Nov 30 2010

Lowered Expectations in Cancún Climate Talks

Feature Stories | Published 30 Nov 2010, 10:54 am | Comments Off on Lowered Expectations in Cancún Climate Talks -

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Climate conference in cancunThe United Nations sponsored conference on climate change began in Cancún, Mexico on Monday. Nearly 200 countries will be negotiating over two weeks in the first global meet-up since the Copenhagen conference in December 2009. The much anticipated Copenhagen summit had begun with high expectations, but ended with a non-binding agreement that was largely derided. There was major disagreement between first world governments and the leadership of developing economies. Developing nations argued that their wealthier counterparts were dodging tough reforms. China balked at US demands to submit to third-party inspections processes of its carbon-reduction efforts. The US, and specifically the US Senate, has been criticized in the year since Copenhagen for failing to pass comprehensive climate change legislation at home. Without domestic consensus on climate goals and action, the US has not been willing to commit to international goals. Expectations going into the Cancún talks are significantly lower than a year ago, however some are calling this a shift in favor of pragmatism, not fatalism. Eileen Claussen, President of the Pew Center on Climate Change, said Cancún will be a success if small but significant steps are taken toward the eventual goal of a binding international treaty.

GUEST: Eileen Claussen, President of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Find out more at www.pewclimate.org.

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