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Copenhagen deal blocked by the Chinese?

December 26, 2009 – 1:37 am

We all read the news: The western nations couldn’t agree to the terms of the poor nations. Many blamed Barack Obama for the miserable results. But how can Obama, who has been in strong favor of a change towards more environmental protection, block the Copenhagen negotiations? My guess was he couldn’t, because on anything he agreed, congress would have to agree as well. However there are other voices, like that of Mark Lynas.

Mark Lynas is a freelance writer, who’s articles can be found in major newspapers with worldwide reach. He also attended the Copenhagen negotiations, but not only as a journalist, but also as an adviser to the Maledives. Therefore he had access to many meetings where other journalists had to leave. He also attended the meeting at the last Friday of Copenhagen. On December 22. one of his articles was published in The Guardian, titled: “How do I know China wrecked the Copenhagen deal? I was in the room“.

In this article Mark Lynas says, that the deal was blocked by the Chinese. According to Mark Lynas, the Chinese even prohibited the developed nations to set a goal for themselves. Tough stuff. True? Unless protocolls are published, noone will know what really happend, however this could take years. The thing that supports Mark Lynas’ credibitlity is, so far noone called him a liar, his reasoning is plausible and he risks a lot: He probably won’t be invited to the next summit.

The truth…
… is somewhere out there. China wants to grow as fast as possible. This means they will reach the status as a developed nation rather soon. Then they would be subject to the strict environmental rules of a new climate change deal. They probably want to avoid just that. At the same time China knows that being the dirty world factory has brought them so far, but it won’t bring them any further. China has to go high-tech and high tech is inherently clean. Maybe Barack Obama, my favorite hero, can still rescue our climate. Let’s see what happens.

Update: This article by The China Beat clears up some things in great detail. What exactly happened in Copenhagen?

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  1. 2 Responses to “Copenhagen deal blocked by the Chinese?”

  2. China is not interested in the environment at all. Their only thought is growth – if it is environmentally friendly than it is OK, but fixed goals … never. A single-sided goal setting by the ‘industrialized’ countries would make China lose face as they try to be soooo “environmental” on the outside. Chinese politicians talk about such things like climate change and that China wants to do something against it, but these are just words. Nothing more. If all the other countries would have agreed to a final goal without China, the Chinese government would have lost at least 4 faces as it seems are not that ‘motivated’ as the other countries.

    It seems there is only one way right now. China needs to be environmentally isolated and all the other countries should sign a treaty with real goals. It will make China to look like a fool (what it actually is) and it is their turn then to show ‘real effort’ and not just words, phrases and those typical Chinese “yes, we can (but actually we can’t or won’t or our waterbuffalo just died and we will never tell you because we have to save face)”.

    The result of the summit was no surprise.

    By kozen on Dec 29, 2009

  3. Hi Kozen,

    You’re right, China is only about growth for now.

    By Hendrik on Dec 29, 2009

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