Th!nk4 Post: Will COP16 Succeed Where COP15 Failed?

This time last year the buzz was beginning to build around COP15 that took place in Copenhagen last year. This was going to be when Europe stood up to the rest of the world and set out its plan and hoped to get everyone else on board.

Did it work? Nope. Will COP 16 be any different is the big question.

We have witnessed 15 Conference’s of the Parties since the signing of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change since 1992. The only things that have come out of these meetings is the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 and the Montreal Action Plan in 2005.

Kyoto is soon to run out. COP 16 will be another talking shop. But do we as a planet and a people have the time to wait? Can we leave things as they are till COP 17 in South Africa in 2011? or COP 18 in Qatar or South Korea? Can we as a race take that risk or will we have reached tipping point?

COP 16 attendees will have to prove themselves. I know prepatory meetings are currently under way in China, but can world leaders agree in Cancun between November 29 to December 10 to actually do something. To change how we act towards our environment. Can we protect our planet before its too late.

In a year where it is only now we have found a planet that could possible support life, Gliese 581g, it shows how few and far between this planet and the life we have is. We have been lucky as a race to make it this far. Are we going to be our own worst enemy and destroy our planet. Here is hoping COP 16 will be different and something will come from it.

Originally post on the Th!nk4  website

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VoteWatch.eu Summary of European Parliament Votes 24-27 November 2009

European Parliament Brussels
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Votewatch.eu sent this out to all its users today. Its a good idea and may be a reason in itself to sign up to the website!

Important votes were taken during the recent EP’s plenary session, such as the resolutions on the upcoming Summit on Climate Change, the Stockholm programme in the area of justice and home affairs, “origin labelling“, the smoke-free environments, the European Police Office (Europol) and European Crime Prevention Network (EUCPN).

The progress towards accession of candidate countries was scrutinized and a resolution was voted on this subject. The European Parliament also approved in the third reading the EU telecoms rules, aimed to strengthen the rights of phone users and internet surfers and boost competition among telecoms firms.

Lots of information on how your MEP is voting!

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Taoiseach to Attend COP15

Edited version of Brian Cowen.jpg, an image in...
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During the week I got confirmation that the Brian Cowen will be attending the Copenhagen Summit on Climate Change in December.

Does this mean that Ireland is placing a large amount of importance on the conference or is Brian just playing along and supporting his Danish colleagues?

I wonder could it be down to Green Party pressure that is attending or does not want John Gormley to get all the media attention, well Irish Media attention.

I know Simon Coveney  of Fine Gael is planning on attending also, but I must reconfirm this. I must also see if Labour’s Dominic Hannigan or Liz McManus will be attending. Watch this space!

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Cabinet Meetings: Under Water and on top of Mountains

A post from the Thinkaboutit.eu Blog!

Last month the Maldives Government held a Cabinet meeting under waterto highlight the threat of global warming to the island nation. This month Nepal’s Government will hold a Cabinet meeting at the Mount Everest base-camp to highlight the threat to glaciers. While both of these events are being reported around the world, will they do anything in the lead up to the talks in Copenhagen?

While both events can be used to place moral pressure on other states to do something at the COP15 summit, I don’t very much if it will be a clincher to a deal. These events have great media potential and both Governments have created a brilliant media event around these meetings and have gotten headlines. But whats the point if they don’t produce a deal in December?

The Maldives will still be at risk of flooding and Nepal’s glaciers will still be in danger of melting even faster.

There is a lot of razzmatazz and drama being built up around the COP15 conference, for the benefit of the World’s media. Some of it is by poor countries, and more of it is by NGO’s in various countries. While in some cases this media around the conference us good as it raises the awareness around the conference and things we can do to lessen our impact on the environment. Will it have any effect on the Governments that represent us?

Will Merkel, Obama, Brown and Cowen become converted to the cause of what is actually needed due to the actions of the Maldives and Nepal Governments? I frankly don’t think so.

Something more needs to be done to convince them of the right path. But I fear it will take an environmental catastrophe for them to be convinced. I fear it will be too late then.

A Climate Change Agnostic

UNFCCC logo.
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So the COP 15 summit is coming up in December in Copenhagen. I will be blogging about it in the lead up to it both here and on the Think About It blog when launched. Like Joe I have a bit of a manifesto going, for example learning more about Climate Change, COP15 and finding out Ireland’s poistion and expert and NGO poistions on it.

For me though this is will personal aswell. While I applaud government efforts in the area of Climate and I applaud Governments who will meet their commitments under the Kyoto Protocol and the original United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. What I am not sure of, is can we do anything do change for good?

While I don’t think meeting targets under Kyoto is a waste of time or anything like that, we do need to lower emmission and reduce dependence on fossil fuels as they are running out. But will these changes do anything to stop or lessen the impact of Climate Change?

Is human action only adding to what would happen naturally? Thats what I want to know?

Also will the big countires like China and the USA sign up to this deal? Will the targets be effective and acheivable? Will it actually make a difference?

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Time to Learn about Climate Change

Remember round 2 of the blogging competition I was in that I blogged about? Well I have been selected! They were looking for 81 bloggers from around Europe so it will be interested to see in who else gets selected.

The competition will be a bit different for me this time round, we will all be given cameras (I need to sort out my shakey hand) and the number of posts per month has increased to 3.

I am really looking forward to going to Copenhagen and learning more about Climate Change and the COP15 conference.

So I will be off to Copenhagen at the end of September for the launch event, I can’t wait!

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