Cuffe welcomes modest progress


The Green Party’s minister with responsibility for climate change Ciarán Cuffe has described the deal reached in the early hours of this morning at the climate talks in Mexico as a modest step forward.

He warned, however, that time was running out for a binding international deal, which must be reached by the next round of talks in South Africa in 2011.

“The Cancun agreements will save the UNFCCC process, which climate campaigners expect to produce an international deal to tackle greenhouse gas emissions and which was in danger of falling apart after last year’s disappointing Copenhagen summit. But saving the planet will still take some time – and we unfortunately do no have time on our side,” he said.

He said there were positives to take from the. “I very much welcome the steps to protect tropical forests and new processes for sharing clean energy technologies. The new $100bn green fund, which will raise a year by 2020 to protect poor nations against climate impacts is also a very positive step forward.”

He said, however that the “window of opportunity” was closing. He said the Durban talks next year would have to produce “a strong and binding international deal on reducing emissions and limiting global warming. More than 10 years ago world leaders established the Kyoto Protocol, which was an ambitious and decisive move. We need similar ambition and determination to find a viable successor to Kyoto.”