MY VIEWS 1999 : October-December


November/06/1999/ELAN: Re: Dependency Theory and

Sustainability in Latin America

Dear Benjamin. I believe that you are looking at the core of the

sustainability problem, not just in Latin America, but in all developing

countries. Your concern could be summarize in the following question:

Can dependency theories be made consistent with sustainability

theory?. If yes, then we should not expect difficulties moving from dependency

theory to sustainability theory in developing countries. If not, the road

to sustainability should be as exptected a rocky one. I believe that a

similar, but opposing situation is created when looking at the

consistency of dominant theories and sustainability in western

countries. Has anybody done formal research in this area?



On Tue, 2 Nov 1999, Benjamin wrote:

> my seminar, look at the question of:


> "Through the eyes of a dependency theorist, what can be said

> about possible sustainability in a (or all) Latin American

> Country (the country has yet to be determined)."


November/10/1999/ELAN: Re: "Environmentalists win

seats on trade panels"

Dear John. This is good news for sustainability efforts since clearly

implies that "social representatives" have also the right to be

represented in these national trade panels as social representatives must

have the same rights as environmentalist have in our democratic societies.



Estimado John. Esta es una buena noticia para los esfuerzos hacia

sustenibilidad ya que implica que "representantes sociales" tienen tambien

el derecho de ser representados in estos paneles nacionales de

intercambios comerciales ya que representantes sociales deben de tener los

mismos derechos que los representates de el ambiente tienen en nuestras

sociedades democraticas.




On Wed, 10 Nov 1999, John wrote:



> Now if the non-US environmentalists can get such representation on their

> national trade panels, it should prove most interesting to see how the

> landscape of international trade negotiations might change - or not.


> John Newcomb


> "Environmentalists win seats on trade panels"


> by David Postman

> Seattle Times Olympia bureau

> November 10, 1999


> A federal judge says committees that advise the Clinton administration on

> timber-trade policy are operating illegally because their membership is

> limited to representatives of the timber industry.


November/12/1999/ELAN: Re: El Metodo Cientifico

Estimado Jose Rafael, muy interesantes sus comentarios. Me gustaria

mencionarle que son esos pasos de el metodo cientifico los que han

mantenido y siguen manteniendo la decadencia de conocimientos

tradicionales, especialmente en paises subdesarrollados, ya que dejan

afuera conocimientos que finalmente hoy se consideran importantes para

contrarrestar el deterioro ambiental. El metodo tradicional, se puede

concebir en los siguientes 5 pasos paralelos a los descrito por


1) observacion

2) acumulacion de experiencias

3) explicaciones

4) determinacion de soluciones

5) practica

5) conocimiento popular




On Fri, 12 Nov 1999, Jose Rafael wrote:



> 1.- Observacion

> 1a.- Acumulacion de Datos

> 2.-Hipotesis

> 3.- Experimentacion

> 4.- Teoria

> 5.- Ley


December/22/1999/ELAN: Re: Aggravated Latin America

Floods - Inundaciones Agravadas en Latino America

Dear Rafael. While I agree with several statements made here about the

factors that worsen the damage caused by natural environmental factors,

the suggestion that building better houses for the poor is the solution

is in my opinion inappropriate. Concrete houses built in the same areas

will too not withstand the next flood unless the volume of the flood is

reduced either at source(stabilizing or reversing global warming) or at

catchment area(by a full and widespread social and environmental program

desinged to conteract the negative externalities of past, present, and

future economic processes).

The article mentioned deforestation and poverty as the main

causes, but reccomends the building of better housing as the

solution. Based on the main issues discussed in this posting it is clear

to me that local and international organizations, specially environmental

organizations better start given at least equal importance to

reforestation programs as the level of importance that they give to

natural forest protection/sustainable exploitation. As deforested areas

and poor areas become inhabitable due to a constant threat of natural

hazards, natural forest areas will start to be considered more socially

safe, and become in higher danger of losing their land use status. The

World Bank and the IMF appear to have strong support for the protection of

natural forest areas and strong support for the sustainable managament of

suitatble natural forest areas, but they do not have, or seem not to have

much support for a formal and full flecthed "reforestation policy".

Poverty can be addressed from the view of linking poverty

reductrion goals to the protection and sustainable management of remaining

natural forest areas, but this is a non-systematic process which

may increase economic, social, and environmental pressures on

existing deforested areas. Poverty could also be addressed

from the point of view of linking poverty reduction goals to fomal

reforestation programs. Since it appears that more poeple lives

in deforested areas than in the remaining forested areas, it

appears that reforestation policies could have a greater positive

impact on poverty reduction goals than than the protection and sustainable

management of remaining forest areas may have, but still it would be a

non-systematic solution that may increase economic, social, and

environmental pressures on forest areas under protection and sustainable

management regimes.

In my opinion, what it is needed is the systematic

implementation of reforestation policies, urbanization policies, forest

protection policies, and sustainable management policies with the only

goal of irradicating poverty or minimizing poverty levels. Then, we

may be able to create and implement a true win-win-win development

solution. As more natural disasters hit the same or other countries in

the next 10 years, the systematic solution will then become not just more

and more attractive, but perhaps unavoidable. Let's move from additive

solutions to systematic solutions before we realize that we may have

not choice, and perhaps that will allow us to save some social,

economic, and environmental assets for the future.

It is sad, but true: without desasters the chances for mininful

political changes are very small. ALL LATINO AMERICAN COUNTRIES COULD




Mis mas sinceras simpatias para el pueble de Venezuela.

Merry christmas to all.




On Wed, 22 Dec 1999, Jose Rafael wrote:


> ------------------------


> ----- Original Message -----

> From: Glen R. Barry <>

> To: <Recipient list suppressed>

> Sent: Tuesday, December 21, 1999 8:17 PM

> Subject: BIOD: Aggravated Latin America Floods


> > ***********************************************


> Deforestacion, Cambio Climatico y la Pobreza Agravan Las Inundaciones en

> Suramerica

> > ***********************************************

> > Forest Networking a Project of, Inc.

> > -- Forest Conservation Archives

> > -- Discuss Forest Conservation

> >



> 21-12-99


> La deforestacion y el cambio climatico, combinado con la pobreza, "han

>hecho que muchas areas de Latinoamerica sean desastres esperando suceder". Cada

> año Venezuela pierde 1,2 millones de acres (1,1%) de sus bosques--algunos

>de los mas ricos del mundo. Lluvias fuertes inusuales, aparentemente

> exacerbabas por el cambio climatico, y la carencia de cubierta forestal,

> significa que la lluvia corre mas rapido por las laderas de los cerros,

> incrementando la erosion, lo cual puede llevar a las inundaciones y

> deslizamientos de barro. Gaia, el sistema ecologico global, es la suma

> de sus partes. La degradacion local continuada de los sistemas ecologicos,

> como los bosques y la atmosfera, eventualmente afectaran la integridad y

> habilidad del todo para funcionar. El fallecimiento de Gaia puede ser

> presagiada por el caos climatico, y esta claramente sucediendo ahora.

> g.b.