December 18, 2009

Why Copenhagen hurts

Why did I come here?

Of course not to have a good time in Winter country.
It’s the worst time for an African to travel, we love our summer all year round, its very sustainable and consumes no energy
I love my land of beauty, even when its dry,you are sure that time for a great resilience is nearing.
This is the last day of the Copenhagen climate change talks, or should i say the end of the Copenhagen crap?
Is also the most important day of my life, when I would be given powers to read from my university, after four years of faithfully learning how to safe mother nature and negotiate for its survival.

But I chose to come and support and be together with the world leaders in agreeing on a deal that could help safe the lives of the present and future generations. To join thousands of delegates and negotiators from all over the world in agreeing on how we should ensure a Carbon free world for our generations.

I hate to say that being from a tropical country, we highly despise the cold weather here. But for the sake of a 2050 generation; that will free from all injustices, free from hunger, free from resource based human conflicts; a 2050 generation that will know the meaning of a sustainable community, i chose to travel to Copenhagen.
I joined with the International youth, the NGOs and the government, on a tow year Marathon to ensure that we had a new Climate change deal that the world leaders would agree with and sign on to commit themselves to a carbon free 2050.

This is a dream that i have not achieved.
It has been shattered and the all the broken pieces are all on the floor crying out to be collected and put together again to give us a hope for a future. I knew that dreams were hard to achieve, but i have never imagined that hard work can at times lead to failure, especially when human beings, with a conscience of humanity are involved.

It hurts.
Last night as i talked to my sister, she reminded me on the old days, when we used to sit by the fire, and roast green corn from our farm. We now have to buy the corn, and recently, my mother has to depend on the relief corn. Not because she is poor and she cant farm,. but in the past two decades, the weather has progressively changed leading to less and less rains and therefore no harvest in the past two years.
This is the reason I came to Copenhagen.
To get answers for my dear mother, why she no longer can eat from her farm, while she still has all the energy to farm and even produce for hundreds of families in other parts of the country.

When i continued to feel the heat of the negotiations in the past few months, i always thought that with the meeting of the heads of States- who hold the power in th hands, who hold the lives of their voters in their hands- i would get a consolation and answer the questions that my mother always asked me.

This is not the case.

I go back back home knowing very well that 1+1 is not equal to 1 but to 2. While all along a world that believe in humanity, justice,a nd rights to life, has refused to have two join to become one, they have opted to make the 1s continue repelling each other.
I longed for the answers to Climate justice, in a world that believes in leaders who can deliver this.
I longed for answers to Climate Equity.
I longed for answers to Historical responsibilities.
I longed for answers to ambitious commitments of the developed countries to reduce their emissions by 40% by 2020 below their 1990 levels.
I longed for an answer to financing the adaptation, mitigation, technology transfer and capacity building for the most impacts, most vulnerable but least contributors to the climate change consequences.

Sorry, there are no correct answers provided
As i listened to the speech below, read by the President of the United States, how was born in a country where climate change is real, and now lives in a country where immediate action is required, i could not help to let my tears run down. Its made me know for sure that it does not matter how much trust we put on our Idol Leaders, a time comes when they no longer remember us.



Office of the Press Secretary



December 18, 2009

Remarks of President Barack Obama-As Prepared for Delivery

Copenhagen Summit

Copenhagen, Denmark

December 18, 2009

Good morning. It's an honor to for me to join this distinguished group of leaders from nations around the world. We come together here in Copenhagen because climate change poses a grave and growing danger to our people. You would not be here unless you - like me - were convinced that this danger is real. This is not fiction, this is science. Unchecked, climate change will pose unacceptable risks to our security, our economies, and our planet. That much we know.

So the question before us is no longer the nature of the challenge - the question is our capacity to meet it. For while the reality of climate change is not in doubt, our ability to take collective action hangs in the balance.

I believe that we can act boldly, and decisively, in the face of this common threat. And that is why I have come here today.

As the world's largest economy and the world's second largest emitter, America bears our share of responsibility in addressing climate change, and we intend to meet that responsibility. That is why we have renewed our leadership within international climate negotiations, and worked with other
nations to phase out fossil fuel subsidies. And that is why we have taken bold action at home - by making historic investments in renewable energy; by putting our people to work increasing efficiency in our homes and buildings; and by pursuing comprehensive legislation to transform to a clean energy economy.

These actions are ambitious, and we are taking them not simply to meet our global responsibilities. We are convinced that changing the way that we produce and use energy is essential to America's economic future - that it will create millions of new jobs, power new industry, keep us competitive, and spark new innovation. And we are convinced that changing the way we use energy is essential to America's national security, because it will reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and help us deal with some of the dangers posed by climate change.

So America is going to continue on this course of action no matter what happens in Copenhagen. But we will all be stronger and safer and more secure if we act together. That is why it is in our mutual interest to achieve a global accord in which we agree to take certain steps, and to hold each other accountable for our commitments.

After months of talk, and two weeks of negotiations, I believe that the pieces of that accord are now clear.

