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The role of the ICOR in the struggle against the threatening global environmental catastrophe

Resolution of the 2nd ICOR World Conference


Since 1970 a global environmental catastrophe has developed, which means an accelerated destruction of the natural foundations of life. In the meantime the imperialist means of production drive humanity towards a global environmental catastrophe, in which the foundations of human life are generally called into question. The super typhoon Hayan/Yolanda in November in the Philippines, with so far unprecedented wind speeds of 380 km/h, as well as the regularly occurring floods and monster storms in many parts of the world or the accelerated melting of the glaciers and the polar ice, are signals for a new quality of the advance towards a global climate catastrophe. The regional environmental catastrophes resulting from extreme weather situations have become a permanent phenomenon.

The filling of the oceans and continents with waste, the destruction of the rain forests and the ozone layer, the risky extraction of gas, coal, oil, uranium and other raw materials cause heavy damage to the biosphere and a growing, chronic poisoning of the masses worldwide. A climax of nuclear contamination is the continuing worst-case accident in Fukushima, where thousands of liters of radioactive water flow into the Pacific each day. These have reached the west coast of the USA and penetrate the ground water. In wanton and reckless irresponsibility, international finance capital with its boundless drive for profit and power puts the existential conditions of humankind at risk.

The old environmental movement made valuable contributions to raise the environmental consciousness of the masses. Faced with the new challenges, it is in decline and is disorganizing the struggle against those who are mainly responsible, because it has adapted completely to those in power under the slogan of imperialist environmentalism: “compatibility of capitalist economy and ecology”. Each year its leaders state at the world climate conferences that these are a farce – and then, again and again, they serve as a green fig-leaf there. To hope that the capitalists will listen to “reason”, to develop pseudo-actions with petitions and illusions in bourgeois parliamentarism – this leads the necessary joint struggle up a deadly blind alley. The necessary broad unity of action, as for example the international days of struggle for the climate and the environment, is sabotaged by them. Like the reformist union bureaucracy in the working-class movement, they work in the environmental movement to separate the social and environmental questions, to divide the working-class and environmental movements.

In this situation the environmental movement must reorient and rebuild itself internationally. The basis must be the active resistance to save the environment from the profit economy. The environmental movement must be open for a societal order free from the exploitation of humans and nature. Although within the international revolutionary and working-class movement there has been a disregard for the environmental question and underestimationof it which must be overcome, the extraordinary examples of a perspective environmental policy in the socialist Soviet Union and the China of Mao Zedong cannot be denied. The assertion that in the socialist countries the question of the environment was trampled upon even more than in the capitalist countries must not stand uncontradicted any longer. It is nourished by the fact that with the beginning of the restoration of capitalism in the formerly socialist countries Soviet Union and Peoples' Republic of China, not only the exploitation of human labor power was introduced again, but the destruction of the environment also assumed alarming proportions. In contrast, the environmental policies of the former socialist countries under Stalin and Mao Zedong belong to the essential and enduring achievements of socialism, by which it has already proven its superiority over the capitalist mode of production.

Marx and Engels already emphasized the unity of humanity and nature as fundamental for a progressing societal development.

The ICOR must commit itself to working in its own ranks and among the masses for a new, higher environmental consciousness concerning the urgency of the environmental question and its solution, in unity with preparing and carrying out the international socialist revolution worldwide. Without defending and further developing the lessons of Marxism-Leninism about the fundamental unity of humanity and nature, without defending the socialist achievements in environmental policy, without struggling to preserve the natural foundations of life, today the international socialist revolution can no longer be prepared and carried out successfully.

It is necessary to developthe leading role of the working class in the environmental struggle and to help the masses to cope with petty-bourgeois environmentalism and modern anticommunism, to help them get organized in self-run organizations and the revolutionary parties and to cooperate in the construction of the international front of resistance. Environmental work must become a fixed, main element of the revolutionary work of the ICOR. With the growing environmental movement worldwide, a potential of new forces and allies for the hard struggle to topple imperialism also is developing.

The revolutionary working-class movement must develop a program of action for the protection of the natural environment on the national and international level. Through active resistance many concrete cases of environmental destruction can doubtlessly be repaired and the tendency towards the environmental catastrophe can be inhibited.

The masses do not want to perish in barbarianism and they put up resistance – all revolutionary and Marxist-Leninist organizations and parties must realize that only the worldwide victory of socialism can prevent the capitalist environmental catastrophe.

In such a society, a change of paradigm in the mode of production, consumption and life must take place and the unity of humanity and nature must become the guideline.

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