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Churches blast lack of climate agreement in Copenhagen

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From National Catholic Reporter | Read article in context.

GENEVA -- Faith groups have expressed disappointment and anger over the outcome of the United Nations talks on climate change that have ended in Copenhagen, pledging to continue to press for climate justice.

"With a lack of transparency, the agreement reached this past week by some countries was negotiated without consensus but rather in secret among the powerful nations of the world," the World Council of Churches' program executive on climate change, Guillermo Kerber, stated.

Kerber said an agreement "called the Copenhagen Accord was negotiated between five countries: the U.S., China, India, South Africa and Brazil." The agreement "failed to make commitments to reduce emissions to keep the temperature rise in check."

After the conclusion of the Dec. 8-18 summit, Kerber asserted, "This has proven to be a strong strike against multilateralism and the democratic principles in the U.N. system."

Caritas Internationalis, an international consortium of Roman Catholic relief agencies, and CIDSE, an alliance of Catholic development agencies, denounced the Copenhagen accord as "a weak and morally reprehensible deal which will spell disaster for millions of the world's poorest people."

A delegation that included Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu and other ecumenical leaders preached and marched during the 11-day meeting.

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