The shamefully weak deal reached at the climate talks in Doha last week – largely the fault of blocking tactics by countries like the US, Canada, Russia, Japan, New Zealand and Poland – means that it’s now down to all of us to act together and force our governments to put people and the planet ahead of short-term economic interests.
In a year when the impacts of climate change have been felt by rich and poor countries alike, negotiators at the latest UN climate talks in Doha failed to deliver even the minimum expectations on cutting greenhouse gas emissions, or making sure climate finance plans are ambitious and fair.
Instead we got a shamefully weak deal, one that’s so far away from the science that it should raise ethical issues for those responsible. Some developed countries made a mockery of the negotiations by backing away from their past commitments or refusing to take on new ones.
We particularly condemn politicians from the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Russia and Poland for blocking any progress, and the EU and Australia for failing to live up to their responsibilities on emissions cuts and finance.
Governments are clearly out of touch with the reality of climate change, which is affecting the lives and livelihoods of millions of people around the world through storms, floods, droughts, erratic weather, sea level rise and melting glaciers. Food and water supplies are under threat, and many homes and communities have been hit hard, along with wildlife and natural habitats.
That’s why WWF and some of the other largest and most respected environmental and development organisations in the world – including Greenpeace, Oxfam and Friends of the Earth – have issued a joint statement vowing to keep fighting for a global deal, climate justice and strong action in every country.
Any chance of a successful global deal by 2015 now rests with mobilising millions of people across the world. We must work to help transform our food and energy systems at a national and global level and rebuild a broken economic system to create a sustainable and low-carbon economy with decent jobs and livelihoods for all.
Hope is far from gone. The most significant development in Doha was actually what was happening outside the negotiations. Social movements, labour unions and others from civil society joined hands, marched and took a stand against the lack of ambition and urgency shown by governments.
Communities and people affected by climate change are standing up for safety, food and water security, and clean energy all over the world – confronting dirty projects such as coal and the dash to 'unconventional' oil and gas – and demanding real change.
We’ll be hoping for your support and involvement in the coming months and years too.