Environment

Dec 3, 2012

Doha(rd) 2012: in an aircon-loving state, more climate delay

The world is talking in the airconditioned confines of Doha, but nobody expects action that matches the science. Renew Economy's Giles Parkinson reports from Doha.

The first slogan to greet arrivals at Doha Airport in Qatar are as optimistic as those that greeted delegates to the climate change talks in Copenhagen in 2009. “Welcome to 12 days that could have an everlasting effect,” it pronounced.

Not real catchy, and possibly a direct translation from Arabic. But worthy all the same. Sadly, judging by the lack of ambition, and the lack of progress of these talks, it’s not a likely outcome.

Free Trial

Proudly annoying those in power since 2000.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions

25 comments

Leave a comment

25 thoughts on “Doha(rd) 2012: in an aircon-loving state, more climate delay

  1. Mark Duffett

    The doublethink exhibited by the likes of Wheelhouse is just amazing.

  2. tinman_au

    People only believe in what they can see, and sometimes not even then.

    Then you have the “other lot” who believe in what can’t be seen because writings from thousands of years ago say it’s so.

    Humans are a weird bunch…

  3. Hamis Hill

    Are those “Indolent Poles” like our indolent Pell, on this subject?
    Is there a religious connection worth factoring in here?
    For those who wish to save the planet; do they have to know their enemies and the planet’s enemies.
    If there is a religious dimension how does this indolence match up with the scripture; The Lord will bring ruin to those ruining the earth”>
    Paying attention there,Poles and Pells?

  4. CHRISTOPHER DUNNE

    Short sightedness is never in short supply in human affairs, but the idea that we MUST dig up every bit of coal and extract every litre of gas now, is a classic example of it. Of course the way we’ve allowed the common goods of this planet to be owned by so few for their immediate enrichment is one reason why I can never completely discount the collectivism of Mr Marx.

    Just what is wrong with sequestering a large proportion of the fossil hydrocarbons for the future? They ain’t going anywhere, and god knows, we’ll find plenty of uses for them in the millennia to come. But unfortunately we are locked into extraction and combustion at the fastest rate technologically possible. And why? Because the shareholders and owners must pay back on borrowed capital now.

    It’s a vicious system. One in which we all suffer, and ultimately for the real benefit of so few.

    Meanwhile, renewables and nuclear sit by, unloved, under-capitalised, and we spew out more and more of the deadly stuff.

    ‘Insanity’ is the other word for it.

  5. Warren Joffe

    Having just read a couple of peer-reviewed papers that seem to suggest that the warming of the last century or so could be a cyclical occurrence which happens to have led to most of the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere I am wondering which, if any, of the IPCC’s 7 models which can approximate what has happened in the last 60 years or so to varying degrees of accuracy, are supposed to be relied on when we ask governments to enforce heroic and costly measures. All of them, it seems, presume that fossil fuel emissions of CO2 are the main driver of global warming and that there is positive feedback from that warming then resulting in more of the main greenhouse gas, namely water vapour, which makes us warmer and warmer (except for 1998-2008 or thereabouts which worried the worriers). But are any of them more than ad hoc attempts to encapsulate most of the more obvious recent measurable variables in some sort of formula or model? Could any of them explain the major climate changes of the past? In short, have we got any adequate reason for spending money on curbing CO2 emissions rather than on any of the hundered other important ways government could spend money without more than the usual waste?

    Fortunately China seems to want to diversify its sources of energy urgently enough to make it likely to do more than all the worriers combined thanks to its huge numbers of bright engineers and rapidly reducing cost of producing solar panels.

  6. AR

    ChrisD – “we’ll find plenty of uses for them in the millennia to come” reminds me of that great visionary & humanitarian the Shit of Persia who said, after the formation of OPEC, “Oil is a noble product, too valuable to burn” and he had a point; it can be used for dozens of purposes, from medicine to plastic to fertilser to foodstuff. Or it can be burned, once.
    The same applies to the gas we are virtually giving away whilst paying far more to use domestically.
    When it’s all gorrnnnn, it’ll be a fair old wait until more is formed.
    These talks about talks will kinda sorta maybe get into motion by 2015 and should have a rilly, rilly spiffing Magic Lantern show by 2020.
    No wucking forries though,just turn up the A/C.

  7. Hamis Hill

    The drive for profit, as emphasised by Christopher Dunne, in turn drives the competition for borrowed capital.
    So at the base of all this destruction lies the demand that money produce a dividend through interest on debt.
    In short, in order to save the planet,( Warren Joffe’s doubts aside), the biblical injunction against usury must
    be enforced.
    The greatest planet destroying pollution is the expectation of Adam Smith’s “Idle Rich” is that resources and lives must be consumed to give them an unworldly “money for nothing”( and the planet and everything in it for free).
    So far perhaps only”Islamic Banking” enforces that biblical injunction against usury.
    Will Cardinal Pell’s “Christian Banking” save the planet, or is it that, as with the children of his church, no “saviour” is needed?
    The greatest sin of renewable energy, in this religion of mammon, is that consumers might become self-sufficient and so greatly diminish the demand for borrowed money and the unearned income available to the “Idle Rich”; incentive enough for the employment of mercenaries like Abbott and company to keep those interest rates high.
    Howard’s record on high interest rates, four times higher than the rest of the developed world, clinches the case.
    All argued more convincingly in “An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations”.
    Why is there never any evidence, in all the various comments, that any of the present generations have ever read Adam Smith?
    Remember the crime of conservatism, like all other crimes, rests on motive and opportunity; how about a judicial inquiry in to the Idle Rich?, not one of them fans of Adam Smith.

  8. fractious

    AR #6
    ‘reminds me of that great visionary & humanitarian the Shit of Persia who said, after the formation of OPEC, “Oil is a noble product, too valuable to burn” and he had a point; it can be used for dozens of purposes, from medicine to plastic to fertilser to foodstuff. Or it can be burned, once.’

    Quite. Most people’s reactions to discussions of ‘peak oil’ are concerns about the availability and price of fuel and impacts on public transport etc. Few remember that many of the “necessities” of modern life depend heavily on oil – without it modern methods of agriculture and medicine and nearly all the innumerable plastics we all take for granted (from cling wrap to carpets to clothing) would never have been invented. Life would be difficult with little or no oil to run transport, but those trials would pale compared to the other impacts.

  9. pat drane

    The Copenhagen circus was at least well attended by world leaders – who could forget Kevin07 and the drop in Obama??

    This talkfest is rated so highly that not even Combet has gone.

    Predictably there is a huge 4-6 degree warming scare screamed out before the summit to alarm the pulic and try to keep AGW scientists in jobs.

    Unfortunately the public does not trust climate science like that practiced by Flannery and other alarmists and has tuned out.

  10. Liamj

    The voluntary human extinction movement appears unstoppable.

    As temps rise we should hold ever more elite meetings, will help put us out of our misery quicker.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details

Sending...