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Draft statement falls short on specifics

By Juliet Eilperin
The draft political statement presented to Obama and other heads of government Friday on the final day of global climate talks outlines several general goals, but falls short of the specificity that many leaders have said is essential for a final deal.

According to excerpts obtained by The Washington Post, the draft provides a way for industrialized nations to commit "aggregate reductions of greenhouse gases" by 2020, and allows for this number to by judged based on both a 1990 baseline--which the European Union has insisted is the most meaningful date--and a 2005 baseline, which the U.S., Japan and other developed countries have endorsed.

On the question of verifying emission reductions by major emerging economies, the draft says these actions will be "subject to their domestic auditing, supervision and assessment, the result of which shall be reported through their national communications" every two years.

"Clarification upon request may be provided by the party concerned, at its discretion, to respond to any questions regarding any info contained in the national communications," the statement adds.

That is a less stringent level of independent scrutiny than what Clinton has said is critical for America's participation in any global warming pact.

The draft does establish the link between international assistance for poor countries and this sort of transparency, with language that says: "In the context of meaningful mitigation actions and transparency on implementation, the parties support a goal of mobilizing jointly $100 billion a year by 2020 to address the climate change needs of developing countries."

Rather than specifying where this money would come from, negotiators have drafted language saying it would be cobbled together from a "wide variety of sources, public and private, bilateral and multilateral, including alternative sources of finance."

Advocates for nations struggling to adapt to global warming's impact said leaders would have to strengthen the draft's language in order to ensure these vulnerable countries would be protecteding the years to come. "It leaves lots of questions unanswered," said David Waskow, climate change program director for Oxfam America.

(Update: The Guardian has also obtained the draft text and they've posted photos of the draft text on their site)


Juliet Eilperin

 |  December 18, 2009; 6:29 AM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Sounds like the the Copenhagen climate change conference was a massive waste of time and energy.

Posted by: junomoneta88 | December 18, 2009 7:06 AM
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