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COP20 devoid of the political will needed for a global climate change deal

Laying the groundwork for a global and binding climate deal in Paris next year was the aim of this week's COP20 UN climate conference in Lima, but for GUE/NGL MEP Merja Kyllönen global leaders' political will for such an agreement is lacking.

Kyllönen was in the Peruvian capital to observe the negotiations as part of a delegation of MEPs from different European Parliament political groups. They met with other parliamentarians and local and international NGO representatives.

The Finnish MEP said: “There must be solution next year in Paris; a global climate agreement simply has to happen. After that it is too late. We need to raise awareness of the importance of building a carbon-free world, but it remains to be seen whether world leaders are capable of making the decisions necessary to take us there.”

She continued: “Peru is the country the fourth worst affected by climate change in the world. Agriculture has been particularly affected, and there will soon be implications for access to clean drinking water and edible food. The poorest people and women will suffer most. Drought, famine and soil corrosion are increasing all the time.

“Changes in sea levels are dramatic globally; the planet’s ability to adjust to changing temperatures has been seriously affected. We need to ask ourselves whose standards of living are to blame for climate change and who is suffering the consequences. Between 1970 and 2012, 2 million people have died because of climate change. We need climate justice for developing countries now. We in Europe have to adjust our goals and be more ambitious, we need a complete shift to renewable energy. We must increase funding to tackle climate change.”

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
European United Left / Nordic Green Left
European Parliamentary Group