by Noah Hodgetts
For added context to my previous blog post.
It is vital that non-governmental organizations representing civil society ranging from College of the Atlantic and the Climate Action Network (CAN) to the Indigenous Peoples are involved in the process for several reasons. The most important reason is to hold countries accountable and to push them to make bolder pledges. Civil society is a recognized constituency of the UNFCCC. Its presence in official proceedings is necessary to make sure all parties are playing by the rules and not shutting out those with less power. Civil Society participation is also necessary to give a voice to the millions of people who do not have a voice at COP and whose governments don’t speak on their behalf. Finally, civil society presence is needed in the proceedings to push for a fair, ambitious, and binding deal in Copenhagen for the world can’t afford to wait until COP16 in Mexico City for a deal! We need action now!