Copenhagen-Meaningful Agreement reached-Obama Call to Action
Today is the last day of the Copenhagen Climate Change Summit. When world leaders arrived yesterday and early today, they were expecting to look at a draft document that they could finalize and sign.
It turns out a document was non-existent. China and the United States seem to be at odds. Although China has announced that it would reduce carbon emission, based on GDP, by 40% it has also stated that it will not permit inspection or verification. President Obama is expected to meet Hu Jintao later today. Can the two countries reconcile their differences?
Chines Premier Wen Jiabao, in a speech this morning, talked about its challenges, especially with energy production by coal. China talked about having the largest man made forests in the world, but that it was challenged with its 1.3 Billion population, 150 Million still living under the poverty line. China said it would do verification according to domestic laws but would not permit intrusion on its souvereignity.
Hillary Clinton yesterday stated that lack of verification of China's climate change efforts would be a deal breaker. All ears and eyes will be on President Obama's appearance this morning. Would Hillary and Obama be playing bad cop good cop?
President Zarkosi, France, has blamed China as the culprit, preventing a deal.
Canada's Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, who arrived in Copenhagen yesterday, hasn't been heard from, other than him attending a leaders dinner last night. Canada maintains that it will align itself with the U.S.
President Obama spoke at the conference, stating that America has taken bold action with legislation and is transforming to to green technology. He said that this would create green industry jobs. He outlined three points that are essential in an agreement.
1. America will reduce carbon emission by 17% by 2020 and 80% by 2050
2. Accountability - i.e. verification (I think this was directed at China)
3. Financing - America will make FAST track financing of $10 Billion available by 2012 to assist developing countries and will contribute $100 Billion fund for Developing countries.
President Obama's speech was a call to action, he said the time for talking was over.
President Obama concluded a 55 minute meeting with Chines Premier Wen Jiaboa, deemed constructive. Apparently the talks have broken into two camps those dealing with China only and the rest dealing with everyone else.
Canada has been designated as the worst country in the world receiving the fossil award.
From Mark Knoller's tweets:
UN Secretary General has asked world leaders to stay one more night. White House says it will consider the request but that it highly unlikely that Obama would stay unless there was substantive progress.
wkg thru Bella ctr in #copenhagen. overhearing dozens of ppl changing flights to Monday. ldrs may go.. negotiators may stay. #cbccopen ^aa
After intense negotiations an agreement was reached that really satisfied no one and fell short of a binding agreement. The agreement is being called meaning full though. Read more here
Climate change talks in Copenhagen are down to their last day, and there is uncertainty whether a deal will be reached.
Lars Lokke Rasmussen, the Danish prime minister, said this morning that talks went well last night, and that compromise and consensus is starting to emerge.
But not all attendees are as optimistic.
"A deal is still possible, but as of this morning, I think we have a climate change summit in crisis," said Achim Steiner, the head of the UN Environment Programme, adding that what the conference needs now some "inspiring leadership."
Leadership could come from U.S. President Barack Obama, who arrived in Copenhagen early Friday. Shortly after he arrived, Obama had an unscheduled meeting with almost 20 world leaders, including the heads of Britain, France, China, Russia, Brazil and a dozen other countries.