Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Bali Low

Santa’s coming to town! Who’s been naughty? Who’s been nice? I can tell you, Canada, the USA and Japan, among others have been very very bad. And I don’t mean good.

The climate talks are in Bali right now. World reps are at a point where they are negotiating post Kyoto targets. The talks are terribly critical. Many who are there are fighting for a post Kyoto future that will steer us away from the tipping point of a climate catastrophe.

You can help. Please sign the following petitions:

AVAAZ: Stop the Climate-Wrecking at Bali

Al Gore’s Petition

Write to the Canadian Minister of the Environment, John Baird -

Provide financial assistance to organizations fighting the good fight. Friends of the Earth has taken the government of Canada to court for failing to meet its Kyoto commitment. They could sure use your support.

What’s Up
The Kyoto Protocol ends in 2012, the year when signatory countries are to cap emissions to 1990 levels. How are they doing? For Sweden and Denmark, very well – dropping seven and four percent respectively. On the other hand, Canada reports an increase of 27%, Japan, 13% and Spain a whopping 61%.

What’s at Stake
The scientists behind the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warn that the situation is dire for our biosphere if we do not act now. This warning is remarkable when you consider that scientists tend to be a conservative lot. If they are worried, we should be very worried. We should be so worried that we band together, put down our petty needs, and creatively solve this colossal problem.

And just in case we don’t really get it, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon makes it very clear: "The situation is so desperately serious that any delay could push us past the tipping point, beyond which the ecological, financial and human costs would increase dramatically."

Currently On the Table
Countries are now discussing next steps in Bali. According to the Toronto Star, the latest draft proposal recommends that developed nations drop their emissions between 25 and 40 per cent by 2020.

Developed countries like the USA, Canada, UK, etc. consume the majority of the earth’s resources, despite representing a minority of the world’s population. As a result, it has been generally agreed that these fat cat countries get the ball rolling on reducing emissions. Click here to see what I mean.

Problem Children
According to AVAAZ, Canada, the USA and Japan rejected the recommended proposal made last night. Apparently they don’t like the idea of mandatory cuts that are critical to staving off climate crisis. I suppose they feel that they can’t meet cuts, based on past performance. They also don’t like the idea of having to reduce emissions when developing countries aren’t bond by the same mandatory rules. Keep in mind that China and India, while on the rise, do not come close to the per capita carbon footprint of Americans and Canadians. In time they must be folded into mandatory reductions.

But for now - we don’t have time to stall.

Our leaders must lead. They must come to terms that our current economy cannot continue. We either work very quickly towards a sustainable way of living or Mother Nature will change everything for us. And this is not up for negotiation. It’s either or. Mr. Baird, Canada’s Environment Minister, seems to think he can negotiate. It’s up to us to give him a wake up call. Please sign the petitions above and write to Baird:

In the News

Sweden First, US almost Last, Says Study
A new report rates the climate-protection performance of 56 countries that account for 90 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions. While Germany came in at second best, the US ranked second worst.

Leaked negotiating instructions show Canada set to block negotiations in Bali
Pot Kettle Black
And Canada ? Oh Canada .

Penguins in march toward extinction
They can’t adapt to their warming climate.

Guns Beat Green: The Market Has Spoken
A fascinating and cautionary article on expectations for the market to lead the green revolution.

Oil-Rich Nations Use More Energy, Cutting Exports
This article has a theme song: Highway to Hell.

Gore Urges Bold Moves in Nobel Speech
Meanwhile, in Oslo ….

What Is Progress?
And from Monbiot

Other News

BBC – The Greenroom

Ecoshock Radio

Green Bloggers

Grist Magazine


My Green Element

New York Times – Environment

Tree Hugger

Zerofootprint Blog

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