Canada has been given the Fossil of the Day award on the third day of climate change talks in Durban, South Africa at COP 17. The “prize” is given by a group of 700 international non-governmental organizations to the country or countries that most obstruct progress at the United Nations climate negotiations. It’s the third day in a row Canada has been given the dubious distinction.
This time, Canada was singled out for not demonstrating any understanding of “Common but differentiated responsibilities” – a phrase from the Kyoto Protocol. It refers to developed countries having greater responsibility to cut greenhouse gas emissions because prosperous countries like Canada have caused climate change more than developing countries. The phrase also recognizes that developed countries should act first and fastest to clean up the mess they have made.
Canada’s federal Environment Minister Peter Kent recently shamefully referred to a greater onus being placed on developed countries as a “guilt payment”.