Stop Climate Chaos


SCCS blog from Copenhagen: Part 6

Stop Climate Chaos Scotland @ Cop15
Sam Gardner
DAY Six - by Dr Sam Gardner.
Saturday 12th December 2009

Over the two weeks of this conference Copenhagen has been renamed Hopenhagen. Everywhere you go the signs and banners hang from buildings or wrap around buses. Hope though does not leap from advertising banners but must have foundations in the actions of leaders. As this conference progresses huge steps need to be made if this word is to resonate with the millions whose lives are threatened by climate change.

Progress here is hard to track and comes in fits and starts. Friday was marked by disappointment in the outcome of the EU Council meeting – a conclusion that did not go ignored in the conference hall and a flurry of new texts from key working groups and country groups. From amongst these papers there must emerge the strong legally binding deal that puts the world on the path to a safe climate. One such paper, from the Alliance of Small Island States , describes the fair and ambitious deal that Stop Climate Chaos Scotland and civic society across the world have been calling for. Hope can be given meaning if this vision is embraced by all parties.

Sadly, the EU Council missed a major opportunity to inject some real momentum into the talks. Their meeting failed to raise their feeble emissions reduction target, neglected to address major loopholes in those same feeble targets, and for the most part rebadged existing aid to developing countries as a new climate fund. This absence of global leadership saw them awarded a ‘Fossil of the Day Award’.

All around the conference centre NGO activists are proudly wearing t-shirts asking "how old will you be in 2050?". The message is clear - today’s leaders must act now if the children of today are to enjoy the safe environment they have had. It was with this message in the back of my mind that I joined a colleague from Oxfam to talk via the internet to over 30 schools across Scotland.

Their understanding and commitment to their environment shames the feeble ambition show by the rich nations here in Copenhagen. The questions they asked were heavy with their concern for people and wildlife around the world and while their understanding on climate change is impressive it is not right that we can only find the ambition so needed from our leaders in our children.

Responsibility for climate change falls now, today, on the leaders of the developed world and they should heed the calls from children who can see the future better than they can.

ECO Cop15 newsletter for 12th Dec

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