11 December 2010
The Green Party gave a lukewarm reception today to the breaking news from the end of the Cancun climate summit.
Party leader Caroline Lucas MP commented that “It's a very weak deal - enough to keep the ongoing negotiation process alive, but not enough to save the climate.”
On the positive side, said the Greens, there was now - for the first time - an agreement amongst all countries that they must cut their emissions, and that the rich countries must provide funding support to developing countries to help them deal with climate change, including with their low-carbon development.
The negatives, however, included that the deal is not binding, that there are too many loopholes to allow countries to evade their responsibilities, and that the world still does not have agreement to achieve the CO2-reduction targets demanded by scientists. The Greens reiterated that there must be 40% global CO2 cuts by 2020 for the world to have even a 50:50 chance of avoiding dangerous climate change.
Speaking on Sky TV this evening, the Green Party’s deputy leader Adrian Ramsay said that it was a significant step forward that all countries had joined in an agreement for the first time, that a climate fund was to be established and that there was an agreement to protect remaining forests, but that between now and the next summit the UK government must push much harder for binding targets at the appropriate level of CO2 reductions.
Adrian Ramsay concluded: “We want to see the UK government leading by example, adopting the right targets and demonstrating the benefits that carbon-reduction policies can bring.”
The Green Party continues to argue that the UK could meet the necessary target of 90% CO2 reductions by 2030, provided there was the political will to invest heavily in transforming the economy.