Scepticism ahead of Rio+20 climate change summit

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Scepticism ahead of Rio+20 climate change summit

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Environmental campaigners are warning that any concrete agreements that come out of a major climate change conference in Brazil are likely to be “watered down”.

The leaders of more than 100 countries are expected to attend the Rio+20 summit from Wednesday.

But activists say talks over a master plan that will be endorsed at the end of the week have already run into problems. Environmental group Greenpeace claims the 50 page document is unlikely to contain very many specific plans because negotiators are removing all influential points in the text.

“Any progress you hear about in press conferences, is about progress to water down the text to avoid commitment. In reality, governments are here to do nothing and to commit to nothing,” said Daniel Mittler, Greenpeace’s Political Director.

The summit organisers maintain that what is agreed this week will bolster the strength of the United Nations Environment Programme and will benefit developing nations in particular.

But activists are concerned that the delicate global economy will be used as the perfect excuse to delay expensive environmental projects.