Pressenza republishes below the text of the statement prepared after publication of the draft agreement by the COP26 Coalition, a UK-based civil society coalition of groups and individuals mobilising around climate justice during COP26. Coalition members include environment and development NGOs, trade unions, grassroots community campaigns, faith groups, youth groups, migrant and racial justice networks – among others.
We needed rich countries to step up and finally do their fair share of climate action, while providing compensation for the destruction to lives and livelihoods already being caused by climate change in countries who have done least to create this crisis.
Instead, the needs of poorer countries have been kicked to the curb, in favour of keeping the hugely over represented fossil fuel lobbyists happy.
Rich countries have tried to make it look as if they care about climate change – but it is clear that they plan to continue polluting with impunity, sacrificing the poorest as they do so. The oil and gas industry, once again, is off the hook and leaves COP26 laughing all the way to the bank.
Developing countries, already overwhelmed by the Covid crisis, inequality and a spirally debt crisis, desperately needed huge increases in financial support to deal with the impacts of climate change, and compensation for the damage already done. Yet rich countries flatly refused to put hard cash on the table, offering a pitiful advice helpline instead.
At COP26, the richest got what they came here for, and the poorest leave with nothing.”