Monthly Archives: November 2009

Get on with it, before the lights go out

With governments downplaying prospects for December’s UN climate summit and the chances of a binding agreement receding fast, the international trade union movement has called on governments to go to the Copenhagen meeting ready to make decisions that will put the world on an unequivocal path to a low-carbon future.  * Cambio climático: El realismo [...]
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UK government launches just transition forum

Tackling climate change should be done with an eye on tackling inequalities too, the UK government has indicated. Business minister Pat McFadden this week announced the creation of a Forum for a Just Transition. It says the new body has been created to ensure that the opportunities and challenges of moving to a low carbon [...]
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Lead poisoning worldwide set to rise

Widespread lead poisoning will result from the planned distribution of a billion computers to developing countries by technology companies and charities, according to a new study. “The lead from batteries needed to power these computers will result in environmental contamination and harmful exposures unless some commonsense safeguards are taken,” said Perry Gottesfeld, co-author of the [...]
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Hey, you, got something to say?

So, you want better jobs, green jobs, decent jobs and you’ve got a good idea how to get them? Then tell us about it. The Global Union Research Network (GURN) has launching a call for papers, jointly with the global union confederation ITUC. The network wants to receive papers on four themes: Social consequences of [...]
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And now in video – the union of green

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We told you lead was dangerous

Earlier this month, this blog reported that although more than half of the lead we use worldwide is recycled, something presented by the industry as a major green advance, production of the known poison, carcinogen, neuro- and reprotoxin is increasing (Lead – a case of right answer, wrong question). And those workers involved in recycling activities [...]
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Green builders don’t build in safety

Not enough is being done to ensure green jobs are safe jobs, a US union health and safety expert has warned. Walter Jones, a safety specialist with the union-run Laborers’ Health and Safety Fund of North America, told delegates to the American Public Health Association annual conference in Philadelphia this week that the shift toward greener [...]
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All gas and no gains?

As the global climate change circus departed its latest stopping point, the global union federation ITUC said failure in this year’s negotiations should not be an option.  Speaking as government representatives left Barcelona’s final preparatory negotiation before the December Copenhagen climate change conference, ITUC stressed the need for an ambitious, fair and legally-binding agreement. “Leaders [...]
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Lead – a case of right answer, wrong question

Green initiatives like recycling can have remarkable successes. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they are good for the planet, communities or those working in ‘green’ jobs. A 2009 report, ‘World Mineral Production 2003-2007’ [pdf], notes that more than 50 per cent of refined lead is now produced from recycled material, dramatically reducing energy consumption during [...]
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Making sure ‘green’ means ‘safe’ at work

Everyone likes to talk green jobs – they sound good and who wants  to be a climate spoiler? But when you add in that the jobs should be “good”, “decent”, “safe” and green, there’s a distinct quietening of the chatter. In fact, while many talk a good green job, in practice it’s a load of greenwash. In the latest [...]
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