Like Hamlet, Shakespeare's conflicted Prince of Denmark, China was caught between conflicting currents in Copenhagen. Its failure to manage these challenges led to its biggest diplomatic debacle in years.
The Copenhagen Accord represents an ignominious retreat from the urgent and universal imperative of combating climate change through cooperative global action. It needs to be replaced with an ambitious, legally binding agreement.
Thanks to the courage of Bolivia and a few other nations – and against huge pressure and threats to sign the deal - the UN did not endorse or adopt the vacuous Copenhagen Accord but instead were forced to use the much weaker language of “noting” it.
So it seems that for once everyone agrees on something: the UN climate summit in Copenhagen was a spectacular failure. That is quite an achievement in itself, since consensus seems a rarity in these times.
The reason for the failure in Copenhagen is clear - rather than discuss coordinated efforts, countries lobbied for their particular interests. Everything now depends on individual states and their respective blocs.
Yoon Geum Sum, a peasant leader in South Korea, joined Trade to Climate Caravan to advocate for the right of small farmers and peasants to produce food locally and sustainably to feed themselves and their communities.
Respected author Naomi Klein spoke at the opening of the KlimaForum on Monday night, where she also found time to interview Nnimmo Bassey, the much celebrated Nigerian human rights activist of Environmental Rights Action.
Betina from Isthmus of Tehuantepec (Oaxaca, Mexico) joined Tade to Climate Caravan to denounce the malicious practices behind the clean-energy windmills set up in Oaxaca, which are displacing indigenous communities from their land.