Press Releases

CAN is an important, critical voice in the international climate policy process. The network’s regular press briefings and commentary help journalists and their audience make sense of what can be a baffling process, even to those who have been covering it for years.

CAN helps coordinate and amplify the communications work of its 850 members around major international climate processes. CAN also provides an important capacity building role for some members interested in boosting their communications efforts.

You can find a range of our latest resources and releases below:

Most Germans Support Plans for More Climate Protection and Less Brown Coal

Berlin, 25 April 2015 – A large majority of Germany's citizens support Chancellor Merkel and Economics Minister Gabriel in their plans for strengthening climate policy. Seventy percent are of the opinion that the German government should implement additional measures to ensure a 40% reduction in emissions by the year 2020 – a current target of German energy policy. This is the finding of a new survey conducted by TNS Emnid on behalf of the association Campact and WWF Germany.

Seventy-three percent of the more than 1000 German citizens who participated in the survey support the so-called “climate levy,” a proposed measure that would tax the oldest and dirtiest brown-coal-fired power plants. Majority support for the government's plans is even seen in impacted regions such as the Rheinland (69% support) and Brandenburg (55% support). Support was visible across party affiliations, with 75% of all participants in favor of the policy measure. The survey also makes clear that young people in particular favor a sustainable and forward-looking climate and energy policy.

"A clear majority wants to see a reduction in the use of brown coal for electricity production. This sends a clear signal to the German government: Mr. Gabriel, Mrs. Merkel, take action now. Ensure Germany fulfills its climate protection goals!" says Chris Methmann, a member of the association Campact.

Germany can only achieve its climate protection targets when significant emissions cuts are implemented in the electricity sector. The electricity sector is responsible for approx. 40% of German greenhouse gas emissions, half of which are attributable to brown-coal-fired power plants.

As the renewable energy revolution will create on the whole considerably more jobs than the measure to reduce the use of brown coal will destroy,  71% of Germans consider the policy measure to be justified, according to the TNS Emnid survey. Ninety percent of electricity generation would receive an explicit exemption from the proposed "climate levy." Accordingly, the policy measure represents an extremely modest intervention into the electricity sector.

"The support of the populace for the planned measure is overwhelming. In the run up to the G-7 meeting this summer and the UN Climate Conference in the fall, it is of key importance not to fall victim to the fear mongering that a few energy companies are engaged in," says Regine Günther, WWF Director for Climate and Energy.

 

Note regarding the survey: 
Unless otherwise indicated, all data were provided by TNS Emnid. 1002 adults took part in the survey, which took place between 18 and 20 April 2015. The results were weighted and are representative of the German population (age 14+).

Press contact:
Sylvia Ratzlaff, Press Office, WWF Germany, sylvia.ratzlaff@wwf.de, Tel. 030 311 777 467

Jörg Haas, Spokesperson, Campact e.V., haas@campact.de, Tel. 0152 - 22888799 
 
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Call for action: May and June Global climate mobilisation

This May and June, youth, faith leaders, and members of labour, development and justice organisations from across the world will call for the just transformation away from fossil fuels to be scaled up so that it can address our biggest problems - climate change, social inequality, unemployment and poverty.

We will stand side by side to ensure governments know that the people are demanding and driving action - we are building citizen-owned, locally based solutions, and strengthening a movement that will keep growing until we achieve a complete, just transition from fossil fuels to 100% renewable energy in citizens hands.

We call on all people to join together at this vital moment and to organize actions which showcase the right kind of decisions governments need to make to drive forward the people-powered transition to a world free of climate change, unsafe and dirty energy and inequality. Will government leaders support us actively in powering this transition or will they stand on the wrong side of history?

When

On the 30th and 31st of May the international mobilisation will be kicked off in France by Coalition Climat 21 with activities across the country. During those days, groups across the globe will be making the same demands and others will start of their activities leading into early June focusing on the G7 meetings in Germany as well as the UNFCCC session in Bonn.  These weeks will serve as a global launch of a year of action, being crucial to connect the dots of the amazing people power 2015 and beyond will witness.

