CANCUN, MEXICO, 6 December 2010 – For the second week of UN climate negotiations in Cancún, the biggest challenge is to keep the Kyoto Protocol in place as the mechanism for aggregate science and equity based developed country targets – established without markets or offset loopholes – and to prevent it from being pushed aside by developed countries to make way for a voluntary pledge-based paradigm. Friends of the Earth International demands an open and transparent process in Cancun, with no ‘green rooms’, to achieve this goal.

Last week, rich countries attempted to lay the groundwork for the eventual dissolution of the Kyoto Protocol. They want to operationalize key aspects of the US-backed Copenhagen Accord, especially by ‘inscription’ of the Accord’s weak mitigation pledges into the Long-term Cooperative Action (LCA) track, avoiding the Kyoto Protocol’s process for establishing legally binding science-based, aggregate emissions targets for developed countries. In addition, extended carbon markets are showing up in many places in the negotiating texts.

The new negotiating text released this weekend on the Kyoto Protocol doesn’t include aggregate targets for developed countries, and substantial loopholes in Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) were added. Friends of the Earth International urges parties negotiating in this track to begin working to set such targets, without loopholes. In the new text under the other track, the LCA, important proposals from developing countries were removed, including references to reducing temperature increases to safer limits.

Manuel Graf of Friends of the Earth Germany said:

“We can still prevent catastrophic climate change. But rich countries, who are responsible for the problem, must stop blocking the strong, just policies that are needed. We must set an aggregate target under the Kyoto Protocol whereby rich countries reduce emissions by at least 40 percent with no role for carbon markets, offsets and loopholes.”

Kate Horner of Friends of the Earth US said:

“The United States must stop attempting to bully other countries into accepting a pledge-based system where emission reductions can be set without regard to science or justice. We’ve seen where this would get us – to as much as five degrees (Celsius) of warming [1]. That is unacceptable.”

Lucia Ortiz of Friends of the Earth Brazil said:

“So called ‘green rooms’, in which negotiators and ministers in Cancún are selectively invited by ‘green men’ to provide their inputs to negotiation texts, do not provide the transparency needed in this complex and vital process to save the world from a slow death from climate change. The pressure made by developing countries last week to shift this process to a more transparent one was very important and we would like to see the same happening this week.”

Tomorrow, Friends of the Earth International joins the thousands of people around the world and in Cancun who are mobilizing under the banner of climate justice. They will demand steep, binding emission reduction targets from developed countries and an open process, and will hold the Mexican Presidency accountable to its public pledges to provide such a process.



Lucia Ortiz, + 52 (1) 998 205 89 25,

Manuel Graf, +52 (1) 998 108 03 64,

Meena Raman, +52 (1) 9982036601,

Kate Horner, +52 (1) 998 137 31



[1] According to research released by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) on November 23

Media contact Friends of the Earth International in Cancun: