The global south is everywhere on Earth that is south of the equator. Many areas of the global south are against environmental regulation because they are less economically developed than the global north. The United States, Europe, Canada, etc. are all in the global north and have strong economies. Therefore, the global north would have an easier time investing in green technology because they have more capital to do so. The global south feels that they will be put at a disadvantage to be held to the same environmental regulations as the north, because they do not have the same economic resources to invest in change.
The term “Global South” basically refers to industries that operate in developing or less-developed countries (especially in Southern and Central America, Africa, and South Asia) whereas the “North” refers to developed nations such as the United States, European countries, and most of China. The distinctions between the “North” and the “South” in terms of economics is clear. In other words, countries in the “North” are rich whereas countries in the “South” are generally poor (if you exclude booming mega-cities that are transforming from poor to less poor and possibly could become some of the world’s richest economies but this is another subject.)
In general, the “Global South” are mainly opposed to environmental regulations because their economies (for the most part) cannot afford to support the environment, and more often than not, the economy is considered to be “more important” than the environment. However, this viewpoint has been confronted; and in many cases, the environment and economy are closely related.
Some issues associated with the conflict between the environment and economy is illegal logging which happens often. Often times, such issues are also related to corruption and structural violence embedded within the political system of a country. For example, in Cambodia illegal logging is conducted and permitted by the government. The wood is shipped to China to make plywood with fake paperwork and government officials (as well as their families and friends) pocket the money. This also directly affects the quality of life for local communities. If local communities understood the importance of environmental regulations and had more power over their resources, then promotion of environmental regulations in the “Global South” would possible. In the meantime, it is a difficult struggle for local communities to understand environmental regulations and corruption demote environmental regulations in the “Global South.”
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