ASEAN leaders must participate in global climate action: Greenpeace

Feature story - June 16, 2009
Greenpeace called upon ASEAN governments to proactively engage in the global efforts to combat climate change at the media launch of its ‘climate vision’ in Bangkok today.

Without collective action by ASEAN governments, runaway climate change will seriously affect common interests of our people who have already been recognized to be the ‘most vulnerable” and least prepared to cope with the impacts of climate change.

Greenpeace is calling upon all ASEAN Heads of states to attend the crucial UN climate talks in Copenhagen in December this year and take personal responsibility for negotiating a climate saving deal before it is too late.

"The climate is changing now; no more evidence is needed to alert us to the devastating consequences of continued political inaction. Without collective action by ASEAN governments, runaway climate change will seriously affect common interests of our people who have already been recognized to be the 'most vulnerable" and least prepared to cope with the impacts of climate change."," said Tara Buakamsri, said Campaign Manager for Greenpeace Southeast Asia in Thailand. "

The Greenpeace Climate vision document describes the causes, current impacts and future risks of climate change, it discusses the temperature rise and emission reduction targets required to avoid dramatic and irreversible impacts on ecosystems, the economy and human livelihoods. The climate vision stresses on the need for all solutions to be global and equitable and thus enshrined in an international agreement.

Greenpeace is calling upon governments to make optimal use of the large potential for emission reductions in all the different sectors by fully investing and deploying technological solutions and achieving the needed changes in lifestyle and consumption patterns.

"While technological and financial support from developed to developing countries is one of the key elements to success of the GHG stabilization target, it is equally important to ensure that mitigation and adaptation support reaches the poor by developing specific funding mechanisms under the framework of the UNFCCC." Tara add.

In the spirit of a gradual widening, deepening and strengthening of global action, developing countries like ASEAN states, must reduce their projected emissions growth by 15-30% by 2020. However, it is clear that to do this, along with ending deforestation and adapting to the already inevitable climate impacts, developing countries will need financial support from the developed world. This figure needs to be in the region of $140bn (€110bn) a year.

Greenpeace also appealed to the public to call for action at the highest level and demand that their Head of State agrees to personally attend the Copenhagen UN Climate Summit to guarantee a climate-saving deal.

"This is your planet, your future, and your leaders are acting in your name.  Tell them what you think," he said. "These leaders must be judged on whether they can meet the challenge of the climate threat."  concluded Tara.

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