Josephine Naaeke, GNA Correspondent Bonn, Sponsored by the Stanley Foundation,
Bonn, Nov 14, GNA - Young people from Canada and United States of America have called on Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to show climate leadership by incorporating and enforcing the Paris goals in a renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement.
The US, Canada and Mexico are currently facing off in a Trump led NAFTA renegotiation that could make the deal even worse by looking in fossil fuel infrastructure across the continent.
The group, gathered at the COP 23 climate summit in Bonn to express their feeling about the issue and to tell the world that the Paris goals are very important said the next round of NAFTA talks would begin later this week.
Ms Tina Oh, a member of the Canadian Youth Delegates at the UN. Climate talks said “we are here to say that we can no longer ignore the climate damage done by trade deals that empower corporate polluters and lock in fossil fuels dependency.”
Maia Wikier from Sustain US and Vancouver, BC resident said “my government has an opportunity and responsibility to ensure that NAFTA’s replacement enforces the Paris climate goals rather than undermining them. So far our trade and climate agreements have gone in opposite directions- a huge gap not being addressed at this conference.
Emma Coffin, U.S Human Rights Network said secretly negotiated deals that undermine real climate action sacrifice our nation’s most vulnerable communities.
It’s time for people-centred approach, to trade that protect worker’s climate and human rights everywhere.
Others have complained that corporate trade agreements like NAFTA have undermined the Paris Agreement’s core objective of tackling climate change. Instead, leading environmental organisations across North America have called for a NAFTA replacement that incorporates and enforces the Paris agreement’s climate goals.
Some also argued that NAFTA has led to greater inequality among workers and has become a prized instrument through which corporations protect their profits by challenging social and environment protections.
According to them, ‘these backroom deals promote oil and gas pipelines and export terminals that lock in fossil fuels dependency for decades, adding that by granting multinational corporations exclusive privileges to sue our governments when they reject dirty investment, deals like NAFTA have given away our power to up hold Paris Agreement.’