For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Karen Orenstein, Friends of the Earth US: Tel: +1-202-640 8679 (US mobile

US holds UN Climate Negotiations Hostage

Rich industrialised Countries Offer Little Hope for Just Climate Agreement in Copenhagen

BONN, Germany - Throughout the United Nations climate talks
due to end today in Bonn, the United States administration blocked
progress to move negotiations forward, according to Friends of the Earth

Rather than show global leadership, the Obama Administration failed to
live up to its responsibility as the world's largest historical greenhouse
gas polluter. This strategy damages the prospects for a just, equitable,
and effective outcome at the key UN conference planned in Copenhagen,
Denmark, in December this year.

"The election of President Obama created tremendous hope worldwide that
the U.S. would finally play a leadership role in solving the climate
crisis that - more than any other nation on Earth - it is responsible for
causing. Unfortunately for the survival of people and the planet, the
Obama Administration's position at these UN negotiations sounds
frighteningly similar to that of George Bush," said Karen Orenstein of
Friends of the Earth U.S.

Domestic greenhouse gas emission reductions by industrialised countries of
at least 40% by 2020 on 1990 levels – with no offsetting – are needed for
a reasonable chance of avoiding catastrophic global climate change.

The US administration, however, is still talking about zero per cent
reductions by 2020 on 1990 levels. Japan tabled a dangerously low
emissions reduction target during the talks of 8% below 1990 levels. The
EU remained unimpressive with their inadequate 2020 target of 20 % (30% if
other industrialised countries commit to similar efforts). Considering
that the EU is set to offset over half of its commitments, already weak EU
targets will be even further watered down.

Delegations from around the world repeatedly warned developed countries
that their refusal to set their own adequate targets is preventing any
progress in other aspects of the negotiations under the United Nations
Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The Alliance of Small Island States called on developed countries to
commit to higher greenhouse gas reduction targets so that global
temperature rise stays below 1.5ºC. Bolivia demanded repayment of the
developed world's climate debt. El Salvador and Paraguay stood strong to
protect Indigenous Peoples rights.

Alarmingly, industrialised countries failed in Bonn to agree to the
substantial transfer of money and technology cooperation needed to enable
developing countries to tackle climate change.


The media landscape is changing fast

Our news team is changing too as we work hard to bring you the news that matters most.

Change is coming. And we've got it covered.

Please donate to our 2019 Mid-Year Campaign today.

"Industrialised countries need to assume their historical responsibility
and pay back their climate debt. Developing countries must stay strong in
calling for climate justice. By ignoring calls to repay their climate debt
and hindering progress in these talks, rich countries are jeopardising the
lives and livelihoods of millions of people." said Meena Raman, Honorary
Secretary of Friends of the Earth Malaysia.

Industrialised nations owe developing countries a 'climate debt' for both
excessive greenhouse gas pollution over the past 200 years and to
compensate for the damage that pollution has and will cause. [1] Rich,
industrialised countries account for some twenty percent of the world’s
population but are responsible for around three-quarters of historical
greenhouse gas emissions. But developed countries have so far refused to
repay this debt and continued to block progress in the negotiations.

For more information, contact in Bonn:

Meena Raman, Honorary Secretary of Friends of the Earth Malaysia: Tel: +
60 12 43 00 042 (Malaysian mobile number)

Karen Orenstein, Friends of the Earth US: Tel: +1-202-640 8679 (US mobile

Sonja Meister, Friends of the Earth Europe (English, German): Tel:
+49-176-64 60 85 15 (German mobile number)

Asad Rehman, Friends of the Earth England, Wales and Northern Ireland:
Tel: +44 77201 47280 (UK mobile number)

IN BONN TODAY Press conference at 15.30 in Saal Reger, Hotel Maritime from
Friends of the Earth International and Third World Network, Pan African
Climate Justice Alliance, Friends of the Earth USA.
*Interviews available with Friends of the Earth campaigners from Japan,
US, Malaysia, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, UK. Media coordinator: +49 176


We want a more open and sharing world.

That's why our content is free. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported.

All of our original content is published under Creative Commons—allowing (and encouraging) our articles to be republished freely anywhere. In addition to the traffic and reach our content generates on our site, the multiplying impact of our work is huge and growing as our articles flourish across the Internet and are republished by other large and small online and print outlets around the world.

Several times a year we run brief campaigns to ask our readers to pitch in—and thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Our 2019 Mid-Year Campaign is underway. Can you help? We can't do it without you.

Please select a donation method:

Friends of the Earth is the U.S. voice of the world's largest grassroots environmental network, with member groups in 77 countries. Since 1969, Friends of the Earth has fought to create a more healthy, just world.

Share This Article