COP19: Warsaw opens the way to Paris, but hurdles remain
European Parliament delegation chairman to Warsaw climate conference Matthias Groote (S&D, DE) cautiously welcomed the conclusion of the UNFCCC COP19 meeting on Saturday, where parties defined the path to a future 2015 climate agreement. He regretted the watered-down wording defining the steps to Paris, condition for keeping developing countries on board.
“We welcome the fact that this conference preserved the original aim of the Durban platform, for a global agreement involving all parties in a common, legally binding agreement in 2015. On the way to Paris, Warsaw managed to overcome the poisonous divide between developing and developed countries, albeit at the cost of rather vague wording and deadlines, while we need clear and urgent commitments. Much is left to the next COP meeting next year” said Matthias Groote.
“In the meantime, more efforts will be needed, everybody will have to do homework” he added. Mr Groote also welcomed the adopted measures for reducing emissions from deforestation (REDD) and replenishing the climate adaptation fund.
Karl-Heinz Florenz: “we cannot wait for those who have their feet on the brakes”
"The Warsaw conference finally delivered after being very close from a complete failure. Once again, compromises were found long after the official deadline, within improvised huddles of sleep-deprived ministers. This proves that the principle of unanimity for a global fight against climate change no longer has a future. I am confident that we will have learned that those in the driving seat cannot wait for those who have their feet on the brakes. The fight for climate change is not a threat, but an opportunity. This approach needs to be developed in an ambitious manner where it has been successful already. Others will follow if they do not want to lose out economically", said EP delegation vice-chair Karl-Heinz Florenz (EPP, DE).
A 10-strong delegation of MEPs took part in the UN climate conference in Warsaw from Monday to Friday. In a resolution voted in October, the European Parliament reiterated the EU's offer to increase its emission reduction target to 30% by 2020 if other major emitting countries commit themselves to comparable goals.