Tuesday, December 8, 2009

TORONTO STAR for the Planet

On Monday, December 7th, as the U.N. Climate Summit opened in Copenhagen, the TORONTO STAR joined together with 56 newspapers in 45 countries to speak with one voice on climate change in a common editorial on their front page (click image to enlarge).

The project was the result of weeks of negotiations between the papers to agree on a final text.

Among those taking part were two Chinese papers – the Economic Observer and the Southern Metropolitan – and India's second largest English-language paper, The Hindu.

In addition to the Toronto Star, some of the other best known papers in the world, such as Le Monde, El Pais, and Russia's Novaya Gazeta also participated.

A team of Guardian writers and editors took the lead and went through three drafts to arrive at a text that satisfied all the editors involved.

The editorial states:

Unless we combine to take decisive action, climate change will ravage our planet, and with it our prosperity and security. The dangers have been becoming apparent for a generation. Now the facts have started to speak: 11 of the past 14 years have been the warmest on record, the Arctic ice-cap is melting and last year's inflamed oil and food prices provide a foretaste of future havoc. In scientific journals the question is no longer whether humans are to blame, but how little time we have left to limit the damage. Yet so far the world's response has been feeble and half-hearted.

Climate change has been caused over centuries, has consequences that will endure for all time, and our prospects of taming it will be determined in the next 14 days. We call on the representatives of the 192 countries gathered in Copenhagen not to hesitate, not to fall into dispute, not to blame each other but to seize opportunity from the greatest modern failure of politics. This should not be a fight between the rich world and the poor world, or between East and West. Climate change affects everyone, and must be solved by everyone.

To read more at the TORONTO STAR, click here.

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