Thursday, December 17, 2009

Is There Hope?

One thing is absolutely certain. Without financial backing from the US and other developed countries there will be no agreement. So Hillary Clinton's announcement Thursday that the US will cooperate with other countries to underpin a $100 B annual "mitigation" fund gives some hope.

With the promise of money comes the requirement for transparency in monitoring emissions, which is only right. The governments of many developing countries have shown in the past that aid money given to help their citizens ends up in politicians' pockets and bank accounts.

But this may be the push that gets China to commit - they have already discovered the insanity of dirtying your own nest and are taking steps to reduce emissions even as they step onto the world stage economically.

Harper arrives today, and Obama tomorrow. I fully expect Canada to come to the table with an empty bucket. At home the oil companies are already whining for corporate welfare lest their profits be diminished as they rape the earth and Harper is, after all, an Alberta politician who has long been nested in the pocket of the oil industry.

But we can still hope that Obama might have something substantial to offer which will move the accord forward. Expectations of him generally are high, despite the US Government's efforts to dampen them.

So we'll see. Will there be any movement toward reduction of CO2 levels. Will world leaders get serious about climate change? It's anyone's guess right now.

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