15 Nov. 2016

Marrakech 2016: UN Climate Change Conference

From November 7 to 18, national delegates will gather in Marrakech, Morocco, for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP22). Every year, the COP meets “to review and assess the implementation of the UNFCCC and any other legal instruments the body adopts with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fighting climate change.”

Last year, at COP21 in Paris, after decades of discussion, the world’s governments finally reached an agreement. And while the Paris Agreement has been called historic and enshrines the goal of limiting warming to well below two degrees Celsius, the actual measures adopted will do no such thing. Indeed, even if fully implemented, the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) that give this agreement its substance will only slow the increase in greenhouse gas emissions, not reduce them.

As in Paris and at previous COPs, civil society—including the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung—will be present in Marrakech to lobby for the best possible implementation of the Paris Agreement, to debate next steps, and to build connections for the global climate movement we need to stop climate change. RLS has a full roster of events planned both in the UNFCCC’s formal civil society space (the Green Zone) and at the Alternative Summit. RLS’s program includes sessions on energy democracy, resistance to market-based false solutions, the need for “loss and damage” instruments that promote climate justice, the European Union’s neocolonial fossil fuel infrastructure projects, and the role of peasants in fighting climate change. For details, see our flyer.

As part of this international delegation, RLS–NYC, together with the Trade Unions for Energy Democracy (TUED) initiative and CUNY’s Murphy Institute, has organized a panel in the Green Zone that will bring together union leaders from the global North and South who are committed to reclaiming and restructuring the energy system through its radical reform. At this session, they will share their experiences resisting the extreme energy agenda of the fossil fuel corporations and demanding that renewable energy be deployed as a public good, for the benefit of all.

RLS–NYC Official Side Event:
Energy Democracy: A Trade Union Approach to the Climate Crisis

November 15, 1-2:30pm
Location: Bab Ighli, Green Zone, Room “Ziz”

Josua Mata, SENTRO, Philippines
Ashim Roy, New Trade Union Initiative, India
Valter Bittencourt, Trade Union Confederation of the Americas
Lance McCallum, Electrical Trade Union of Australia
Eliza Carboni, New York State Nurses Association
Ron Rousseau, Canadian Labour Congress
Representative of Unifor, Canada
Facilitated by Stefanie Ehmsen, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung—New York Office

Check out the related TUED Working Paper, “Carbon Markets After Paris: Trading in Trouble.”