People send me stuff… UPDATE: See below for another interpretation
Remember how this was phrased? “sign it, it’s just voluntary!”
Recall Rio 1992 “Earth Summit” where the meme was “hey, it’s voluntary!…with a negotiating schedule attached”. Apparently, like a Roach Motel, “countries check in but they can’t check out”. This email is from UNFCCC’s list server and note my bolded section below. The arrogance, it burns.
From: globalmedialist-all <email@example.com>
To: globalmedialist-all <firstname.lastname@example.org>; germanmedialist <email@example.com>
Sent: Tue, Dec 13, 2011 4:46 am
Subject: [UNFCCC medialist] STATEMENT BY UNFCCC CHIEF ON CANADA’S ANNOUNCEMENT TO WITHDRAW FROM KYOTO PROTOCOL
STATEMENT BY UNFCCC CHIEF ON CANADA’S ANNOUNCEMENT TO WITHDRAW FROM KYOTO PROTOCOL
The Durban agreement to a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol represents the continued leadership and commitment of developed countries to meet legally binding emission reduction commitments. It also provides the essential foundation of confidence for the new push towards a universal, legal climate agreement in the near future.
I regret that Canada has announced it will withdraw and am surprised over its timing. Whether or not Canada is a Party to the Kyoto Protocol, it has a legal obligation under the Convention to reduce its emissions, and a moral obligation to itself and future generations to lead in the global effort. Industrialized countries whose emissions have risen significantly since 1990, as is the case for Canada, remain in a weaker position to call on developing countries to limit their emissions.
I call on all developed countries to meet their responsibilities under the Climate Change Convention and its Kyoto Protocol, to raise their ambition to cut emissions and to provide the agreed adequate support to developing countries to build their own clean energy futures and adapt to climate change impacts they are already experiencing.
UPDATE: There’s some ambiguity here in the announcement, upon further reading it could be interpreted that they are saying this:
“I see you withdraw from Kyoto but you are still legally bound to reduce emissions UNDER THE 1992 ‘VOLUNTARY’ RIO UN FRAMEWORK CONVENTION ON CLIMATE CHANGE (UNFCCC)”.
So maybe it isn’t Kyoto they’re saying they can’t leave, but its parent treaty, Rio’s UNFCCC, which is the model for this Spring’s upcoming UNCSD ’12.
But that’s voluntary too, so how can a “voluntary” agreement be legally binding?