Sunday, December 12, 2010

Cancun climate talks success or not?

It is very difficult to characterize Cancun climate talks as successful. True, there were some small steps forward like the decision to give more money to poor countries in a form of a Green Climate Fund that would give $100 billion a year in aid to poor nations by 2020 (though the mechanism for raising this amount of money each year is still unclear). Other positive notes include certain measures to protect tropical forests and ways to share clean energy technologies.

But despite these positive things world leaders still failed on the most important thing of them all, namely there was no progress at all in extending the Kyoto protocol and oblige countries to curb their carbon emissions.

Most of world leaders will likely describe Cancun climate talks like U.S. president Obama did by saying that "the Cancun meeting was a success and advances the world's response to climate change". Of course, most environmentalists will not agree with such statements.

Niklas Hoehne, director of energy and climate policy at consultancy Ecofys, believes that this isn't enough to halt temperature rise, and that existing government policies will lead to a rise in world temperatures of about 3.6 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial times.

The best way to describe this year's climate talks in Cancun would be "not a total failure like Copenhagen last year but still not a step forward many of us were expecting".

The next climate talks will be held at the end of 2011 in South Africa.

No comments:

Post a Comment