How

The global call for climate action will take the message of the transition away from fossils and to renewables to the people with both boots on the ground and online activities. In France, actions, initiatives and demonstrations of all sizes will fill the cities. Other countries will see rallies in front of Parliaments, other direct actions, and citizen involvement at the G7 meetings. There will also be concerts that will gather audiences in the tens of thousands.

All of this will be backed by online activities, making it possible for people all around the world to voice their call for climate action/justice. We welcome all initiatives of all sizes across the world to join this moment, which can be done as an individual activity or as part of an already planned event. A website for registering events or joining forces with other groups will be available soon.    

Who

Numerous groups and coalitions will be carrying out activities of all shapes and sizes. To get a picture of what is going on, please have a look at THIS TIMELINE

For more information or suggestions, please contact Lasse Galvani Bruun

lbruun@climatenetwork.org | Skype: bruun.lasse | +55 11 99909 4046

 Study quantifies benefits unlocked by new climate action commitments

Scaling up action scales up benefits

Berlin, Germany. March 31, 2015: More jobs, fewer deaths and money saved from fuel imports. That’s what the climate action commitments laid out by the EU, US and China will deliver to their nations, according to a study by NewClimate Institute, and commissioned by Climate Action Network. 

The new study calculates that as well as helping reduce climate change risk, the steps outlined in the plans for these three economies will mean a total of almost 1 million new jobs by 2030, save the lives of around 113,000 people who will no longer die prematurely thanks to reduced air pollution, and huge savings from avoiding the high costs of imported fossil fuels. 

What’s more, scaling up their commitments to be in line with the transition to economies powered by 100% renewables by mid-century will mean unlocking even more benefits for these nations. More ambitious plans would collectively create around 3 million jobs by 2030, save the lives of around 2 million people who would otherwise fall victim to deadly air pollution, and would save around US$520 billion from avoided fossil fuel imports per year. If all countries took climate actions at this scale, global warming would not cross the 2degC threshold, beyond which scientists predict climate change to spin out of control. Such action would also give us an even chance of staying within 1.5degC - the threshold advocated by many of the most vulnerable nations. 

NewClimate Institute’s Niklas Höhne, author of the study, said: “This new analysis shows that any governments currently formulating climate action plans should consider the significant benefits for their people that could be achieved by setting their ambition levels to maximum.” 

Climate Action Network chair Mohamed Adow said: “Over 100 countries have thrown their support behind a phase out of fossil fuel emissions and it’s not hard to see why - making a just transition to 100% renewable energy is a no brainer as it means healthier economies and healthier people.” 

The report comes as developed countries - and others in a position to do so - were expected to lodge their offers with the UN by today. These offers will form the building blocks of a new climate agreement to be signed in Paris this December. 

The study shows that Europe stands to save around USD$33 billion per year on avoided fossil fuel imports through its climate action plan, but this would jump to around USD$170billion a year if the region scaled up its offer. 

China’s battle with air pollution has been well documented, as has the country’s actions to get it under control. Beijing’s new climate offer will save around 100,000 lives a year, but as they scale up their efforts that figure rises to around 1.2 million people annually. 

The United States is expected to formally lodge an offer with the UN today which will create around 470,000 jobs by 2030 in the country’s burgeoning renewable energy sector, with even more potential in the country’s energy efficiency sector. 

This study once again confirms key findings from last year's Fifth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which informed governments that the only way to build and retain prosperous economies is through both mitigating and adapting to climate change. 

All eyes will now turn to other major - more and more isolated - economies such as Japan, Australia and Canada whose governments appear to have missed today’s deadline for lodging climate action commitments with the UN.

With evidence piling up on the side of scaling up action and the multiple benefits that delivers, their people will increasingly question government decisions that fail to speed up the people-driven transition from fossil fuels to renewable energies.  

