Elizabeth May in Warsaw-High Level Segmment of the COP19

I have here an email to share from the Green Party of Canada to keep us all up to date on the Convention on Climate Change in Poland:

Hi Eldy —
This week I am in Warsaw, Poland, for what is called the “High Level Segment” of the 19th Conference of the Parties (COP19) under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. You can get up-to-date information on all of the events happening at COP 19 by going to greenparty.ca/cop19.
The Harper administration continues its outrageous practice of sending delegations to international meetings, not representing Canada, but representing the Conservative Party of Canada. As far as I know, other than Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq, I am the only Canadian Parliamentarian attending. I am here with my way paid by the Green Party of Canada and I will receive my UN credentials through my membership in the Global Greens.
Expectations for progress at COP19 are low. These negotiations work up to a deadline. With the disaster that was Copenhagen in 2009, the new deadline is COP21, to take place in Paris in 2015. The COPs fill in the years to the deadline with mind-numbing work on pieces of a future treaty that will matter – but only matter when and if governments around the world are prepared to be serious about slashing GHG missions. And on that, we are moving in the wrong direction.
I will try to get a few words into a blog every day to keep you updated on the events at COP19. You can subscribe to those blog posts by going to greenparty.ca/cop19. If you haven’t already, please don’t forget to sign our petition to demand climate action from the Harper Conservatives. The science is clear and the scientists are worried. Humanity has already changed the chemistry of the atmosphere — heating up the atmosphere and even more so the oceans at the rate of four Hiroshima-sized bombs per second. We are running out of time to avoid the worst case scenarios of run-away global warming. Only a profound shift globally to make the transition away from fossil fuels a central priority of leaders will ensure our kids have a liveable world.
Eldy, while the expectations for COP19 are low, it is nevertheless time to stop enabling politicians by allowing them to live up to our low expectations for them. We enable them by expecting them to be useless. It’s time to start demanding — through our votes, through our protests and marches and petitions and unrelenting pressure — that they make good on their promises.
That is why I am here in Poland — that is why I will be writing and observing and pushing for change every chance I get. That is why we need Green MPs in Ottawa and in Parliaments around the world. That is why we need you.
Thank you Eldy for all of your support.

Elizabeth May, O.C. MP, Saanich-Gulf Islands Leader, Green Party of Canada

P.S. The Harper Conservatives will spend millions to maintain the status quo. We’re fighting for change — chip in $5 or more to support the GPC today.

Here is what you will find on their COP19 page to help us all take action:

Elizabeth May at COP19

By Brian Howard on 7 November 2013 – 2:50pm

“We are on a collision course to global disaster with a dangerous disconnect between the political timetable and what science is warning us.”

— Elizabeth May

Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada, will be in Warsaw, Poland from November 17 to 22, attending the 19th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP19) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

This historic meeting will bring together world leaders from the Convention’s 194 member states to discuss the future of global climate policy.

For live updates, join Elizabeth on Twitter and Facebook, and don’t forget to follow @UN_ClimateTalks and #COP19.

Sign the petition

Subscribe to updates

Email your friends

Contribute to the GPC



  • 19-Nov-2013
    I started out early, memories of the appalling arrangements in Copenhagen left me not wanting to take any chances in a cold city.
  • 17-Nov-2013
    I will be here, in Warsaw over the next seven days, for what is called the “High Level Segment” of the 19th Conference of the Parties under the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change.

This is the wording of the petition mentioned…YES  do go and sign it too:

Demand Climate Action Now

By Brian Howard on 30 September 2013 – 3:45pm

Stephen Harper has made Canada’s climate record the worst in the industrialized world. When he became Prime Minister, he cancelled all climate programmes, repudiated our Kyoto targets, chose far weaker targets, legally withdrew from the Kyoto Protocol, and then failed to meet the weaker targets. We cannot afford a government operating outside global norms and ignoring the need for climate action.

I demand a comprehensive, economy-wide strategy to reduce GHG (avoiding global average temperatures reaching 2 degrees C above pre-Industrial revolution levels), while we make the transition to a clean energy economy.

I demand climate action from my government now.

 Are You curious about why Elizabeth has joined with the Afghanistan delegation for the meetings…READ THIS from The Vancouver Sun:

Elizabeth May joins Afghanistan delegation at climate change talks in Poland

By Mike De Souza, Postmedia News November 18, 2013

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May

Photograph by: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand , Postmedia News

OTTAWA — Green leader Elizabeth May has joined Afghanistan’s delegation at an international climate change summit in Poland after the Harper government didn’t respond to her request to join the Canadian team.

May, who previously turned toward Papua New Guinea to be able to enter the meeting rooms at a 2011 climate change summit in South Africa, said Monday that she wrote to Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq in September to inquire about this month’s United Nations climate change summit in Poland.

But the opposition MP from British Columbia said in an interview that Aglukkaq and the government didn’t acknowledge her request, and as a result, May decided on her own to find a way to attend the summit, with her Green Party funding all of her expenses.

“Isn’t it sad?” said May. “Here I am in Warsaw because the government of Afghanistan thought I could be helpful in their delegation and the government of Canada didn’t even show enough respect to respond to a letter asking if I could be on the delegation.”

Without accreditation from Afghanistan, May could have participated in events on the sidelines of the conference, but would not be allowed in official negotiating sessions.

She said an Australian academic on Afghanistan’s delegation invited her since they have a small team of four people and could use help in following all of complex sessions and meetings ongoing simultaneously at the summit. But May added that she would not be speaking on Afghanistan’s behalf.

It is common at United Nations talks for developing nations to approach foreigners for support and expertise in their respective delegations.

May noted that Canada had a long-standing tradition, under previous governments, of including opposition parties in negotiations at international summits to represent the views of all Canadians. But she said this tradition changed in recent years.

In 2006, opposition Canadian MPs received accreditation as “observers” through environmental groups at a United Nations climate change summit that was hosted in Kenya. But in 2008, former environment minister Jim Prentice invited opposition MPs to join his delegation at the annual summit, held that year in Poland.

“Traditionally, the notion was when Canada went to an international meeting, our delegation reflected Canada, not the party in power,” May said, noting that former prime minister Brian Mulroney included a diverse representation of civil society groups at the 1992 Earth Summit in Brazil. “That was the pattern until Stephen Harper became prime minister.”

Aglukkaq wasn’t available for an interview Monday, and her office wasn’t immediately able to respond to questions about how it selected its delegation and what it thought about May’s letter of request.

But the minister’s office issued a statement saying that the Canadian government was “taking a leadership role” in addressing international climate change by focusing on economic and environmental efforts at home such as regulations to reduce carbon emissions from coal-fired electricity plants and vehicles, while investing money in support of climate change mitigation and adaptation in developing countries.

The statement coincided with two international reports, one from international environmental groups and the other from a Washington-based think tank called the Center for Global Development, that found Canada had one of the worst environmental and climate change records in the developed world.

Environment Canada also released a report this month stating that the country was drifting further away from Harper’s international climate change goal of reducing annual carbon emissions to 17 per cent below 2005 levels by 2020, and that it was unlikely to meet it because of rising emissions from the oil and gas sector.

The New Democrats and Liberals also said they requested to join Canada’s delegation, but received no response and decided not to pursue the matter.

“I’ve got to hand it to Elizabeth (May) for creativity and it is ironic that for a Canadian member of Parliament to be accredited at an international conference, one has to join in a delegation in a country (where) we’ve been having a war for the last 12 years,” said Liberal environment critic John McKay.

©              Copyright  (c)              Postmedia News

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