Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Ministers must drop loopholes in climate deal

Greenpeace warns government ministers to drop loopholes in climate deal

Governments must increase ambition on emissions cuts and climate finance

Doha, December 3, 2012 – As ministers arrive at climate talks in the Qatari capital Doha, Greenpeace urged European countries not to take the side of Poland and Russia in a battle over whether to maintain the Kyoto Protocol’s biggest loophole and to make real progress on a deal to prevent catastrophic climate change.

Europe has traditionally been seen as a progressive force in climate negotiations, but stands to lose that reputation at the Doha talks, Greenpeace warned.

In dispute is the preservation of the excess emissions rights – or ‘hot air’ – that allows governments to trade their way out of real climate action. The leftover hot air granted to former Soviet and Eastern European countries in 1997 is estimated to total 13 billion tonnes of CO2 – equivalent to 2.5 times the annual emissions of Europe.

A deep split among European governments has overshadowed the first week of the talks, but so far the common EU position favours the loophole.

"The prospect of catastrophic climate change needs to change the mindsets of political leaders," said Martin Kaiser, Greenpeace climate campaigner.

“Coal-rich Poland is so far dictating the European Union position on hot air. Ministers coming to Doha must make a choice now about whether they have the courage to defend people from the impacts of climate change, or whether they will pander to Brussels politics. If Europe makes the wrong call here, it will lose the trust of the rest of the world.”

Greenpeace is demanding that a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, the only legally binding cap of greenhouse gas emissions, be agreed on in Doha and that it does not carry over the ‘hot air’ excess emissions rights.

As ministers arrive in Doha, discussions are only just beginning under the two new workstreams agreed on at last year’s talks in Durban – one on increasing the ambition of emissions cuts in the next decade and one on planning the shape of a new global deal to be signed in 2015.

Progress is made harder by what developing countries see as bad faith on the part of industrialised countries. Greenpeace echoed the call from developing countries for an increase of climate finance toward the $100 billion a year by 2020 agreed on at the 2009 Copenhagen talks.

With 'fast start finance' – the $10 billion a year package agreed at Copenhagen – now running out in 2012 – and only vague and ad hoc promises about what happens now, there is a real risk of a 'fiscal cliff' in resourcing for countries to adapt to climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy.

"It is almost impossible for countries to make long-term plans to adapt to climate change, or to deploy renewable sources of energy, if they have no confidence in how much money there will be available in future to support them," said Kaiser.

"No one in business would make investments with so little certainty. It is ridiculous to expect hard-pressed governments and communities in some of the world's poorest countries to do so as an act of faith."

Noting that tropical forest destruction is responsible for approximately 15% of the world’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Kaiser added: "This week ministers must agree rules that provide countries with incentives to protect their forests, not merely with cheap offset schemes for the coal and oil industry. Oversight must be at the national level, not left to subnational approaches that are subject to abuse."
ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

To date, the Opposition has continued to occupy itself with the marginalia of the issue. E.g. whether Key did or didn’t know whether Barack Obama would be present at the US briefing last week on IS, or whether New Zealand’s military involvement is or isn’t already a fait accompli.

It might be better to tackle the issue, head on. Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn.
More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Tea Breaks 'Gone By Lunch Time'

“How cynical that on the eve of Labour weekend, the National government is pushing through legislation that takes away the statutory right to tea and meal breaks along with collective bargaining protections, and makes vulnerable workers jobs even less secure." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news