Students urge ‘fairer play’ in new climate change report
6 December 2010
UNfairplay – a project run by a group of young people including Bristol students to address inequalities in negotiating resources between nations in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – has released a report on some of these inequalities.
‘Levelling the Playing Field’ – published with the support of the climate campaign group 350.org – details, among other things, inequality in the sizes of the delegations from different countries at the UN climate negotiations currently under way in Cancùn, Mexico: on average every 10 million people living on the African continent are represented by two delegates, in comparison with eight delegates per 10 million inhabitants of the EU. One of the consequences of this is that many of the countries most susceptible to the adverse affects of climate change are unable to attend all the main meetings, not to mention the numerous group meetings and side-events.
The report outlines seven simple and feasible steps which it suggests the UNFCCC secretariat should take to make the process of climate negotiations fairer – and thus to fulfil its founding charter, which calls explicitly for the ‘sovereign equality of all its Members’.
The ‘Levelling the Playing Field’ report has been welcomed by Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), who said:
‘The IPCC is fully aware of the uneven capacity that exists in different countries... I have found this report extremely revealing and I certainly think it’s very important to bring out these issues because it’s only on the basis of awareness that collective action can be taken. So, I complement those involved in this effort for having brought out this interesting report.’
You can download the full report from the UNfairplay website (direct link to pdf).
You can read more about UNfairplay and the role of Bristol students in an earlier news item.