First, all major economies must put forward decisive national actions that will reduce their emissions, and begin to turn the corner on climate change. I'm pleased that many of us have already done so, and I'm confident that America will fulfill the commitments that we have made: cutting our emissions in the range of 17 percent by 2020, and by more than 80 percent by 2050 in line with final legislation.

Second, we must have a mechanism to review whether we are keeping our commitments, and to exchange this information in a transparent manner. These measures need not be intrusive, or infringe upon sovereignty. They must, however, ensure that an accord is credible, and that we are living up to our
obligations. For without such accountability, any agreement would be empty words on a page.

Third, we must have financing that helps developing countries adapt, particularly the least-developed and most vulnerable to climate change. America will be a part of fast-start funding that will ramp up to $10
billion in 2012. And, yesterday, Secretary Clinton made it clear that we will engage in a global effort to mobilize $100 billion in financing by 2020, if - and only if - it is part of the broader accord that I have just described.

Mitigation. Transparency. And financing. It is a clear formula - one that embraces the principle of common but differentiated responses and respective capabilities. And it adds up to a significant accord - one that takes us farther than we have ever gone before as an international community.

The question is whether we will move forward together, or split apart. This is not a perfect agreement, and no country would get everything that it wants. There are those developing countries that want aid with no strings attached, and who think that the most advanced nations should pay a higher price. And there are those advanced nations who think that developing countries cannot absorb this assistance, or that the world's fastest-growing emitters should bear a greater share of the burden.

We know the fault lines because we've been imprisoned by them for years. But here is the bottom line: we can embrace this accord, take a substantial step forward, and continue to refine it and build upon its foundation. We can do that, and everyone who is in this room will be a part of an historic endeavor - one that makes life better for our children and grandchildren.

Or we can again choose delay, falling back into the same divisions that have stood in the way of action for years. And we will be back having the same stale arguments month after month, year after year - all while the danger of climate change grows until it is irreversible.

There is no time to waste. America has made our choice. We have charted our course, we have made our commitments, and we will do what we say. Now, I believe that it's time for the nations and people of the world to come together behind a common purpose.

We must choose action over inaction; the future over the past - with courage
and faith, let us meet our responsibility to our people, and to the future
of our planet. Thank you.

I am hurt, and I know most of you are hurt.
I have taken almost four hours to put this article together, not because i don't know what to write, but every time i imagine how injustice has prevailed in the almost ending Climate Change Talks, my heart breaks down.

The leaders whom we thought could deliver can no longer be relied on.

Its a SHAME.
If Copenhagen is a failure, Our leaders are to blame.

They are to blame for the lives lost due to climate change, the millions of people suffering from climate related diseases, those with no food to eat, those who no longer have water to drink, those who have lost their homes as the sea level continues to rise, those who have lost their businesses due to climate linked economic crisis.

They have decided not to listen to the voices of the people
The people that initially believed in them, and supported them in becoming their leaders. The people who with no negotiations pay the tax, the people who tirelessly on a daily basis, work towards improving their lifestyles to at least live sustainably while at the same time, trying to solve the climate challenges at a local scale.

Our leaders have failed us.
I may want to say that I am tired or a process that yield frustrations, blackened future and discontent. I may want to give up right now, and let business run as usual. I may want to assume that all the nations after witnessing this phenomenal year of climate change negotiations, will go back and re-invent the wheel and start a new road to a green economy. But i am not damn to believe this.
15 years ago when they signed the KP, we though that we had solved the climate change problem. But it has just worsened. Instead, they took the time off to go and learn how to negotiate better in the next commitment period, while allowing the emissions to skyrocket.

They are not reliable.
But we, the young people of the world are.

We are simply innovative and meeting the demands of our society. The desire to change. The desire to live in a beautiful world. The desire to give justice to humanity.

For the past five years, we have continuously engaged our leaders in providing real solutions for a dying planet. At times they have listened and acted. Thank you to those who took action. At times they have not. They have ignored our messages, and warnings, thinking that we are to young to advice them. At times, they tink this is not our time to speak. But, its out time to speak out, because we are the most affected by all these crisis.

We need the space to speak and ACT.
We the youth have to rise beyond this unjust process and system,and do extra ordinary things that will shake the world leaders.
We should consider leading the worlds in to the future they would want. In our very own small ways, we can make it happen. We can transform the climate change challenges into opportunities and save the people, the biodiversity and the economies that are dying.

We can give the society the change they want to see.
We should not allow our hearts to die quietly, our dreams to be shattered, neither should we allow our boat to be capsized.
We are on a journey, and our destiny is near.
Lets keep on pressing.

We have a heart.
A human heart.
A heart that will help us reach out to those affected; whether north or south, and redeem them from this climate injustice.
I have faith in our strength!


1 comment :

  1. Grace,

    Am hurt... knowing all the effort you and all young people have put forward towards having a deal in COP15, it hurts, but it shall not break us, we will rise up stronger... if our leaders wont act... lets show them how to.... lets be the change..... lets keep on fighting and preaching the message... maybe just maybe they will listen. But we have to rise up stronger than before. Thank you for all the work you have done. God bles you