In a year in which the impacts of climate change pounded people in rich and poor countries alike, negotiators in Doha have failed to deliver even the minimum expectations for the UN climate negotiations.
“Some developed countries have made a mockery of the negotiations by backing away from their past commitments and refusing to take on new ones. And to make matters worse, it was only a handful of countries – such as Poland, Russia, Canada, the US and Japan – who held the negotiations to ransom,” says Samantha Smith, leader of WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative.
“What science tells us and what millions of people experienced this year is that fightingclimate change is now extremely urgent. Every year counts, and every year governments do not act increases the risk to us all.
“The acid test for these negotiations was real emissions cuts; real and concrete financial commitments for climate change; and the basis for a new global deal by 2015 that is both ambitious and equitable. But instead we got a shamefully weak deal, one that is so far away from the science that it should raise ethical issues for those responsible.”
”But hope is far from gone. The movement gets stronger and more passionate everyday. Communities and people are standing up for clean energy, confronting dirty projects all over the world, such as coal, and demanding that changes be made. Here in Doha, for the first time in history, people marched to demand real leadership to tackle climate change,” says Tasneem Essop, head of the WWF delegation to COP 18.
“The most significant development in Doha was what happened outside the plenary rooms, says Essop, “Social movements and civil society joined hands to take a stand against the lack of ambition and urgency in the climate negotiations. We will continue to work to ensure that governments are going to meet the 2015 deadline for a fair, ambitious and binding agreement.”