Behind us is infinite power.
Before us is endless possibility.
Around us is boundless opportunity.
Why should we fear?
Unfortunately that is not the closing statement of the Meeting of the Aarhus Convention. It's an advertisement poster of Chisinau Airport, showing seven children in the departure lounge, ready to travel the world - Except that they probably aren't.
Looking around the departure lounge I can only wonder how many of the actual children here, how many of the adults have infinite power, endless possibility, boundless opportunity. I had misread it first, reading "borderless opportunity" which would have been enough irony in itself when you think about the number of hoops to jump through to get a visa into a Schengen country from here.
There are other NGO representatives here, travelling back to countries like Ukraine or Belarus, countries that are not in compliance with the Aarhus Convention. Infinite power to whom?
Yesterday the Aarhus MOP4 closed after adopting a two-tier system for accession. Countries that are not from the UNECE region of Europe, Central Asia, North America and Israel, first need an agreement of a MOP before they can join. This is not only an obstacle that is not required by any country that finds itself in the right geographic position - it also means that before MOP5 in 2014 none of these countries will be able to join. Mongolia and two African countries (Cameroon and Guinea-Bissau) have voiced their interest but they didn't even get a warm welcome. Infinite power, endless possibility, boundless opportunity?