The People’s Agreement Prevails in Tianjin

The People’s Agreement Prevails in Tianjin

Chinese officials welcome delegates at the opening ceremony

A sign of hope last week in the build up to the Cancun climate conference. Members of the Bolivian delegation as well as representatives from other ALBA (the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America) countries succeeded in adding elements from the World People’s Conference on Climate Change into the negotiating text drafted at the climate talks in Tianjin, China.

Reducing emissions by more than 50% by 2017, and limiting the temperature increase to 1 degree Celsius (as opposed to the 2 degrees agreed to at last year’s Copenhagen talks) were among the key elements adopted from the Cochabamba Conference. Most remarkable was the inclusion of the Rights of Mother Earth into this negotiating text — a surprising victory for Evo Morales’ movement and a significant departure from the positions that typically emerge from such high level climate negotiations.

How will the inclusion of these principals play out in Cancun, now just around the corner? With the effects of climate change being increasingly felt around the world, are global leaders ready to embrace this paradigm shift, that views nature as an entity with rights, rather than a source of capital? Or, will this movement continue at a grassroots level, picking up membership and momentum with each coming climate change conference?

Photo courtesy of MVI