Canadian Youth Delegation walks out on meeting with Canadian negotiating team
(Cancun, Mexico) December 10, 2010 – Frustrated with Canada’s obstructive role in UN climate negotiations, and with the unwillingness of Canada’s government to represent the majority of Canadians who want action on climate change, members of the Canadian Youth Delegation walked out on the morning federal government delegation briefing after expressing their discontent with Canada’s negotiating team.
“It’s increasingly clear that our country is not a leader and is not prepared to be. I’m ashamed of that every day,” said delegation member Stephen McGlenn to the Canadian negotiating team. “We are a country that could do so much and yet your delegation isn’t even content to follow the majority of countries here in Cancun.”
The Youth Delegation’s frustration was echoed by several other representatives of Canadian civil society who also walked out on the briefing.
“It is extremely disconcerting that the Canadian government can so easily ignore the cries from millions of Canadians for climate action. In a time of crisis, instead of being accountable to the public will, the government is choosing inaction on the most important and pressing issue of our time,” said youth delegate Maggie Knight.
Recent telephone polling in Canada shows more than 80 per cent of Canadians agree that Canada and other developed countries should take the lead in reducing emissions, and the federal government should be investing in green jobs while having transition programs for workers and communities impacted by an end to our reliance on fossil fuels.
“This government needs to start listening to and working for the people of Canada instead of promoting the interests of industry,” said delegation leader Amber Church. “That’s why we told the Canadian negotiators to ‘stop pandering to the will of the fossil fuel industry, and start listening to the voices that you claim to represent.’”
For more information contact Emilie Novaczek
Phone (Mexico): 011 (52) 1 998-141-5815
The Canadian Youth Delegation (CYD) includes diverse youth from across the country who are concerned and active on the issues of climate change. The Delegation aims to engage Canadians, mobilize youth, and provide communication that makes theses global challenges and negotiations accessible. This year 29 young Canadians travelled with CYD to the United Nations climate negotiations in Cancun. Learn more and see their progress at canadianyouthdelegation.wordpress.com.