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3 December 2010 | | |

In Front of Everyone

Environmentalists strong at plenary session of UN Climate Conference

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On Wednesday, at the plenary session of the COP16 on Climate Change in Cancun, Friends of the Earth highlighted the need for the official negotiations to take place in a democratic and transparent way. The environmentalist federation also rejected the attention the convention has been paying these past days to carbon markets.

“President Patricia Espinosa (Mexican Secretary of Foreign Affairs), we have a concern: in Cancun there should be a transparent and committed process to provide real solutions to the climate crisis”, said environmentalist Domingo Lechón, member of Otros Mundos-Friends of the Earth Mexico, at the beginning of his plenary intervention.

Several organizations of this country have warned the COP that the Mexican Presidency is not being transparent and has allowed parallel processes to take place behind closed doors. The social organizations fear that a group of countries will sign an agreement without the participation of the rest, outside the framework of the Climate Conference as happened in Copenhagen, at the COP15, in December 2009.

Lechón spoke on behalf of Friends of the Earth International and stated that the federation is part of a global network of social movements and organizations called Climate Justice Now!

The activist requested the 192 countries of the UN Climate Convention to “work towards a just result and not to dismantle the structure of a global agreement”. He also requested them to “demand effective actions by the countries historically responsible for climate change” (developed countries), among them “the reduction of emissions by at least 40 per cent without offset” by 2020 (compared to 1990 levels). “It has been proved that carbon trading is useless, and we reject the emphasis being put on it”, Lechón highlighted.

The member of Friends of the Earth Mexico also called for a “new finance mechanism under the authority of the UN” to finance climate change adaptation and mitigation in developing countries. “We propose that the funds should come from a global tax to financial transactions, to combat tax evasion and from the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies”, he added.

Finally Lechón highlighted the “urgent need for real solutions to stop suffering”. In this way, he said that the Peoples´ Agreement, a participatory process that proposes real solutions to the climate crisis, should be taken into account.

In April, 2010, the Bolivian government organized in Cochabamba the World Peoples´ Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth where tens of thousands of delegates from social movements and organizations from 140 countries participated. The “Peoples´ Agreement” signed by the participants demands, among other things, radical emission cuts by Northern countries, it rejects the carbon market and proposes climate finance 6% higher than that offered by the rich countries.

Photo: Radio Mundo Real

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