The COP25 conference which concluded last Friday (December 13) has been described by UN Secretary-General António Guterres as ‘disappointing,’ with no overall deal reached between the 190 countries that attended.
The conference has resulted in some conclusions, for example on capacity building, a gender programme, and technology, but no overall deal was reached due to disagreements on the larger issues of loss and damage caused by climate change and how to finance the need for adaptation.
Decisions in many areas have been pushed onto COP26, which will be held in Glasgow next year.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres said: ‘I am disappointed with the results of COP25, the international community lost an important opportunity to show increased ambition on mitigation, adaption and finance to tackle the climate crisis.
‘But we must not give up, and I will not give up.
‘I am more determined than ever to work for 2020 to be the year in which all countries commit to doing what science tells us is necessary to reach carbon neutrality in 2050 and a no more than 1.5-degree temperature rise.’
Sara Shaw, climate justice and energy programme coordinator for Friends of the Earth International said: ‘Just as we thought the slow pace and weak ambition shown at the climate talks couldn’t get any worse, along comes COP25.
‘Here, we have witnessed the gutting of the already weak Paris Agreement, with the advance of dodgy carbon trading that will only exacerbate the climate crisis and harm Southern communities.
‘And we have seen a refusal by developed countries to pay up loss and damage finance, while they try to introduce language that would remove their liability for the impacts their emissions have caused.
Friends of the Earth Scotland’s head of campaigns Mary Church said: ‘COP25 should have delivered urgent support. Instead, the response of Northern countries and elites everywhere, including in the UK, is to sacrifice the global majority: the lives and livelihoods of the many to pay for the lifestyles of the few.
‘The UN must put pressure on the new UK government to ensure the voices of those most affected by the climate crisis are not silenced or excluded at COP26.
‘Next year’s climate talks will shine a spotlight on the UK’s unacceptable oil and gas expansion plans, and the Scottish Government support for them, which is incompatible with any claims of climate leadership.
‘The climate justice movement in the UK is stronger than ever, and the COP in Glasgow next year will serve as a rallying cry for all who care about our planet and the fate of peoples all over the world. The eyes of the world will be on us. It is not too late to act.’
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