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The Low Carbon Economy Ltd

23 Apr 2010 11:04:07

Is it a surprise that the Copenhagen Accord may not work?

Is it a surprise that the Copenhagen Accord may not work?
When representatives of 192 countries converged in Copenhagen at the end of 2009, it was thought to be a seminal step forward in the world's fight against climate change.

Out of this conference emerged the Copenhagen Accord and the agreement that a two degree limit would be the benchmark by which the international community would measure global warming.

However, no firm agreement was made about how this would be achieved.
Just six months later, researchers at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research have said that the pledges made in Copenhagen may not be enough to keep global warming within the agreed limits.

Published in the journal Nature, the research suggests that current emission levels could see the earth heat up by more than three degrees by 2100. It estimates that there is a 50 percent chance of this happening.

Currently the UK is pledging to cut carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050, although this may change depending on the result of the upcoming election.

The researchers said that even if all nations reduce the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere by half by 2050, there is still a 50 percent chance that global temperatures will rise by two degrees C.

In fact it was found that it's possible that global carbon emissions could increase by 20 percent by 2020.

According to the Times, the report concluded that the nations which signed up at Copenhagen were simply putting off difficult decisions.

The United Nations has also pointed out recently that it is very unlikely that the targets set out in the Copenhagen Accord will be met.
And is it really a surprise that such vague pledges may not bring about the changes needed?

In brief, those who signed the accord agreed that action must be taken on climate change and agreed to the provision of certain levels of funding, both long term and short term.

Developing countries will be required to report their efforts every two years, although no similar clause was included which applies to developed nations.

Perhaps, most significantly no sanctions were identified for those who fail to meet their targets.

So, in light of this new research, is it time for the world to accept that the Copenhagen Accord was just a vague idea and we're still waiting for the real action to tackle climate change to begin?ADNFCR-1235-ID-19738311-ADNFCR

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