The environmental movement is losing momentum and governments around the world are ignoring their responsibility for slowing climate change. Greenpeace head Kumi Naidoo, however, remains optimistic. In an interview, he explains his new vision for a sustainable world — and how the pope can help.
Politicians and business leaders are fond of talking about the new era of the green economy. But in reality, the exploitation of nature is on the rise. The Brazilian parliament is seeking to weaken laws protecting the rain forest. At the climate conference in Durban, South Africa, no agreement could be reached on limiting CO2 emissions. And in developing economies such as China and India, dozens of new coal-fired power plants are in the works.
One government after another is ducking its responsibility when it comes to the fight against climate change. Meanwhile, environmental activists around the globe have proven unable to reverse, or even slow, the trend. Indeed, the green movement seems to have lost momentum. Now, the head of Greenpeace has begun pursuing a new strategy. Kumi Naidoo is shifting his organization’s focus to the developing world. He is linking the fight against global warming with the fight against poverty and is increasing Greenpeace’s cooperation with large companies.
Critics have accused Naidoo of weakening the Greenpeace brand name. SPIEGEL ONLINE caught up with Naidoo at the St. Gallen Symposium in the Swiss city of the same name. In an interview, he defended Greenpeace against accusations that it has become too soft.