Copenhagen summit (2009) was nicknamed from being Hopengahen to Nopenhagen for its failure to reach significant resolutions on limiting carbon emissions. Next was Cacun, climate change conference in 2010, yet again the divide between the developed and developing countries resulted in failure to address the climate change concerns.
Now the ball is rolling in Durban as I write. The Kyoto protocol, which is the ONLY legally binding climate agreement expires at the end of 2012. What’s a Kyoto Protocol, read it here, but in short – a globally binding agreement signed in Kyoto at the United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) by 191 states (excluding the U.S). It basically outlined the need to reduce carbon emissions leading to climate change.
If an agreement is not reached over renewal of Kyoto protocol or framing a new proposal, then one can only imagine the consequences. It’s not to say the Kyoto protocol reduced the greenhouse gases drastically, but it was a legal document binding 191 nations.
The argument over emissions cut between developed and developing countries is never ending. China and India are the leading in carbon emissions, with growing populations and urbanisation, it is unlikely to change. Copenhagen failed miserably because of disagreement between these two factions. Is it fair to demand carbon emission cuts by the developed countries when they have been the primary contributors to emissions for decades? Now that the developing countries are growing industrially, they require more energy, which means more emissions, and let’s face it, it’s never eco-friendly.
The developed and developing worlds cannot live in isolation, the world has been connected even before the advent of technology.
And the truth is, no matter how much leaders, diplomats and delegations argue over this, climate change is universal. The recent floods in East Asia, hurricanes in United States, droughts in Africa are results of climate change. There will be a lot of diplomatic clap-trap going on in Durban, but I am hoping the NGOs, pressure groups, indigenous associations get the better out of it.
The focus must be on sustainability and renewable energy at the Durban climate change conference.