Govt urged to commit to binding treaty
Updated: 2011-12-09 09:40
United Nations Security personnel escorts US youth delegate Abigail Borah (2nd R) after she disrupted a speech by US Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern during the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP17) plenary session in Durban December 8, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]
DURBAN, South Africa - After nearly two weeks of stalled progress at the United Nations climate change conference in South Africa, a young American attracted high attention by calling for "a real, science-based climate treaty" on Thursday.
Abigail Borah, a New Jersey resident, delivered a speech calling for an urgent path towards a fair and binding climate treaty and admonishing members of Congress for impeding global climate progress to international ministers and high-level negotiators at the closing plenary of the Durban climate change negotiations.
Borah was expelled from the talks shortly following her entreaty.
According a statement issued by Borah, "the obstructionist congress has shackled a just and delayed ambition for far too long. " Her delivery was followed by applause from the entire plenary.
Since before the climate talks, the United States has held the position of holding off on the necessary emissions reductions targets until the year 2020.
Studies from the International Energy Agency, the UNEP, and countless other peer-reviewed scientific papers show that waiting until 2020 to begin aggressive emissions reduction would cause irreversible climate change, including heightened tropical storms, worsening droughts, and devastation affecting communities and businesses from Africa to America.
Nevertheless, the United States has held strong to its woefully inadequate and voluntary commitments made in the Copenhagen Accord and Cancun Agreement.
"2020 is too late to wait," Borah said. "We need an urgent path towards a fair, ambitious, and legally binding treaty," she added.
The Washington continues to negotiate on time borrowed from future generations and with every step of inaction, forcing young people to solve the quickly exacerbating climate challenges that previous generations have been unable and unwilling to address.