 

Notes to Editors

  1. The report, Assessing the missed benefits of countries’ national contributions, was written by the NewClimate Institute - which raises ambition for action against climate change and supports sustainable and climate-resilient development through research and analysis. 
  2. The report was commissioned by Climate Action Network - a global network of over 900 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. More at: 
  3. You can find the full report here, a summary of the findings here, and an infographic here

 

Contact 
To be connected with a spokesperson on the report, please contact:  Ria Voorhaar, CAN International on +49 157 3173 5568 or email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org  

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Europe becomes second party to lodge Paris climate action commitment

Climate Action Network released the following statement upon the release of Europe's commitment towards the Paris agreement on climate change today. 

European environment ministers have today agreed on the EU’s first climate action commitment towards the Paris agreement. The pledge translates its previously announced target to reduce carbon pollution by at least 40% by 2030. After Switzerland, the EU will be the second party in the world to lodge its plan to speed up the transition away from fossil fuels towards renewable energy with the UN. Commitments from other major countries including the United States and Mexico are expected later this month. Together, these pledges will signal the start of what will be the world’s first collective step on climate action. 

Europe has in many ways been spearheading the global transition, and it has only last week presented a domestic energy strategy that makes clear that Europe’s move towards a decarbonized economy is well underway. That’s why some observers want Europe’s first offer to go further in harnessing progress towards a fossil fuel phase out and Europe’s vision to be the world leader in renewable energy. For example, Denmark has already committed to make 100% of their electricity supply renewable and party leaders in the UK have committed to phase out coal. Accelerating this transition makes sense because it can deliver more and better jobs, improved public health and more robust economies.

Today’s announcement leaves open the tricky question of how to deal with forests when counting emission reductions. If not handled well, accounting rules could dilute the EU’s commitment. Progressive Member States are working to reach a decision that ensures environmental integrity and retains ambition. Furthermore, despite calling for countries to renew their pledges under the Paris agreement every five years, the EU does not outline a 2025 target in its offer.

The EU’s plan stayed silent on the amount of additional support they'd provide to developing countries who are expected to take their own climate action under the Paris agreement. Scaling up support will be vital if we're to secure a comprehensive global climate agreement in Paris in December that builds resilient communities and helps vulnerable people cope with unavoidable climate impacts. In a bid to shore up Europe’s leadership on climate, European foreign ministers can step up and explicitly outline their offer to help communities adopt renewable energy and adapt to climate change.

Undoubtedly, this offer will not be the final word from Europe on climate action towards the Paris agreement. Indeed, the EU’s pledge document says it looks forward to working with other countries to find “ways to collectively increase ambition further”. And European NGOs will continue to push member states to do more to unlock the “at least” part of their 2030 commitment.  The European Commission has already outlined plans to hold a conference in November to review collective commitments, providing the impetus for all countries to consider what more they can do to accelerate the transition away from fossil fuels. To give that agreement a smoother landing, Europe can reassert itself as a leader on climate diplomacy giving countries confidence in the collective steps we’re taking on climate action.

Contact: Ria Voorhaar
Head - International Communications Coordination 
mobile: +49 157 3173 5568

 
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EC kick starts 2015 climate pledge wave with draft proposal but more work ahead of Europe

Climate Action Network provided the following comment on the releasse of the EC's Energy Union package today. 

The European Commission has today published a proposal on how to flesh out the EU's commitment towards the Paris agreement on climate change as part of a package outlining Europe's vision for energy and climate issues. 

Building off it's previously announced target to reduce carbon pollution by at least 40% by 2030, the EC is the first party to attempt to translate its pledge for presentation to the UNFCCC after after last year's major climate negotiations in Lima gave countries guidance on the information to be presented.  While being the first off the mark is cause for applause, European NGOs will be working with EU member states to improve the transparency and quality of the EC's proposal before a version of it goes to the bloc's environment ministers next week. 

Moving forward, the EU will need to bring to life the "at least" part of their climate action commitment. Countries like Denmark have already committed to make 100% of their electricity supply renewable because they know that such policies can deliver more and better jobs, improved public health and more prosperous economies.  

