Rachel's Precaution Reporter #56

"Foresight and Precaution, in the News and in the World"

Wednesday, September 20, 2006........Printer-friendly version
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Table of Contents Edition

Report Says, 'To Avoid Clashes Over WTO Rules, Define Precaution'
  The main aim of the corporate globalization project is to deny
  national governments the right to make their own laws, to prevent them
  from defining for themselves a "good society." Instead the good
  society will be defined for all nations by the World Trade
  Organization (WTO). The precautionary principle lies near the heart of
  this debate.
UN Report Calls for Common Definition of Trade Ban Principle
  Here is a slightly different 'take' on the same dispute. Earlier
  this year, the World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled that the European
  Union and six of its member states violated WTO rules by stopping the
  trade of biotech crops from the U.S., Canada and Argentina based on
  safety concerns -- a precautionary approach. The WTO objects to this
  approach, demanding that an "absolute certainty" of safety issues must
  be present before trading bans can be implemented. Who decides the
  laws governing the health and safety of a nation? The nation itself or
  the WTO?
Try This at Home: Defining the Precautionary Principle
  The World Trade Organization (WTO) refuses to accept the legitimacy
  of precautionary action by individual nations aiming to protect their
  citizens from harm. A recent report from the United Nations
  University says the problem stems from a vague definition of
  precaution. Columnist Carolyn Raffensperger shows that the definition
  of precaution is not vague at all.
Canadian Cancer Society Focuses on Prevention and Precaution
  "We use the precautionary principle when developing positions,
  which states that when an activity raises threats of harm to human
  health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even
  if some cause-and-effect relationships are not fully established
  scientifically." American Cancer Society, please take note.


  Rachel's Precaution Reporter offers news, views and practical
  examples of the Precautionary Principle, or Foresight Principle, in
  action. The Precautionary Principle is a modern way of making
  decisions, to minimize harm. Rachel's Precaution Reporter tries to
  answer such questions as, Why do we need the precautionary
  principle? Who is using precaution? Who is opposing precaution?

  We often include attacks on the precautionary principle because we  
  believe it is essential for advocates of precaution to know what
  their adversaries are saying, just as abolitionists in 1830 needed
  to know the arguments used by slaveholders.

  Rachel's Precaution Reporter is published as often as necessary to
  provide readers with up-to-date coverage of the subject.

  As you come across stories that illustrate the precautionary 
  principle -- or the need for the precautionary principle -- 
  please Email them to us at rpr@rachel.org.

  Peter Montague - peter@rachel.org
  Tim Montague   -   tim@rachel.org

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