Its Coaland or, um, Poland first in line for a Fossil at COP 24

Fossil Poland COP24

Cough, cough …. Did anyone else notice that strange haze in the air? … cough, cough … I suppose there is something to be said for the way light reflects off the “clouds,” but really? Why are we at COP in a coal region?

Polish President Andrzej Duda said yesterday during his speech delivered at COP 24 that there is no contradiction between climate protection and coal use. He also stated that Poland has coal reserves that will last for 200 years more. Then today, speaking at the Barbórka Academy of the Tauron Group, he stressed that the Polish mining industry and mining constitutes "one of the foundations of the Polish economy", determining the country's energy security and are "to a great extent" a guarantee of its energy sovereignty. What a warm (or boiling hot?) welcome from the hosts of COP 24!

There is a stark contrast between his words and what science says – the recent IPCC report clearly states we have 12 more years to save the world and deliver on ambitious climate action. Meanwhile, the past four COP Presidents have been busy urging parties and stakeholders alike to send an “unequivocal message” from Katowice on the need to “enhance ambition by 2020 that puts the world on a trajectory compatible with the objectives of the Paris Agreement,” pursing efforts to limit warming to 1.5C. It’s clear the presidency is not doing enough!

Today’s Fossil of the day goes to Poland for trying to protect their one true love – coal – and not its people and environment, as well as for downplaying the urgency of climate action that we need to stay alive - a negotiated decision to strengthen NDCs in line with the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming to 1.5C.

About CAN: The Climate Action Network (CAN) is a worldwide network of over 1100 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in more than 120 working to promote government and individual action to limit human induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. www.climatenetwork.org 

About Fossil: The Fossil of the Day awards were first presented at the climate talks in 1999, in Bonn, initiated by the German NGO Forum. During United Nations climate change negotiations (www.unfccc.int), members of the Climate Action Network (CAN), vote for countries judged to have done their 'best' to block progress in the negotiations or in the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

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