“If not us, then who? If not now, then when? If not here, then where?”
Naderev Saño, lead negotiator for the Philippines at the COP18 climate talks, gives an emotional and heart-felt plea for action in the waning hours of the conference. In his address Saño referenced the devastation brought by Typhoon Bopha, responsible for at least 500 deaths, as it plowed into the southern Philippine island of Mindanao. Saño said that no typhoon had ever come so far south or with such intensity, likening it to Superstorm Sandy as a clear sign of the consequences of a changing climate.
“You feel frustrated when the UN process does not work. We always go to the brink in the negotiations. That is a bad sign. Climate change negotiations cannot be based on the way we currently measure progress. It is a clear sign of planetary and economic and environmental dysfunction,” Saño told a reporter from the Guardian after his address to the plenary.