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 Drone Strikes And Judith Collins‘ Last Stand

The news that a New Zealand citizen was killed last November in a US drone attack in Yemen brings the drones controversy closer to home.

To the US, drones are a legitimate response to the threat posed by the al Qaeda organisation and its franchisees... To the US, the drones carry the added advantage of not putting US troops at risk on the ground, and minimises the need for putting them in large numbers in bases in the countries concerned, always a politically sensitive point.

The counter-argument, well articulated by security analyst Paul Buchanan on RNZ this morning, is that this particular drone attack can be said to amount to an extra-judicial execution of a New Zealand citizen by one of our military allies, in circumstances where the person concerned posed no threat to New Zealand’s domestic security. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Policies: Labour’s Economic Upgrade For Manufacturing

Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today announced his Economic Upgrade for the manufacturing sector – a plan that will create better jobs and higher wages. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And ACC Work Of Sir Owen Woodhouse

With the death of Sir Owen Woodhouse, the founding father of the Accident Compensation Scheme, New Zealand has lost one of the titans of its post-war social policy. More>>

ALSO:

Bad Transnationals: Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award

It won the 2011 Roger Award and was runner up in 2012, 2009 and 08. One 2013 nomination said simply and in its entirety: “Blackmailing country”... More>>

ALSO:

Select Committees: Tobacco Plain Packaging Hearings

The Stroke Foundation is today backing the Cancer Society and Smokefree Coalition who are making oral submissions to the Health Select Committee in support of proposed legislation to remove of all branding from tobacco products. More>>

ALSO:

Milk: Oravida Asked For Cabinet Help

New evidence released by New Zealand First today reveals Justice Minister Judith Collins used her position to manipulate the Government to help her husband’s company, Oravida, after the Fonterra botulism scare, says New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. More>>

ALSO:

With Conditions: Ruataniwha Consents Approved In Draft Decision

The Tukituki Catchment Proposal Board of Inquiry has granted 17 resource consents relating to the $265 million Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme in a draft decision that would open more of the Hawke’s Bay to irrigation. More>>

ALSO:

Fast Lanes, Campervans: Labour 'Making The Holidays Easier For Kiwi Drivers'

The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Royalty And Its Tourism Spin-Offs

Ultimately the Queen’s longevity has been one of her most significant accomplishments. A transition to Prince Charles while the monarchy was in the pits of public esteem in the mid to late 1990s would have been disastrous for the Royal Firm. Far more congenial representatives have now emerged... More>>

ALSO:

Privacy (Again): ACC Demands Excessive Privacy Waivers

Labour: “This is just another example of ACC under National deliberately acting to deny treatment and compensation... Those who did fill in the form have effectively been victims of yet another ACC privacy breach. This time Judith Collins knew it was happening..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news