Here’s the February programme – our second consecutive show focussing on the Arctic. Our guests this week are:
- Joan Walley MP, Chair Environmental Audit Committee
- Charlie Kronick, Greenpeace UK
- Louise Rouse, Fair Pensions
- James Marriott, Platform
In January’s Climate Radio we explored how the observed rate of change in the polar north is surprising scientists into revising their projections for the speed at which global warming will unfold – unless we take urgent action. But where scientists see warning signs and a wake up call, oil companies and their friends in government see only economic opportunity. So this month we take a look at where some of the battle lines lie in the fight to stop the Arctic being drilled for oil and gas and how concerned citizens can get involved and help win the war.
Last September a cross-party parliamentary committee of MPs in the UK called for a moratorium on drilling in the Arctic – concerned about the potential impact on climate change and about the lax safety regime surrounding this high-risk activity. In January this year, the UK government responded by rejecting the committee’s key recommendations and using old science to suggest that Arctic drilling could be compatible with avoiding dangerous climate change. At the same time a Freedom of Information Act request discovered they the government had been lobbying against EU legislation designed to make Arcitc drilling safer.
Over the course of 2012 Shell’s claims that they were “Arctic Ready” collapsed after a succession of calamities and oil companies and investors started getting cold feet. In this programme we also look at how Shell’s Arctic drilling plans poses a risk to your pension and what you can do about it.
In today’s show we have an interview with Kassie Siegel from the Center for Biological Diversity on why President Obama doesn’t need to wait for Congress to bring scienced-based targets to the table when he comes to Copenhagen at the end of next week. We’ve an interview with Professor Tim Jackson on why Copenhagen needs to restsructure our economy if it is to be truly successful in combating climate change. Frederika Whitehead takes a trip to the parallel People’s summit that’s happening here in Copenhagen and picks up some testimony. We give the Carbon Town Cryer‘s heart-melting Copenhagen song “The Overflowing” its first airing. But to start things off, on the day that President Obama picked up his Nobel Peace Prize we have a reading of the letter sent by African civil society organisation Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance to President Obama, pleading with him to fulfil the promise of his inauguration speech and to not betray his brothers and sisters in Africa when he comes to Copenhagen.
It is the fatal flaw at the heart of both the EU and US climate policies which threatens to make a scientifically robust and fair climate deal in Copenhagen impossible. It is the reason that when the EU says it is cutting greenhouse gases 20% by 2020 or 30% if there is a global deal in Copenhagen, they are in fact putting a cut of just 10 or 15% on the negotiating table. And it is the reason why when the UK says it is cutting greenhouse gases by 80% by 2050 it is actually committing itself to a cut of only 40% within the UK.
This week we take a look at the creative accounting mechanism which makes this sleight of hand possible – carbon offsetting under the United Nations Clean Development Mechanism – more commonly known at the CDM.
We take the argument against large-scale carbon offsetting under the CDM to the head of the Market-Based Instruments Unit at the European Commission, Yvon Slingenberg; and we hear from Tom Picken, Head of the International Climate Change at Friends of the Earth, who is co-author of the most accessible report yet on the case against carbon offsetting under the CDM, “A Dangerous Distraction.”
55-minute special featuring the voices of Climate Camp activists. Arthur of the London Camp for Climate Action media team is live in the studio discussing
We have interviews with four London campers on
- the rapid take-up of the Climate Camp model around the world – there are over a dozen Camps around the globe this year
- policing and legal aspects and
- the justification for direct action in the face of inaction to prevent devastating climate change
- what’s planned for this year’s camp
- legal and policing aspects
- the direct action training that’s on offer and
- the mass action that’s planned for later in the year
We also have four short statements from the Camps in Australia, New Zealand, US and Finland; and a range of voices taken from a recent Climate Camp promotional video.
A political reality may be emerging here that civil action could well force the government to act. This might even be one of those rare ocassions where everyday but resolute citizens have a lasting impact on the great issue of our time. – Paul Rogers, Professor of Peace Studies, University of Bradford
Any just approach to climate change must ensure that those who have benefited in the course of causing climate change compensate the victims of climate change – Third World Network, 2009
What do we need to do to escape the current deadlock at the UN climate talks? Rich countries need to start acknowledging their historical responsibility for climate change and their capacity to pay for adaptation and mitigation measures in poor countries. They need to start bringing targets to the table that are adequate from the point of view of both science and fairness. As the call for rich countries to repay their climate debt grows louder, we speak to Matthew Stilwell, author of Climate Debt: A Primer, for a sharp analysis of what’s needed to seal a fair climate deal.
