* You can view a regularly updated list of signatories here: https://www.corporateaccountability.org/resources/eu-usa-australia-new-zealand-norway-stop-blocking-a-conflict-of-interest-policy-at-the-unfccc-kick-big-polluters-out/ *
To: European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker Her Excellency Erna Solberg, Prime Minister, NorwayThe Right Honourable Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, New ZealandHis Excellency Scott Morrison, Prime Minister, Australia
Cc:Miguel Arias Cañete, European Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action, European UnionOla Elvestuen, Minister of Climate and Environment, NorwayThe Honourable James Shaw, Minister for Climate Change, New ZealandThe Honourable Sussan Ley MP, Minister for the Environment, Australia
Stop blocking a conflicts of interest policy: Kick polluters out!
We the undersigned XX civil society organizations and networks represent xxx of people around the world. We stand in solidarity with Global South communities and governments fighting for just climate policy and real solutions. We are writing to demand that you stop siding with the interests of the likes of the United States and Big Polluters in blocking the development of a conflict of interest policy at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). People are paying for the climate crisis with their lives and livelihoods. We experience the deadly consequences of a rapidly warming planet daily. The need for strong policy and just action could not be more urgent.
Yet for decades, the very corporations that have fueled the climate crisis have spent billions of dollars to water down and weaken progress at every turn, deploying a vast array of trade associations and front groups to mislead the public, discredit climate science, and block meaningful climate policy within the UNFCCC and elsewhere. Though they present themselves as part of the “solution,” their actions have illustrated time and again that they represent their own profiteering interests. This is as true now as it ever has been. For example, in the three years following the Paris Agreement, the five largest public oil and gas corporations spent more than US$1 billion on misleading branding and lobbying on climate.
Enough is enough. It’s time to scale-up and implement the people-centered climate policy and just solutions that Global South communities, Indigenous leaders, low-income communities, and people of color around the world have been developing and advocating for years. To do this we must remove the conflicting interests of polluting industries—most notably the fossil fuel industry—that continue to be a primary obstacle to progress.
From June 17 to 27, your negotiators gathering in Bonn, Germany at the intersessional meeting of the UNFCCC can and must embody true climate leadership. We urge you to stop working hand in hand with Big Polluters like fossil fuel corporations and the climate-change-denying Trump administration, among others. Rather, within the negotiations on Arrangements for Intergovernmental Meetings (AIM), your government negotiators must acknowledge the repeated requests of governments representing the majority of the world’s population and advance an effective conflict-of-interest policy to protect against polluting industries’ vested interests in the talks.
The public mandate is clear. Over recent years, more than 400 civil society groups, nearly 650,000 people, and governments collectively representing 70% of the world’s population have called for addressing this fundamental roadblock. Yet your treaty negotiators have refused to heed the call, at best conveniently overlooking it and at worst advancing the same agenda as that of the U.S. and the Trump administration, among others.
The European Union, for example, has ignored a formal request from its own democratically elected Parliament to support tackling this issue. And last year at these negotiations, treaty negotiators from your countries allowed the United States to yet again sabotage global climate diplomacy, blocking any attempt to address conflicts of interest within the AIM negotiations.
True climate leadership means rejecting fossil fuel industry agendas in whatever form they take. It means standing with people all over the world who are bringing forward meaningful, just solutions to the climate crisis. It means taking the urgent, just, necessary action we need right now and rejecting the dangerous distractions put forward by the very corporations that have fueled this crisis. All this begins with protecting climate policy by passing a robust, conflict of interest policy that will protect climate policymaking at the UNFCCC from the undue influence of polluting industries.
The eyes of the world are on Bonn, and people everywhere are awaiting your climate leadership. We urge you to stop blocking an effective conflict of interest policy at the UNFCCC.