Climate change will never be combatted by EU alone while some G20 countries keep procrastinating

Press conference by Miguel Arias Cañete, Member of the EC, on the preparations under way ahead of COP21/CM11 (EC Audiovisual Services, 20/08/2015)

Press conference by Miguel Arias Cañete, Member of the EC, on the preparations under way ahead of COP21/CM11 (EC Audiovisual Services, 20/08/2015)

The EU Commissioner of Climate Action and Energy stressed out yesterday the sluggishness of the required actions that must be taken in order to combat climate change effects. Miguel Arias Cañete was critical to some G20 countries that have not yet provided their climate contributions and are not helping to create a constructive agreement.

The Commission’s official made it clear from Brussels that there is an absolute need to reduce the length of the 85-page draft agreement and narrow the options down. It is of great importance that everyone starts working immediately for the next climate agreement which will target at the temperature’s rise of more than two degrees Celsius.

Despite the pioneer fight of the EU against climate change, it seems that is alone in a context of 195 countries in the Kyoto Protocol which has as main idea to tackle global warming created by man-made CO2 emissions.

However, Europe should not stop there but continue its tasks urging every EU member state to reduce CO2 emissions and also provide financial aid to other non-EU countries that cannot tackle this long-lasting problem on their own.

EU “points the finger” to big emerging economies

Miguel Arias Cañete at a press conference that took place in Brussels, stressed the fact that many alterations to the climate change issue must be done before attending the Paris climate conference in December. More specifically, the EU Commissioner mentioned that: “In the negotiating rooms, progress has been painfully slow. The technical talks are seriously lagging behind the political discussion and this must change. The window of opportunity to meet our target of keeping the global temperature rise below 2 degrees is closing fast.”

Moreover, the submission of targets for reducing global greenhouse-gas emissions are not on the table by some of the biggest economies such as Argentina, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. The aforementioned emerging economies are contributing to the global emissions to a great extent and is of vital importance to present their climate plans as soon as possible in order to be evaluated at the Paris Conference.

Cut down the 85-page draft agreement

The text that was written by all countries’ proposals is still too long to be characterised as constructive and options must be narrowed down in order to have a sustainable document that is affordable. “When it comes to substance, the text is still far too long, with all options put forward by countries still on the table. This has to be negotiated as soon as possible,” the Commissioner of the Climate Action added during his speech.

All the countries involved in this agreement should focus only on solutions that have a direct effect on the rise of the temperature that comes from greenhouse gas emissions. Further, the text has to contain analytical actions on how and who is going to provide financial aid to the countries that contribute negatively to the climate change but cannot reduce their emissions on their own.

EU is fighting climate change alone

It is clear that the Old Continent has practically shown its will to reverse the climate change that humans have caused. In detail, the EU is the only major economy that will truly and seriously try reduce emissions by at least 40% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels, which is anyway quite ambitious in comparison to biggest economies such as the US which has announced to cut emissions by between 26% to 28% from 2005 levels over the next 10 years.

What is more, China, India, and the United States have all signaled in Lima in 2014 that they will not sign any agreement that will commit them legally to reduce CO2 emissions, something that makes things a lot worse for the environment and for the anticipated deal.

All in all, the EU, in an attempt to promote its values of protecting the climate at all costs, is trying to put pressure on the rest of the world to join this fight but does not seem to be able to persuade them. Thus, despite the desperate warnings of the scientists, the rise of the temperature will keep on heartrending governments as well as citizens at a global and personal level.

All the above make the next international INDC forum on 12-13 October in Rabat, Morocco to be crucial for the negotiations and the achievement of the next climate agreement in Paris.


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