Saturday, December 19, 2009

Failure at Copenhagen

Before he went to Copenhagen Obama called Meles Zenawi to discuss the UN climate talks. What followed was a "compromise" that saw Meles hawk African hopes for a pittance, according to Mithika Mwenda of Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance. It is not just the money, and we all know where that will go if and when it reaches Kinshasa, Kigili, Kampala, Addis and elsewhere, which is, of course, inadequate, but also the fact that Zenawi knows that Obama has failed miserably to put forward target reductions that will prevent a global disaster. Indeed, Obama has not "compromised" one jot on the American position and as I wrote in Thursday's post; "Washington's reduction target of 17% per less than the 2005 levels by 2020, means in fact only 3% below the 1990 levels. In the meantime, experts are demanding that developed countries reduce their emissions by 40% below 1990 levels."

So, there we have it; the hype man bribes the vain Meles Zenawi, while the authoritarian leader who is good at selling big chunks of Ethiopia to foreigners who then cause, among other things, environmental havoc, this time goes a bit further and, seduced by the hype man's piffle, drivel and flattery, hawks the future of the whole developing world, indeed, of the whole planet, to get himself onto the centre stage and get a few more millions flowing into his own personal bank accounts. In the meantime, Obama, who has really done nothing, insists that China and India offer a fuller account of its emissions reductions, so that he can get Congress and the American public to agree to his non-existent initiative. Of course, satellites already monitor Chinese and Indian CO2 emissions.

It is five to midnight for the planet and what we are in fact experiencing is a farcical charade and a defensive rearguard action of an economic system that is based on fictitious capital and the petro dollar. Washington does not want any alternative to fossil fuels and for the time being the Chinese in particular remain dependent on them. Nevertheless, at least in the case of China we have indications, evidenced, among other things, by that country's ambitious nuclear programme, that there will at least be an attempted move in the right direction although we have no real reason to be optimistic and it might indeed prove to be a case of too little too late.


Canada Guy said...

Copenhagen has failed. The UN has failed to address the most important crisis in human history. This is now the time for sanctions, boycotts and embargoes. A new alliance is needed. An alliance of hope and peace and justice must be built to oppose the axis of pollution, extinction and self destruction.

James Nelson said...

thanks for the comment! yes, the un has failed to address possibly the most important crisis in human history.