On the first day of week two of the UNFCCC climate negotiations, things are busy at the Cancunmesse exhibition hall, which is filled with hundreds of booths staffed by NGO, IGO, and national representatives. Among them are antipoverty development organizations such as Oxfam, WEDO, and CARE who are calling for the establishment of a fair global climate fund that will meet the needs and rights of the world’s most vulnerable communities. They, and scores of other attendees at the conference, believe that climate change poses an unprecedented threat to poor people who are already struggling to sustain their livelihoods and maintain food security, and that women and other marginalized groups are most vulnerable.
Yesterday afternoon at a press briefing titled Funding the Future organized by Oxfam International, six panelists shared their visions and experiences to help set the path to establish a fair global climate fund by week’s end. Top climate negotiators and ministers responsible for actualizing this goal are in Cancun right now and more are flying in this week. Although the first week of talks seems to have shown a fairly positive spirit and willingness to compromise on the part of many countries, a feeling of trepidation is present that the building pressure to make progress regarding emissions cuts and the Kyoto Protocol may result in insufficient time and energy for agreement on the establishment of a fair climate fund.
So what is this fund and how is it different from what Tim Gore, International Policy Advisor for Oxfam, calls the “spaghetti bowl of different climate financing channels” that currently exists? Well, as outlined in a letter signed by 215 civil society organizations released today at the press briefing, in order for the fund to be legitimate and effective it must:
- Be established under the authority of the UNFCCC, a legitimate forum where all countries are represented.
- Have equitable representation for developing countries on the board and not be donor country dominated.
- Ensure consideration is given to gender and multicultural balance on the board.
- Guarantee at least 50 percent of the resources of the fund are channeled to adaptation.
- Be a one-stop shop with the vast majority of climate financing passing through the fund.
- Ensure that vulnerable communities, especially women and indigenous populations, participate fully in decisions on uses and monitoring at the national level.
Cate Owren, Program Director for WEDO, noted that, while climate financing is politically challenging, it should not be economically challenging because investments now save money in the future. She also reiterated that design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of the fund will be crucial and will help prevent a negative impact on women and marginalized groups. Stories of climate adaptation needs and successes were shared by Alcinda Abreu, Mozambique’s Minister for Coordination of Environmental Affairs.
The briefing began and ended with the message that the establishment of this fund in Cancun will not only help developing countries adapt to the changing climate and adopt low-carbon development pathways, but also help rebuild trust in the negotiations. While a legally binding climate agreement seems almost certainly not on the cards for this round of negotiations, a fair global climate fund will hopefully produce tangible, concrete outcomes by Friday that addresses the need for both mitigation and adaptation assistance.
TIME: 7:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.
We can’t let them forget poor people. Poor communities are hit first – and worst – by climate change. Leaving these provisions out of the bill will leave billions of people in peril from worsening storms, droughts, and floods and undermine the pledge that President Obama made in Copenhagen to help those most affected by climate change.
Send a message to your Senators today and make sure they include support for international communities fighting for survival against climate change.
Click Here to send a message to your Senator:
- July 31st - Elmhurst Green Fest
- August 14th - John Mayer, Tinley Park, First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
Join us this Wednesday June, 2nd to visit the offices of Senators Richard Durbin and Roland Burris to urge them to support Adaptation Funding in the American Power Act which is now before the senate. We'll meet in the lobby of the Kluczynski Federal Building at 9:00am on Wednesday, June 2nd.
The address for the Kluczynski Federal Building is:
230 S. Dearborn, Chicago, IL 60604
Chicago Oxfam Action Corps Summer of Action Kick-off Meeting is Monday, May 24th
Meet fellow Oxfam supporters from Chicago, and kick-off an exciting summer with the Oxfam Action Corps! Jump in to volunteer with the Chicago Oxfam Action Corps or come just to learn more about what we do… This is the opportunity you've been waiting for, and now is your chance. We can’t wait to meet you!
WHAT: Summer of Action Kick-off Meeting
WHEN: Monday, May 24th, 7:00 - 8:00 pm
WHERE: Old St Pat's Church, 2nd Floor Meeting Rooms
711 W Monroe, Chicago, IL
WHY: This meeting will be a gathering of new volunteers (and a few vets) from all parts of Chicago who are interested in making this summer and beyond a forceful effort towards tackling hunger, poverty, and social injustice. Our aim is comprehensive climate legislation that includes adequate funding to help poor communities cope and build resilience to climate impacts! It’s time the U.S. steps up as a leader in the fight against climate change and takes a stand for the world’s most vulnerable communities. And we need YOUR help to accomplish this.
DIRECTIONS: Just off I90/94 at the corner of Monroe and DesPlaines.
Public Transportation: 2 blocks west and 1 block south of Ogilvie Transportation Center & Union Stations.
CTA bus routes 8, 20 & 156 run nearby.
"L" stop at Clinton(Lake St, Green/ Pink line) or Washington (Wells St, Loop).
Street Parking available on DesPlaines & two Pay Parking lots across the street.
WWD 2010: Clean Water for a Healthy World
Every year, 1,500 cubic kilometres of wastewater are produced globally. While waste and wastewater can be reused productively for energy and irrigation, it usually is not. In developing countries 80 percent of all waste is being discharged untreated, because of lack of regulations and resources. And population and industrial growth add new sources of pollution and increased demand for clean water to the equation. Human and environmental health, drinking and agricultural water supplies for the present and future are at stake, still water pollution rarely warrants mention as a pressing issue.
To do something about that UN-Water has chosen Clean Water for a Healthy World as theme for World Water Day 2010. The overall goal of the World Water Day on 22 March 2010 campaign is to raise the profile of water quality at the political level so that water quality considerations are made alongside those of water quantity.
UNEP has responsibility for taking the lead in 2010, UN-Water announced at a session during the Stockholm World Water Week in August 2009. Keep an eye on their site
Shakira, Alicia Keys, Justin Timberlake, Jennifer Hudson and many more artists will be part of the show.
Gather friends and family and host a telethon-viewing house party! And don't forget to call in!
If you can write a LTE please email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know! You can also email us if you need any talking points. Please see oxfamamerica.org for a lot of info and easy ways to make a contribution.
Our first action in 2010 will be tomorrow, Tuesday, January 12th. Thousands have already pledged to call their senators. But we still need your voice!
Sign up today to call your senators during business hours:
With your help, we can send a strong message to the Senate on the eve of the 2010 campaign season: We won't stand by idly while you sacrifice our future to political expediency or wealthy lobbyists. Together, we will flood every single Senate office with phone calls and let them know that without their support for a bold climate bill they shouldn't be expecting our support in this year's election or elections to come.
Register now and you'll receive special instructions for your calls. Two calls to your senators will be a fast, easy, and effective way to let your voice be heard. Sign up today to make your calls.
First Person: Voices, video, and photos from Oxfam's fight against poverty
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