Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Last Chance: The Road to Cancun

I am back home in beautiful Ottawa looking out my window at the colours that make autumn so special in Canada. This beauty is in sharp relief to the thick smog the bus drove through on the way to the Beijingairport on Sunday.

The closing plenary in Tianjin showed that there is still hope for a better outcome to the forestry negotiations. Both the Africa Group (all African countries) and the Association of Small Island States spoke out strongly against the logging loophole: they both rejected the approach of using "projected reference levels" from the future to account for forestry emissions. This resistance and insistence on environmental integrity is important. Although developed countries may not want to take heed of this, we will do our best to make sure they do.

In the next seven weeks before the decision-making meeting in Cancun, I will be working with my colleagues to continue pushing for a strong outcome: campaigning, public outreach, communications and exploring compromises that have environmental integrity. We are in the final stretch.

In the meantime, I will be working to ensure that domestic policies and meausures for forests and climate change are up to snuff!


David said...

Good luck in Cancun Chris. I've read the blogs and it seems that once again the weakest and poorest, those with the most to lose, are destined to suffer at the hands of the richest and strongest. I spent a month in Ecuador in September and saw first hand the deforestation the people there suffered at the hands of multinationals. Not that different from the picture here in NW Ont with our own First Nations. I don't suppose government has asked the aboriginal people what they think about deforestation and climate change.

Ashes said...

Great post Chris! Its not surprising to see that African countries and island countries are more willing to accept something that will stir up the status quo than those who are already in power. It is very sad though to hear that politicians in developed countries are still so unwilling to change their views on what sustainable logging practices are. Best of luck in Cancun!

Chris Henschel said...

Thanks David and Ashes!

You are right that we see the same political dynamics of development playing out at these international negotiations.

We hope that the resistance of African countries and small island states will remain strong and that we can help them push for a better outcome!

Thanks for reading!