For Immediate Release


Keith Schneider, +1 231 920 0745
Rhys Gerholdt, +1 202 341 1323,

Climate Action Network (CAN)

USA Wins First Place Fossil For Weak Target, No Cash

3rd: Canada and Saudi Arabia 2nd: European Union 1st: USA

COPENHAGEN, Denmark - As the UN climate talks in Copenhagen enter their second week, NGOs
from around the world voted to present their mock "Fossil of the Day
Award"--given to the country or countries doing the most to obstruct
progress in the global climate talks--to the USA.

USA's failure to commit to long-term financing is foot-dragging that could foil
the talks," said presenter Ben Wikler of "America also has
among the weakest emissions targets of any major developed country. Just when
the world needs the US to lead, the fossil fuel lobby and its allies in the
Senate are holding the US right where it's been stuck for years--at the back of
the pack," he added.

Fossil of the Day Awards are chosen by a daily vote of the Climate Action
Network-International, a global coalition of over 450 non-governmental organisations,
and presented daily at 6pm at an award ceremony hosted by Ben Wikler of For more information, and past winners:

Fossil went to the EU for failing to address a gaping loophole that undermines
its targets: hot air and forest management. Canada and Saudi Arabia came joint
third for their woeful performance in the Climate Change Index figures released
today by Germanwatch and Climate Action Network Europe.

In a
satirical game-show style ceremony, tuxedo-clad Ben Wikler of said:

The USA wins its first Fossil of the COP for two reasons: first, for making
absolutely no commitment on long-term financing for developing countries, a
failure that could sink the talks. Second, because the US--far and away the
biggest cumulative emitter of global warming pollution in world history--has
among the weakest emissions targets of any major developed country, a laughable
4% below 1990 levels by 2020--despite the growing chorus of calls for 40+% cuts
from rich countries. Do US negotiators represent the US fossil fuel lobby? Or
will they bring the US into the community of nations, rich and poor alike,
rising to the biggest challenge humanity has ever faced? US, all eyes on you:
is it Hopenhagen or Brokenhagen?

The EU wins second-place Fossil dishonors for failing to address a gaping
loophole that undermines its targets: hot air and forest management. Allowing
full carry-over past 2012 of Europe's hot air--that is, targets based on 1990
levels that in fact allow huge increases in emissions--could allow 11
gigatonnes of carbon emissions. Europe's flagging credibility as a climate
leader could crumble completely if this hot air loophole is not closed -- and
all of the EU member states are responsible.

Saudi Arabia and Canada receive the third place fossil of the day for their
respective last and second-last finish in the Climate Change Performance Index
released today by Germanwatch and Climate Action Network Europe. The Index
evaluates 57 industrial and developing countries who release 90% of the world's
greenhouse gas emissions.

Saudi Arabia's record speaks for itself. Canada only finished second-last
because Saudi Arabia received a zero rating for its climate policy! Canada is
in the world's top ten emitters, has one of the world's highest per capita
rates of emissions at 23 tonnes per person, and is 34% above its Kyoto target
(which is just a modest 6% cut from 1990). Simply put: on climate change,
Canada has performance issues.


This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Won't Exist.

Please select a donation method:

The Climate Action Network (CAN), a coalition of over 450 NGOs worldwide dedicated to limiting climate change to sustainable levels, regularly judges and presents three 'Fossil of The Day' awards to the countries who perform the worst during the past day's negotiations at UN climate change conferences. The Fossil-of-the-Day awards were first presented at the climate talks in 1999, also in Bonn, initiated by the German NGO Forum. For more on the Fossils:

Share This Article