An alliance of environmental groups, scientists and grassroots organizations expressed support to the call for a 40 percent reduction in carbon emissions, based on 1990 levels, by 2020 and by more than 95 percent by 2050.
An alliance of environmental groups, scientists and grassroots organizations expressed support to the call for a reduction in carbon emissions.
The Philippine Climate Watch Alliance (PCWA) is supporting the demand of the 43 small islands states, the Philippines included, for industrialized nations to cut their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2020 and by more than 95 percent by 2050.
The Conference of Parties (COP) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP) is being held in Poznan, Poland.
Meggie Nolasco, spokesperson of the Philippine Climate Watch Alliance (PCWA) said, “It is a positive thing that the Philippine delegation to Poznan is united with other developing nations on the level of reduction of GHG emissions industrialized nations should take.”
Giovanni Tapang, chairperson of the scientist group AGHAM and co-convenor of PCWA said achieving a more than 40 percent reduction in global carbon emission based on the 1990 level by 2020 may avert the feared two-degree Celsius increase in global temperature, which many scientists believe would be catastrophic if not prevented. “It is a realistic goal and the world has no choice if we want to avoid global disaster,” he said.
The PCWA urged the 43 developing countries, especially the Philippine delegates, to hold their ground as developed countries, especially the US, have tried to evade responsibility in the past.
The US, the largest emitter of GHG in the world, is the only industrialized country that did not sign the 1998 Kyoto Protocol. The Kyoto Protocol, a landmark international agreement on climate change, came about in 1998. It targeted to reduce global carbon emissions in 2012 by 5.2 percent compared to 1990 levels. It also introduced market-based and profit-oriented mechanisms such as carbon trading and the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) to reduce carbon emissions of countries and corporations.
US President-elect Barack Obama has promised to reduce their carbon emission down to their 1990 levels by 2020 and 80 percent below the 1990 level by 2050. The European Union is negotiating a 20 percent cut below 1990 levels by 2020.
The PCWA refused to be oblivious. Nolasco said it should be expected that industrialized countries, particularly the United States, would impose smaller carbon emission reduction in the pre-text of protecting their economies, as they have done in the past.
The alliance maintained that industrialized nations would want to ‘continue to exploit and consume fossil fuels in their greed for profits.’ The PCWA said that industrialized nations were the ones historically and primarily responsible for the emission and rise of greenhouse gases (GHG).
Nolasco said that cutting back on emissions is not enough. She said that any genuine move to resolve the problem of global warming must critically recognize and address the larger socio-economic context in which it occurs.
The PCWA said it finds the position of the Philippine government in Poznan contradictory to its own policies. Nolasco said the Arroyo government’s economic policies such as in mining and energy, agriculture and forest are geared towards producing and consuming more carbon-based fuels. She cited the Arroyo government’s promotion of large-scale mining projects, coal-fired power plants, oil and gas extraction projects.
Tapang said the root cause of global warming is the unsustainable extraction and use of natural resources particularly of fossil fuels. He said that the globalization policies of the Arroyo administration which puts the country and people more at risk and vulnerable to climate change must be opposed.(Bulatlat.com)