- George Monbiot (The Guardian)
- Caroline Lucas MEP (Green Party)
- Jeremy Leggett (Solar Century)
- Leila Deen (activist)
The new series of “The 300-350 Show” kicks of with a recording of the presentations given at the launch of the “Climate Safety” report last Autumn. The Public Interest Centre’s “Climate Safety” report gives a clear and simple summary of the latest science, and shows how our current handling of the problem has exposed us to serious and growing risks. With Arctic sea ice melting away faster than anyone had predicted, the climate seems more sensitive than almost anyone thought, placing us in the middle of a climate emergency that cannot be ignored or brushed aside.
The report delivers a clear message that to have any chance of maintaining a safe climate, we must rapidly decarbonise our society, preserve global sinks, and address the problem with an unprecedented degree of seriousness. Even with a commitment to 80% carbon cuts by 2050, “Climate Safety” warns that our current policy response does not match up to the scale of the challenge.
At this launch event, recorded last Autumn, the panelists discuss how we can get beyond “politics-as-usual” and achieve a full, emergency response.
Many thanks to film-maker Beth Stratford for the use of her sound recordings.
Special 45-minute programme celebrating the launch of a major new independently produced climate change documentary-drama, The Age of Stupid. Made by the producer of McLibel and financed by “crowd-funding”, the film stars Oscar-nominated actor Pete Postlethwaite living alone in 2055 in a world devastated by climate change. He looks back at archive footage and asks “why didn’t we act when we had the chance?”
The programme takes a look behind the scences and features exclusive interviews with producer Franny Armstrong and head of animation Leo Murray, various audio clips, plus appearances from Postlethwaite and Caroline Lucas MEP. This is an edit of a 60-minute live Clear Spot programme on ResonanceFM.
The UN Climate Talks are at crisis point. Nothing on the table matches the scale of the challenge and corporate interests are rife. As the talks in Poznan come to an end, we take stock with three key protaganists: Kevin Smith (CarbonTradeWatch), Oliver Tickell (Kyoto2) and Tom Athanasiou (Greenhouse Development Rights).
- UNFCCC tenders a report on alternative frameworks
- 350 ppm CO2 target endorsed by Al Gore, AOSIS & the LDC country blocks
- Potsdam Institute shows how we can achieve the 350 ppm target
- Climate Justice Now! coalition grows in size from 20 to 160 organisations
- Carbon trading advances despite a crisis of credibility
- 142 organisations sign a statement against the World Bank’s involvement with climate funds
- The China+G77 block support climate funds being managed by UN
- Rich nations still failing to fulfill their commitments 16 years on
- Plans develop for a mass mobilisation in Copenhagen December 2009
- Could extending the scope of the Montreal Protocol and controling black soot be two effective ways forward outside the UNFCCC process?
We continue our coverage of the UN Climate Talks in Poznan, Poland where the big issue on the table is “how to reduce emissions from deforestation”? The big push from investors is to incorporate forests into the carbon markets, but this approach is riddled with problems. Friends of the Earth International has warned that this would “create the climate regime’s biggest ever loophole.” We speak to Miguel Lovera, chair of the Global Forest Coalition about his concerns and his proposals for an alternative way forward.
Meanwhile in Brussels, European country delegates have been agreeing new targets for agrofuel for road transport. This will increase deforestation and emissions from other changes in land use. We speak to Robert Bailey of Oxfam International and ask why this disaster has been allowed to happen.
We continue our lead in to this year’s UN climate talks in Poznan with a look at a proposal that seeks to break the current deadlock and lead to a fair deal which both delivers climate safety and protects the poor.
The Greenhouse Development Rights framework is supported by Christian Aid, Oxfam, Stockholm Environment Institute and the Heinrich Boll Foundation.
We speak to Tom Athanasiou, Director of EcoEquity and co-author of the GDR framework.
- “Greenhouse Development Rights – Powerpoint” (Summary of 2nd Edition)
- “Greenhouse Development Rights – Executive Summary” (2nd Edition)
- Greenhouse Development Rights website