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The Alpine Convention has no answer to climate change

Mar 12, 2009 / alpMedia
At the 10th Alpine Conference held in Evian/F the Alpine states today debated a common approach to climate change. They were unable however to agree on a climate action plan for the Alpine region that is worthy of the name. Besides general formulations the climate action plan finally adopted by the Conference does contain a few concrete measures - thanks not least to pressure from CIPRA. However these measures are far too tentative to genuinely take climate protection in the Alps forward.
Image caption:
The climate action plan adopted is too tentative to genuinely take climate protection in the Alps forward. ©
Individual states did today refer to the importance of climate response measures at the 10th Alpine Conference in Evian/F and expressed their disappointment with the proposal for resolution put forward. It proved impossible however to draw up a concrete catalogue of measures that would have won the consent of all the Alpine states. Ultimately the action plan only adopted the call for an alpine transit exchange by Moritz Leuenberger, the Head of the Swiss Federal Department of the Environment, and the proposal put forward by Michael Müller, the Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for the Environment Minister. Michael Müller wants to examine whether it is possible to make the Alpine region carbon-neutral by 2050.
The project for a Climate Protection Action Plan was first raised at CIPRA's initiative at the 9th Alpine Conference in November 2006. For its term in office France, which has chaired the Alpine Convention for the past two years, had set itself the goal of making the Alps a model region for prevention and adaptation to climate change - at least that's what it said on paper. France's hesitant proposals were not significantly boosted within the Standing Committee of the Alpine Conference; in fact, they were even seriously undermined by some countries. The proposal of environmental associations and environmental ministers had already been criticised ahead of the Alpine Conference. On a number of occasions CIPRA also called for specific resolutions to be adopted and a time frame for their implementation to be defined. CIPRA formulated a comprehensive proposal for a concrete action plan already back in March 2008 and highlighted solutions in all areas where urgent action is required. At today's Alpine Conference CIPRA sharply protested against the fact that the member states of the Alpine Convention were failing to act. It added that they had missed a great opportunity over the past two years.
Slovenia now takes over as chair of the Alpine Convention for the next two years. It is called upon to come up with a response to climate change together with the other Alpine states and the European Union.
Source: CIPRA International
CIPRA's Climate Action Plan: (de/fr/it/sl)