Red Cross/ Red Crescent Climate Centre

Red Cross/ Red Crescent Head expresses alarm over outcome COP 17 climate change negotiations

13/12/2011 - by IFRC

Failure to reach a binding agreement to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions at this week’s 17th Conference of the Parties (COP-17) represents our “collective failure” and puts the world’s most vulnerable people at even greater risk, the head of the Red Cross Red Crescent said today.

Bekele Geleta, Secretary-General of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), said that even though global policy making has slowed down severely, the IFRC was committed to “rolling up its sleeves” and would continue to address the humanitarian impact of climate change and extreme weather on communities. 

Failure to reach a binding agreement was not unexpected but is nonetheless extremely alarming,” said Geleta. The devastating consequences of global warming on people and their communities are increasingly clear to see and it is frankly unacceptable we cannot all  agree when so many  lives are at stake.”

Throughout his attendance at COP17, Ethiopian-born Geleta, has called upon the international community to deliver on the Copenhagen and Cancun commitments to increase financing for climate change adaptation. 

Families and communities at risk from the impact of climate change do not need more words but real action. We must demonstrate leadership or we run the risk of being overwhelmed by the humanitarian  consequences of climate change.”

Durban, 11 December 2011