Saudi Arabia Awarded Fossil of the Day for Oct. 5th

6 October 2009

fossil of the day

CAN International gave its Fossil of the Day award to the following countries judged best at blocking progress over the past day of negotiations.

First Place: Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia stated today that there was no need to include figures under the Shared Vision text. Apparently, a simple reference to the “ultimate objective of the Convention” is enough to set a clear goal for us to achieve. Saudi Arabia also suggested a new understanding of vulnerability which would encompass and emphasize economic vulnerability alongside vulnerability to climate impacts. We award Saudi Arabia the first place fossil for this attempt not only to weaken global goals but also to undermine the precedence of countries highly vulnerable to the physical impacts of climate change.

Second Place: Poland

Poland comes it at second place for comments by Finance Minister Jan Rostowski that it is “totally unacceptable that the poor countries of Europe should help the rich countries of Europe to help the poor countries in the rest of the world.” Poland needs to get a little perspective on the concept of a poor country: although certainly not as wealthy as some EU Member States, Poland is in the wealthiest 25% of countries globally. It also receives substantial financial support from the richer EU Member States – something they might wish to re-consider if all Poland contributes in return are unhelpful and ethically dubious interventions in the climate debate.

Third Place: New Zealand

In today’s discussion on emission reductions in the AWG-KP, New Zealand helpfully explained to Parties that unless they are allowed unlimited offsetting in their next commitment period, they would be forced to move towards a target of zero (!) by 2020. In other words: Unless New Zealand is allowed to avoid reducing their own emissions, they will refuse to reduce any emissions. For this, New Zealand receives a well deserved fossil.

The Climate Action Network (CAN), a coalition of over 450 NGOs worldwide dedicated to limiting climate change to sustainable levels, regularly judges and presents three ‘Fossil of The Day’ awards to the countries who perform the worst during the past day’s negotiations at UN climate change conferences.  The Fossil-of-the-Day awards were first presented at the climate talks in 1999, in Bonn, Germany.

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