Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Can There Be A Deal?

View in Botanisk Have (University of Copenhage...Image via Wikipedia
Last night, representatives at the Copenhagen Climate Conference had to struggle through the night to salvage the talks, which for sometime now have been thrown into some bit of "chaos". It is reported that a group of African nations walked out of the conference and withdrew their co-operation, accusing the developed countries of bias in their approach to the talks. The group, which received a backing from the G77 countries (comprising 130 developing countries),  staged this walkout yesterday morning to register their displeasure with the lack of progress at the talks and also against what they describe as an attempt by the developed world to "ditch" the Kyoto Protocol. And this was enough to bring the talks into a temporary suspension.

According to Penny Wong, the Australian climate change minister, the walkout was "regrettable", insisting that it was "a walkout over process and form, not a walkout over substance". "This is not the time for people to play procedural games. We need to resolve the process issues and get onto the substance," she added.

Contrary to this, the Algerian chief negotiator for the African group, Mr. Kamel Djemouai,  told reporters that rich nations' opposition to a continuation of Kyoto meant they were willing "to accept the death of the only one legally binding instrument that exists now" to cut emissions.

On the BBC 08:00 GMT today he had two main questions to ask; "If there is a new treaty, when will the treaty be ratified and who will ensure that it is indeed ratified?".

With only a few days to the end of the summit, we ask ourselves whether there can actually be a deal by way of a legally binding outcome, amidst the many major issues that still need to be resolved.

Time will tell.
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