Europe United against Climate Change!

, by JEF Europe

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Europe United against Climate Change!

The Young European Federalists (JEF-Europe) welcome the opening of the UN Cancun talks on Climate Change, while reminding of the disappointing outcome of last year’s Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, which only established a system of non-binding international consultations.

Philippe Adriaenssens, President of JEF-Europe emphasises: “Because climate change is a global threat to today’s youth and to the right of the future generations to have a clean and healthy environment, a threat to human, economic and social rights and a risk to the stability of the international system through conflicts over scarce resources and mass migration, it is essential that the Conference reaches a bold, binding and long-term environmental deal."

The European Union (EU) has explicitly committed itself to ‘combating climate change’ in the Lisbon Treaty and a Commission Communication from last March sets out a roadmap to raise the level of its outreach and explore specific international measures to be agreed. “The EU has both the capacity and the responsibility to emerge as a true environmental frontrunner in Cancun and beyond.” explains Adriaenssens.

It is essential that the Conference reaches a bold, binding and long-term environmental deal.

“The inability of the European Union to leave its mark and live up to its ambitions during the last Conference of the Parties (COP) damaged the EU’s credibility, among its own Citizens as well as other countries. The Cancun Conference is an opportunity for the EU to maintain momentum and restore its credibility and legitimacy as a global leader in the field of combating climate change.” Adriaenssens points out.

Executive Bureau Member Daniela Vidaicu stresses: “For the sake of protecting the future of our planet and its Citizens, all countries need to be involved in the Cancun negotiations, and the EU should provide more ‘fast-start’ technical and financial support to adapt and ease the efforts of developing countries in order to get them all on board.”

JEF-Europe therefore urges all the Parties of the COP 16 to agree on a robust, binding and enforceable international agreement ensuring a decent follow-up to the Kyoto Protocol and setting out clear goals and commitments to effectively combat climate change. “We urge the UN Secretariat to set up strong and well-functioning international structures such as a World Environmental Organisation able to direct, monitor and evaluate progress in the delivery on the commitments made.” Adriaenssens concludes.

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