07/12/09

Hot sex in Copenhagen

What’s unsustainable about paying fo sex? I guess it depends on what your budget is, and how randy you are. As Copenhagen turns its thoughts green, its mayor Ritt Bjerregaard sent postcards to Copenhagen hotels urging climate conference delegates to: ‘Be sustainable – don’t buy sex’. In response, the city’s sex workers are offering free rides to any delegate who can produce one of the offending cards, according to Speigel.

Unsustainable? Well, there’s latex to dispose of, or worse still, population growth. But on the upside sex warms you up without needing to burn fossil fuels. It’s a renewable resource. And if it’s on offer for free this week in Copenhagen, it might just provide the positive energy to break some of the log-jams in the negotiations.

I’ve followed the build-up to the conference (beautifully dissected by Sam Kinght, writing in Prospect), with some amusement. Way back when I was writing The Wisdom of Whores, a friend from the World Bank was rolling his eyes at every UN agency’s willingness to hook itself to the HIV wagon. I quoted him thus:

““The UN institutions are professional beggars, and beggars go where the money is,” he said. “So you get “culture and AIDS”, “kids and AIDS”, “fish and AIDS”. I’m just waiting for “climate change and AIDS”.”

It wasn’t until months later that I saw the first headlines linking HIV to climate change. Just recently, there’s been a UNFPA report about it, which means it’s now official. As Rasna Warahp pointed out in Kenya’s The Nation, the real link between HIV and global warming will probably be that as more funding goes to the latter less will go to the former.

An aside, since I’m mentioning both development fashion and the World Bank: I am reliably informed that that venerable institution last week headed off a bid to have every loan reviewed for the effect that it has on trafficking of persons (which in the current climate is more or less equated with trafficking of women into the sex indutry). Just sometimes, common sense does prevail.

Thanks to Ron of greencollar for sharing the determination of the Danish with me.

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This post was published on 07/12/09 in Good sex and bad, The sex trade.

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  1. Comment by Roger, 07/12/09, 02:17:

    Elizabeth,

    You underestimate gravely the link between climate change and HIV. It is called “Conferencing”: have you ever thought about all these delegates that need to be flown to these exotic locations for the big circus that the AIDS conference is? Bangkok, Mexico, Vienna (less fun…)… all traveling on carbon-emitting aeroplanes. The solution? Stay Home, people!

    😉

  2. Comment by Helen, 07/12/09, 03:07:

    oh no, have to confess that i am going to Copenhagen. By train from Stockholm so not feeling too guilty. I’ll be sure to look out for the anti-sex work brigades and hopefully the sex work activists on the demos

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