LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Uruguay's austere president is urging world leaders to fight a "culture of waste" in which poor nations try to emulate richer countries rather than live in balance with the environment.

Speaking in Bolivia on Sunday to a summit of the Group of 77 and China, Jose Mujica calls the growth in consumerism "a trap" that will produce material gain at the cost of human development.

Mujica is a former guerrilla leader and he has won attention for his no-frills lifestyle as Uruguay's president, including driving an old Volkswagen Beetle and living on a simple flower farm.

Opposition leaders in Bolivia have criticized the summit of representatives from 128 nations as a waste of money. President Evo Morales defends the meeting, saying will help promote Bolivia and its social reforms.


Due to the overwhelming enthusiasm of our readers it has become necessary to transfer our commenting system to a more scalable system in order handle the content.