The EC's draft proposal was silent on the amount of additional support they'd provide to developing countries who are expected to take their own climate action under the Paris agreement. Scaling up support will be vital if we're to secure a comprehensive global climate agreement in Paris in December that builds resilient communities and helps vulnerable people. Developing countries in particular will be looking for the EU to be more explicit in coming months on how it will help  communities adapt to climate change.

The EC's move today will kick off a wave of pledges from countries over the course of the year - all of which will add up to the first collective signal that the world is moving out of fossil fuels and embracing the renewable energy era.  All eyes will now turn to other developed countries who need to submit their commitments by the end of March.  The EC has also outlined plans to hold a review collective commitments in November providing the impetus for all countries to consider what more they can do to accelerate the transition away from fossil fuels on the eve of the Paris Climate Summit. 
 

Contact: 

Ria Voorhaar - +49 157 317 355 68, rvoorhaar @ climatenetwork.org 

UN climate talks in Geneva close adopting a draft text but much political work remains ahead

The UN climate talks in Geneva have closed today with an air of optimism having made progress towards a new agreement that is due to be signed in Paris at the end of the year. The draft agreement is on track to signal an end to fossil fuel emissions with both Jamaica and Switzerland adding their voices to the idea of a long term goal.1 

Climate Action Network members made the following comments on the closure of the UN session:

It's good news countries have given a stamp of approval for a new draft version of the climate agreement that will be the basis of negotiations through the year and that it features a wide range of options to deal with mitigation and to provide support to help developing countries prepare for climate impacts including a loss and damage mechanism.  

There's been a seachange in the dynamics here thanks to the open and consultative approach of the Co-Chairs.  Countries also came ready and willing to work.  The spirit of Geneva needs to be kept alive, as we move to on to deal with crunch issues like the need to scale up financial support for action and how to treat richer and poorer countries fairly, and loss and damage - which has the potential to be a make or break issue for Paris.  

Julie-Anne Richards, Climate Justice Programme  

All eyes must be on political leaders now, as they are the single most important influence that will shape the final outcome of a new global climate deal in Paris later this year.  

There are important political moments outside of the UN climate negotiation process – at both ministerial and Heads of State level - on the road to Paris where they can demonstrate their intentions, such as the G7, the G20 meetings, and the SDG Summit.

 The first test of political will and influence inside the negotiating process will come in the period from March to June when countries announce their plans to reduce emissions and, we hope, provide financial resources for the post-2020 period.

Tasneem Essop, WWF head of delegation to the UNFCCC

As the talks here in Geneva come to a close, people around the world are taking part in Global Divestment Day, a worldwide effort to move money out of the fossil fuel industry and into a clean energy future. 

That's what these negotiations need to do, as well: send a clear signal to investors that the age of fossil fuels is coming to an end.

Jamie Henn, Strategy and Communications Director. 350.org

1. CAN is calling for a complete phase out of fossil fuel emissions and the phase in of 100% renewable energy by 2050 with sustainable energy access for all. 

Media Briefing: From Geneva to Paris - what this week's talks mean for climate action in 2015

Civil society will assess what the outcome of the UN climate negotiations in Geneva this week means for progress towards a new climate agreement due to be signed in Paris this December. 

The talks conclude with momentum for a phase out of fossil fuel emissions growing across the board, and campaigns like those calling for people and institutions to withdraw their money from dirty energy companies gaining ground with divestment events taking place in 58 countries.

From Geneva, negotiators will return to capitals where governments are busy preparing their climate action commitments towards the Paris agreement before they meet again in Bonn in June for talks to resume.

When: Friday February 13th, 2pm Geneva time which is 8am New York/5pm Dubai/ 1pmGMT

Where: Room XXIII (23), Building E, Level 1, UN Palais Des Nations, Geneva or join online.

To Join: You can join the teleconference online here: www.uberconference.com/climateactionnetwork or dial the relevant telephone number for your country listed below and enter the conference number: 855-534-4477 followed by the # key when requested.

