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CAFOD: poor should be at center of ‘green economy’

Catholic World News - May 30, 2012

As the international community prepares for the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, CAFOD--the official Catholic aid agency for England and Wales--is calling for the world’s poor to be placed at the center of “green economy” concerns.

“We think it’s an important event, and an important opportunity, but more to try and put poverty reduction and poor people’s livelihood at the center of the debate about greening development, about moving to more sustainable development models,” said Sarah Wykes, CAFOD’s lead analyst on environment and climate change.

CAFOD is “concerned about the current vision of the ‘green economy,’” the agency said in a recent statement. “It focuses too much on the ‘economy’ --that is, economic interests of rich, industrialized countries --and not enough on the ‘green’--that is, sustainable development for the poorest communities.”

“Leaving poor men and women out of the equation means solutions will be less efficient and less effective,” added Christina Weller, CAFOD’s economic justice analyst. “They often rely on the local environment and natural resources to support themselves, and they play a large part in looking after them. It is completely misguided to think that a green economy model that does not include them will work or be fair.”

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  • Posted by: molly - May. 30, 2012 11:49 PM ET USA

    Could someone translate this into concrete terms for me? How does "green economy" -whatever that means - play a large part in taking care of poor men and women? I am not being a smart alec here, but this statement of CAFOD soundsto me purely abstract and intended to make this organization look good and feel good and justify their expenses.

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