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After COP25, integrity of Paris Agreement under threat

Upon their return from COP25 in Madrid, MEPs Mick Wallace (Independents for Change, Ireland), Idoia Villanueva (Podemos, Spain) and Petros Kokkalis (SYRIZA, Greece) have issued the following statement.

Our house is on fire. Instead of working together to put the house fire out, powerful countries are pillaging what is left of it.

COP25 is the latest example of how the international community is failing to tackle the climate emergency and in the process, failing the world and future generations.

Having witnessed the negotiations in Madrid, we are disheartened by how just a few countries are blocking progress on climate action for the many.

This year’s COP slogan was ‘time for action’, aiming for far-reaching solutions and a strong rulebook. It ended up being the COP where the very integrity of the Paris Agreement came under threat.

The US, Australia and Brazil – headed by climate denying right-wing governments – shamelessly blocked the COP from calling for revised higher targets even as citizens of these countries suffer first-hand from the catastrophic consequences of global warming.

One example of how discussion is being side-tracked is Article 6 on international carbon markets. The fact that the parties failed, for a second time, to reach agreement on Article 6 underlines the infectiveness of a voluntary market-based system.

Talking about market rules, at the behest of corporate lobbies, is a distraction to the challenge of phasing out of fossil fuels.

In the absence of global leadership, the EU is not filling the void, and is instead sending a mixed signal to the rest of the world on ambition, and failing to fully support the needs of the global south

The EU’s 50% emissions reductions target by 2030 is woefully inadequate and is not even compliant with Paris Agreement, certainly not with 1.5C warming according to the latest science.

Through our talks with young people from all around the world, with activists, civil society and parliamentarians from other countries, especially from the global South, we remain steadfast, hopeful and defiant that a progressive majority is forming that will stop the far right, business interests and neoliberal forces from destroying our planet.

Because there is no planet B: change the system, not the climate.

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