President Fernández of Argentina,
President Bolsonaro of Brazil,
President López Obrador of Mexico:
We, Global Citizens and CSOs, call on you to step up, as members of the G20 and countries whose leadership on environmental issues is needed in Latin America and the Caribbean.
As we move toward this year's G20 Summit in Rome and COP26 in Glasgow, we understand that both events are interrelated, as the largest economies need to present ambitious action at the global stage. COP26 also presents the last big opportunity to get the Paris agreement on track. We are asking you to announce concrete measures of national implementation and action and to be leaders moving negotiations forward.
We applaud efforts and previous announcements made. However, it is undebatable that more needs to and can be done, both to bring your already-made announcements to reality and to step up the level of action required to confront this existential challenge, both globally and at home.
We defend the principles and spirit of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris agreement. The largest polluters should do the most effort to reduce emissions; the largest economies should do the most efforts to provide the promised climate finance goals both for mitigation and adaptation. G20 membership comes with a share of responsibility to the maximum of your capacities. Moreover, COP26 presents one of our last opportunities to secure these commitments, and also look ahead at a global carbon market and future targets.
However, none of the above exonerates each and every single country, regardless of their share in emissions and the size of their economy, from taking concrete steps at home. Governments may negotiate, but the realities of climate change cannot be negotiated away. Nature simply does not negotiate.
Latin America and the Caribbean must lead and within it, we turn to you and we ask you to announce at either of the upcoming two summits, the following:
Protect at least 30% of territorial forest, wetland, and grassland ecosystems, as managed and protected by the State and in support of preserving local and Indigenous sustainable practices and cultures.
Restore keystone species, especially big birds and mammals (predators, herbivores, and frugivores) in national parks and eventually provincial parks.
Keep national parks wild, with no domestic animals.
Actively support at the G20 negotiations necessary biodiversity commitments regarding land and sea preservation, tree planting, and phasing out of fossil fuels.
Officialize and include in your revised NDC, the goals made at the April 2021 Earth Day Summit, of neutrality emissions by 2050 and zero illegal deforestation by 2030.
Lead the push at COP26 to finally regulate the carbon market and unleash discussions on Article 6 of the Paris agreement.
Stop contraband cattle from coming through the southern border with Guatemala to protect Indigenous peoples, prevent disease transmission, and curb deforestation.
Stop all deforestation in the greater Maya Forest of southern Mexico.
Fully restore island ecosystems to prevent extinctions of endemic species on Guadalupe, Socorro, and Clarion Islands by 2030.
Commit to preventing the extinction of the vaquita.
From record-setting heat waves to historic floods, the effects of climate change are rapidly escalating. Changing weather patterns and natural disasters affect the ability of our countries to feed populations, improve education rates, build sustainable infrastructure, and expand access to jobs.
Your actions, both in pushing forward successful and ambitious outcomes at the G20 and/or COP26 Summits, as well as at the national level, are for the benefit of all — either close to home or far away from it.
We count on you. There is simply no more time for rhetoric.