The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Erin Jensen,Email:,

Developed Countries Must Stop Stalling Climate Talks


On the eve of a new round of UN climate talks due to start on Monday in
China, Friends of the Earth International called on developed countries
to stop stalling on deep emission cuts and to collaborate with
developing nations to produce a strong, just climate agreement.

Negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on
Climate Change (UNFCCC) will take place in Tianjin, China, from October
4-9. This is the final UNFCCC intersessional meeting this year prior to
the annual Conference of the Parties, which will take place in Cancun,
Mexico, November 29-10 December.

Control of climate finance is at
the centre of negotiations. Friends of the Earth International is
calling for the establishment of a Global Climate Fund under the UNFCCC -
with no role for existing multilateral development banks.

Rich countries, led by the United States, are attempting to place control of climate funds with the World Bank.

Asad Rehman, of Friends of the Earth-England, Wales and Northern Ireland, who will observe the Tianjin UN talks, said:

U.S. and other developed countries want the World Bank to control
climate finance. This is unacceptable. The World Bank is an undemocratic
discredited institution that is far more adept at causing climate
change than preventing it. The World Bank is the number one lender to
environmentally and socially destructive projects around the globe, and
heavily influenced by major corporations and polluters. It is time for
political leaders to stop listening to the Bank and these corporate
interests and start acting on behalf of people and the planet. There is
the potential for real progress to be made in Tianjin if developed
countries do their part. Citizens of developed countries should urge
their leaders to take bold action that advances the cause of climate

Karen Orenstein of Friends of the Earth-U.S., who will observe the Tianjin UN talks, said:

is clear that domestic politics at this time will not allow the United
States to lead global efforts to tackle climate change. The Obama
administration must stop pretending it can lead. It must cease its
efforts to drag the rest of the world down to its very low level of
ambition, when what the climate crisis demands is far higher ambition
from all developed countries. The European Union, rather than continuing
its strategy of catering to the U.S., could reemerge as a climate
leader and take up the cause of binding, equitable, and science-based
emissions targets."

In addition to calling for a strong and just
agreement that deeply cuts emissions and includes commitments by
developed countries to meet their responsibility to provide adaptation
and mitigation support to developing countries, Friends of the Earth
International calls for an agreement to:

* Avoid carbon offsetting schemes, which are loopholes that prevent necessary emission reductions from being made

* Avoid carbon trading, which is unjust and makes bankers wealthy but prevents needed emission cuts in developed countries

* Address deforestation in a way that stops deforestation while respecting communities' and indigenous peoples' rights

Establish a global climate fund under the authority of the UNFCCC with
no role for the World Bank and other multilateral development banks

Protect human rights and be consistent with existing human rights
treaties and obligations, including the UN Declaration of Rights of
Indigenous Peoples.

* Ensure that rich countries reaffirm
their commitment to their legally binding obligations under the Kyoto
Protocol, where rich countries accept their responsibility for causing
climate change by agreeing to cut their emissions first and fastest. New
Kyoto targets for a second commitment period for industrialised
countries of at least 40 per cent reductions - without offsetting - is
the minimum requirement to provide any chance of avoiding catastrophic
climate change.

Friends of the Earth fights for a more healthy and just world. Together we speak truth to power and expose those who endanger the health of people and the planet for corporate profit. We organize to build long-term political power and campaign to change the rules of our economic and political systems that create injustice and destroy nature.

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