“Copenhagen Accord” on the Rocks


While protestors attempt to storm the conference center in Copenhagen and Hugo Chavez takes the opportunity to call President Obama the “Devil”, climate talks are apparently breaking down. According to The Times,  The Chinese delegation reacted negatively to a slight from President Obama in his speech to the conference on Thursday. The Chinese took offense to Mr. Obama’s assertion that, “Without any accountability, any agreement would be empty words on a page.” Mr Wen, the Chinese Prim Minister apparently interpreted this as an attempt to subject China to external scrutiny, despite Mr Obama’s insistence that the monitoring system would respect national sovereignty.

In an attempt to salvage the meeting, a commitment to turning the “Copenhagen Accord” into a legally binding treaty within a year was deleted from a draft of the text leaked tonight. The draft also contained only vague language on the key issues of limiting the temperature increase to 2C and cutting global emissions by 50 per cent by 2050. If codified, this would mean that the U.S. will cut emissions by 80% by 2050, using 1990 as a baseline.

Tear gas was used on protesters after they attempted to storm the conference center in Copenhagen.

China does not want the long-term target to be binding because it fears that this would constrain its economic growth.

The Copenhagen Accord also contains language to create a $100 billion fund by 2020 to help developing countries to cope with climate change. Different drafts of the agreement emerged every two or three hours yesterday, with paragraphs being added or deleted each time. Developing nations have been lobbying wealthy nations to contribute money to help offset emission reductions for the entirety of the conference, seeing it as a potential foreign-aide bonanza.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. As per http://euandus3.wordpress.com/2009/12/19/national-sovereignty-and-climate-change-at-copenhagen/ , the less than stellar result of the UN conference on climate change can be seen to point to the antiquated absolutist approach to national sovereignty in the wake of the technological changes of the 20th century.

    Reply

    • Posted by Shawn Martini on December 20, 2009 at 12:00 am

      The Pulse is pretty sure that technological advancements do not in any way require independent states to obviate their national sovereignty. Nor should climate change. In fact The Pulse sees technological advances as complimentary and supportive to sovereignty.

      Reply

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