Implementation of UNFCCC; TIME TO BE BOLD

Implementation of UNFCCC; TIME TO BE BOLD

At COP 15, on December 17 and 18, presentations were made, by the head of states, to the Assembly. The majority of heads of states were calling for the global community to maintain the rise in temperature to well below 1.5 degrees. Sadly, it was clear at COP 15 that the demands of the majority of states were disregarded. On December 7, Papua New Guinea had proposed that, rather than descend to the lowest common denominator, the Parties should strive for Consensus with a fall back of 75%. Unfortunately, this proposal was summarily dismissed by the Chair.

If one counts the G77 representing 130 developing states along with some low lying states or small island states which were not members of the G77 along with some of the member states of the European union, then possibly over 75% of the signatories of the UNFCCC would have been prepared to sign and ratify a strong, legally binding agreement. While it could be argued, on the one hand, that this agreement would be irrelevant because the major greenhouse gas producers would have not signed on, but on the other hand, citizens in the major greenhouse gas producing states could use the agreement to pressure their governments to make commitments to stronger emissions reductions. Hopefully that in COP 16 in Mexico, the demands of the majority will be respected.

Signing of the Copenhagen accord currently in front of heads of states would undermine the actions necessary to make the drastic cuts necessary to fulfill the legal obligations under article 2 of the UNFCCC  to  “stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.“

We affirm that
The UNFCCC is ratified by 194 countries representing near universal membership.  It commands near universal support and its legitimacy is unquestioned. This would mean that all signatories of the UNFCCC are legally bound to discharge the obligation in Article 2 which states: “stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere must be at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. Given the emerging science, this level equates to a target of below 1°C, which is the point at which global systems on land, water and air will be so affected as to create vicious feedback cycles and destabilize many ecosystems and human societies.

and that
Because of the global urgency, there is the legal obligation to contain the rise in temperature to less than 1°C above pre-industrial levels, and the parts per million to 300 ppm. Strict time frames must be imposed, so that overall global emissions will begin to be reversed as of 2010. There must be a global target of 30% below 1990 levels by 2015, 50% below by 2020, 75% by 2030, 85% by 2040 and 100% below by 2050, while adhering to the precautionary principle, and differentiated responsibility principle

and developed country parties agree to acknowledge their emissions debt to developing countries, to cancel their existing debt of developing countries, to implement the long-standing obligation of .7% of GDP for overseas development, to ensure new funding for climate change reparation.  In addition, developed country parties will renounce war and reallocate military expenses.

~ by Cory Morningstar on January 30, 2010.

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