Thursday, 17 December 2009

24 hour countdown?

Parties need to have an agreement by 3pm tomorrow (or as close as possible to that time) so that heads of state who are in Copenhagen can officially seal the deal while they're there. But is this possible given the deep disparities on a large number of key elements among countries? Tuvalu wants a legally-binding commitment, while US delegates have admitted they can only accept a (non-binding) decision because their hands are tied by their Senate. So this is a tug-of-war between the US Senate and whoever is advising Tuvalu, one might wonder? It's a strange practice that countries can be represented by anyone (e.g. international experts), who may or may not represent national interest - whatever that really means anyway.
I was just in a contact group meeting where they had negotiating text on the screen. It was about the Climate [Fund] [Facility]. Unbelievable that less than 24 hours before an agreement needs to be on the table there is still very little that's actually agreed on.
Meanwhile, TV reporters are looking for Brad Pitt who is supposed to be here somewhere.
This place is cold, heartless, artificial. It's a strange feeling to be locked in here all day, while time is being wasted and progress is stalled. But it's also heartening to see the word come together here in pursuit of saving 'mother earth'. In the wise words of Gordon Brown, we need to advance national interest more intelligently because for all of us and our children there is no greater national interest than the common future of our planet.

Heike Schroeder

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