Political Risk Latin America Blog @PolRiskLatam

Chávez goes green . . . sort of

Posted in News and Articles, Political Risk by politicalrisklatam on December 2, 2010

by Benedict Mander for Financial Times – Beyond Brics, December 1st, 2010.

The environment has not been kind to Venezuela this year. After Hugo Chávez blamed countrywide blackouts earlier this year on a particularly severe drought (Venezuela is heavily reliant on hydroelectricity), incessant rains now have the country on emergency footing, with dozens of lives already lost and devastating landslides a very real danger (blackouts, nevertheless, still seem to be continuing).

Indeed, Venezuela is as interested as the next country in making progress at the climate summit in Cancún this year, and certainly played a very active (some would say obstructive) role at Copenhagen last year. But the next time Chávez hops up onto his soapbox to rail against the damage rich countries have done to the environment, it’d be as well to ask what his motives really are.

After all, it is a perfect opportunity to attack his sworn enemy, the US “empire”, as well as to promote his socialist revolution – capitalism is destroying the planet, he says, and socialism is the only cure. (continue reading… )



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