Climate change - working for a unified response
The Council of the Socialist International, meeting in New York on 21-22 June 2010:
Expresses once again the social democratic commitment to act in an immediate, decided and coordinated manner to face climate change as a matter of priority;
Points out that following the Copenhagen summit at the end of last year, the issue of climate change appears to have lost its place on the international agenda, which should be of concern considering the magnitude of the problem and the urgency of taking without delay measures to combat it;
Reiterates its call to the international community not to relax the struggle against global warming, not to content themselves with the feeling of having done enough, not to fall into the fatalism of assuming that there is nothing else to do; not to defer the decisions that are necessary today;
Recalls the rich and extensive work on this issue that has carried out for years. The International, already at the Council meeting in Santiago, Chile, in 2006, addressed this issue and continued at the Geneva Council meeting of 2007 when the Commission for a Sustainable World Society was established. In all the latest meetings of the organisation, climate change has taken a prominent place on the agenda.
Underlines the importance of the work carried out by the Commission during the meetings held both in developed and developing countries, in which it discussed the subject with political leaders, scientists, academics and representatives of civil society, being able in situ to witness the devastating effects of climate change on nature and human settlements;
Reiterates that the Commission’s Report “From a High Carbon Economy to a Low Carbon Society”, issued in this same city of New York on 23 September last year, on the occasion of the Presidium meeting of the Socialist International, is a particularly valuable document and presents a progressive, global proposal for facing this problem common to all the nations of the planet;
Is grateful for the efforts made by the members of the Commission, the member parties that hosted their meetings around the world, the scientific community who shared the concerns and proposals to confront this threat, the social and community organisations who demonstrated how the climate change today affects their lives and living conditions.
With days before the G20 in Toronto and at less than six months of COP16 in Cancun, the Socialist International recalls that the challenge posed by climate change retains its full attention and priority.
Progressive thought over the last years has identified and highlighted certain points that must be taken into consideration when negotiating or finalising an international instrument which is at the same time ambitious and realistic.
This is a collective challenge and an efficient response can only be a common one, shared challenge, responsibilities for developed and developing countries, but with differentiated obligations.
The negotiations must conclude with a binding text, with clear commitments by the parties involved, an efficient system of follow-up of the proposed objectives and corrective measures for cases of eventual failure to comply with the accepted obligations.
The developed countries must advance their efforts for technological transfers towards developing countries. The use of ecologically sustainable technologies involves important transformations in the developing countries and this requires technical assistance and economic resources. The international funds already in existence to support this process of re-conversion must be strengthened and new instruments adapted to the most particular needs must be implemented.
The world of work, in developed and developing countries must be given special attention at the moment of carrying out these substantive transformations. Thus, the Socialist International reiterates what was expressed at the Council in Budva concerning the work-environment alliance and the planning of a fair transition in the transformations that the production processes go through.
At the same time, and as it was expressed at the recent meeting of the Council in Santo Domingo, the SI underlines the inequality that people may face by climate change, as it is often the most vulnerable groups, and for whom adaptation is the most difficult, who are the hardest hit or threatened by global warming.
The agreement to be reached must have as a minimum standard the reduction of emissions of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) to 350 ppm, a level of gas concentration in the atmosphere that will allow the fulfilment of the goal of a maximum temperature rise of 2° Celsius above the level of the pre- industrial era.
Finally, the Socialist International declares that it will continue making all efforts to advance, continuing its struggle against climate change with a progressive perspective and reiterates its trust in the building of a global model of green development as the only alternative for a sustainable world society.