Search Results for Tag: Copenhagen
Follow the leader?
The question is who is the leader, in the crusade to avert a climate catastrophe? (I know, sounds a bit melodramatic, but…)
Today WWF is calling on the EU to push ahead and set a firm goal of a 30% reduction by 2020 instead of 20%. (There is a meeting of EU reps in Brussels to discuss this on Wednesday).
WWF says this would give the EU the leading position it seeks. If it sticks to its position of only going up from 20 to 30% if other countries also make some concessions, the leadership claim would have to lie elsewhere, says WWF. Seems logical.
On the “climate change calendar”, January 31st is an interesting deadline. The agreement drawn up in Copenhagen includes a list where countries are supposed to enter their planned emissions reduction targets by that date.
Don’t get your hopes up too much – but it’s a date to watch.
DateJanuary 19, 2010 | 9:43 am
Not the conference that saved the planet
I was tempted to write “the conference that failed to save the planet”, but I’m trying not to be too negative (or is this just semantic nit-picking?). Am I very disappointed? Well you can only be very disappointed if you have high expectations. I must admit I would have been (pleasantly) surprised if Copenhagen had really come up with a substantial agreement, but the final debacle could and should surely have been avoided.
So now we appear to have agreement(although the countries only took note and didn’t officially accept the document) that we need a 2° maximum rise limit. But the way we are going, we appear to be heading for up to 4°. The industrialised world has opted out of binding targets. The funding arrangements are linked to development aid that would have been given anyway.
Here in Germany, the industry lobby is using Copenhagen to argue against emissions limits which they say would put German industry at a disadvantage. The sceptics – both tue “fundamentalists” who deny any link between human behaviour and climate change or even the existence of the latter – and those who don’t believe in mega-Conferences are rubbing their hands and saying “I told you so”. The big states are trying to tell us it was really a success or at least a step in the right direction. So where do we go from here and is there still hope?
Well, I’m not ready to give up yet, although I find it hard to give rational reasons for that.
Confidence in the power of the UNFCCC negotiations is at an all-time low. The differences between the developing countries facing disaster and the wealthy industrialised nations who think they still have time seems wiser than ever.
2010 is not getting off to a good start from the climate point of view. Can it only get better or is there worse to come?
DateDecember 21, 2009 | 9:44 am
In line with global trend ,Copenhagen heats up- and what about the rest of us?
The heavyweights are on their way to Copenhagen. 115 heads of state. Here’s hoping they’ll produce more than hot air.Things are not really looking good for a final binding agreement. Then again, it’s really hard to tell whether all the warnings from high-ranking people are just designed to make us prepare for the worst so that whatever comes out of the truly-mega-meeting will seem better than expected.
One danger I see is that people expect the politicians and the Copenhagen meeting to solve all the problems. It’s easy to say “there’s no point in my doing anything, it won’t have any effect if the top brass can’t get their act together”. But there is. I met with a group of US energy experts visiting Germany the other day ot look at renewables. One Professor from Texas was talking about how that state, the “oil state” had become a US leader in wind energy. The interest came from “the bottom up”, as he put it. Now the Obama administration is channeling funds in that direction to push the wind energy sector further.
The British opposition leader David Cameron is pushing a partnership between local authorities, businesses and householders to save up to 30% of the UK’s carbon emissions by making homes more energy efficient. Cameron is trying to give his party a “green” profile as the voters head for a general election in 2010. Whatever his motives, campaigns like this mean direct action to reduce co2 regardless of international political agreements.
Let’s not just wait for the bigwigs in Copenhagen to come up with something. Sure, we need these agreements. But in the meantime, we have to do our own bit.
DateDecember 17, 2009 | 9:32 am
The climate divide? And Copenhagen bursting at the seams
It’s not hard to understand the frustration of the developing countries who have been boycotting some of the Copenhagen sessions to try to pressure the industrialised world into committing to binding emissions limits. We all know who’s been spouting out the greenhouse gases – and who is going to be hardest hit, or even already suffering most.
Meanwhile, the conference organisers are having trouble getting participants into the conference venue. It seems 45,000 peole have applied to participate – three times more than the actual capacity, according to the UNFCCC. If a record number of negotiators, ngos, journalists etc. attending were a guarantee of success, Copenhagen would have to be the best conference ever. If…
DateDecember 15, 2009 | 10:33 am
On the streets of Copenhagen
One of the main things that gives me hope that all might not be lost in the battle to avert climate catastrophe is the sight of all those people demonstrating on the streets of Copenhagen at the weekend. Even the danger of being handcuffed by mistake by police looking for troublemakers (1.000 people detained?), and having to wait it out in the frost didn’t put them off.The politicians in the conference rooms have to take the decision. But grassroots pressure – or support, depending on how you look at it – can’t do any harm. (The British art of understatement).
For one reason or another I am not in Copenhagen, but there’s no shortage of journalist colleagues on the streets, in the conference halls and at the numerous side-events, keeping the world abreast of what’s happening. And some of us have to tie the threads together at home.
Here in my Bonn office, the email system is being bombarded by press releases, briefings and reports. “Mega-hype”? And will something come out of it?
People keep saying the fact that so many world leaders are turning up in Copenhagen this week is a positive sign. Well, I’m glad they’re showing an interest – or is it a question of being interested in the show?
The proof of the pudding…in this case is whether they can actually agreed on BINDING targets and funding for affected
DateDecember 14, 2009 | 10:46 am