A cynic’s ringside view of the recently concluded Copenhagen climate summit…
One Problem: The world is getting hotter.
One Solution: Cut down on greenhouse gases.
One Roadblock: No-one really wants to do so, but all the countries are ready to spend billions of dollars and burn umpteen tonnes of greenhouse gases to hold dozens of conferences to allegedly inch forward in the form of treaties and resolutions.
A for Acting and Actors: Is anyone really interested in a deal? Everyone was merely enacting out a drama and hoping to get home soon.
B for BASIC: Brazil, America, South Africa, India, China. A so-called Copenhagen power group. But when there are more acronyms than agreements, you know you are in real trouble.
C for Chindia: China+India and their coming together briefly. But whether you like it or not, unless the world has these two countries on their side, more than 2 billion of the world’s population is out of it. Though they were arm-twisted by the US, we are still not sure what will happen in these regions.
D for Danish Text: A document that talked of “keeping average global temperature rises to two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels” but ended up being another battleground between the two Ds: Developed and Developing countries.
E for Everyone: The head of the Chinese delegation said: Everyone is happy. Wow! Overstatement of the year?
F for Fredrik Reinfeldt: Who’s he? That’s what even the US thinks too, for a news report said he got an SMS saying that the deal was wrapped up even though he was still negotiating. For the record, the Swedish Prime Minister is the EU president.
G for Global Warming, for Greenhouse Effect, for Greenhouse Gas: Is Global Warming happening in the first place? If it is, will countries cut down on emissions? And if they will, will it really make a difference? We live in a very iffy world.
H for Hundred Billion Dollars: Wow! That’s a huge sum of money! The amount rich nations are willing to pledge annually for Climate Change Aid. Wonder why no-one is impressed!
I for IPCC: The grand Nobel winner Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, of the United Nations. But more in the news for a report which said that the head stood to make money if there was a breakthrough in Carbon economy talks.
J for Joseph Fourier: Heard of him? Yeah, the famous mathematician. He’s the dude who started this whole thing. In 1824 he postulated something that would later be called the greenhouse effect. Do you think we can reach a deal on the 200th anniversary of this great event in 2024?
K for Kyoto Protocol: Adopted in 1997, it came into force in 2005. It will expire in 2012. What is it? Does anyone remember? I don’t.
L for (not) Legally Binding: Ha! After all the furor and subsequent agreements, we were told that whatever was decided upon was not legally binding. How convenient!
M for Mexico: If Copenhagen was COP15, then Mexico 2010 will be COP16. Wait for the drama to continue there.
N for Negotiations: Negotiate, negotiate and negotiate… compromise, compromise and compromise… dilute, dilute and dilute… then tell the world that it’s all a resounding success.
O for Obama: The difference in this summit and a big Change from Bush. He pushed and at the end of it all he told us it was a success. And we are supposed to believe him.
P for Percentages: 10%. 20%. 30%. What does it all mean? How will countries bring about those emission reductions? Who’ll check?
Q for Questions: Which were more in number than answers.
R for Rubber Stamp: We are all rubber stamps of the US. Bush rubbishes climate talks. Obama pushes climate talks. It’s all down to the whims and fancies of the US President, the rest of the world be damned.
S for South Africa: In 2011 it will be COP17. Then 18, 19, 20, 21, 22… keep counting.
T for Tuvalu: A small island which could sink in case of global warming and rising of oceans. At its highest it is 4.5 metres above sea level. A gem from its spokesman on the final Copenhagen draft: It looks like we are being offered 30 pieces of silver to betray our people and our future.
U for Urban: Urbanization. Modernization. Development. With the population increasing like crazy and more and more people living in the cities, I seriously wonder how they are going to pull the whole thing off at ground level.
V for Venezuela: One of the countries that called Copenhagen a Capitalist Conspiracy. Other countries which joined in with the name calling were: Cuba, Bolivia and Nicaragua.
W for Water: The crux of the problem after global warming reaches a critical point. Islands will start sinking, beaches will start disappearing… We will wake up The Day After.
X for Xerox: COP1 happened. Then they photocopied that and COP2 happened, Then they Xeroxed that and COP3 happened… OK I am being pessimistic. But you go through all the documents of the last couple of decades and tell me what really has changed at the ground level, apart from all the treaties and conferences that is.
Y for Yankee Imperialists: Another term the US and its lackeys got called by Venezuela, Cuba, Bolivia and Nicaragua.
Z for Zero: One way to sum up what really happened at Copenhagen.
© Sunil Rajguru