Denied instant gratification of their global warming dreams of redistribution, up to 800 members of extreme enviro-left nongovernmental organizations walked out of COP 19, the UN climate summit in Warsaw, Poland.
Among the NGOs walking out was Earth in Brackets, Greenpeace, 350.org, Jubilee South, WWF, Oxfam, Friends of the Earth, ActionAid, the Third World Network and the International Trade Union Confederation.
By walking out they hoped to echo and support the walkout that China recently led of 132 poor nations frustrated over resistance by developing nations to adopting the “loss and damage” concept under which rich nations would agree to be legally liable or extreme weather and other events which strike poor nations.
Loss and damage (as CFACT has explained before) would create a massive windfall for developing nations by mandating redistribution when natural disasters strike. Industrialized nations have so far been unwilling to openly oppose loss and damage, but instead have sought to delay funding the concept until after their hoped for full global warming treaty is signed in Paris in 2015.
Loss and damage is scientifically bogus. There has been little warming to date, none since the nineties and world weather, even when occasionally extreme, is historically normal.
However, the tragic Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda, which struck the Philippines just before the Warsaw talks began, has provided developing nations and the left with a powerful emotional argument in support of loss and damage. Philippine negotiator Yeb Sano’s hunger strike, which he reports remains unbroken, added potent drama to their position.
The lack of a valid causal relationship between industrialized human freedom, global warming and the typhoon is of no concern to the advocates of loss and damage. They want your money and they want it now.
Many of the members of leftist NGOs who walked out surrendered their conference badges to UN security. They expressed outrage, not just over their redistributionist frustrations, but over the participation in the talks of members of industry marching behind a banner which read, “polluters talk, we walk.”
Susann Scherbarth of the leftist pressure group Friends of the Earth said “We are walking out in frustration and disappointment – the talks here in Poland have done nothing to cut emissions or provide real finance to tackle climate change. We also walk out in solidarity, with those communities and countries who stand to lose so much from climate change, and for whom these talks have done so little. Enough is enough.”
So out they walked on sneakers made from petroleum, talking on their i-phones and brandishing placards which they could make affordably from materials readily available due to industrial economies of scale.
The warming-left has been upset with host country Poland throughout COP 19 for its use of corporate sponsors to pay for hospitality, goody bags and other aspects of the conference. Polish conference organizers were not used to the politically correct aspects of the climate conference and sought to offer their best Polish hospitality the same as they do when organizing other major gatherings. They failed to reckon with the army of warming pressure groups set to descend upon them, all desperately seeking something upon which to express outrage.
The ever-present intolerance of the warming-left is particularly bizarre, as the UN rules of civil society are what gave them the opportunity to participate in the climate talks in the first place.
At the first UN Earth Summit held in Rio in 1992, the UN adopted its infamous “Agenda 21” which has been the catalyst for the UN’s climate and environmental program since. The Rio Earth Summit established the premise that governments cannot implement the UN’s agenda in isolation and formally established nine major group constituencies to work with them. (CFACT’s delegation participates in the UN talks as an officially recognized NGO). They are:
Business and Industry
Children and Youth
Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs)
Science and Technical Community
Workers and Trade Unions
In seeking to stifle participation by representatives of industry in the UN climate talks, the warming-left pressure groups ask the UN to violate its founding principles as codified in Article 19 of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
A segment of the NGO’s, just one UN recognized major group (and that group’s most extreme left wing segment at that), has no standing or legal basis to seek the exclusion of another major group, in this case business and industry.
Many already view the UN as overly bureaucratic, expansive, activist and intolerant. Unless the UN ensures it is a forum in which nations and groups can come together and freely express different and often widely diverging opinions, it jeopardizes its very reason for being. A fair forum is the least we can accept.
The big advantage to the warming-left walkout is the relative peace it has left behind in the halls of the climate summit. The big disadvantage is that with the exception of rare exceptions like CFACT, it leaves the proceedings solely in the hands of carbon profiteers and bureaucrats who like nothing better than a secluded atmosphere in which to cut a deal. They have already announced that they have secured funding for the UN’s REDD forestry scheme. Let’s hope loss and damage and the Green Climate Fund are not next. If you really want to understand these talks, look past the spectacle and follow the money. The Left may have left the stadium, but are still very much in the game.