A longtime rural resident, I use my 60 plus years of life learning to opinionate here and elsewhere on the “interweb” on everything from politics to environmental issues. A believer in reasonable discourse rather than unhelpful attacks I try to give positive input to the blogesphere, so feel free to comment upon rural issues or anything else posted here. But don’t be surprised if you comments get zapped if you are not polite in your replys.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Four Fossil Awards for Canada

I don’t normally have much time for the Sierra Club but find it hard to disagree with this that pretty well got lost in the ongoing political “crisis”…….

Today, during international climate talks in Poznan, Poland, Canada was given an unprecedented four "Fossil of the Day" awards by the international community. The awards are given to governments taking positions that stall or block the progress of climate negotiations. At the climate talks, the Canadian delegation has failed to take a constructive approach to negotiations - at the same time as the Harper government prorogued Parliament, shutting down debate until next year. "
Canada must take a more constructive approach to international climate talks. With ever-increasing levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, time is running out," said Mike Buckthought, National Climate Change Campaigner. "We need deep reductions in emissions to avoid the most dangerous consequences of climate change."
Canada tied for first place with Japan and Russia in failing to support deep reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases. Reductions of at least 25-40% are needed by 2020, in order to avoid dangerous global warming that threatens most of the world´s plant and animal species.For the second place Fossil of the Day Award, the international community awarded Canada two awards of shame - an unusual tie for second place.
Canada´s negotiators argued that the country should get a break on its emissions targets, because the tar sands release a lot of carbon."The tar sands should not be exempted from targets for reductions. Quite the contrary, Canada and the international community need to apply disincentives for the burning of dirty oil from the tar sands," said Stephen Hazell, Executive Director.Canada also insisted that rich countries should get special treatment for "welfare loss" - the "hardship" of using smaller cars, or public transit.
Canada picked up a third place award, for a total of four prizes of shame in arguing that special "national circumstances" (i.e., Canada is cold and big) are the reason for Canada being 29% above its Kyoto target. This argument ignores the fact that other cold countries such as Sweden have been able to meet their Kyoto targets. "

Canada is missing the chance to create thousands of new green jobs in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors," said Hazell. "Other countries with northern climates have invested in a sustainable economy, and the investments have paid off - with the creation of thousands of new jobs."

Update Wed Dec 10
Canada won again today, sharing a second place and first place Fossil of the Day Award. The mock gala ceremony takes place every evening at 6 pm at every Conference of the Parties to mark the most shameful efforts to obstruct progress in climate talks. So far Canada has a clear lead. We already had five Fossil of the Day Awards.

Today’s second place was for objecting to protecting indigenous rights in the negotiations on the deforestation agreement (referred to as the REDD talks for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation in Developing Countries). Our first place award was shared with Japan and Australia. La Presse got the scoop. There are in fact exactly two Canadian reporters here: from La Presse and Radio Canada.

H/T to Elizabeth May for this.

Update #2 Thur Dec 11
Poznan: Canada Snags Another Fossil of the Day

Canada distinguished itself for poor performance again today by forcing the United Nations Secretariat to dismantle a tar sands display mounted by the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition. The display consisted of four roughly three-foot by two-foot tar sands photos, accompanied by a small amount of explanatory (and not very controversial) type. The pictures were tacked to a Climate Action Network booth in the main conference hall at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change meeting in Poznan.
T/H to http://www.desmogblog.com/

Update #3 Dec 13th
After eight years during which the United States was consistently derided as the most obstructive force in international climate negotiations, Canada moved into worst place today, receiving the "Colossal Fossil" award for having done more than any other country to drag down talks at the UN climate negotiations in Poznan.

Oh Canada....................!

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