Ignoring planetary peril

QatarBy Bianca

After two weeks of climate talks in Dohar, 194 countries have agreed to implement a second phase of the Kyoto Protocol, or have they?

In a last minute decision Qatar decided almost on its own to extend the Kyoto Protocol for another seven years.

With only Europe and Australia agreeing to sign on for the second and final phase the results are rather depressing. Although the Kyoto Protocol has been extended, negotiations will be until 2015 and further global emissions reduction agreements won’t take place before 2020. Not unjustified, scientists warn that any deal that goes into effect in 2020 comes too late and that we have to act now.

Sadly it seems like noone wants to understand that. In a truly touching speech the Philippine climate change commissioner, Naderev M. Sano, appealed to his fellow negotiators. Fighting back tears he asked everyone to remember that Doha should be the place where things will be turned around.

Despite his pleas and the argument that the Philippines have been hit by more unusual forceful typhoons in and out of season during the past years, causing more death and damage than ever before, the summit was politics as usual.

The Philippines are a good example how smaller island start to suffer first, especially from more frequent storms and extreme weather situations. But shouldn’t Sandy have been a sign to the U.S. as well?

With more people worldwide realising the urgency of the problem we can only hope that politicians will start to wake up too and act.

Read more coverage by the India Times and the NY Times.

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