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Image: George W Bush melts our Planet


"George Bush melts the planet, as portrayed by a Greenpeace activist in Manners Mall, Wellington, New Zealand, to highlight the US President's rejection of the Kyoto Protocol."

Copyright 2001 Greenpeace/Simon Wolf

George W Bush melts our Planet


Noon – 23 July 2001 Wellington, Manners mall: Greenpeace activists took to street theatre today with a caricature of George W Bush melting an ice sculpture of planet earth with a blowtorch, to highlight Bush rejecting the Kyoto Protocol.

“The USA is the largest single greenhouse gas emitter in the world, yet Bush, with urging from his fossil fuel backers, such as Mobil, has turned his back on the Kyoto Protocol”, said Sue Connor, Greenpeace campaigner.

“The final outcome from the G8 Heads of Government meeting has failed to protect the global climate. All G8 nations acknowledged the need to reduce greenhouse gases, but did not resolve differences about the Kyoto Protocol.”

Governments are meeting right now to finalise the Kyoto Protocol. The Whitehouse announced in March this year that the USA did not intend to honour the Protocol. Australia and Canada have used the USA’s backslide as an excuse to try to slide out of their obligations as a citizen in a global warming world.

“There is an agreement on the table in Bonn now which if accepted will allow nations to begin the process of ratification to begin. We know that 3 nations from the ‘Umbrella Group’, which includes Japan, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Norway, have accepted the agreement. It remains to be seen if New Zealand has accepted it yet.”

New Zealand has stated that it will ratify the Kyoto Protocol by mid 2002. Greenpeace is urging the government to firmly stick to this target and do everything in its power to encourage Australia and Canada to stop playing into Bush’s game.

“Australia and Canada, along with Japan are using Bush’s rejection of the Protocol to wreck the negotiations and destroy the Protocol’s environmental integrity. They are trying to avoid reducing greenhouse gases at the source, (burning fossil fuels), by arguing for elaborate mechanisms to count carbon which is soaked up by trees, plants and soils as reducing carbon dioxide”.

“The reality is the major cause of global warming is burning fossil fuels. The answer to global warming is simple, we must phase out fossil fuels and phase in renewable energy such as wind, solar and hydrogen fuel technologies. The first step to achieving a phase out of fossil fuels is to introduce binding greenhouse gas reduction targets under the Kyoto Protocol”.

The Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change, 2,500 of the world’s leading climate scientists, have confirmed that global warming is happening now and that burning fossil fuels are the major contributor.

Wellingtonians are invited to Manners mall to sign a letter calling on the New Zealand Government to stay strong and ratify the Protocol. Greenpeace will deliver the letters to the Government on behalf of all people sending letters. People can also send a letter to the government from www.greenpeace.org.nz.

ENDS

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