"We are addicted to fossil fuels and that is a disease."

"We are addicted to fossil fuels and that is a disease."

"We are addicted to fossil fuels and that is a disease."

So says Kumi Naidoo, executive director of Greenpeace International, referring to the climate negotiations that are taking place in the French capital. The view, review and analysis by one of the leaders of civil society and the environmental activism of the world.


Despite having perhaps one of the most desirable and complex activism charges in the world of environmental, Kumi Naidoo shows serene, humble, but worried about the current state of negotiations of the Conference of the Parties (COP21) taking place in Paris France, these days. The executive director of Greenpeace International provides an analytical and reflective look about the present and future of the fight against climate change.

The first South African to head the recognized environmental organization describes the key foundations on which further work should be in the second week of negotiations. First, the principle of long term objectives contemplate looking over a longer time. According to Naidoo, 2030 for some countries it is very close to reduce their contributions to an ambitious way.

Second, the current debate on the need for action in order to achieve a warming of the surface of the Earth that does not exceed 2 ° C compared to claim by most of vulnerable countries to reduce that target to 1.5 ° C, given the seriousness of the effects of climate change. In this regard, Naidoo shows critical: "In 10 years the increase in temperature of the Earth has meant 90% of the complications in the global climate. The problem is that, if we only national contributions made so far, we are at 2.7 ° C. This is below of 3.5, but we are far from even 2 ° C ".

Third, the director of Greenpeace highlights the importance of the issue of loss and damages, considering the current state in which some countries are now following the effects of climate change. In this connection, he underlines the importance of financing, but is critical in this regard: "The countries that are demanding this point we are not asking for charity, but we are seeking justice against those who have based their economies on the exploitation of fossil fuels. It is not fair that developing and underdeveloped countries have to take charge of the costs generated by the impacts that they have helped to create for years".

The COP21 is a conference specifically referring to climate change, but here too and in this connection, it is considered the problem of a global economic system based on fossil fuels to meet human needs. Therefore, one of the main demands of the various players in these days of negotiation is the need to start rethinking and change that system. In this regard, Naidoo is blunt: "We are addicted to fossil fuels and that is a disease. We must understand that, with all the knowledge we have, all that investment we are making today in fossil fuels, is an investment in our children's death tomorrow". However, he invites not forget the other big problem behind emissions of greenhouse gases and climate change: the livestock industry. Agriculture and the Arctic are other issues that Naidoo presentes as international level challenges that require solutions and concrete actions.

Facing the question of whether a country or group of countries is specifically blocking the negotiations, Naidoo was accurate: ​​"Most countries are not doing what they should be". As his work on the farm these days, many parties are conducting negotiations in secret and in problematic positions on certain lines of discussion, India being one of the highlights in this task. But, why it is so difficult that there could be progress in the negotiations? "Because our democracies are lost, because now everything can be bought with money. And the decisions are taken by industries", he says.

Human rights are another issue that Naidoo considers relevant for a strong agreement to climate change: "Often as environmentalists we say we have to save the planet. Indeed, the planet does not need to be saved. The planet will continue, it will find its balance and it will move forward. We're the one who are going out. It's not about saving the planet, it's about to protect our children and the future generations".

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