Lima climate conference deceives, but not the climate movement

With governments ending yet another Climate conference in Lima, Peru, the trade union movement has to express its deep concerns on the low path of ambition that has been shown by negotiators and this despite the communication efforts deployed by many to dress the Lima deal as a step in the right direction.

“Governments have decided to ignore our calls to promote ambition before 2020 –a critical aspect for growing jobs in climate-sound sectors, and fundamental for protecting workers in the transformation of our economies”, said Sharan Burrow. “ Rather, they have played again the lowest possible ambition scenario and postponed for Paris critical discussions about how will they manage to stay below 2°C”.

The trade union movement also shared deep dissatisfaction on the way in which the process has been handled.

“Despite numerous governments raising the importance of including a message for the world’s workers around the need for decent work and just transition in the Paris draft text, co-chairs have ignored these demands, raising questions about who actually leads this process…” added Burrow.

There are reasons for hope though. Lima has provided for the past two weeks a unique space for crystallising unity in the climate movement, which is growing in depth, diversity and ambition.

“Unions in Lima were at the centre of the climate space, committed to build an alternative agenda for their people, for the country and also for the world”, said Burrow. “We must continue this work to increase even further the mobilisation of working people around climate change.

“We will not let up on any government that denies the centrality of securing a just transition with decent work opportunities for workers when building climate plans– nor we will sit back and watch governments sell out future generations with their lack of courage, she concluded.