra Club and Zero Population Growth. "It's time to hold these groups accountable and compel organizations, foundations, courts and policy makers to understand the consequences of the policies they are imposing on our Earth's poorest citizens."

"The most recent WHO report on malaria makes virtually no mention of indoor residual spraying programs, using DDT," says Dr. Roger Bate of Africa Fighting Malaria and the American Enterprise Institute. "And when it is mentioned, it is done in a very negative way that ignores the great success South Africa and other countries have had with these programs. It's as though this great success has been scientifically cleansed from the literature."

"When I helped create Greenpeace in 1971," reflects Dr. Moore, "I had no idea it would evolve into a band of scientific illiterates who use Gestapo tactics to silence people who wish to express their views in a civilized forum. I had no idea the movement would oppose genetic engineering and other programs that could benefit mankind - and adopt zero-tolerance policies that so clearly expose its intellectual and moral bankruptcy."

"Cute, indigenous customs - the kind environmental groups say they are trying to safeguard - mean indigenous poverty, indigenous malnutrition, indigenous disease and childhood death," points out Kenyan Akinyi Arunga, who is on travel and will not be able to participate in the event. "I don't wish this on my worst enemy, and I wish our so-called friends would stop imposing it on us."