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by CPI (ML), 3 December 2011

Imperialism, to escape its grievous crisis, has resorted to further exploitation of human and natural resources. For the first time in history, we have actually reached a stage where the very existence of humankind and the very world that they live in is in jeopardy. However the ruling classes, all over the world, refuse to recognise this truth. They continue with the super-exploitation of all available natural resources in their quest for super profits as the only way to escape the super crisis that they are passing through. Even after it is proved that the earth is headed for disaster, and after this fact compels them to hastily convene conferences to discuss means to postpone the disaster, all such conferences have not seen any mitigation of their greed and have ended in stalemates where no one gives an inch in their pursuit of profits. They have resorted to sops like carbon credits to create a pretence that they are going to pay for spoiling the environment, whereas the reality is that they are only buying the right to pollute.

The ICOR (International Co-ordination of Revolutionary Parties and Organisations) which was formed in October 2010 in Berlin has taken this issue of the environment very seriously. In particular, out of four days that ICOR observes every year, it has been decided to observe the first Saturday of December in each year as the World Environment Day as per the practice followed by environmental activists all over the world since several years. The first such World Environment Day was observed soon after its formation on 4th December 2010 and was observed by members of ICOR jointly with other environmental activists in many countries all over the world. This year also, ICOR has given the call to observe 3rd December 2011 as the World Environment day. There will be many programs all over the world even on this day just as last year.

As a part of this commitment to the environment, ICOR has also taken up a campaign along with the ILPS (International League of People's Struggles) against nuclear energy and for total disarmament. This campaign was started in August / September 2010 and will last for one year. In many countries movments have already been built up on this question. In India also, we have taken steps to form an Organising Committee for forming an All India Democratic Forum Against Nuclear Energy. The preliminary meeting for this was held in Delhi on 10th August following a march against the Jaitapur nuclear plant in Delhi on 9th August, the “Quit India” day. As a part of this campaign we have also taken an active part in the Koodankulam struggle.

The CPI (ML) has given great importance to this question. In its recently concluded 9th Congress, the CPI (ML) has accepted the contradiction between capitalism and nature as the fifth fundamental contradiction at the world level. After much debate, it was finally accepted by the Congress that the contradiction is different from that between capital and labour and just as crises cause capitalism to heighten the exploitation of labour, so also the present severs crisis has caused capitalism to unprecedentedly increase the exploitation of nature. This is also reflected in the 9th Congress debates on the question of “development”. It is obvious that we cannot measure development only in terms of GDP and that development must be in consonance with the preservation, protection and nurturing of natural resources also. This calls for rethinking of the very concept of development. It must mean development in the quality of life for present and future generations. That is the only valid framework within which we can conceptualise development.

The past year has confirmed the precarious situation in the world today. Not only is each year consistently hotter than the past, not only are glaciers all over the world disappearing, not only are the polar ice caps definitely melting, but even the incidents of frequent earth quakes like that which happened in Fukushima are not mere coincidences. That the ruling classes of the world can still think of introducing nuclear power in the face of an accident of Fukushima only serves to underline the extent to which they will stoop in their quest for profits. Common human beings can stand no chance to survive in the face of such greed.

To change the concept of development and to stop this wanton ravage of natural resources requires the destruction of the imperialist/capitalist system all over the world and its replacement by socialism. This is the only way to ensure that the human race can survive. When, under capitalism, human labour is only seen as another raw material and when, under globalisation, capital scampers to the far corners of the world to find both cheap labour and cheap raw materials, it is only by ensuring the primacy of nature and labour over capital that we can effect an escape from this mad race towards oblivion.

The CPI (ML) calls upon all the working class and toiling peoples and upon all democratic and patriotic individuals and organisations to come together on 3rd December to fight against the destruction of our environment.

  • Imperialism destroys our environment – not imperialism but socialism is the only alternative!

  • Make December 3rd a day of struggle against the destruction of the environment by imperialism!

  • Workers of the world and oppressed people of the world unite to save our environment!

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