Late last night, there was a change in the UN negotiations. There was a proposal called the Copenhagen Accord. It is a draft text of an agreement reached between China, US, India and South Africa. Here are perspectives from the Wall Street Journal, the Guardian UK and BBC News.
1. It commits Annex 1 or Developed countries to 80% reductions on 1990 levels by 2050 and 50% reductions overall. It says nothing about 2020 reductions.
2. Pledges to keep temperature rise at 2 degrees with the potential to revise down to 1.5 by 2016. It says nothing about how this will be achieved.
3. It is a non-legally binding treaty. In fact, the draft drops a previous 2010 deadline for achieving a legally binding treaty.
4. Developed countries to support the mobilization of $100 bil per year by 2020 for developing countries. Calls were for $200 bil by African Union, Avaaz and 350.org were not heard.
5. Copenhagen Climate Fund of $30 bil will be made available for 2010-2012 with balanced allocation between adaptation and mitigation. This amount of money will not be enough for the developing nations.
Australia is supporting the Copenhagen Accord as will many of the UN blocs such as the Umbrella Group and G77. I think it is fair to assume it will pass (with some minor changes) with the majority of nations and the majority of population.
Will it provide the rapid response the world needs for a safe climate?
After decades of negotiations and following the framework of Kyoto, the world has been expecting a ramping-up of the response to climate change. However, what we have today is a weak, non-binding accord that is endorsed by a minority of nations. Two weeks of intense negotiations have passed and what we have is a bare-bones document.
For me personally, I feel like this was the likely outcome. AYCC, youth of the world, people from AOSIS and other nations have done everyhing we thought strategic to get a stronger treaty. We continue to push and we have made our base stronger through this experience. The battle for a safe climate will not end here because we are not done yet.
What do you think?