13, Dec, 2015

Paris Agreement ‘takes an inch forward, but miles more needed’

Category: News

The New Zealand Youth Delegation is saying that the Paris Agreement ‘takes an inch forward, but miles more needed’. The two week climate change talks were a chance for governments to accelerate the transition to a safe, clean energy future that is already underway. However, the agreement concluded on Saturday evening failed to match the ambition being demonstrated by communities and businesses around the world and left observers asking for more.

“This is a historic moment where all countries around our planet have recognized the need to bestow a safe and liveable climate for young and future generations. There are positive aspects of the deal, including the recognition of a safer 1.5 limit and the review mechanisms for monitoring and increasing countries’ climate ambition. This “Paris Moment” has been made possible thanks to the work of the climate movement around the world - communities and businesses coming together to take the reigns of leadership where governments would not,’” said New Zealand Youth Delegation Spokesperson Ben Abraham.

“While we are encouraged that countries around the world have made progress it is still not enough. This text is heavy with the illusion of ambition without the reality of action. From the farmers in Aotearoa who will cope with more severe droughts to the people in Tuvalu who will watch more of their homes sink beneath the waves - it is frontline communities that will bear the brunt of global inaction. New Zealand pulled the wool and pretended to support an ambitious agreement while blocking compensation for climate-impacted vulnerable communities and refusing to push for inclusion of human rights in the body of the agreement. This government will be judged harshly by history.”

“As young New Zealanders we are disappointed that in this historic moment, our government has failed to adequately future proof New Zealand. Fortunately, we know that communities and businesses will continue to lead where the government refuses to. The transition to a sustainable world powered by 100% renewable energy is already underway and inevitable; we are calling on young people in Aotearoa to rise up. Our message is to get involved in local climate, fossil fuel free, and clean energy campaigns in order to future proof New Zealand and the world.”

NZYD are a group of nine young New Zealanders from around the country at the UN Paris Climate Change meeting to advocate for fair and effective climate action to ensure a safe and livable world for everyone, particularly future generations.

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