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Friday, December 18, 2009

Final Day, Maybe

COP15 participants are riding the pendulum between hope and despair amidst rumours that delegates have been asked to stay until Sunday

Posted By on Fri, Dec 18, 2009 at 10:33 AM

climate_not_saved.jpg

It's the final day of the Copenhagen climate conference. In the words of WWF Sweden CEO Lasse Gustavsson, "world leaders have arrived and negotiated overnight with little or no progress.” Shocking that even with 120 super-egos in the room they couldn't save the world overnight. You think maybe they should have allotted more time for this task?

Well, rumours abound on the social media that Yvo de Boer, head of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, has told delegates to plan on sticking around all weekend and gettin 'er done.

The Guardian has also tweeted that "'UN's Ki-moon has asked people not to leave tonight,' European Union Environment Commissioner Stavros Dima told Reuters."

Apparently Hugo Chavez didn't hear about that because he was too busy shouting "It's over; we failed."

Grist reports that US President Barack Obama was "visibly frustrated" as he urged everybody to get their shit together. He spent the night locked in a room with 18 other key leaders and still found time this morning to give a speech and spend an hour with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao. According to one Singapore journalist it was a very productive meeting in which they agreed that bold action plans are needed, that money needs to be invested by richer countries, and that commitments must be measurable.

That last point has been the biggest sticking point of the conference. Rich countries are insisting that they get to verify the reductions reported by poor countries. But poor countries don't get to look at our climate books in return.

Ann Danylkiw, a journalist in China, reports that a new climate and energy registry has been developed for businesses and municipalities in Jiangsu and Guangdong provinces in southern China. The registry is run by an international NGO and the information is on an online database, providing the independent verification rich countries want without the paternalism poor countries fear.

No word yet on whether anyone in Copenhagen besides Ann Danylkiw is aware of this potential solution to the biggest threat humanity has ever faced.

I'll be keeping an eye on things all day and posting developments here.

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