During the recent Greek election, the centrist/blairite Socialists got elected running on a platform of transforming the Greek economy towards the direction of Green Development. Looking beyond the electoral campaign buzzwords, the idea of starting to seriously discuss pursuing a Green shift is definitely an important political development. For us in the radical Left, however, this shift is not as apparently progressive as it sounds, especially when viewed in the context of a global economic crisis that has caused serious regressions in labor rights.
In this vein, Greg Macdougall, sat down with Ben Powless, a young Mohawk activist and organizer of the upcoming Power Shift Canada conference to discuss issues of Green Economy and social and economic justice.
The interview is available on rabble.ca in two parts:
- Grassroots must lead transition to green economy
- Why youth and First Nations are key to green economy future
And here’s the abstract:
The Power Shift Canada 2009 conference will take place in Ottawa from October 23-26. The focus is on climate change, but also on a ‘just transition’ to green jobs. Between 1000-1500 mainly young activists will gather to figure out how to present the case for a shift to a green economy, and to develop strategy for local organizing to make that happen.
Ben Powless is a Mohawk youth and one of the key organizers of the conference. He’s involved with the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, and the Indigenous Environmental Network, among other pursuits. I had the opportunity to meet with him and hear firsthand the importance of green jobs and how we can get there in an equitable, just manner.