Just before the start of the historic UN climate talks open in Copenhagen, UK civil society will come together and encircle the Houses of Parliament. They will demand that the UK and Europe do much, much more than they have pledged so far as part of a fair and effective climate agreement in Copenhagen. We speak to the director of the Stop Climate Chaos coalition, Ashok Sinha, about The Wave and other events they have planned for December 5th and about their policy platform. The SCC brings together over 100 organisations with a combined membership of around 11 million people – one in six of the population.
Their demands include:
On 16th December thousands of activists will attempt to take over the United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen for a day and set the agenda. In contrast to many of the false solutions in play at the talks, protestors will advance a common sense agenda based on the principles of Climate Justice. We speak to Chris Kitchen who has been helping to organise the mass mobilisations with the Climate Justice Action coalition about the week of actions that has been planned. We also speak to Camp for Climate Action legal advisor Frances Wright about the legal context for the protests. CJA’s common platform includes:
- leaving fossil fuels in the ground
- socialising and decentralising energy
- relocalising our food production
- recognising and repaying ecological and climate debt
- respecting indigenous peoples’ rights
- regenerating our eco-systems
As the UN climate talks end in Barcelona, the prospects for getting a fair deal which will be strong enough to stop catastrophic climate change are looking slim. In response, a handful of courageous people have started a hunger strike for Climate Justice. The second half of this programme is an extended edit from the press conference at which Anna Keenan and Sara Svenson announced the start of the Climate Justice Fast in Barcelona on 6 November. It leaves us speechless…
In the first half of the programme we take a look at some of the ways that the poor majority world is disadvantaged in the UN climate talks and at some of the dirty tactics employed by the rich world. The South African delegation reminds us what everyone agreed to under the Bali Roadmap in 2007 and why the rich world seems intent on reneging on that. And in extracts from the UNFCCC’s final press conference, General Secretary Yvo de Boer gives his expectations on the Copenhagen deal in relation to whether it will be legally binding (no, but maybe we can tie that up next year) and whether it will be informed by the latest science (no chance).
Our half-time report on the UN climate talks in Barcelona is told in the words of the poor majority world participants. The story of the African Group’s stand at the talks is told in their own words.
Also this week the UK government found another £40 billion to bailout of the banks just one week after the EU heads of state were unable to guarantee any new money to meet their obligations and to poor countries and to seal a fair deal in Copenhagen…
In the wake of International 350 Day and direct actions in the US & Europe we ask, isn’t it time that we stopped business putting the brakes on climate action? In a break from our usual format we weave recent highlights from the independent media landscape into a corporate-critical narrative. With thanks to The Big Blow, Bill McKibben of 350.org, Fisk Umbra of Grist, Climate Alarm, The Yes Men, Amy Goodman & Democracy Now!, Daphne Wysham & Earthbeat Radio and Age of Stupid‘s Copenhagen Kids.
As Europe stands accused of blocking the protection of intact natural forests and introducing logging-friendly language into the UN draft climate deal, we take a look at some of the key components that need to be in an effective deal for saving the world’s forests.
As Nathaniel Dyer of the Rainforest Foundation UK explains, saving forests is about a lot more than simply throwing money at the problem. To get the UN forestry talks back on track we need to recognise that land rights, good governance and managing demand are also critical. And payment for forest protection should come from public funds rather than carbon markets.
An analysis of the UN climate talks in Bangkok with Saleemul Huq – a veteran who has been to “practically all of them”. While Norway has announced a 40% cut in their emissions by 2020, the other rich countries seem to want to run as fast as possible from their legal and moral obligations. But their premature call to kill the Kyoto Protocol has been fiercely resisted by poor countries. Can rich countries put deep cuts and adequate financing and technology on the table in time to save the deal and prevent globally catastrophic climate change? Includes an assessment of rich country targets by the Association of Small Island States and a damning speech by the Youth Delegation.
Saleemul Huq is Senior Fellow in Climate Change at the International Institute for Environment & Development – who has also been a lead author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s last two assessment reports.
Yesterday Europe blocked the protection of natural forests at the Bangkok Climate Talks. Is the Prince of Wales Rainforest Project (PRP) Emergency Package an appropriate alternative solution for forests? We speak to Tony Juniper, special advisor to PRP and former director of Friends of the Earth. We’ll continue to dig into the forestry story next week. UPDATE: British delegate’s pro-logging stance prompts EU apology.
A pre-requisite for making the transition to a clean energy future is to switch subsidies from fossil fuels to renewable energy projects. If that’s the case, why are we still bank-rolling dirty energy projects in developing countries?
World Bank lending for fossil fuels rose by 94% between 2007 & 2008 to over $3 billion which far outweighs the $476 million they gave to “new renewables” energy projects. World Bank lending for coal in particular rose 256% from 2007 to 2008. This contradicts the Bank’s own rhetoric in their “World Development Report” published in September that advises against “locking the world into high-carbon infrastructure”.
Steve Kretzmann of Oil Change International has been campaigning for the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies for many years. He says that if the G20 leaders were serious about their Pittsburgh commitment to phasing out subsidies for fossil fuels, they could end World Bank and Export Credit Agency support at the stroke of a pen. However, rather than putting their own house in order first, there is a danger that the G20 could choose to focus on the the subsidies that developing countries use to make energy services affordable for the poor. If that’s the case, we still have a job to do in holding the G20 to account.
If the Waxman-Markey climate bill goes unchanged through the Senate, it could make an adequate and fair global deal on climate change impossible. The bill would allow new coal-fired power plants to be built up until 2020. It would also strip the Environmental Protection Agency of their existing authority to regulate coal-fired power plants under the Clean Air Act. It would replace this direct regulation with the widely-discredited Cap & Trade system. It has a very low level of ambition.
As 125 civil society groups from around the globe write to President Obama asking for US leadership on climate change, we chew over options for enhanced US action with our guest Daphne Wysham, presenter of Earthbeat Radio and founder and director of the Sustainable Energy & Economy Network.
UPDATE: Since this show has been broadcast, the Senate’s version of the Waxman-Markey bill has been released (30 Sept) and Friends of the Earth US have done a good potted analysis of why they can’t support it. On the plus side, it does reintroduce EPA’s authority to regulate coal plants.