There have been demonstrations across Europe calling for urgent action on climate change.
Thousands of people protested in Brussels, London, Dublin, Stockholm and other cities ahead of the start of the Copenhagen summit on Monday. Their message was the same – something has to be done now about global warming and rich countries, most notably, the United States, have to take the lead. Sentiments shared by the head of the UN’s Environment Programme, Achim Steiner, who told euronews that any agreement reached must not be at the expense of poor or developing countries. “I think there’s a high risk that in Copenhagen a deal maybe initially developed among some of the big players at the expense, perceived or real, of the least developed countries or continents like Africa or small island developing states,” he said. “Their problem is not about delinking emissions necessarily from their development; it’s how to survive and how to adapt in a world of global warming that is imposing major costs on them today, even though they have not had any role in bringing the phenomenon about,” Steiner added. Many demonstrators want Western nations to commit to an 80% cut in carbon emissions by 2050.