Reported by Tanveer Arif, SCOPE and FANSA-Pakistan

Yes V CAN cun!

Attending a high level United Nations conference, such as CoP-16 is an incredible experience within itself. The moment you come to the conference venue on first day, the scene there fill you with energy and hope.  When you see hundreds of men and women coming to work together with enthusiasm and determination to serve a global cause, you naturally become optimistic and forget about failures of the past. My first day at Cancun was the similar optimistic experience. At Cancun Messe (the entrance of the conference centre) was decorated with official logo of CoP-16, with green leaves. I noticed a huge bill board near Cancun Messe with a slogan “Yes V CANcun”. For a moment my heart muttered “let’s forget disappointment of Copenhagen and move forward because we simply don’t have a choice, as they say failure in not an option”.

Standing at the gate of Moon Palace Hotel I was trying to read the minds of people who were walking briskly to their respective conference rooms and wondering, can these people coming from different corners of the world and having different stakes and interests, finally deliver us an instrument which could stop and even reverse climate change? Of course this is too much to ask…but then what? What choices we have? Look at devastating floods in Pakistan which was unprecedented in all respects, similarly severe droughts in Africa, forest fires in Russia, sand storms in China, hurricanes in Americas…all these events points towards same chilling conclusion, that the monster of climate change is definitely out and on the killing spree.

But do the world leaders and climate negotiators also share the spirit of “Yes V CANcun”? Unfortunately level of expectations and hopes seems to be very low here at Cancun. According to some experts the conference will act as a stepping stone to further negotiations at COP17. The outcome of COP16 is not yet predictable. But with snow storms across the United Kingdom last year and the Pakistan floods this year, we should realize that we cannot afford much time wasting only in deliberations without taking a concrete step forward to correct the injustices we committed in the past against the nature.

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