PRESS RELEASE COP21: CSO Statement in response to the release of a new text
December 10, 2015
Civil Society Denounces Latest Draft of Paris Text Considered The Great Escape for the Wealthiest Countries of the World
Paris, France - While the French drive an outcome on the eve of the climate talks, civil society groups call the latest draft a massive disappointment as it fails to create a blueprint to avoid the climate crisis. Groups say the text exposes developed countries’ intention to escape their legal obligations and their fair share of responsibility for cleaning up the planet.
“What we feared about the text has happened – it is an agreement that is good for the US and bad for the developing world as it amounts to a rewriting of the rules of the Convention. It says there should be a ‘shared effort’, which means both poor and wealthy countries are responsible for providing climate finance – this totally a rewriting of the existing climate Convention. This is indeed what the US and other developed countries have been pushing for for years.” Meena Raman, Third World Network
Most notably, the much-celebrated 1.5 degree target has been excluded from the text, leaving it as only an aspirational goal. Other key issues with the current text: Human Rights was eliminated from the body of the text (on human rights day); there are no pre-2020 goals, delaying progress by five years of progress; there are no clear dates or obligations for emissions reductions.
“President Obama promised to be both accountable and take responsibility for our roles in the current climate crisis. As the talks nearly come to a close, we can now see that this was not only empty rhetoric, but a great escape for polluters. The low expectations of this draft have been surpassed beyond belief, it does nothing to cut emissions or give hope to the poor and most vulnerable. The next 24 hours are critical if we don’t want this document to sink the planet.
Asad Rehman, spokesperson for Friends of the Earth England, Wales, and Northern Ireland
“For the Least Developed Countries, the issue of loss and damage is particularly key and is a red line that can’t be crossed for LDC peoples. By introducing an ‘exclusion clause’ against liability or compensation, the US and EU are trying to make sure they will never be held accountable for their climate crimes. Where's the ambition and solidarity with the Least Developed Countries and people impacted by climate change which Obama and Hollande talked about last week?”
Prerna Bomzan, Advocacy Coordinator, LDC Watch
“This agreement sells young people down the river. Once again, rhetoric is out of tune with reality: last week Obama, Cameron, and Hollande talked the talk. But this week they’ve proven they won’t walk the walk. Young people need to see immediate pollution cuts in order to know that we are free to live and love life. This agreement kicks the responsibility down the road to 2020 and beyond, leaving us all facing the future possibility of what youth in the global south are already facing today: climate chaos.”
- Nathan Thanki, Global North Focal Point for the official Youth Constituency