Target: Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework on Climate Change
Goal: Stop corporate polluters from sponsoring and influencing global climate change conference.
Powerful polluters want their voices to be heard in the global discussion on climate change action. World leaders will discuss climate policy at the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) this month in Paris. Climate talks will revolve around the United Nations Framework on Climate Change (UNFCC), an international treaty meant to combat greenhouse gas emissions globally to limit the most severe negative effects of climate change. Yet ironically, some of Europe’s most egregious polluters have been chosen to sponsor the event.
Among the companies responsible for a whopping 20 percent of COP21’s funding are Air France, Nissan, and Engie–an energy company whose coal-fired plants make up nearly half of France’s total emissions. These companies are responsible for many of the greenhouse emissions UNFCC is supposed to combat. They have a vested interest in slowing climate change action and have been shown to resist emission reductions and other legislation meant to curb their climate impact. The funding these companies provide will go towards speakers and other important aspects of the conference. The message is clear: polluters want to sponsor COP in order to buy a stake in climate policy.
We cannot allow corporations to continue weighing in on climate change action. Despite what corporations would like us to think, companies are not stakeholders in climate policy. World leaders and the public interest should move climate action forward without the intrusion of corporate influence. Please urge the executive secretary of the UNFCC to act quickly and stop corporate sponsors from buying influence at COP21.
Dear Secretary Figueres,
I am very concerned by the list of sponsors for the upcoming COP21 Climate Change Conference. It has come to light that 20 percent of COP21’s funding is being supplied by companies whose goals are directly opposed to climate action. For example, Air France has repeatedly resisted emission reductions and Engie is responsible for almost half of all of France’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Allowing these companies to sponsor an event that is supposed to push climate action forward is not only hypocritical, it is downright damaging. Companies with a vested interest in slowing climate change action should not be allowed to buy a stake in this international discussion. These companies may put on a show of becoming “more green,” but this does not change their bottom line.
We cannot allow companies that profit from pollution to contribute to vitally important climate policy. International communication on climate change should be between world leaders, and work for the public interest, not for corporations. Please act swiftly to stop these corporate sponsors from capturing COP21.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Arnaud Bouissou