Bangkok Climate Talks Considered a Failure

BANGKOK, Oct. 12 (UPI) — The latest round of climate negotiations failed to deliver any consensus between developed and developing nations and were “doomed to be uneven,” Chinese climate policy experts said Monday.

After the two-week talks, which concluded in Bangkok on Friday, there is just one final negotiating session in Barcelona next month before the December climate change conference in Copenhagen to draw up a successor to the Kyoto Protocol.

By this time, developed countries should have come up with specifics on how much they plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions after 2012, when the Kyoto Protocol expires.

Noting that the Bangkok talks were like a trial run for December’s meetings, “it’s almost impossible” to produce an outcome in Copenhagen that meets the demands of all parties, Qi Jianguo, an economic and environmental policy researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told state-run news agency Xinhua.

Qi said the climate negotiations were politically driven and “it’s almost impossible for the Copenhagen conference to produce an outcome that meets the demands of all parties.”

“The talks involve a conflict of interests, so it cannot run smoothly,” he said.

Su Wei, director of climate change policy at China’s National Development and Reform Commission, observed that some developed countries had a “passive attitude” during the Bangkok talks.

“They neither offered satisfactory plans on their own emissions cut, capital and technological transfer to developing countries, nor responded positively to developing nations’ suggestions on these aspects,” Su said, Xinhua reports.

For India’s part, Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh blamed the European Union for disregarding the basic structure of the Kyoto Protocol and said it was now up to the EU to build trust between rich and developing nations after the Bangkok talks.

“Recent events in Bangkok have cast a long shadow over what is going to happen in the Copenhagen negotiations,” Ramesh said Saturday, the Hindustan Times reported. “The trust that has broken should be repaired quickly,” he said.

Ramesh maintained that India is not “obligated” to take on legally binding emission reduction targets. “That is not on the table as far as India is concerned,” he said. He suggested that nations should tone down ambitions for a global climate deal in Copenhagen and not have “exaggerated expectations” about the outcome of the talks.

Yet Ramesh stressed that a lack of an agreement in Copenhagen would affect his country as much as it would affect other vulnerable developing nations and that India will come to the talks in December as an “interested party” and a “deal maker, not a deal breaker.”

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.