Brazil was well ahead of this clean energy curve in the past and used to be a world leader in sustainable energy with hydropower from the 1960s through the 1980s, and ethanol's development in the 1980s into 1990s and early 2000s. Today, however, Brazil is backtracking.
Cynics, critical of Brazil's unfulfilled promise, like to say that Brazil is the country of the future and always will be. However, a look at Brazil's long-term record cautions against excessive pessimism.
Stating the obvious can have its merits, so I'll risk the inevitable criticism for stating the obvious: Two women, one white, one black, are the top contenders for the presidency of one of the world's largest democracies.
South American political elites seem to have jettisoned much of the high minded left idealism of past years in favor of crass economic interests. In a somewhat outlandish turn of events, Brazil has embraced Vladimir Putin, a figure who has desperately sought to end his country's political and diplomatic isolation.
Hillary Clinton ended Hard Choices with a subtle hint of her intent to run for office in 2016, while sharing the inspiring story of her late mother, Dorothy Howell Rodham.
Before Campos's death, the conventional wisdom was that the race would tighten, but that Rousseff and Neves would ultimately face off in a October 24 runoff. Silva's candidacy, however, would upend that conventional wisdom.
This could be a chapter in Latin American history coming full circle in the worst possible way.
For now, the BRICS Bank is a global statement certainly, and one with the ability to score each of these leaders some political capital domestically. Whether or not it crashes and burns is an entirely different conversation.
From the killer thief on the street, through the heartless bureaucrat, to the insatiable CEO, all the way to the politician who'll sacrifice young lives merely to increase his power, the disease of inhumane cynicism sometimes seems like an inescapable epidemic.
Apart from passionate support for their national sports teams, hatred of government corruption and "crony capitalism" is one of the few issues that unite all social groups in developing countries.
Indeed, many in the soccer-crazed nation of over 202 million said the Most Congenial Nation award was a necessary first step in a long healing process.
The wind appears to again be at Dilma Rousseff's back again, as Brazil's performance at the World Cup has virtually assured that she will be re-elected -- politics working as politics do.
Why is it hard to get excited about the gradual return of the Washington-Brasília pas de deux?
As a result of Snowden's disclosures, U.S. companies have been wrongly suffering commercial reprisals by some governments. Conflating the acts of the NSA with other agencies has also potentially harmed legitimate government activities.
For the sake of Dilma's political ambitions later this year, Brazil's luck had better continue. Voters will head to the polls on October 5 to decide whether she deserves another term in office, and a poor showing on the international stage could hurt her chances.
The struggle for gender equality and women's empowerment in Latin America has been long, difficult, and full of push backs. In some places it has been marked by violence that has led to the indiscriminate killing of women, based solely on their gender.