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European faith-based networks worried about EU’s role at UN Climate Change Conference


27 Oct 2009


Social Europe & Jobs

Brussels, 27 October 2009 - The Secretary General of Caritas Europa, along with the Secretary Generals of two other faith-based networks (Aprodev and CIDSE), sent a letter yesterday to top EU decision-makers asking them to ensure that the European Council will show leadership towards a more sustainable and equitable economic future for the world.

The Swedish Presidency’s first EU Summit will take place in Brussels this week (29th - 30th October) and it is in advance of this occasion that the three networks are addressing Mr. Fredrik Reinfeldt (Sweden’s Prime Minister and President of the European Council), Mr. Jose Manuel Barroso (President of the European Commission), Mr. Jerzy Buzek (President of the European Parliament), Mr. Stavros Dimas (Commissioner for the Environment) and Mr. Lars Lokke Rasmussen (Denmark’s Prime Minister and President of the 15th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change).

In their letter, the three Secretary-Generals insist on the importance of reaching an ambitious, equitable and binding international agreement in Copenhagen, since climate change is not only happening, but it is developing disturbingly faster than it was originally anticipated.

“Early and effective action now is the only way to reduce human, environmental and economic costs – both for present and future generations”, states the letter. It also highlights that not all countries have the same possibilities to tackle this ecologic crisis since most developing countries cannot cope with the economic burden that countering climate change is imposing on them. On the other hand, the EU has the resources to help. Therefore it is the Union’s moral and historical responsibility to assist and support developing countries in their struggle to become more carbon efficient without hampering their own development.

The letter also includes a short list of essential elements of an effective and equitable EU negotiation position that must be adopted by the Council during this week’s summit, such as:

The UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen will take place on the 7th-18th December 2009

Photo: Wordpress

Strong commitment to domestic emission reductions of at least 40% below 1990 levels by 2020
Support for fair and equitable global effort sharing model which respects the right of poorer countries to sustainable development

Commitment to innovative climate finance mechanisms that can provide predictable, sustainable and adequate funding in addition to the existing Official Development Assistance commitments

Commitment for the EU to provide at least €35 billion new and additional public funds annually for mitigation and adaptation in developing countries and to commit to a near-term financing package for pre-2012 action in developing countries

The networks will monitor very closely the development of the Summit and its outcome regarding climate change and the UN Conference in Copenhagen. They will also continue advocating at the national level through their member organisations, which will send a similar letter to their national Head of States and relevant decision-makers.

For more information, please contact:
Blandine Bouniol
Policy Officer for International Cooperation
Tel: +32 (0)2 235 26 55


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