Dec 21, 2009

Copenhagen’s nasty negotiations

The spirit of the Copenhagen summit was marked by a degree of fractiousness, pig-headedness, selfishness and deviousness not seen at previous UN conferences.

It is sometimes said that the United Nations knows only two types of conference, the successful and the very successful. After Copenhagen, there is a third, the failure that cannot be covered up by calling it a success.


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36 thoughts on “Copenhagen’s nasty negotiations

  1. mtats

    Maybe it’s the lack of coffee on my part, but are you saying negotiators ‘died’?

    Am i reading this right, or am i just taking it too literally? Or are we talking an existential death, or a ‘death of youth’ kind of thing.

  2. MichaelT

    Good analysis.

    IMHO it was always unlikely that over 192 countries would agree to increase the price of energy (which is a very sensitive subject) let alone stick to any such agreement.

    Steven Chu is right to focus on developing new energy industries, because that is something we can all agree needs doing, and we can all get cracking on just doing it, without having to broker impossible agreements.

    I don’t think Kevin07 should waste much time and political capital on the post Copenhagen process. Follow the lead set by Steven Chu, I reckon.

  3. EnergyPedant

    I’ve read a few things by Steven Chu and I’m mostly quite impressed.

    He explained how his interest in energy efficiency at home is because he’s cheap and doesn’t want to waste money on a large heating bill.

    Mostly he impress me on a nerd level because he’s really smart. Not sure how that plays to the masses though….

    MTATS, there was thousands of people there. Its statistically not unreasonable for a handful to die within a two week period.

  4. beachcomber

    Copenhagen in Winter was probably the most inappropriate place to debate Climate Change. Delegates sat in air conditioned comfort while snow fell outdoors. They were so far removed from the reality and urgency that they may as well have met in Santa’s Workshop.

    The next meeting should be in Tuvalu or Bangladesh.

  5. Frank Campbell

    So Dopenhagen was the fifth “Conference of the Parties” you attended Rev. Calvin? Time to buy another carbon offset then…yet another pot plant?

  6. mtats

    Notwithstanding the good article, i’d like to know the name of the “Australian Delegate” who “died” during the intense negotiations and why i have not heard about it on the nightly news.

  7. Frank Campbell

    It was Kevin Rudd’s ego who died. Refused entry to the venue. Cause of death: a combination of rage and hypothermia.

  8. James McDonald

    Hamilton, you’re a Leninist fanatic. Here is a different analysis from a far more credible source, the most balanced of the political reporters on the Australian, Lenore Taylor.

    Obama’s men even got into a scuffle with Premier Wen’s minders when the Chinese Premier tried to ignore a previous arrangement to meet with the American.

    For Wen, the entire Copenhagen conference was all about claiming alpha male status in the new world order. Nothing more and nothing less.

  9. franmolloy

    This is a sad day. I think the West reaped what it sowed in conference after conference in the past and paid a high price for Stern’s arrogance.

    Had COP15 been called by China or India, had it been held in Hong Kong or Nairobi, I suspect negotiations may have gone differently.

    China has been brutal in the past in applying essential and painful policy for long-term gain; what other nation has come up with the one-child policy – and stuck with it?

    Sounds like much dick-waving went on. Tragic stuff.

  10. Kevin Cox

    The Chinese have long realised that Emissions Trading or Carbon trading is a waste of time.

    It appears that the USA has come to the same realisation. Let us hope it is not too long before Australia understands that the cost of renewable energy is less than the cost of energy from burning fossil fuel – if the cost of finance is reduced. Remove interest payments and extend repayments to the life of the energy plant and the output from almost any renewable energy power plant is cheaper than the equivalent output from a fossil fuel energy plant.

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