Global Young Greens Cancun Paper


This is the GYG Cancun Paper, approved by the Congress in Berlin on August, 13th, 2010.

Introduced by: FYEG (Federation of Young European Greens)

We, the Global Young Greens (GYG), are deeply disappointed, dissatisfied and frustrated by the outcome of the United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Copenhagen in December 2009. Many of us, who have been active within the UNFCCC process for some time, expected a much stronger agreement.
The Copenhagen Accord is one of the weakest political agreements in the history of the climate negotiations. The deal is not legally binding and clearly reflects the lack of ambition and the exclusive process by which it was agreed. Regarding the difficulty building consensus within the negotiations, we are highly critical of some countries for their role in blocking any meaningful agreement during COP15.

Japanese Young Green waters a tree, planted by GYG

In order to agree upon a legally binding post-2012 Treaty at COP16, all parties must recognise the need for long-term cooperative action to enable the full, effective and sustained implementation of the Convention now, up to and beyond 2012.
Annex 1 must reaffirm their political and legal commitment and global partnership made under the Kyoto Protocol to combat climate change and to address existing deficiencies in the implementation of the Convention.
Annex 1 must also acknowledge that the largest share of historical global emissions of greenhouse gases has originated in industrialized countries and that they therefore must take the lead in combating climate change and its adverse effects.
The Copenhagen Accord recognizes the objective to keep the maximum global average temperature rise below 2°C and the need for a review in 2015 to consider a possible goal of a maximum temperature rise of 1.5°C using new scientific insights. Nevertheless, the emissions pledges that are currently on the table and current Annex 1 emissions reductions fall far short of what is necessary to achieve this goal.
We call upon industrialized countries to increase their efforts in order to ensure atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations are rapidly reduced to 350ppm and stay below this level in the long term.
Annex 1 Parties’ have both the economic and technological capacity to deliver adequate emissions reductions. GYG therefore calls on Annex 1 to reduce their CO2e emissions by 40% by 2020 and by 95% by 2050 based on 1990 levels.
In order to ensure this pledge is credible, Annex 1 must strictly limit the use of offsetting, agree not to bank surplus assigned amount units (AAUs), and agree to rules on how to account for emissions from land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF) that ensure the environmental integrity of their emissions‘ reduction targets.
GYG believes that industrialized countries should take all the necessary steps to enable Non Annex I countries to undertake country-level needs assessments and to develop specific capacitybuilding activities and fair financial and technological transfers.
Technological progress should be equitably enjoyed by both Global South and Global North. GYG supports a generous and binding regime of technology transfers. Such transfers should not include nuclear technology, Carbon Capture and Storage or other technologies which harm people or the environment.
Considering adaptation, we must prioritise highly vulnerable areas such as small islands, Least Developed Countries and many African countries. To do this, there must be capacity building programs for adaptation.
Adequate financial support must be transferred to developing countries based on the principles of additionality, sufficiency, predictability and equity. Current figures of $100bn by 2020 fall far below the $600bn estimated as necessary by the 2009 UN-Department of Economic and Social Affairs report. GYG calls upon industrialised countries to commit to the recommended $600bn.
There must be a mechanism to must enable the mobilisation of financial resources from developed countries for reducing emissions from deforestation, forest degradation, the role of conservation, sustainable management of forest and the enhancement of forest carbon stocks, financed by a UN managed fund and not a market mechanism.
Financial programs must also consider economic, social, indigenous, cultural and environmental needs of local populations and in particular indigenous peoples.
In order to rapidly reduce CO2e emissions, peaking no later than 2015, GYG are in favour of a progressive and equitable tax and dividend system whereby fossil fuels are taxed at source or at entry to a market with a 100% dividend paid to all citizens equally. This would lead to a progressive and regulated rise of the energy prices which would foster Research and Development in renewable energies, energy efficiency and energy savings. Governments must also discontinue all subsidies to carbon and nuclear industries.
Although GYG are opposed to carbon markets, if they remain the only politically feasible mechanism for rapid mitigation, we must demand a fair cap-and-dividend model, where carbon markets in any country or region must have ambitious targets, no offsetting and a linked redistribution system.
Such a carbon market should not enable the distribution of free quotas and should be based on a 100% redistribution of auction revenue.
In conclusion, young people can provide invaluable perspectives to the climate change debate and their involvement contributes to the broader empowerment of young people. The current generation of decision makers seem to be incapable of achieving political consensus in order to stop dangerous global climate change. Specifically the decision making process should be opened up to include stakeholders who have to deal with future consequences, especially global youth. We therefore demand that governments include youth in their delegations through cooperation with National Youth Councils and UN agencies and allow youth to meaningfully participate in the decision making processes as outlined in several UNGA resolutions.
GYG will continue to fight for a fair, ambitious and legally binding deal.

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