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Friends of the Earth calls on President Obama to Earn his Nobel

2 Nov 2009

As the last week of climate negotiations before Copenhagen begins today in Barcelona, Friends of the Earth International calls on President Obama to earn the Nobel Prize he was given for efforts to strengthen international diplomacy. Instead of cooperating effectively to solve the climate crisis, the US administration is undermining existing agreements and shirking wealthy nations' responsibility to lead the way in solving the climate crisis. Failing to solve the climate crisis in a just and equitable way will undermine peace in our world and basic human rights. While the President's openness to diplomacy and international negotiations are a welcomed change, they must be matched by tangible action.

"Change we can believe in isn't a continuation of Bush era climate policy," said Kate Horner, policy analyst at Friends of the Earth U.S. "To earn his Nobel, President Obama must put an end to this isolationist nonsense and commit to acting cooperatively to solve the climate crisis."

"The rest of the world seems to be suffering from a severe case of amnesia, forgetting that we have once already allowed the United States to severely weaken international climate agreements," said Antje von Broock, climate campaigner at Friends of the Earth Germany, referring to the policy positions taken by the United States during the negotiations to establish the Kyoto Protocol in 1997. "The European Union must not fall into the same trap again."

Vanessa María Gálvez Hernández, Ceiba/ Friends of the Earth Guatemala said: "The people of Central America are fighting for to defend our territories in the struggle against climate change. Transnational corporations and elites are responsible for the crisis and are promoting false solutions such as extractive activities, monoculture plantations, agribusiness, carbon markets, free trade agreements. Instead we are promoting "Good Living" which is based on the principles of solidarity, equity, harmony and respect for mother Earth."

Friends of the Earth is running an international petition demanding industrialised countries turn climate justice into reality including tough new targets of at least 40% emissions reductions compared to 1990 levels as well as provide sufficient public finance for adaptation and climate protection in the global south. The world's people are demanding real action. For more information visit: www.demandclimatejustice.org

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