Gridlock and fake pledge

photo by aantozak (istock lisence) Monday morning 11:30am: negotiations in Copenhagen have stopped completely. A day before the high-level segments start, countries are arguing about what to negotiate first and only agreed to disagree. It was interesting as an observer to watch how the session of the group of the Kyoto-Protocol was ended by Australia insisting on closing the session, because the developing countries were blocking other sessions. All press conferences by governments have been canceled, behind the door talks are going on. In the meantime, Canada has announced a new climate target for 2020 that would put the home of the tar sands in a frontrunner position to tackle climate change. Sounds crazy? I know…

Take a look as long as the article is online. According to the Wall Street Journal Europe Canada announces a major shift in the negotiations and offers to reduce its emissions with 40% by 2020 compared and 80% by 2050 to 1990 levels. I wish it was true, but no more than a nice fake.

This gridlock in the negotiations has two implications: On the one hand, we lose important time to get the job done. Every minute not negotiated is a waste of time that should be used to work through a very complex and long agenda. On the other hand, the gridlock increases dramatically the pressure on Ministers and heads of States who will arrive later on this week. They don’t want a meeting of failure. Sweden – which is speaking for the EU at the COP – was talking about the rumour that new climate targets will be negotiated only in the Ministrial segment. The working group was scheduled to meet again tonight at 7pm (1pm ET), but this is now totally open. The gridlock increases the pressure!

Photo by aantozak (istock lisence)