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DURBAN COP17: Science, Justice and Equity. Principles to tear the climate out of the hands of savage capitalism

DURBAN COP17: Science, Justice and Equity. Principles to tear the climate out of the hands of savage capitalism

By Elizabeth Peredo Beltrán

Every year the media say that this time it is "the last chance to save the planet." What is at stake in Durban is not life, because they have already raffled it a long time ago, what is truly at stake is the possibility of finding real and coherent ways to stop the catastrophe and to sow the bases of a transformed society that consequently eludes the mechanisms and apparatus of global destruction on a day-to-day basis.


We have already said it and we repeat it: the Climate is in the hands of "wild capitalism" and its institutions. In the last year's negotiations, practically nothing positive progress has been made for the peoples, no further reduction commitments have been achieved and, supported by the Cancun agreements, a suicidal logic of "voluntary commitments" aimed at dismantling the climate regime and promote a new instrument to replace the Kyoto Protocol, making it easier for large economies to evade their responsibilities, particularly the US. The World Bank and its role in the Green Fund have been empowered, opening up towards greater privatization, indebtedness and conditionalities, progress has been made in fine-tuning the market mechanisms for the “control” of emissions, there are no commitments for sufficient funds that respond to the catastrophe, the situation in developing countries has weakened in practice and we are rapidly heading towards temperatures above 2ºC, some scientific groups even speak that in this century we could overcome an average rise of 4ºC: a true catastrophe.

The decisions to be taken are already late, but it would give at least hope to know that the States are aware of the magnitude of this crisis and of their responsibilities. Governments must tell the truth, explain to their peoples what is happening, because the regrets and promises of a future are not enough, we need effective and immediate measures to stop this destruction.

We demand that governments at COP 17 defend the principles of equity and the historical responsibilities of large economies towards the world and that the countries responsible for this catastrophe not only commit to substantial reductions in their emissions, but also to stop to promote unsustainable development in the South through their companies, their policies and their desire to save capitalism in its financial crisis. The planet does not have to pay the cost of the crisis produced by themselves.

We also demand that our government, in time to defend the climate regime based on the historical and differentiated responsibilities between the large economies and the "developing countries", act with coherence and consequence at the international and local level, because although we claim For the right to development, we must say with our heads held high that the type of development we seek is not the same as that which is destroying the planet. The Bolivian representatives must be consistent with how to put into practice what we call the “rights of Mother Earth”, those issues included in the draft negotiation texts must have coherent, thoughtful explanations, based on what local realities are claiming. .


And to those who tear their clothes stating that those who pollute the most today are the emerging countries, which for us are no role model, we remind them of the enormous historical debt that developed countries and large economies have with poor countries and that it is precisely the large Western transnationals that exacerbate extractivism and developmentalism. The emerging economies argument is being used by developed countries, particularly the United States, to dismantle the multilateral climate regime and destroy those principles expressed in the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol and even erase with the elbow what is agreed on the Bali Agenda. Meanwhile and in parallel, the sabers are being sharpened for the WTO negotiations, which under the mandate of the G20 at the recent meeting in Nice, have become a priority to be concluded. It is precisely the deep asymmetries and the laws of capital such as intellectual property systems and investment rules that have made it easier for these countries to locate themselves light years away in low-carbon energy technologies and matrices and that - by the way - are not even used. as appropriate under public policies but remain in the hands of corporate power.

But it is also essential to take a look at the power of corporations and the dominant elites in southern countries and the development, infrastructure and energy models that they are promoting, as is the case of South America and its relationship with the climate crisis and environmental and remember that the PICC itself (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) affirms that no previous experience in terms of infrastructure, water management, environmental management, is a precedent for the magnitude of the challenges that the future holds, given the degrees of vulnerability due to climate change.

Undoubtedly, the basic solutions will come from the people, who are the ones who experience the consequences firsthand, as we have seen in Thailand, Colombia, Australia, South America, the droughts in Africa and all those regions hit by the crisis climate and environmental conditions, and due to the vulnerability that the use of nuclear energy, the construction of aggressive infrastructures and the increase in agrofuels have added to this situation. It is the ordinary people, those who do not go to international conferences, those who face and resolve crises and those who deserve hope.

This was also the case with the agenda proposed by the Peoples' Agreement that synthesizes the awareness that we require global agreements based on science, equity and justice. Let us remember some of the proposals prepared collectively:

- The agreements should be aimed at limiting the increase in temperature in this century to 1º C to reduce the effects of climate change.

- It should seek to reduce greenhouse gases by 50% compared to the base year of 1990 for the 2nd commitment period in the Kyoto Protocol from 2013 - 2017.

- Developed countries have a climate debt with poor countries, Mother Earth and future generations and must honor it.

- Funds to face the impacts of climate change must exceed the defense, war and security budgets of developed countries worldwide.

- No private interest institution such as the World Bank or others should intervene in the management of climate funds that are in the public interest.

- The reduction of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation cannot be subject to market mechanisms. (Peoples Agreement, April 2010)

Every year the media say that this time it is "the last chance to save the planet." What is at stake in Durban is not life, because they have already raffled it a long time ago, what is truly at stake is the possibility of finding real and coherent ways to stop the catastrophe and to sow the bases of a transformed society that consequently eludes the mechanisms and apparatus of global destruction on a day-to-day basis.

Elizabeth Peredo Beltran - Social psychologist, writer and activist for water, culture and against racism. A summary of this article has been published in the Global Agenda in Bolivia on Sunday, November 27.

TUNUPA - Solon Foundation


Video: ENVIRONMENT -16: DURBAN SUMMIT UNFCCC-COP17 (June 2021).