India: "no binding commitment to reduce emissions"


Emissions to continue rising

Acres of newsprint have been wasted over the past week trying to convince everybody that Durban really did achieve something, namely that for the first time, China, India and the US have agreed to binding emissions cuts by 2020.

Despite the fact that Australia will have a carbon price for many years before the rest of the world, Julia and Greg have spun this to somehow justify Australia’s unilateral actions.

Graham Lloyd in The Australian falls for the line, in a piece yesterday:

The significance of setting a timeframe for a legal agreement that covers both developed and developing nations – with talks to conclude by 2015 and an agreement to take effect from 2020 – should not be understated. For the first time, large emerging economic powers such as China, India and Brazil agreed to legal constraints on their emissions.

“That would have been unthinkable” at the previous two big UN conferences in 2007 and 2009, says Anthony Hobley, head of climate change at London-based legal firm Norton Rose. “It’s a recognition of the reality of the shifts in global power.” (source – paywall)

But that’s not how India views the deal post-Durban:

Days after the Durban Climate Summit, Government today insisted that India has agreed to no legally-binding commitments to reduce its emissions in absolute terms in 2020. 

Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan told Parliament that India has already announced a domestic mitigation goal of reducing the emissions intensity of its output by 20-25 per cent by 2020 in comparison with 2005 level. 

“This goal is relative in nature and allows India’s emissions to grow as the economy grows,” she said in identical suo motu statements in both Houses. 

She insisted that the decision of the Durban meet “does not imply that India has to take binding commitments to reduce its emissions in absolute terms in 2020.” (source)

The reality is, that whilst they may have vaguely committed to reducing emissions intensity (per unit GDP), they have made no commitment whatsoever with regard to absolute emissions, which will continue to rise. Similarly, China is building dozens of new coal-fired power stations every year, and there is no way on earth that China will bind themselves to reduce emissions, except (perhaps) in terms of intensity.

Which means, in short… emissions will continue to rise. Which means, in short, there will be no effect on the climate (assuming a climate sensitive to CO2 as the alarmists contend), which most of us were under the impression was the main aim.

So far from being a bold agreement to “save the planet”, Durban is a watered-down compromise which will see emissions continue to rise for the foreseeable future, and which will ensure that Australia’s tiny 5% cut by 2020 will be well and truly lost in the noise.

Australia’s unilateral action is pointless and damaging, will send our industries offshore and, thanks to rapidly spiralling energy costs, will consign many to poverty. And by the way, it won’t save the planet either.

Copenhagen: Ethiopia advocates global socialism


The Ethiopian suggestion

The Ethiopian suggestion

And supported by France and Britain – surprise surprise. Sarkozy the closet socialist, and Brown the old-Labour socialist. Climate change is the gift that keeps on giving. It’s the perfect way to introduce global wealth distribution via the back door, without anyone noticing. The Ethiopian proposal is as close to this as it’s possible to get – I’m amazed they said it with a straight face, as they prepare to fleece the developed world right under its nose.

AFRICAN nations, led by Ethiopia and backed by France and Britain, have presented a plan to break the deadlock at the Copenhagen talks by raising billions of dollars to help poor countries cope with climate change through levies on international aviation and shipping and possibly even a controversial global financial tax.

Kevin Rudd discussed the plan with Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown soon after his arrival in Copenhagen. Mr Brown, along with French President Nicolas Sarkozy, is backing the Ethiopian scheme, although the financial tax proposal was last night meeting resistance from other developed countries.

A spokesman for Mr Brown said London supported the Ethiopian proposal and hoped it could “provide a way forward” for the struggling climate change talks.

Where will the money go? To adapting to climate change? Er, I don’t think so. Into the pockets of despots and dictators.

Stupidity really does know no bounds.

Read it here.

Copenhagen Day 5 – Rudd's document irks Chinese


Day 5

Day 5

It’s not going very well, and part of the reason for that is Kevin Rudd’s desire to be seen as an international statesman, at the forefront of negotiations. But unfortunately his meddling is annoying the Chinese, whose participation is essential if any deal is to come out of Copenhagen:

CHINA has accused the developed world of retreating from its undertakings to cut greenhouse gas emissions, rejected a proposal at the Copenhagen conference to reduce financial help to China and described the draft deal Kevin Rudd worked on as creating “a lot of problems”.

The Chinese have accused the developed world of abandoning the Kyoto Protocol and pressuring the developing nations to cut emissions without proper compensation for the “luxury emissions” the West has put out for the past century.

The so-called “commitment circle” draft document worked out between Denmark, Australia and other nations was said to be from a small and isolated group and designed to lift the political standing of individuals. [Who could they possibly mean? – Ed]

The Chinese position is providing no room to raise its carbon emissions target and to accept any binding agreement. It is demanding new technology regardless of patents, and rejects the view that it should be labelled a developed nation. The draft proposal, which involved the Danish leader and Mr Rudd as a “friend of the chair of the conference”, “was not the overwhelming view of developed countries and was also a personal view not representing the view of his country“, Mr Zhang said.

