Madrid, Spain – Progressive steps at the 25th COP have yet again been undermined by fossil fuel and corporate interests who see a multilateral agreement on tackling the climate emergency a threat to their profit margins. The door was literally shut on values and facts as civil society and scientists demanding an end to the climate emergency were temporarily barred from COP25. Instead, politicians squabbled over the ‘Article 6’ carbon trafficking scheme, which threatens Indigenous Peoples rights and puts a price-tag on nature. Most politicians showed no commitment at all to lower emissions here and have clearly not understood the existential threat of the climate crisis. 

Read about Greenpeace’s expectations at the COP25 here.

Greenpeace International head of delegation to the COP, Juan Pablo Osornio, said:

“This disappointing outcome is a sign that the UNFCCC cannot be the only place where politicians are held to account in confronting the climate emergency and bringing emissions down to scientifically safe levels. We need multilateral spaces to be free from the private-profit interests which keep on blocking us from a future we want and know is possible. Success relies on a broader set of financial, trade and development institutions that can unite for the systemic change that is required to deliver a Global Green Deal. ”

Greenpeace Chile national director, Matías Asun, said:

“It’s very clear that while having presidency of the COP25, Chile didn’t achieve progress against the climate emergency. Chile lost a perfect opportunity to show climate leadership. Instead, it re-confirmed that coal will stay until 2040. The real progress was made by people moving forward for real changes while pushing those who passively watching our environment been destroyed. The people who suffer social injustice and inequality through ecological and climate injustice the most are the ones that can hear the planet’s call for protection. Government and business elites must hear this and wake up to make real changes. The world is more awake than ever, and we won’t stop demanding that our leaders end the climate crisis”.

Greenpeace Spain executive director, Mario Rodríguez Vargas, said:

“Politicians can no longer ignore scientific evidence and civil outrage demanding a strong, urgent response to the climate emergency. The outcome of this COP leaves too much work to be done, when we need real leadership now. Political action in Spain and in the whole of Europe must take the fight against climate change the number one priority which answers social interests, not those of the industrial oligopolies. Spain did a good job organizing COP25, and now that the European Council has agreed to ask the European Commission to put forward new, more ambitious targets for 2030 in time for COP26. This should definitively push the next Spanish government to upgrade the national emission target to at least negative 55% by 2030 from 1990 levels.”

Greenpeace East Asia, Senior Global Policy Advisor, Li Shuo, said:

“COP25 demonstrated the collective ambition fatigue of the world’s largest emitters. The US, China, EU climate tricycle has had a wheel pulled off by Trump. Going into 2020, it is critical for the remaining two wheels to roll in sync. The decision taken by the Chinese leaders over the next year is not only critical for rescuing Beijing’s climate reputation, but matters to how the world perceives China under increasingly turbulent geopolitics.”

Greenpeace International executive director, Jennifer Morgan, said:

“Governments need to completely rethink how they do this, because the outcome of this COP is totally unacceptable.

COP25 was billed as being technical, but it became about more than the negotiations. This COP exposed the role of polluters in politics and the youth’s deep distrust of government. We needed a decision that responded to the youth, had science as its guiding light, recognised the urgency and declared a climate emergency. Instead, climate blockers like Brazil and Saudi Arabia, enabled by an irresponsibly weak Chilean leadership, peddled carbon deals and steamrolled scientists and civil society.

The Paris Agreement may have been the victim of a hit and run by a handful of powerful carbon economies, but they are on the wrong side of this struggle, the wrong side of history and the Paris Agreement is just one piece of the puzzle. 

We need systemic change that people can trust.

Decision-makers need to go home and regroup. There are some positive forces at work, the High Ambition Coalition offered us a lifeline this week, and the small island states are growing stronger by the day, keeping the Paris Agreement alive.”


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Arin de Hoog, Greenpeace International, [email protected], +31 646 197 329

Conrado Garcia del Vado, Greenpeace Spain, [email protected] +34 660 47 12 67

Greenpeace International Press Desk: [email protected], +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)

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