Draft DPI/NGO 2007 Declaration on Climate Change

From Yochai Benkler - Wealth of Networks
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  1. We, delegates to the 60th DPI/NGO Conference, have gathered from 5-7 September, 2007 in New York City to review the impacts of climate change and to consider how the NGO community can work together more effectively to mitigate the risks of climate change through reducing greenhouse gases and conserving carbon sinks and to prepare for adaptation to the actual and expected consequences of climate change in support of the purposes of United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change[1].
  2. We are particularly concerned about the reluctance on the part of some of the major contributors to greenhouse gas emissions to seriously address the issue and that insufficient resources have been made available to protect the poor and disadvantaged from Climate Change.
  3. We concur with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change[2] on the anthropogenic causes of climate change and on the urgency of effectively addressing the issue, and affirm that climate change represents an imminent threat to is a direct threat to our common efforts to reduce poverty, hunger and disease.
  4. Climate Change is a direct threat to socially equitable and environmentally sound development, poverty reduction and the prevention of disease;
  5. We recognize that the solution to climate change lies not in the fragmentation of issues but in addressing the complexity and interdependence of issues and thus we commit ourselves to spending the next twelve months to develop a harmonized NGO approach to Climate Change, one that links all NGOs, whether focused on gender, agriculture, indigenous peoples, livestock, livelihood protection, peace-building, sustainable development or other issues.
  6. We call on all participants in the 2007 DPI/NGO Conference to join together in common cause to articulate a practical strategy, list NGO-led programs of worth and craft a common report on those efforts for dissemination throughout the NGO community.
  7. We recognize that the international community has accumulated much experience with disaster prevention and commend the many organizations that are already working on the Climate Change issue. Our effort must be added value, not separate.
  8. We acknowledge the importance of the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED)[3], [4], and the Framework Convention on Climate Change which was signed and ratified by most Member States of the United Nations including many who have not ratified the convention's Kyoto Protocol. Under this Convention, the precautionary principle was clearly enunciated, and a firm obligation was incurred to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to conserve carbon sinks.
  9. We reaffirm the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development and call for a more integrated mechanism for implementing all environmental treaties.
  10. We recognize the precedence of productive contributions of UN partnered NGOs in enhancing the environment, civil rights, peace, etc and call on all NGOs to continue that tradition, drawing on experiences and principles established in years of obligations incurred through conventions, treaties and covenants, through commitments made through UN Conference action plans, and expectations created through UN General Assembly Resolutions and Declarations.
  11. We are concerned that the solution proposed should never be equally bad or worse than the problem they are intended to solve. For this reason we do not consider nuclear energy as the solution to Climate Change, (unless significant new safety and environmental improvement are included in the programs) and have grave reservations about some of the biofuel proposals.
  12. To guide our work over the next year, we have agreed on several principles.
  13. We concur with the fundamental principle enunciated throughout UN documents: the principle of intergenerational equity- rights of future generation to their ecological heritage, and to a safe environment
  14. We also support the labour principle of "fair and just transition" enunciated by the International Labour Organization.
  15. NGOs, the United Nations, other international organizations, including labor and governments must work together; and implement the principle emerging from the commitment in UN Conference on Women: Equality, Development and Peace, and in Habitat II - States must ensure that corporations including transnational corporation comply with all applicable national and international law, including international environmental law.
  16. We must foster a culture of disaster prevention and resilience, and associated pre-disaster strategies, and recognize that the use of the term "reduction of disasters" has coopted the expression of disaster prevention
    • (Conference participants can recommend a set of other priorities here. Once combined, these may form the basis for virtual workshops that collaborate over the coming months.)
  17. We express our appreciation to the United Nations for hosting this conference and the people of the City of New York for their graciousness and hospitality.

This text should be used at September 24 Summit by the Secretary General.

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