Democracy Now!, this week in Durban for the UN climate conference, offers one deluded perspective on solving the world’s problems:
On Sunday, Democracy Now! producer Mike Burke attended the corporate-sponsored World Climate Summit here in Durban that advocates a market approach to solving the climate crisis. One of the people who attended was the South African entrepreneur Jason Drew.
JASON DREW: We’re here talking about COP 17. “COP 17,” that means there’s been 17 previous conferences. Most shots I’ve ever had at a business is twice, and that’s lucky. Most times you get one go. COP 17 is a cop-out, because it’s taken us 17 goes to try and fix the environmental problems from a political stance. What we can do is fix it from a business stance. There are so many businesses in this world busy repairing our future, which, from where I stand today, is broken. We need to repair the future. And it’s businesses and individuals that will drive that change, not governments.
MIKE BURKE: I’m curious how you would describe this or, you know, make this argument to someone, say, from the Maldives or one of the small island nations. What—why would any corporation be that interested, say, in saving the Maldives? What would be in their interest to do that?
JASON DREW: Consumers live there. Customers live there. It’s a business world. It’s capitalism. We need people to buy our goods. If people don’t buy my goods, I haven’t got a business. So, therefore, we need to save those things. Two, three, four hundred thousand people in the Maldives, they all buy iPads, Coca-Cola, all the products we know. If they don’t exist anymore, the market’s gone. This is about market economics.