50,000 People Went to Denmark and All They Got was a Lousy 3-Page Political Agreement
What Really Happened in Copenhagen?
By BRIAN TOKAR
Detailed accounts from participants in the recent Copenhagen climate summit are still coming in, but a few things are already quite clear, even as countries step up the blame game in response to the summit’s disappointing conclusion.
First, the 2 1/2 pages of diplomatic blather that the participating countries ultimately consented to “take note” of are completely self-contradictory, and commit no one to any specific actions to address the global climate crisis. There isn’t even a plan for moving UN-level negotiations forward. Friends of the Earth correctly described it as a “sham agreement,” British columnist George Monbiot called it an exercise in “saving face,” and former neoliberal shock doctor-turned-environmentalist Jeffrey Sachs termed it a farce. Long-time UN observer Martin Khor has pointed out that for a UN body to “take note” of a document means that not only was it not formally adopted, but it was not even “welcomed,” a common UN practice.
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
A climate-change conference is probably going to be useless by its very nature. The best way to lower the carbon in the atmosphere is to put out fires. Since we humans have been spending the past 100,000 years finding ever more clever ways to burn things, this is a monumental change in direction. A conference not only won't seriously address this BIG problem, it is likely to just make the carbon problem worse.
So mostly, this isn't a problem to be solved by politics but by engineers. And if all the financial resources are going to go to Wall Street in their worse-than-useless Cap and Trade schemes, the chance that the engineers will have the necessary resources to do their work is nearly zero.