Kyoto agreement on climate change moves forward
MILAN (ITALY) – Concerted US attempts to derail the United Nations Kyoto Protocol on climate change have failed, said Friends of the Earth International today, at the close of the ninth Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Milan.
A US diplomatic offensive to play down the Kyoto Protocol did not stop nations from reaffirming their commitment to the Protocol, which has now been ratified by 120 countries. The stage is set for Russian ratification and the Protocol’s entry into force sometime next year.
The Kyoto Protocol is the only international treaty to cut the emissions causing dangerous climate change. US attempts to derail it have failed. The stage is now set for the Russians to ratify Kyoto and bring it into force,” said in Milan Roger Higman of Friends of the Earth International.
However, US intransigence is causing headaches for other negotiators. Despite continuing to intervene in discussions on the Protocol, the US has refused to contribute to its administration and has forced contributions to be voluntary. Friends of the Earth International is calling on countries who have ratified the Protocol to quickly come forward to ensure administration costs are met.
However, hopes for tough rules to stop the Protocol encouraging monoculture plantations in developing countries have been dashed. The vast majority of such plantations are environmentally and socially destructive. Countries did not agree to ban the use of genetically modified organisms or invasive species in forestry projects being funded through the Protocol’s so-called Clean Development Mechanism.
Friends of the Earth International therefore calls on Northern countries to focus on curbing greenhouse gas emissions at home and on promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency. Friends of the Earth International members will continue to expose and fight damaging forestry projects that are put forward in the south as alternatives to emissions cuts in the north.
“Northern countries who have contributed so much to climate change must not compound the damage they have done by forcing environmentally and socially destructive plantation schemes on communities in the south. We will continue exposing and fighting damaging forestry projects that are put forward in the south as alternatives to emissions cuts in the north,” added Roger Higman of Friends of the Earth International.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT IN MILAN:
Friends of the Earth International:
Roger Higman : +39-335-138-9242
Yuri Onodera: +39-338-9752248
Friends of the Earth Lombardia:
Francesca Biagi +39-348-271-4932