With only five days left, the crucial Copenhagen climate summit is at a tipping point.
The climate-change conference in the Danish capital of Copenhagen is in disarray after some 130 developing countries walked out of the confab today. That’s led to at least a temporary suspension of the conference while rich-world delegations try to convince developing nations to rejoing the talks. Fundamentally, the walkout seems to be a “put up or shut up” message from poor countries to rich ones. The developing countries are upset that the Copenhagen conference may ditch the 1997 Kyoto Protocol and are upset with paltry amounts of financing offered so far by developed countries. Treehugger calls this the nuclear option. A similar tactic was used during recent climate talks in Barcelona.
Meanwhile the US and China, the world's biggest polluters, are blocking a deal. The rest of the world could cave in to their pressure for an empty agreement, or fight for a real deal. We urgently need a massive global outcry for the US and China to do the right thing, and for Europe, Brazil, South Africa and the rest of our leaders to draw a line in the sand and insist on a deal that saves the planet.
Click here to sign the petition for a real deal -- supported by hundreds of organizations it's already at a staggering 10 million signatures - let's make it the largest petition in history in the next 72 hours.
The negotiations work through consensus, so if even just a few of our leaders stand absolutely strong, an empty agreement will be impossible. Avaaz has a large team meeting daily with negotiators at the summit who will organize a spectacular petition delivery as world leaders arrive. If the petition is massive enough, any country that stands up to the big polluters will feel massive public support -- the US will feel intense pressure to offer more money and stronger emissions cuts, and China will be pressed to agree to a binding treaty.
US President Obama and Chinese President Hu will join an unprecedented 60 hours of negotiation among world leaders in Copenhagen this week . Both leaders value their respect on the world stage, and will have a personal choice about whether to go far beyond what their negotiating teams have offered so far. Historic agreements are made when leaders decide to stake their legacy on something - Obama and Hu need to hear it from the people of the world, and the rest of world leaders, that this is the time for boldness and vision, not empty agreements that cave in to domestic oil and coal lobbies.
A global climate movement is finally here. Yesterday Avaaz members led thousands of events worldwide, and millions watched our vigil inside the summit on TV, where Archbishop Desmond Tutu told hundreds of delegates and assembled children:
“We marched in Berlin, and the wall fell.
"We marched for South Africa, and apartheid fell.
"We marched at Copenhagen -- and we WILL get a Real Deal.”
Copenhagen is seeking the biggest mandate in history to stop the greatest threat humanity has ever faced. History will be made in the next few days. How will our children remember this moment? Let's tell them we did all we could.
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