Making the Sausage at Glasgow

November 10, 2021

I’m somewhat fascinated with the business reporting from the Glasgow COP meeting.

First of all, Diana Olick of CNBC is doing great work on a number of fronts, secondly, the process that you’re seeing is a bunch of business leaders who generally get that climate is a problem, a big one, while they are trying to steer these giant ships, (Pepsico in the clip above) thru a global transition the likes of which no one has ever seen.

So the conversation includes things like, what concerns does a giant food company have about extreme weather, and water supplies? Where does the plastic for your packaging come from, what is the composition of your transport fleet, (they are going to be buying Tesla electric trucks), and the company’s need for policy makers to pivot the wider grid to renewables to lower the overall footprint of the operation, beyond what the company can do by itself.

It may possibly be that all this is just rearranging the deck chairs on said giant ship, that the Extinction Rebellion demonstrators are right – or it may be that this is just what the “in between” process looks like as we move toward a decarbonized goal as the vast majority of global citizens are still eating, drinking, driving, and demanding services that use energy in one form or another.
I offer this as just food for thought on the complexity of speeding this process up (as we must), seeing as there is no foreseeable circumstance where everything comes suddenly to a crunching, or crunchy, halt and the green millennium magically dawns.

Looking over the products below, I did not realize that my favorite hummus, which I eat to lower my meat consumption and carbon footprint, actually comes from this giant corporation. Food for more than thought.

6 Responses to “Making the Sausage at Glasgow”

  1. Abel Adamski Says:

    Sent to me by an investment advice service
    “Cycles, Trends & Forecasts
    Tuesday, 9 November 2021
    Melbourne, Australia
    By Catherine Cashmore

    [2 min read]

    Dear John,

    There’s nothing more valuable than land — or, more accurately, the economic rent from land.

    That’s why everything we do here at Cycles, Trends & Forecasts aims to open your eyes to the motivations behind the monopolisation of this resource.

    Take the thousands of angry protesters that marched last week during the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Scotland.

    The demonstrations had widespread coverage in the MSM.

    Yet you’ll hear nothing mentioned about the massive land grabs taking place under lofty accolades of ‘sustainability’ and ‘conservation’.

    It’s all being spruiked alongside the UN’s policy push for ‘30 x 30’, of course. That’s 30% of the Earth to be ‘conserved’ (or rather commodified) by 2030.

    A month prior to the conference, a new asset class was launched on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

    It’s called a ‘natural asset company’ or NAC.

    A NAC is an investment vehicle that allows for the commodification of the valuable ecosystems that sustain life, produced by vast tracts of land.

    It essentially ‘converts’ nature itself into financial capital.

    The NYSE team launching the NAC is the Intrinsic Exchange Group (IEG).

    Major investors are the Rockefeller Foundation and the Inter-American Development Bank (known for their neo-colonialist agendas through debt entrapment).

    According to IEG’s website:

    ‘We are pioneering a new asset class based on natural assets and the mechanism to convert them to financial capital.

    ‘These assets are essential, making life on Earth possible and enjoyable.

    ‘They include biological systems that provide clean air, water, foods, medicines, a stable climate, human health and societal potential.

    ‘The potential of this asset class is immense. Nature’s economy is larger than our current industrial economy…’

    NYSE’s Chief Operating Officer Michael Blaugrund stated:

    ‘Our hope is that owning a natural asset company is going to be a way that an increasingly broad range of investors have the ability to invest in something that’s intrinsically valuable, but, up to this point, was really excluded from the financial markets.’

    The NAC spruik to justify this commodification is that it will channel funds back to the preservation of these valuable ecosystems.

    The IEG’s website, however, makes clear that the real goal is endless profit from natural processes and ecosystems that were once deemed part of ‘the commons’.

    The value of natural asset classes in the current economy is around US$512 trillion.

    The assets unlocked by NACs, however, are said to be much, much bigger.

    We’re talking to the tune of US$4,000 trillion (that’s US$4 quadrillion).

    NACs quite simply open the market for buyers to own and privatise the economic rent produced by the natural resources we need to sustain life itself.

    Institutional investors, corporations, sovereign wealth funds, multilateral development banks, and so forth.

    For example, firms like BlackRock already own more than US$9 trillion of the world’s assets (hence why they are known as ‘The Largest Shadow Bank In The World’).

    BlackRock’s Chairman Larry Fink is on the board of the World Economic Forum.

    Recently, the WEF featured a promotional video stating that by 2030 ‘you will own nothing, and you’ll be happy.’

    The agenda, under the guise of ‘climate change’, is well underway.

    It won’t stop this cycle playing out as planned ‘til 2026, however.

    For now, the lesson for investors remains the same.

    Buy land.

