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Japan – Don’t kill the Kyoto Protocol

By Clare Groves | 10 December 2010

Today, the last day of the UN climate talks in Cancun, Christian Aid teamed up with the Stop Climate Chaos coalition to urge the Japanese Government to commit to the second period of the Kyoto Protocol.

In festive mood, campaigners dressed up as Santa Clauses and cycled eco-friendly ‘Boris Bikes’ to the Japanese Embassy in London.

Climate santa stuntWobbling through the lunchtime traffic, smiling for tourist photos - and trying to ignore the cat-calls and honking horns - we made our way to Piccadilly to deliver a plea to the Japanese Ambassador, asking Japan to demonstrate to the rest of the world that it is serious about halting climate change

The negotiations at the UNFCCC meetings in Cancun hang in the balance today, and Japan is in a position to tip the scales. Japan has the opportunity to demonstrate it is serious about finding a lasting solution to climate change.

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As UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon said earlier in the week, ‘Nature isn't waiting while we negotiate.’ We are running out of time to act on climate change, and a global commitment is needed.

The Kyoto Protocol is the only binding agreement we have to ensure action on climate change. By committing to a second commitment period, and by including strong emissions reduction targets, Japan can demonstrate to the world that it is serious about tackling climate change.
The larger developing countries are already indicating that they are willing to act on climate change if countries such as Japan and the UK are willing to renew their commitments.

The only alternative to the Kyoto Protocol is a weak agreement which can only take the world towards global temperature rises of 3ºC or more. This is not a world we should contemplate. 

What you can do

For more information about the climate talks and Christian Aid’s campaign, see our Time for Climate Justice website. 

Sign up to our International Photo Petition is a visual message to the world's most powerful decision-makers, calling for a fair and meaningful approach to tackling climate chaos.

Meanwhile, back in the UK, it's not too late to call on the government to deliver on David Cameron's pledge to make this government the 'greenest yet'. Email environment secretary Caroline Spelman

About the author

Clare Groves

Clare Fussell is a campaigns officer for Christian Aid