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2009 is a key year in the fight against climate change. World leaders will decide in a meeting at the United Nations scheduled to start on December 7th in Copenhagen regarding their commitment in providing continuity to the Kyoto Protocol. At this meeting, an agreement should be developed that guarantees that the emissions responsible for climate change be reduced sufficiently to ensure that the increase in global temperature is maintained below +2ºC in terms of pre-industrial levels.
Climate change is a reality, as stated by every reliable scientific report. The longer we take to react, the greater the costs in economic, ecological and social terms.
What can we do?
Developing countries and emerging economies need to contribute by stopping deforestation, limiting their emissions and betting on a sustainable development model, instead of repeating the mistakes of industrialized countries, which have led us to the current crisis.
Developed countries have to sufficiently assume ambitious commitments regarding reduction of emissions of the gasses that are causing the problem, since historically they have been responsible, and also because they have the capacity and resources to confront the problem.
A transition is necessary from an energy model that is fundamentally based on carbon, petroleum and natural gas, towards one that prioritizes efficiency, equity and renewable energy.
For this, the new global post-Kyoto agreement must guarantee the transfer of technology and funds on behalf of developed countries towards developing countries.
Riding a bicycle, Finland. Eco-tip: ride a bicycle when ever you can instead of driving a car - and save the planet. Cycling is an environmentally friendly way to move.
The new agreement which will provide continuity to the Kyoto Protocol should be based on the following principles:
Clear and fair commitments from the countries. The industrialized countries should commit to reducing their emissions with internal measures by at least 30% by 2020 and by 80% by 2050, in relation to pre-industrial levels. In addition to internal measures, they should also commit to sufficient funding to reduce emissions of developing countries by 15%, thus making it possible for these to satisfy their energy needs in a clean and sustainable manner.
Solid and additional funding given on behalf of the industrialized countries for the development needs of the countries for approximately US$ 160 billion per year, to allow developing countries to implement mitigation and adaptation actions, complementary to those actions in industrialized countries.
Ensure the drastic reduction of emissions from deforestation and degradation of forests, respecting the rights of local inhabitants.