The Other Voices of Rio+20

Posted on 21 June 2012 by admin

By Fabiana Frayssinet

A War Cry Against the Merchants of Nature

The grey city streets and a few sparse trees contrast dramatically with the colourful traditional clothing, feathered headdresses and face and body paint of a group of indigenous people from the northern Brazilian state of Acre. But if the destruction of their home, the Amazon rainforest, is not halted, it will not be long before this desolate urban landscape takes over their own lands.

“The Brazilian government wants to sell our nature and our lands, our forest. It is causing the disappearance of the rivers, the animals, and the people of the rainforest,” indigenous leader Jaminawá Junikuin told TerraViva.





The Widows of Rio

 Amid the vibrant colours of a multiethnic demonstration, one group of women stands out with their black dresses and dark glasses. They weep inconsolably over a closed coffin. Who died? “Environmental policy,” they answer in unison.

The women are Brazilian government employees who decided to use black humour to condemn what they consider to be not merely a death, but a violent murder. “The killer waseconomic power, that formula for development that Brazil and other countries apply at the cost of the environment, and which has destroyed environmental policies, traditional communities, forests and artisanal fishing,” they declared.





The Race of the Xavante People

A group of 20 Xavante indigenous men, running in the opposite direction from the marchers and carrying logs, frightened a few unsuspecting city dwellers. But much greater is the fear of these natives of the western state of Mato Grosso as they watch their forests disappearing at a faster pace than their traditional “log races”.

An elder from the village of MarĂŁiwatsĂ©dĂ©, Luis Tserewamriwe Tserenhitomo, told TerraViva that large landowners are “stealing our lands.”

Francisco Tserewamriwe Tserenhitomo, a younger Xavante, explained that the landowners have brought diseases to their communities, and are planting soybeans where they used to plant corn and other subsistence crops.


A Tank That Wages War on Hunger

A tank covered in bread advances menacingly among the protestors. But its gun is aimed at a noble target: ending world hunger.

The “bread tank” is an edible, mobile sculpture created by the nongovernmental World Future Council to

back its Disarmament for Sustainable Development campaign. It was presented to the press in the Rio de Janeiro favela of Santa Marta on Jun. 19, and thenaccompanied the Global Day of Action

March in Rio to highlight the need to invest in food instead of weapons.


Categorized | English, Headlines

  • S. Saran

    Preservation of the rain forests is synonymous with preservation of the mankind. Governments should never forget this in the midst of their economic growth strategies.

  • Jack W. Scott

    From millions of years of evolution, Mankind was intended to live as these indigenous peoples still live.  We should not be living in cities and suburbs, this is my constant thought as I sit smoking my cigarettes and watching my little 3 acre grassy Nature-land.  Now, almost no-one lives as we are intended to live, but we must learn fast or we won’t even survive!  In recent years, Mankind has been like the thieving Magpie, fascinated by the bright shiny things of civilization, at ease with our television reassuring us, as we munch our easy supermarket food.  Woe unto you, America!  Heed the call!  To reduce the population and learn from the American and South American Indians how to live as Nature intends us to live, in harmony with Nature!

Download PDF File

Download TERRAVIVA PDF File   Download TERRAVIVA PDF File


Expo Milano

Photos from our Flickr stream

See all photos


Terraviva talks to Giuseppe Sala, CEO of EXPO Milano 2015 Expo Milano 2015 is in Rio to kick off its global dialogue on food and energy. During a side on June 21, CEO Giuseppe Sala gives an overview of the Expo 2015 that will run from May to October in Milan, Italy.more >>.

Upcoming Events


RSS News from our partners

  • Are you ready to Connect4Climate?
    World Bank's social media campaign engaged African youth caring about climate change.
  • Natural capital accounting
    Thomson Reuters Foundation and the World Bank have jointly produced a video explaining the concept of “natural capital accounting” in the run-up to the Rio+20 summit on sustainable development. The seven-minute video news release (VNR) was created as part of a World Bank campaign for countries to carry through on promises to include the full [...]
  • IUCN World Conservation Congress
    IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, is a long standing member of COM+. It helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges by supporting scientific research; managing field projects all over the world; and bringing governments, NGOs, the UN, international conventions and companies together to develop policy, [...]
  • IFC, Union for Ethical BioTrade Encourage Businesses to Protect Biodiversity in Latin America
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, June 17, 2012—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and the Union for Ethical BioTrade today announced an agreement at the Rio+20 Conference to increase private sector awareness of biodiversity and strengthen market frameworks for protecting it in Latin America. In addition to aiding environmental conservation, the partnership will help [...]
  • Rio de Janeiro e Banco Mundial lançam inĂ©dito Programa de Desenvolvimento de Baixo Carbono da Cidade
    RIO DE JANEIRO, 18 de junho de 2012 – A Cidade do Rio de Janeiro e o Banco Mundial lançaram hoje, durante a CĂșpula dos Prefeitos – evento paralelo Ă  ConferĂȘncia das NaçÔes Unidas sobre Desenvolvimento SustentĂĄvel-Rio+20 –, um programa pioneiro na esfera municipal para colocar em prĂĄtica açÔes para o desenvolvimento de baixo carbono [...]

Sponsors and Partners of TerraViva Rio + 20


TerraViva is an independent publication of IPS Inter Press Service news agency. The opinions expressed in TerraViva do not necessarily reflect the editorial views of IPS or the official position of any of its sponsors or partners.