UN climate negotiations in Poland have lacked the ambition and cooperation needed to agree crucial measures to avert catastrophic climate change.
Ministers came to the 24th Conference of the Parties (COP24) to agree the rulebook needed to implement the Paris Agreement to limit global warming to 1.5 °C and protect the planet now and for future generations.
Despite urgent warnings from the world’s leading scientists that we have just 12 years left to keep global temperatures at a safe level, governments have failed to create a rulebook that lives up to the promise of the 2015 Paris Agreement.
Speaking from Katowice, Harjeet Singh, Global Lead on Climate Change at ActionAid International, says:
“Our governments have failed us. Some of the most powerful countries in the world are led by reactionary climate deniers and their views have been allowed to water down the ambition and cooperation needed to avert catastrophic climate change.
“Rich countries have a moral and a legal responsibility to provide money and technology to developing countries to make their economies greener and tackle the impacts of climate change. Instead of taking this seriously, they pushed through a rulebook riddled with loopholes allowing them to avoid this responsibility.
“The climate crisis simply cannot be fixed without financing. It’s hugely frustrating to see a Paris Rulebook that goes backwards on delivering real finance and real action.
“The worst affected communities have shouted from the rafters about the loss and damage they’re experiencing right now. More than 20 million people a year are being forcibly displaced by sudden, extreme weather events. The agreement to now officially monitor losses shows that, although these communities are finally being heard, the world is still standing back and watching climate change like it’s a slow-motion car crash.
He adds: “Citizens and young people around the world recognise the urgency of action on climate change.
“High level talks have disappointed us over and over, but we know that the real solutions lie in local movements and communities that use their votes and voices to hold their governments accountable for solving the climate crisis. Change is possible.”