To Cook a Continent: Destructive Extraction and the Climate Crisis in Africa

To Cook a Continent: Destructive Extraction and the Climate Crisis in Africa


By (author) Nnimmo Bassey

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  • Publisher: Pambazuka Press
  • Format: Paperback | 204 pages
  • Dimensions: 126mm x 196mm x 14mm | 222g
  • Publication date: 4 April 2012
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 1906387532
  • ISBN 13: 9781906387532
  • Edition statement: New.
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 850,793

Product description

People in Africa argue that natural resources are a blessing; it is the way these are plundered and used that can turn them into a curse. The continent has plenty of experience of such plunder. Rich in resources, Africa is a net supplier of energy and raw materials to the North. The climate crisis confronting the world today is rooted mainly in the wealthy economies' abuse of fossil fuels, indigenous forests and global commercial agriculture. But, without agreement about how to tackle this reality, the question often becomes what can be done about Africa. Or, sometimes, for Africa. This book looks at what has been done to Africa and how Africans should respond for the good of all. Bassey examines the oil industry in Africa, probes the roots of global warming, warns of its insidious impacts and explores false 'solutions'. Crucially, his intelligent and wide-ranging approach demonstrates that the issues around natural resource exploitation, corporate profiteering and climate change must be considered together if we are to save ourselves. What can Africa do? And can the rest of the world act in solidarity? If not, will we continue on the path laid out by elites that brings us ever closer to the brink? Many live in denial even as ecological and social disasters increase, but this is not inevitable and Bassey suggests how Africa can overcome the crises of environment and global warming.

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Author information

Nnimmo Bassey is an activist, a poet, the executive director of Environmental Rights Action in Nigeria, and the elected chair of Friends of the Earth International. He is one of "Time" magazine's 2009 Heroes of the Environment and the corecipient of the prestigious Right Livelihood Award. He is the author of "Genetically Modified Organisms "and "Oilwatching in South America."

Review quote

"This powerful indictment of greed and ravaging of Africa's riches yet offers prospects for hope." --Camilla Toulmin, Chair of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED)

Table of contents

Part 1: A Rear View 1. Introduction: The pull of Africa 2. Africa is Rich Part 2: The Scramble and the Grabbing 3. The Wheels of Progress 4. The Steps of the Advisors 5. Destructive Extraction 6. Enforced Immune Deficiency Syndrome 7. Swimming Against the Tide Part 3: A Forward View 8. Climate Chaos: False solutions and hunger politics 9. Connected by Blood: Community empowerment 10. The People are the Future: We are one people