COP25: UN climate talks end
16 December 2019
The UN COP25 climate change talks in Madrid have ended, with complaints that governments have not shown enough ambition in their commitments to tackle the climate crisis.
The talks, which overran by two days, saw countries formally recognise the need to set more ambitious targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions ahead of COP26 in 2020.
But decisions on the final rules underpinning the Paris Agreement were postponed until the next summit, which will take place in Glasgow.
Some countries were accused of blocking progress in negotiations.
CAFOD's Director of Advocacy Neil Thorns, who attended the Madrid conference, said:
“It’s unbelievable when we’ve seen people worldwide calling urgently, loudly and ever more desperately for action that the negotiators at the COP in Madrid have responded so meekly.
“These conferences feel like a million miles away from the reality of those families in Zimbabwe facing the worst drought in 40 years and having to deal with their crops failing and the impact that will have on their families.
“The new UK government must start straight away doing all it can to urge countries to increase their ambition ahead of next year’s COP. We need pledges to cut emissions quickly and deeply enough to keep temperature rises below the catastrophic 1.5-degree threshold. This leadership role means having a credible domestic story with concrete plans and policies which get our own house in order.
“As Pope Francis has warned, history will judge harshly those who ‘hold on to power only to be remembered for their inability to take action’.”