A sampling of headlines from around the world now that the United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Copenhagen has concluded…
Buenos Aires Herald: Climate deal won’t cap warming, big gaps
A climate deal among world leaders including US President Barack Obama puts off many tough decisions until 2010 and sets the planet on track to overshoot goals for limiting global warming.
The Copenhagen climate summit concluded without an agreement despite high expectations.
Running almost 24 hours behind schedule, the summit was set to end with a resolution that only ‘takes note’ of the ‘Copenhagen Accord’ that US president Barack Obama had tried to broker but failed.
Montreal Gazette: Analysis: Copenhagen was based on false premise
In total, 192 countries came to the table. But only about 50 – rich countries, the oil nations and the emerging giants like China – had something to give. The rest were irrelevant to the process. The sad irony was that they were the ones that are and will continue to suffer the worst effects of climate change.
Copenhagen failed for a number of reasons. Lack of political will; a reluctant population not truly understanding or accepting the tremendous risk mankind faces now and in the future are only two of them. But overall, the pure process of the United Nation’s negotiations was based on a false premise.
Negotiations require a give and take. For that to happen, each party must have something to offer. In Copenhagen, 140 countries had nothing to offer but their moral outrage and pleas for justice and that has rarely proved to move the West.
New Zealand Herald: Copenhagen called climate ‘crime scene’
The United Nations process at Copenhagen was slammed as “appalling” by New Zealand’s climate change ambassador yesterday, in comments to international media.
Adrian Macey’s strong words were overshadowed only by those of the Sudanese ambassador, who compared the deal to the Holocaust and said it would condemn Africa to widespread deaths from global warming.
The Prague Post: Czechs expected more from Copenhagen conference – minister
Czech Environment Minister Jan Dusik expected more from the U.N. Copenhagen climate conference, and he views the states’ final agreement, in which they take key countries’ efforts against global warming into account, as an intermediate step, he told CTK today.
Dusik said a legally binding document on fighting climate changes could be signed in Mexico next year, after the planned negotiations of experts as well as politicians.
“It is a wasted chance. The positive aspect is that agreement of the important players has been achieved and also a result for us to base our further work on,” Dusik said.
He said the Czech delegation did not expect a legally binding agreement to be achieved in Copenhagen. Nevertheless, the Czechs expected the summit’s final talks to touch on more issues, and “mainly to be supported by all delegates,” Dusik (nominated by the Green Party) said.
He said the Copenhagen conclusions change nothing in the Czech Republic’s commitment to reduce green house gas emissions by 20 percent.
Saudi Gazette: Climate talks a halting step toward goal
The Copenhagen climate conference “failed” long before it even opened. It may not “succeed” until long after it ends. For the moment, then, negotiators must satisfy themselves with something in between, an “outcome,” one whose shape Thursday was in the hands of the United States and China.
A pivotal meeting in Bali, Indonesia, in December 2007 set a two-year timetable for the world to produce a grand new agreement to cut even deeper into the greenhouse-gas emissions largely blamed for global warming.
Every one of the thousands attending that UN conference saw the problem, however: The US administration of President George W. Bush had blocked progress on climate change for seven years, and would do so for one more.
When President Barack Obama took charge last January, he had just 11 months to work with international partners to negotiate a successor agreement to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which had imposed modest emissions cuts on industrialized nations, and which the US had rejected.
With time so short, the new US leadership needed a long run of luck. But its luck ran out with this year’s drawn-out and distracting US health care debate.
The Economic Times (India): Investors give cautious thumbs up to climate deal
Businesses and investment analysts cautiously welcomed a climate deal struck in Copenhagen on Friday, but complained that it was unclear how its commitments would be translated into law.
The private sector is expected to supply most capital to drive a global shift to a greener economy away from burning fossil fuels.
Businesses and in particular the energy sector say they need clear carbon targets so that they can invest appropriately – for example in power plants which may last for more than 40 years.
New York Times: U.N. Climate Talks ‘Take Note’ of Accord Backed by U.S.
With the swift bang of a gavel on Saturday morning, a prolonged fight between nations small and large over an international pact to limit climate risks that was forged the night before by the United States and four partners came to a somewhat murky end.
The chairman of the climate treaty talks declared that the parties would “take note” of the document, named the Copenhagen Accord, leaving open the question of whether this effort to curb greenhouse gases from the world’s major emitters would gain the full support of the 193 countries bound by the original, and largely failed, 1992 Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Washington Post: Climate talks end without real agreement
After two weeks of rancor and uncertainty, the U.N.-sponsored climate talks ended Saturday morning with negotiators choosing to “take note” of an agreement brokered by the United States but failing to adopt it as an official decision of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change.
The anti-climactic ending to an intense final round of negotiations underscored the incomplete nature of the accord, which provided for monitoring emission cuts in individual countries but set no overall global target for cutting greenhouse gases and no deadline for reaching a formal international treaty.
The United Nations’ top climate official, Yvo de Boer, acknowledged that the agreement, known as the Copenhagen accord, has yet to bind large and small nations to either definitive emission reductions or financial commitments.
“The challenge for the coming year will be to capture that, and to turn it into something real, measurable and verifiable, in every sense of those three words, a year from now in Mexico City,” he told reporters.
Describing what it means “to take note” of the accord, de Boer added, “That is a way of recognizing that something is there, but not going so far as to associate yourself with it.”