The Failure at Copenhagen

Just to follow up on our earlier posts about the climate talks at Copenhagen, I wanted to share the link (see below) to a story from the PBS Newshour. Here is a piece of the transcript:

VINUTA GOPAL, Greenpeace India: The world leaders have failed the planet, and now it’s up to people to come together, because we need a deal that is real.

RAY SUAREZ (Newshour corespondent): That deal, of course, is the 12-paragraph nonbinding Copenhagen accord announced after two weeks of grueling negotiations and last-minute dealings. One hundred and ninety-three participant nations formally called for billions in aid to help poor nations cope with climate change, but set no firm targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions.The U.N.’s climate chief, Yvo de Boer:

YVO DE BOER, executive secretary, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change: An impressive accord, but not an accord that is legally binding, not an accord that, at this moment, pins down industrialized countries to individual targets.

RAY SUAREZ: At heart, the accord represented just how far President Obama and the leaders of China, Brazil, India, and South Africa were willing to go. At a snowed-in White House Saturday after his return, the president had a more upbeat assessment.

U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: For the first time in history, all of the major — the world’s major economies have come together to accept their responsibility to take action to confront the threat of climate change. After extremely difficult and complex negotiations, this important breakthrough lays the foundation for international action in the years to come.

RAY SUAREZ: European leaders were notably absent from President Obama’s last-minute meetings. Today, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown demanded the entire process be reformed. He said, “Never again should we let a global deal be held to ransom by only a handful of countries.”On a different note, the British climate change secretary, Ed Miliband, singled out developing nations.

ED MILIBAND, secretary of state for energy and climate change, United Kingdom: Because there was point-blank refusal from many of those countries to have legally binding targets. I think it shows in a sense how far we do have to go to tackle the problem collectively.

RAY SUAREZ: China came under criticism for refusing to agree to legally binding and verifiable actions.

Watch the video and the read the transcripts of this story here: A Look at Climate Change After Copenhagen

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