    Best wishes,
    Catherine Cashmore Signature

    Catherine Cashmore,
    Editor, Cycles, Trends & Forecasts

  2. Ann Says:

    Peter, one of the complexities I struggle with in my longstanding decision not to eat meat was that that decision was based on the industrial model of raising any and all meats in this country, aside from small private farmers, none of whom I knew. Now I do know some and value the choices they offer. The problem is that now I just don’t want to eat meat, while not condemning those who do. But I know that plant based diets use and produce way more carbon than the steer raised on healthy pasture or marginal lands that shouldn’t be tilled, and that more total number of creatures’ lives are sacrificed in the plant farming model. This is where your hummus dilemma comes into play. Not knowing your reasons for reducing meat consumption, if they have to do with energy use and carbon/methane released (and I’m sure you already know this!)it is hard to go wrong with locally sourced, small farm raised meat. But then I live in a rural area where such farmers are fairly plentiful….Just something offered to add to your thinking equations.

  3. jimbills Says:

    Some videos are just too painful for me to watch. This is one of them. The a Pepsi guy starts talking about growth (literally all a corporate CEO can think about, because their jobs are dependent on it), and starts his own marketing of a somewhat greener bottle packaging and how that will drive their growth (while the clock is ticking on climate change), and my uncontrollable squirming made me turn off the video. Woof. So painful.

    But, if COP26 is just in talks with corporations right now it tells me a few things that aren’t so optimistic.

    1) It means they’ve largely given up any sort of governmental top-down approach, and they’re turning to corporations to supply good news for the conference. Real progress at COP26 ‘could’ be made if the nations got together and agreed to certain principles and rules. They’ve recently made progress at G20, for instance, on a global corporate tax rate. These rules produce frameworks for corporations to work within, and most corporations actually want a clear business horizon so that they can plan accordingly. Just throwing the ball to the corporations themselves is far, far more inefficient (because they will simultaneously be looking for all the other more hidden ways to cut corners to increase profits, while competing with each other for dominance), and frankly desperate, an approach.

    2) It also shows how captured governments are by the interests of corporations. It’s like in Texas. All it would have taken was for the Texas Legislature to mandate either NG plants have a week’s supply of gas store at all times, or mandate that all wellheads be weatherized, or impose an enormous fine if they don’t, or set much higher goals for replacement of NG, but all of that was off the table. Why? They’re entirely captured by the profit interests of a handful of corporations. Why wouldn’t it be different situation for the world at COP26? All it would really take is for the world governments to set real goals (not just pledges), and impose rules and regulations on the corporations to do that, but is that being discussed? Or are they essentially leaving it all the to the corporations themselves to do what is right – and isn’t that more than a little crazy?

  4. indy222 Says:

    The rot goes right through to the policy people and the UN overlords to the IPCC. The entire IPCC structure, it now seems clear, was just a very clever way to get the scientists to put their names on documents that, in key ways, were out of their control, and thereby ruin the very alarm the scientists hoped to convey to “policy makers”.

    My insisting on complete “consensus” and by incorporating into the IPCC people with a “range of views” (their words), the make it impossible for the true science in the journals to ever be properly communicated. The pro-growth economics people are part of the IPCC and have veto-power over everything that scientists in the IPCC publish. Scientists were seduced into the IPCC over 30 years ago, believing they would thus have their arcane science become understood and acted on by the governments of the world. They didn’t mind so much that there needed to be consensus – after all, when scientists get together at their meetings, building consensus on what’s true usually means logic, evidence, drawing compelling conclusions, bringing to light studies your compadres may not have studied or noticed. And the coin of the realm is actually getting it right. That’s how you’re rewarded with plum jobs at prestigious universities, and big awards. Actually being right as judged by Nature herself. Of course, that’s got nothing to do with the dirty sausage making imposed by the IPCC non-scientists, or the “industry scientists” (oxymoron, too often). So consensus making actually means arm-twisting the scientists to sugar-coat, to ignore inconvenient studies, to promote and include mild-i-fied poor studies (like the Otto et al. paper claiming ECS=1.5C that got an outcry from the better scientists, but was snuck in just under the deadline for inclusion).

    It’s 1000x worse when scientists names are on documents that neuter and ignore the dire science we can plainly see in the PNAS, Nature, and other good journals. 1000x worse than if Big Oil is wimpering, or Republicans. People may not really understand climate, but they certainly know to “consider the source”.

    My top recommendation to my students, first, is to plead for the IPCC scientists to divorce themselves from the UN’s IPCC. Publish their massive review, and their Summary for Policy Makers, and demand only 90% agreement, and have now other “working groups” than the climate science. Let the Policy people get it straight and then do with it what they will, but don’t sully it while it’s still got the scientists’ names on it.

    Otherwise, all we get are endless COP outs, as the true dimensions of what’s ahead can be ignored – “Hey, if the scientsts are issuing such couched, mild-i-fied, hesitant documents, how certain can they really be that it’ll be all that bad?” is the refrain.

  5. redskylite Says:

    Talking about sausages . . . . .

    “Time-series studies suggesting that increased consumption of super-processed foods has an impact on the environment

    Brazil has undergone a nutrition transition toward a diet higher in ultra-processed foods, and that of food types consumed, these have been the largest contributor to worsening impacts on greenhouse gas emissions, the nation’s water footprint and ecological footprint, such as deforestation.

    Ultra-processed foods include reconstituted meat products, such as sausages; ready meals; margarines; sweets; soft drinks; and other foods which contain artificial additives like sweeteners and flavors.”

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