SDLP Climate Change Spokesperson Mark H Durkan has welcomed the agreement reached on damage and loss financial assistance at COP27, but said there was still a failure to recognise the seriousness of the climate emergency.
A deal was finally reached on Sunday to compensate poorer countries for the damage caused by climate change.
Mr Durkan said radical action was needed to tackle the causes of climate change.
Foyle MLA Mr Durkan said:
“I welcome the agreement reached at COP27 on Sunday and look forward to further details on which countries will be contributing to damage and loss support. It’s vital that poorer and developing countries are provided assistance to help them face the challenges posed by the climate emergency, particularly when many of these countries are among the lowest contributors to climate change, but stand to suffer the most as a result.
“However, until we take action on the issues that are causing the climate emergency to worsen we are simply kicking the can down the road and will be having the same discussions and arguments for years to come at future COP events. We know the difficult decisions that have to be made if we want to protect our planet for future generations and it’s time that world leaders faced up to them. By delaying and leaving this mess for another generation to sort out we are only making the situation worse and missing opportunities to protect our environment.
“We need to see radical action when it comes to lowering greenhouse gas emissions and phasing out harmful fuel sources, this is not new, it’s something we have been trying to sort out for decades and until leading governments around the world get real and face up to their responsibilities our future is uncertain and our way of life is at stake.
“Once again the North is lagging behind when it comes to climate change. We were the last part of these islands to have climate legislation in place and we are prevented from doing what’s needed to reach the targets within it due to the lack of Executive. When the DUP end their boycott and the institutions are restored, proper climate action needs to be at the top of our priorities list, for too long the toxicity in our politics has distracted us from the issues that really matter.”