First Video Blog from COP19

Elizabeth says:

“Hello I’m in Warsaw and this is Monday November 18th and this is the beginning of the second week of the 19th Convention of the Parties of the Framework Convention on Climate Change. As you know I’ll be participating in the High Level segment which begins tomorrow. Leona Aglukkaq leads the Canadian delegation.


“I’m not on the Canadian delegation and I remain absolutely outraged that Stephen Harper has taken the decision unprecedented among Canadian Prime Ministers over decades that the Canadian government delegation represents the Conservative Party and not Canada as a whole. Typically over decades opposition members of Parliament have been included in the delegation.

“So I initially got here and was accredited through the Global Greens organization as a non-government observer. I’m very honoured to have been asked by a country that needs additional help on its delegation to work with them.”

Holding up her official security identity tag she notes the pink band along the bottom which signifies that she is with a government delegation and then adds that she should be on the Canadian government delegation but is instead with the government of Afghanistan delegation. The Afghan delegation she adds is small and facing overwhelming challenges as one could imagine in a post -conflict country amongst the group of countries called the least developed countries, LDCs. These challenges, she says, include not only on-going security threats but also climate change impacts:

“The country is facing a real challenge to figure out how to adapt to increased threats of drought and desertification, threats to agriculture, and how to the promote crops other than poppies”.

She goes on to indicate her other piece of identification, a red fabric circle, which she says delegates fasting in solidarity with the head of the Philippines delegation are wearing. He announced upon his arrival that he is fasting during the talks to push for greater action.

Elizabeth says “So those are my two new pieces of identification – a member of the delegation of Afghanistan, and fasting in solidarity with the Philippines”

She concludes:

“Ill keep you posted. So far this morning the main event was the sharing of the work that occurred over the weekend. There is a call for greater urgency and for an additional negotiating session to take place in 2014 to ensure that there is a negotiated text in time for the 2015 meetings that are planned for Paris. I’ll touch base with you soon.”

Transcription by Dr. Janet Eaton.