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[OPIRG-EVENTS] Tuesday, March 13: Trading away our forests

The Forest Action Network & OPIRG present:

Trading Away Our Forests - A teach-in about the FTAA, 
globalization and threats to the forests, with activists 
from B.C.'s Forest Action Network. Members of FAN are 
travelling across Canada, giving talks about forests 
and the FTAA on their way to protests in Québec City.

Tuesday, March 13 * 8 pm
Ottawa Public Library Auditorium
120 Metcalfe Street, Ottawa

For more information contact OPIRG-Carleton, 520-2757.

The FTAA & Forests:

This April, government representatives from 34 western hemisphere nations
will descend on Quebec City to negotiate the future of global trade for
half of the planet. An agreement could compromise decades of struggle to
value and protect the land and all its inhabitants.

Industrial clearcut logging and corporate resource extraction on unceeded
or stolen Native land is beginning to be recognized as unsound,
unethical, and just plain wrong by people around the world. Will our voices
be heard as corporations and governments negotiate away our right to oppose
their policies of profits before all else?

The goal of the FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) is to create a free
trade and investment zone that extends from northern Canada to the
southern tip of Chile. As with NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement),
"free trade and investment" means reducing government regulations on
corporations, opening markets to foreign competition and expanding trade
in all products, including forest products. In fact, it appears that the
FTAA could include a "Global Free Logging Agreement" like that proposed and
thus far defeated at the World Trade Organization.

The FTAA would promote unbridled hemisphere-wide consumption of forest
products without a single forest or biodiversity safeguard. Negotiators
expect that the FTAA will also include investment liberalization
initiatives like those included in NAFTA and the ill-fated Multilateral
Agreement on Investment (MAI) that allow corporations to sue governments
if environmental laws reduce profit.

A "Global Free Logging Agreement" in the FTAA?

A Global Free Logging Agreement would:

(A) 1. Eliminate tariffs on forest products, which would
2. Increase consumption of forest products, which would
3. Increase production of forest products, which would
4. Increase unsustainable logging, which would
5. Further decimate the world's endangered old-growth forests.

(B) 1. Threaten forest protections by labeling them "non-tariff trade
barriers," which could
2. Threaten forest protections such as recycled content and eco-labeling
laws that reduce consumption and encourage sustainable forestry practices,
which would
3. Tie the hands of people reforming current unsustainable practices, 
which would
4. Further decimate the world's endangered old-growth forests, which would
5. Cause global deforestation and loss of biodiversity.

We will not allow our hands to be tied by corrupt governments and greedy
multinational corporations. A wave of resistance is building to shut down
their negotiations in Quebec City. Join us and discover the role you can
play in reigning in this system run amok. Take action in your own community
as well, and show the corporations the power of the people.

The presentation will highlight the forests and communities of resistance
in the territory known as British Columbia, and across Kanada. A dynamic
movement of ordinary citizens has been changing the face of the forest
industry in this country. As we all fight the monster of a global economy,
let us stand in solidarity to create a global resistance.
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