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Archive for September, 2009

UN Climate Chief says time running out for deal

UN climate chief says time running out for deal


UN climate chief says time running out for deal AFP/Getty Images/File – A power station is seen in Sun Valley, California. The UN climate chief warned that time was running …

by Rachel O’Brien Rachel O’brien Mon Sep 28, 11:12 am ET

BANGKOK (AFP) – The UN climate chief warned on Monday that time was running out to break a deadlock on a global warming pact, telling delegates in Bangkok that failure to do so by December would threaten future generations.

The talks are the next to last before a showdown in Copenhagen at the end of the year, when the 192 countries must agree on a treaty for tackling greenhouse gases beyond 2010, after the current Kyoto Protocol expires.

“Time is not just pressing, it has almost run out,” said UN climate head Yvo de Boer, who broke down in tears of frustration at talks in Bali two years ago, when world governments drew up the “road map” to the Copenhagen deadline.

After two years of haggling, the world is still trying to thrash out a draft text for December’s talks, with major disagreements on the two key issues of cutting carbon emissions and meeting the associated costs.

“There is no plan B, and if we do not realise plan A the future will hold us to account for it,” de Boer said in his opening speech to around 2,500 government delegates and representatives from business and environment groups.

De Boer said that devastating floods in the Philippines at the weekend which have killed at least 140 people further highlighted the need for action.

“One of the reasons why countries have gathered here is to ensure the frequency and severity of those kinds of extreme weather events decreases as a result of ambitious climate change policy,” de Boer said.

The Bangkok talks, part of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), run until October 9. The final talks before Copenhagen are in Barcelona from November 2-6.

The meeting in the Thai capital follows last week’s UN climate summit in New York and a G20 meeting in Pittsburgh, both of which failed to break the deadlock on either of the two biggest issues.

“Our children and grandchildren will never forgive us unless action is taken. Time is running out, we have two months before Copenhagen,” Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said in his opening speech on Monday.

De Boer said on the eve of the Bangkok talks that they had a 280-page negotiating text which is “basically impossible to work with.”

The US on Monday reaffirmed its commitment to signing the treaty.

“We want to be part of a new agreement,” said Jonathan Pershing, the US head of delegation in Bangkok.

The US — which signed the Kyoto deal but later saw it rejected by Congress — is due to introduce its new climate change and energy bill in the Senate this week and there are fears the bill will not pass ahead of Copenhagen.

Pershing said the United States was “working quite aggressively trying to promote action in the Congress.”

While the European Union, pegged to a 1990 benchmark, has set a 20 percent target for emissions cuts by 2020, and Japan 25 percent if others follow suit, the US so far has only set the equivalent of four percent as a target.

Experts warn that global temperatures must rise no more than two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) by 2100 over pre-industrial times, a target embraced by the leaders of the G8 nations in July.

Scientists also say emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases should peak just six years from now.

Without drastic action they fear drought, floods and rising sea levels could grip the world by the end of the century causing famine, homelessness and strife.

On emissions, developed economies including the US have acknowledged a historical responsibility for global warming. Most have put numbers on the table for slashing their carbon pollution by 2020 and by 2050.

But they say that developing nations — especially China, India and Brazil and other major emitters of tomorrow — should also pledge to curb output of greenhouse gases.

Poor and emerging economies refuse to take on their own hard targets but call for rich nations to make higher cuts.



Mari Kurangi Makan Daging (Let’s Eat Less Meat)

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Mari Kurangi Makan Daging (Let’s Eat Less Meat)
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Senin, 28 September 2009 | 03:49 WIB
Laporan wartawan KOMPAS Lukas Adi Prasetya

YOGYAKARTA, semestinya mulai mengurangi konsumsi daging karena makanan ini bisa merusak lingkungan dan kesehatan. Menu nabati lah yang seharusnya makin banyak disantap. Hal itu dikatakan Murdijati Gardjito, profesor di Fakultas Teknologi Pertanian UGM.

“Tren sekarang, terutama di luar negeri, dan mulai tumbuh di Indonesia, adalah menuju vegetarian. Itu adalah tren yang sangat bagus,” ujar pakar pangan tradisional yang mengaku tidak vegetarian tapi sudah banyak mengurangi konsumsi daging itu.

Menurut dia, daging yang terhidang di piring adalah sesuatu yang prosesnya boros energi, merusak lingkungan, tidak efektif, dan menjadi pemicu beragam penyakit. “Untuk setiap 1 kg daging sapi, butuh 6,5 kg jagung dan dedaunan.Sedangkan untuk menghasilkan 1 kg daging kambing, butuh 4,5 kg. Ini boros. Termasuk boros air, karena hewan kan butuh banyak air. Sementara di satus sisi, pada belahan bumi ini yang lain, ada banyak kasus kelaparan. Yang kita berikan sebagai pakan ternak, jika kita berikan ke mereka yang kelaparan, saya yakin tak ada ancaman kelaparan,” ujar Murdijati.

Proses penggemukan hewan ternak, lanjut dia, juga dilakukan dengan obat-obatan kimia. Hal ini jelas tidak sehat. “Industri daging juga berkontribusi pada terjadinya pemanasan global. Artinya adalah pola makan kita harus cepat diubah. Kurangi banyak konsumsi daging, dan perbanyak menu nabati,” katanya.

