December 19, 2007

I received this via email from Avaaz this morning-- This is good news indeed.

Wow - on Saturday, in desperate last-minute negotiations, the world faced down an effort by the US, Canada and Japan to wreck the crucial Bali Climate Change Summit. Over 600,000 Avaaz members mobilized to save the Bali talks, including 320,000 in the final 72 hours! Click below to read the whole story with photos and videos:

Arriving in Bali, most countries wanted to work towards a new global treaty on climate change as well as new targets for carbon emissions by rich countries. But late last week, the US and Canada teamed up to undermine the talks -- the US blocked the whole Bali summit consensus, and when a smaller group of Kyoto treaty countries tried to move ahead without the US, they were blocked by Canada. The summit was in danger of deadlock.

The Avaaz community flew into action, signing and spreading petitions to each of the governments, supporting ad campaigns in Bali and Canada, marches around the world, and phoning and lobbying elected officials. At the summit, Avaaz members brought the storm of public criticism inside the conference walls with the only march allowed inside the venue, the largest climate petition delivery in history, daily press conferences and "fossil awards" for the worst countries in the negotiations, and constant lobbying of officials.

In the final hours of the summit, Canada backed down completely and allowed Kyoto countries to agree to strong 2020 targets on carbon emissions, and the US team, now entirely isolated and actually booed by the world's diplomats, compromised and agreed to call for "deep cuts" and "reference" the 2020 targets. This paved the way for the summit to agree to sign a new global climate change treaty by 2009.

Usually these conferences are stuffy diplomatic affairs - but this time the world was watching, and speaking, each day. Together, we brought people-powered politics to the halls of power, and put our governments on notice: in the fight to save our environment, we will not be spectators.

This is just the beginning. Every nation of the world has now agreed that they will enter into accelerated negotiations and, by 2009, sign a new treaty to confront global warming. We need this treaty to set binding global targets for carbon emissions, and a mechanism for meeting them, that keep the earth's temperature from rising more than 2 degrees celsius - the amount that scientists say would be 'catastrophic'. Such a treaty will change the world's economy forever, weaning us off oil and fossil fuels to cleaner sources of energy. Some leaders, in the pocket of the oil industry, will fight it tooth and nail all the way. And we will too. A great struggle to save our environment has begun, and this weekend, we showed together that the people of the world aren't intending to sit this one out.


Mary Ellen said...

It's so disgusting when we are getting reports of ice caps melting, polar bears and other animals facing peril and sure extinction, and then the so-called most powerful nation is too greedy to want to do anything about it. I'm so ashamed of our government and wonder if we will ever be able to restore our reputation worldwide.

two crows said...

right on, Mary Ellen--
tho I wasn't surprised by the US and the Japanese stances, Canada did surprise me. I always thought they were a cut above us.
well, at least they capitulated first. that's something, I guess.

an average patriot said...

You know, it is terrible what is happening to the planet. It is worse than even Al says though. if we could set mans influence to zero tomorrow it would not be enough. Part of what is happening to day is normal and cyclical. It has happened many times before.
Like Bush has sped up the natural cycle of our societies degeneration, Man has sped up the natural life cycle of the planet.

two crows said...

yeah, AAP--
that cyclical change is a major reason why the politicians are getting away with stonewalling the way they are. when they ask a scientist, 'hasn't this happened before?' the scientist has to admit that, yes, it has. then the politician says there's no need to do anything about it.
meanwhile, the planet is dying.

fortunately, there are places where stuff is happening despite the gov't's interference.

Mary Ellen's home town, f'rinstance, has some very interesting projects going-- like green roofs, and the natural cleaning of water, etc.
some of their projects were profiled on a show called 'Invention Nation' last night.

and, I'm looking into a bicycle generator. if I can afford it, I'll use it to recharge my cell phone and other batteries -- AND get some much-needed exercise while doing it! :)
if I can get hold of one, I'll post it on the blog with details as to where and how much.