Nauru Wonders About Climate Role Reversal As Emerging Powers Continue Backing Kyoto Protocol

united nations building photo

photo: Zane Edwards/CC BY-ND

As the US east coast and New England deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, some updates on progress towards addressing climate change at the global policy level: Adopt a Negotiator reports on climate change debated in the UN Security Council; and, AFP reports that four key emerging powers in the world have backed continuing with the Kyoto Protocol.

[Brazil, South Africa, India, and China] released the statement after two days of talks in southeast Brazil to prepare for the next UN climate conference scheduled to take place in Durban from November 28 to December 9. The ministers "reaffirmed that the Kyoto Protocol is a cornerstone of the climate regime."

This year's climate talks, COP17, have already been largely written off as having virtually no chance of reaching a global consensus agreement to combat climate change--something which for a few moments in 2009, prior to COP15 in Copenhagen, seemed nearly within reach.

Over in the UN Security Council the ongoing drought and famine in Somalia was discussed, with some pretty powerful statements from the United States (surprisingly)--which we knew about and reported on previously.

But what Adopt a Negotiator brings to light is a powerful statement from Nauru, representing the small island nations of the world banded together as AOSIS:

[Climate change] is a threat as great as nuclear proliferation or terrorism...neither have ever led to the disappearance of an entire nation, though that is what we are confronted with today...I often wonder where we would be if the roles were reversed. What if the pollution coming from our island nations was threatening the very existence of the major emitters?

The statement from Nauru gets at the essence of the lack of international response to climate change.

More on Global Climate Change
Cancun Climate Agreement Saves UN Process But Not The Climate
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