MAC: Mines and Communities

CARRYING CARBON TO COPENHAGEN:Southeast Asia

Published by MAC on 2009-12-22
Source: Oilwatch Southeast Asia (2009-12-14)

Regional Mining Profile #3

In a statement, circulated at last week's Copenhagen climate summit, several major Southeast Asian NGOs called for a rejection of carbon trading, the so-called "clean development mechanism", the proposed REDD, and 'clean' coal technologies.

They declared that: "These market-based and profit-oriented solutions put the interest of private corporations and ruling elite above anything else".

Southeast Asian Leaders - Go for Solution Not Delusion!

A Joint Statement, Copenhagen, Denmark

14 December 2009

Copenhagen - We, members of Oilwatch Southeast Asia[i] and Indonesian Civil Society Forum for Climate Justice (CSF) declare our common position and demands on the current climate negotiation in COP 15 UNFCCC Copenhagen. We have witnessed the lack of leadership among industrial countries to significantly cut carbon emission let alone show their responsibility to support developing countries to tackle the impacts of climate change.

Southeast Asia is considered as one of the most vulnerable regions in the world to impacts of climate crisis. Most of the Southeast Asian countries are poor and majority of the population in the region live in deep poverty resulting to a very low capacity to adapt to climate change impacts. The location of the region poses high risk for disasters such as typhoons, droughts, earthquakes, and flooding.

We are disappointed that the negotiations in COP15 UNFCCC do not take into account the reality in the ground that fossil fuel exploitation by industrial countries have been going from strength to strength. Oil and gas projects of transnational corporations are mushrooming and demand for coal is increasing[ii]..

Big foreign and private corporations such as Royal Dutch Shell, BHP Biliton, CNUOC, Chevron Texaco, Amarada Hess, Conoco Phillips and Bumi Resources, are the same actors who plunder natural resources and pollute the environment[iii]. These big corporations control and exploit the rich natural resources of the region particularly fossil resources like oil, gas and coal. Also these entities with the support of international financial institutions like International Monetary Fund, World Bank and Asian Development Bank, are the owners and suppliers of fossil-based technologies and products that the people of Southeast Asian are forced to be dependent with.

Given the fact that burning and consumption of fossil fuels especially oil and coal is the leading cause of global carbon emission, we demand the national governments in Southeast Asia · To agree on a common position to push for more than 40% carbon reduction from ANNEX I countries by 2020 from the level of 1990. · To demand from ANNEX I countries to compensate Third World countries from ecological debt and fund their mitigation and adaptation initiatives ·To declare an immediate moratorium on new exploration and commercial operation of oil, gas and coal by big transnational companies in the region. · To define a concrete timeline and comprehensive plan on eventual phase out of fossil fuel extraction and usage in the region.

In this regard there should be a significant investment on research and fast development of technologies that harness alternative and renewable resources of energy that are cheap, safe and clean. This is needed to make the economy and energy needs of Southeast Asia to veer away from relying on the production and consumption of fossil fuels. Majority of the income and revenues from the existing extraction of fossil fuel in the regions should be automatically appropriated for funding public services.

We oppose the false solutions being implemented and pushed for by ANNEX I countries and their transnational corporations such as carbon trading, clean development mechanism, the proposed REDD and ‘clean' coal technologies. These market-based and profit-oriented solutions put the interest of private corporations and ruling elite above anything else.

We push for the leaders of Southeast Asia countries to unite for truly address the issue of climate change and curb global warming. There should be a reversal of the orientation and framework of economic development and production in the region. In this regard, climate solutions should be based on human security, rectification of ecological debt, land rights, the change of production and consumption pattern, to realize social justice and people's sovereignty.

These principles ensure in the heart of climate solutions are the welfare and interest of the people and the environment.

The Oilwatch Southeast Asia, CSF, PACC, La'o Hamutuk and TCJ remain committed not only in pushing for genuine climate solutions but also in steadfastly fight along with grassroots communities against agreement, policies, program and projects that will further aggravate climate change and endanger our communities.


[i] Oilwatch SEA is a regional alliance of fossil fuels-affected communities and support organizations from Arakan Oil Watch from Burma; Indonesian Civil Society Forum on Climate Justice (CSF) and JATAM from Indonesia; Friends of the Earth from Malaysia; People's Action on Climate Change (PACC), Kalikasan People's Network for the Environment (Kalikasan-PNE) and Central Visayas Fisherfolk Development Center Inc. from Philippines, Timor-Leste Institute for Development Monitoring and Analysis (La'o hamutuk) from Timor Leste; and Thai Working for Climate Justice (TCJ) and Ecological Alert and Recovery - Thailand from Thailand. [ii] Almost half of Indonesia coal production, - around 100 million tons - , was extracted by Bumi Resources mostly for export. The company Climate Justice (TCJ) and Ecological Alert and Recovery - Thailand from Thailand. [iii] Today 80% of 216 million tons total coal product from Indonesia is aimed for export and the demand has been increasing over the year. In the Philippines, coal accounts for 34% of energy produced in the country and more than 75% of coal supply are imported abroad.

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