Secara terpisah, Prasasto Satwiko, profesor pada Fakultas Teknik Arsitektur Universitas Atma Jaya Yogyakarta, vegetarian, yang juga Koordinator Pusat Studi Energi UAJY mengatakan, memang sulit mengubah benak masyarakat yang telanjur “daging minded”, dan menempatkan daging sebagai makanan bergengsi. Sisi defensif orang pun akan langsung “menyala” jika disodori fakta tentang dampak daging.

“Intinya, daging itu tak perlu dikonsumsi (karena tubuh tak membutuhkan). Manusia bisa hidup sehat hanya dengan makan sayur dan buah (tumbuhan),” ujar Prasasto.

Ia sendiri pernah melontarkan kritik pada ahli pangan dan gizi. Mereka, menurut Prasasto, mestinya juga memaparkan dampak bahaya daging sebagai sebuah fakta. “Saat menjumpai makanan dari olahan daging, manusia lupa. Lupa darimana asal daging, lupa bahwa hewan ternak itu digemukkan dengan zat kimia, lupa bahwa daging itu sumber penyakit, lupa bahwa sudah banyak orang sakit akibat kebanyakan daging plus jerohan. Tapi coba lihat sekarang, industri menggiring orang sejak anak-anak untuk banyak menyantap daging,” ujar Prasasto.

Over One Million People Pledge Support for Global Climate Action

One Million People Pledge Support for Global Climate Action

Join them.

Brian Merchant

By Brian Merchant
Brooklyn, NY, USA | Mon Sep 14 11:30:00 GMT 2009

global climate treaty
DC Productions/Getty Images

One million climate action proponents can’t be wrong.

Kofi Annan, the former UN Secretary General, is spearheading a movement to raise awareness about climate change–and more specifically, to gain support for establishing a global treaty to succeed the Kyoto Protocol in Copenhagen this December. To accomplish this, he founded the open source tck tck tck campaign, which called on NGOs, climate activists, and other groups from around the world to rally people to the cause.

It seems it’s succeeded–less than two weeks since the campaign’s beginning, one million people have already pledged support for forging a global climate treaty. It’s an effective way to send a message to politicians around the world that there’s a strong demand for action around the world. As the pre-Copenhagen talks proceed haltingly–China, India, the US and Europe are still largely at odds about emissions targets–and frustration echoes down from world climate leadership, heads of state must keep in mind that people have an ardent desire to see a climate solution.

And you can help–take two seconds (literally. it’s name, country of origin, and all done) and join the growing number of pledges to show your support for climate action. This is important–Annan is one of the most respected forces in international politics, and with a bastion of support behind him world leaders will have no choice but to hear him out.
Head over to tck tck tck to fill out the pledge.

More on the Global Climate Treaty
Obama Paves the Way for International Climate Treaty
Could the US Senate Pass the Climate Bill, then Reject a Global Treaty

It’s time to wake up the world!

Campaign Story

10 September 09

Posted by: Richard Graves

It’s time to wake up the world! Join one of 500 events in 55 countries

It is time for the world to wake up to climate change and you can be the one to do it!  This fall, in Copenhagen, is the single greatest opportunity we will have to act on global warming. Yet, many world leaders seem to be asleep at the switch.

So, TckTckTck partners, Oxfam, Greenpeace, and and many local leaders and individuals are coming together in a massive plan to wake them up.

Local leaders, like you, have already registered more than 500 Climate Wake-Up Call events in 55 countries, for this September 21st.

Avaaz just sent out an alert describing the kind of events their members are organizing and I am getting excited just reading about it.

“The plans for September 21 events are thrilling in their variety: a gathering in Ethiopia will beat drums to sound the alarm. Monks will chant prayers. And everywhere, from Berlin to Buenos Aires, Avaaz members will gather in peaceful, spontaneous “flash mobs” in public places to sound the alarms on their mobile phones, flood their governments with phone calls urging climate action, and make a tremendous noise. The images, sounds, and videos will be stitched together overnight for presentation to world leaders at the United Nations the next day!”

You can go here to register your own event; it will only take a minute. If you want to participate, you can find an event, here.

However, it isn’t just Avaaz that is spreading the message that there is a huge and growing global movement to demand a fair, ambitious, and binding global climate treaty this year.

The Age of Stupid is having a massive global premiere of their epic global warming film, in more than 700 cinemas in 60 countries. They will be streaming satellite feed of the New York premiere, including footage of the Global Wake-Up Call. Attend a Global Wake-Up Call event and then watch yourself on the big screen. Hundreds of thousands of people around the world might just be watching you that night!

Oxfam is hosting a Human countdown, on Sunday, September 20th, in New York, where thousands will convene to create a human sculpture of how our world is in a race against time. Notable speakers will meet and address the group and they will kick off a global call-in campaign by calling the White House over loudspeaker. This unprecedented live action aerial art piece is just the kind of thing that can get attention in unexpected places.

However, you can host your own event, wherever you are, using the Global Wake-Up Call toolkit, we have posters, templates, media resources and more, so join the largest global mobilization on climate change and you can be part of the effort to wake the whole world up.

Tags: Campaign stories

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