Dead On Arrival: No consensus at climate summit despite ‘scare stories’
With less than a day left in the marathon 11-day UN summit being held in Doha, Qatar, the delegates in attendance are no closer to finding a solution to the current stalemate on climate change. The two-week meeting is due to end this Friday, and will likely end in deadlock.
With the Kyoto treaty – the previous international climate treaty – effectively dead in the water after the failure to extend it beyond 2012, ideas on how to revive the climate change debate have gained little traction.
The other main agendas of the summit included acknowledging the need “for scaling up climate finance and pathways for the mobilization of USD 100 billion every year until 2020,” as well as “working out long-term cooperation action to be taken under the convention.
But no clear consensus was reached, with a group of leading NGOs, including Greenpeace, Oxfam and WWF, issuing a statement warning that the talks were “sleepwalking into disaster,” and calling for more clarity on climate finance.
“Does Doha want to be known as a place where ideas come to die?” a campaign coordinator at NGO tcktcktck remarked.
The most eye-catching moment was likely when Lord Monckton, a staunch critic of the climate change movement, gate crashed the summit by disguising himself as a delegate from Myanmar.
Monckton switched on a microphone and said, "In the 16 years we have been coming to these conferences, there has been no global warming at all."
Lord Monckton (screenshot from youtube video by user tcktcktckorg)
“Secondly, even if we were to take action to try to prevent global warming the cost of that would be many times greater than the cost of taking adaptive measures later,” he added. “So our [the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow] recommendation therefore is that we should initiate very quickly a review of the science to make sure we are all on the right track. Shukran Iktir, ” before he was escorted out for “violating the UN code of conduct" and "impersonating a party” amid confused murmurs and boos filling the hall.
Over 17,000 participants have attended the summit in what is the largest conference to have ever been held in Qatar, according to TTGmice.com.
The EU, Australia, Ukraine, Norway, Switzerland – the main backers of the Kyoto Treaty – are willing to extend legally binding cuts in carbon emissions from 2012 until 2020. However, these nations account for less than 15 percent of world carbon emissions.
Meanwhile, Russia, Japan and Canada have all withdrawn their participation, since large developing nations like China are not participating.
A legally binding agreement preserving the Kyoto Treaty goals is seen as the backbone to creating a new, global agreement by 2015.
he issue of climate change has become a topic of heated debate in recent years. Supporters claim human activity is to blame for the rise in temperatures and sporadic weather changes seen in areas of the globe.
Critics, however, say those claims are not substantiated with science, and argue that there has been little, if any, climate change over the course of human history.
A general view shows the opening ceremony of the 18th United Nations (UN) climate change conference in Doha on November 26, 2012 (AFP Photo / Karim Jaafar / Al-Watan Doha)