Copenhagen Day 2 – Climate Change Conference in Denmark

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Delegates at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, had quite a day.

The week leading up to the conference, a report was circulating that Denmark, host of the conference, had a drawn up a text that was sure to come under fire. Yesterday afternoon Britains’ The Guardian Newspaper published what they claimed to be this text. Further the paper also claims to have read “a confidential analysis by developing countries” which “shows deep unease”.

The draft acknowledges that 2020 as the year which global emission should peak, while also acknowledging that developed countries have collectively peaked and that the timeframe will be longer for developing countries. The text goes on to specify emission reduction targets for both developed and developing countries.

What as the latter up in arms is possible shift of control of enforcement of any agreement to developed countries.

Confused yet?

Under the present agreement, the Kyoto Protocol, developing countries are exempt from obligations, but industrialized countries have stressed that this will not be feasible in the future. The Danish text says that “developing countries, except the least developed which may contribute at their own discretion, commit to nationally appropriate mitigation actions”. According to The Guardian’s sources, “developing countries are infelicitous about the new proposed division between the ‘least developed’ and other developing nations.

Another sticky point is the suggestion to transfer more control over the enforcement of the Copenhagen agreement from the UN administration, to the World Bank. Such a move would indirectly shift more control over to the industrialized world.

In other news, UPI is reporting the period from 2000 -2009 will be considered to be one of the warmest on record. Additionally the World Meteorological Organization said 2009 will rank among the 10 warmest years since 1850. The WMO said temperatures for the current year stand between 0.6 degrees and 1 degree Fahrenheit higher than the average from 1961-1990.

The WMO said the period from 2000-2009 was warmer than the 1990-99 decade, which was warmer than the 1980-1989 time span.
Forecasters cited El Nino conditions and human-caused global climate change for the increases. Only in North America were lower average temperatures recorded.

“We are in a warming trend – we have no doubt about it” said WMO Secretary General, Michel Jarraud.

And from the “Did they really do that file”, you may remember when CEO’s of the former Big Three Automakers arrived in Washington, hands held out, looking for a big influx of cash, but they all arrived via private jet. Only to be scolded by the commission and ordered to dispose of the luxury items. Fox news is reporting that delegates haven’t been arriving in fleet of Smart cars, but rather the city airport has been swarmed with 140 private jets, and over 1200 hired limousines and “a carbon footprint the size of a small country”.

  • Mark Spowart

    A writer and photographer, Spowart has publication credits in Canada, United States, Europe and Norway with such publications as The Globe & Mail, The National Post, Sun Media, Canwest News, and Canada News Wire.

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