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COPENHAGEN: Non-binding Climate Agreement Is All Bark And No Bite

COPENHAGEN: Non-binding Climate Agreement Is All Bark And No Bite

The agreement finally reached by world leaders at Copenhagen, which sets the first emission limits for India and China and new reduction targets for the United States, is being hailed as an ‘unprecedented breakthrough’. But it doesn’t take a climate expert to see that this agreement, which is not legally binding in any way, falls far short of what many people hoped would be a real way out of the climate crisis.

Many had hopes that the U.N Conference on climate change, which has been convened in Copenhagen since December 7th, would reveal nations willingness to set agressive goals for reducing greenhouse gas emission in nations known as heavy polluters, and offer up mutually beneficial solutions to developing nations that would encourage them to preserve their forests and keep their emissions in check as they continue to pursue industrialzation.

Although it is encouraging to see that the United States, which refused to adopt the commitments of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, did commit to curbing greenhouse gases, the agreement was still vague on some of the most important details, such as basic information about how much money would be provided as aid to enable poor nations adapt to the changing climate and employ low-emission fuels.

In a recent press release, Oxfam International criticized the deal as weak and more hype than help. Jeremy Hobbs, Executive Director of Oxfam International said: 

“The deal is a triumph of spin over substance. It recognizes the need to keep warming below 2 degrees but does not commit to do so. It kicks back the big decisions on emissions cuts and fudges the issue of climate cash.

Millions of people around the world do not want to see their hopes for a fair, binding and ambitious deal die in Copenhagen. Leaders need to get back round the table in early 2010 take the hard decisions they copped out of in Copenhagen.”

Although the agreement gives other nations until February to sign on with specific emission commitments, many are skeptical that any developing nations would even consider adding their names to this aspirational document, given that it provides no guarantees that the necessary financial aid will be provided, or that the aid will be distributed correctly to the public officials that need it.

Related Reading:
COPENHAGEN: A Failure At Copenhagen May Be a Blessing In Disguise
COPENHAGEN: Throwing Tuvalu Under the Bus…and Under the Sea

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Image Credit: trendsupdates.com

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94 comments

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3:26PM PDT on May 21, 2013

Loretta, all you have to do is spend a day in LA and you will understand why I say the air is not clean. Yes, carbon monoxide plays a very good role. We do need to clean up our act for our air and our rivers and oceans. But none of that plays into the game of 'global warming', as proven by thousands of scientists. If we move to clean up our environment without the false scare tactics of global warming, I'll support it. As long as Al Gore and all the other global warming leaders collecting millions off the people, I'll continue to help prove how wrong they are. Anyone who believes the global warming hype should read the results from the American Policy Roundtable, the OISM (Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine), the 31,487 scientists who signed the petitionproject,org against the Kyoto Protocol, the Heartland Institute, and so many others. I found the OISM report from 2001 to be extremely accurate considering they predicted the states financial failures, unemployment and property values decreasing if our govt followed the recommended Kyoto protocol. Every prediction was accurate, all of them.

Kenneth, a one world govt has been in the plans for many many years. To deny that is simply hiding from the truth. Copenhagen is just one attempt. The UN is another.

10:24PM PDT on May 19, 2013

Thank you.

10:23PM PDT on May 19, 2013

Thank you.

8:19PM PDT on May 14, 2013

Thank you.

8:19PM PDT on May 14, 2013

Thank you.

8:18PM PDT on May 14, 2013

Thank you.

3:00AM PST on Dec 29, 2009

Thanks for the article!

7:36AM PST on Dec 26, 2009

thanks for the post

7:28AM PST on Dec 26, 2009

Michael A., what 'attempt' at a 1 world government? Copenhagen? And right there it goes into the realm of world domination plot conspiracy theorists.
Personally, IMO I don't think every leader of every country on the planet is controlled by some such conspiracy including Obama, the Queen of England, the Royal Family, David Suzuki, Al Gore, Prince Charles, including who they're married to, their children, extended family, in-laws, tied by blood, finances, and even those who simply are GUILTY BY ASSOCIATION as I've seen a number of conpspiracy theorists say.
But then, you've got your opinion and I've got mine. And there it stays as such until PROVEN which only THEN makes it fact and not opinion.

3:19AM PST on Dec 26, 2009

Michael Austin - you say we need cleaner air. Why is the air not clean? I believe it is because, for the last century, we have effectively been burning up several millions of year's worth of the earth's carbon sink. If we want clean air, we need to figure out a carbon sink that is able to deal with this pollution.

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