London, September 6, 2002 – US Secretary of State Colin Powell was jeered and heckled during his speech at the Earth Summit as he sought to put a positive spin on the Bush administration’s environmental policies.

However, some reports suggest that environmentalists started booing when the Secretary of State referred to Zimbabwe. This was not true. Friends of the Earth was one of the organisations present during Mr Powell’s speech. The jeering which coincided with references to Zimbabwe was due to the removal of a banner by security guards.

The issues that provoked a reaction from people in the conference centre were Mr Powell’s references to the United States’ role on climate change, renewable energy, GM food and trade. His claim that the US was leading the world on sustainable development also provoked howls of disbelief.

Tony Juniper 07712 843 207
Craig Bennett 07747 123565