From the US or via Skype, dial (+1) 855-534-4477 - no PIN required. A full list of available telephone numbers can be found here: https://www.uberconference.com/international 

If your country is not listed, and you cannot join via internet browser, please contact us. 

Contact: Ria Voorhaar, CAN International, email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org, phone: +49 157 3173 5568

About CAN: Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of over 900 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. More at: www.climatenetwork.org

What to look for when the UN climate talks in Geneva wrap

 

Climate Action Network experts will brief reporters on Thursday morning on developments in the UN climate talks in Geneva and outline what to expect from the meeting's final hours.

When: Thursday February 12th, 10.30am Geneva, 3pm New Delhi, 5.30pm Beijing, 13.30pm Dubai.  

Where: Room XXVII (27), Building E, Level 1, UN Palais Des Nations, Geneva or join online.

Who: 

- Alix Mazounie, RAC France

- David Turnbull, OilChange International

To Join:

You can join the teleconference online here: www.uberconference.com/climateactionnetwork or dial the relevant telephone number for your country listed below and enter the conference number855-534-4477 followed by the # key when requested.

From the US or via Skype, dial (+1) 855-534-4477 - no PIN required. 
A full list of available telephone numbers can be found here: https://www.uberconference.com/international 

If your country is not listed, and you cannot join via internet browser, please contact us. 

Contact:
Ria Voorhaar, CAN International, email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org, phone: +49 157 3173 5568

About CAN:
Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of over 900 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. More at: www.climatenetwork.org

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What to Expect from the UN climate talks in Geneva

 

As countries gather in Geneva to shape and sharpen the draft global climate agreement due to be signed this December, Climate Action Network experts will brief reporters on their expectations for the week ahead, and outline how the UNFCCC negotiations are impacted by developments in capitals around the world.

What: CAN will host TWO briefing calls to cater for timezones. Civil society expects will analyse opening day of the first UN climate negotiations of the year currently underway in Geneva, Switzerland, and layout expectations for the week ahead.

When: Monday February 9th

- Call 1:  10.30am Geneva, 3pm New Delhi, 5.30pm Beijing, 13.30pm Dubai.  

- Call 2:  6.30pm Geneva, 12.30pm New York, 15.30pm Sao Paolo.

Who: 

- Call 1: Anoop Poonia, CAN South Asia, Camilla Born, E3G. 

- Call 2: Alden Meyer, Union of Concerned Scientists, Tania Guillen, Centro Humboldt/SUSWATCH. 

To Join:

You can join the teleconference online here: www.uberconference.com/climateactionnetwork or dial the relevant telephone number for your country listed below and enter the conference number855-534-4477 followed by the # key when requested.

From the US or via Skype, dial (+1) 855-534-4477 - no PIN required. 
A full list of available telephone numbers can be found here: https://www.uberconference.com/international 

If your country is not listed, and you cannot join via internet browser, please contact us. 

Contact:
Ria Voorhaar, CAN International, email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org, phone: +49 157 3173 5568

About CAN:
Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of over 900 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. More at: www.climatenetwork.org

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France reaffirms its commitment to phase out coal financing abroad, but more to do to show climate leadership

Climate Action Network said today the reaffirmation by French President Francois Hollande that the country would stop funding coal plants overseas through export credits was to be welcomed as long as the ban starts now. 

With President Hollande to host the major UN climate negotiations in December this year at which a new, global agreement will be signed, it is heartening to see the government hinting at climate leadership. However, France can really show it means business by encouraging other countries in the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to commit to the same standard as soon as possible.

As part of the ongoing transition away from dirty fossil fuels, its imperative governments and institutions stop funding new coal projects and instead shift their investments to projects that speed up the path to 100% renewable energy. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said in a major report last year that to keep the temperature rise within limits agreed by governments, the world had to reach a complete phase out of fossil fuel emissions. That means most of the world's known fossil fuel reserves have to stay in the ground. 

Climate negotiators will meet in Geneva on Sunday to continue negotiations on the global agreement. 

 

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