“The so-called draft has been widely criticised by the developing camp through the group of 77, which truly demonstrates this draft was made by a very small number of countries in isolation, and there are a lot of problems to be addressed,” he said. (source)

Keep up the good work, Kevin – you’re doing everyone a favour. If you want to read the draft, you can find it here.

And China is digging in, pushing its right to economic development:

China has become the “key” to success at Copenhagen, on the developing side, but the world’s most populous nation is fighting back against proposals, in part developed by the Australian Prime Minister, which would redefine China’s status as a developing nation, oblige it to meet tougher targets and cut its access to the billions in aid from the developed world to fight climate change. The proposals also effectively weaken the binding agreements under the Kyoto Protocol.China, in a co-ordinated effort, has decided to put responsibility for emissions cuts back on Europe and the US and to declare its targets of 40 to 45 per cent reductions as “the upper limit”, or the maximum achievable.

Using the backlash from the developing world at Copenhagen, China is marshalling its argument that the West created the greenhouse gas problem and built its wealth upon coal-fired industry. Now, says China, it has 150 million in poverty, millions in regions who suffer harsh winter conditions and their right to develop and simple comfort and sustenance cannot be denied. (source)

Meanwhile, the EU has begun the global socialism at the core of the Copenhagen summit:

European Union nations have agreed to give 7.2 billion euros to help developing nations tackle climate change, the Swedish EU presidency announced Friday.

“The EU total is equal to 2.4 billion euros per year,” over the next three years, with voluntary pledges coming in from all 27 EU member states, Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said after a two-day EU summit in Brussels.

The ‘fast start’ money is Europe’s contribution to helping the developing world to adapt to global warming over the next three years and to encourage the ongoing UN climate change conference in Copenhagen to do more. (source)

Just a drop in the ocean compared to what they’re hoping for…

Copenhagen: US gets tough on China


Stern by name, stern by nature

Stern by name, stern by nature

For all the sweet talking that has been going on over the past few months, when it comes to tough negotiations, the gloves are off, as Politiken.dk reports:

America’s Chief Negotiator Todd Stern says China must act, and rejects demands for more funding.

He may have just arrived and hardly had time to have a bath, but America’s chief negotiator at the COP15 talks has turned on a shower of rebuttal on China’s calls for the United States to do more.

“The United States accepts its historical role in greenhouse gas emissions, but it is wrong to talk about fault and debt. We want the strongest possible agreement in Copenhagen, but it cannot be a free round for China and the big developing countries,” Stern says.

Stern was reacting to statements by China’s Development Minister Xie Zenhua earlier today when he tentatively suggested that China would be prepared to consider a 50 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in 2050, but only if the United States puts much more on the table than it has already done.

I really hope that President Obama delivers when he comes to Copenhagen,” the Chinese minister said.

Emissions are emissions. It’s pure mathematics. Anyone can see that we cannot achieve an adequate result if China is not part of it,” Stern says, going on to reject demands from China and other developing nations for more funds than the USD 10 billion the United Nations says is necessary in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

“And here, one cannot imagine that China is at the head of the queue to receive public dollars from the United States. There are many other countries with much greater needs,” Stern says.

Read it here.

Copenhagen – Day 2: "disarray"


Day 2

Day 2

It hasn’t taken long for the wheels to start coming loose on the Copenhagen bandwagon, if reports at News.com.au are to be believed. Under the headline “Copenhagen conference in disarray“, it reports that certain documents have been leaked showing wealthier nations would be given more power in future climate change negotiations:

The documents seem to allow a handful of rich countries to have larger emissions and more control over future talks within a “circle of commitment” and have enraged delegates from developing countries.

The US, UK, and Denmark are among the countries included in the so-called “Danish text.”

The document also sets unequal limits on per capita carbon emissions for developed and developing countries in 2050; meaning that people in rich countries would be permitted to emit nearly twice as much under the proposals.

The secret draft agreement worked on by a group of individuals known as “the circle of commitment” – understood to include the UK, US and Denmark – has only been shown to a handful of countries since it was finalised this week, The Guardian reports.

The document was described last night by one senior diplomat as “a very dangerous document for developing countries. It is a fundamental reworking of the UN balance of obligations. It is to be superimposed without discussion on the talks”, the paper reports. (source)

The ABC (incredibly) has more:

The document abandons the Kyoto Protocol, sidelines the United Nations in future climate change negotiations, and hands most of the power to rich countries.

The Kyoto Protocol relied on the principle that rich nations – responsible for the bulk of emissions – can and should be compelled to take on the biggest burden when it comes to cutting those emissions.

Under Kyoto, poorer nations were not required to act at all.

The leaked agreement not only brings the developing world into the frame, it allows rich countries to emit twice as much carbon as poor countries. (source)

Ouch. That should really stir things up! See BBC coverage here.

The other big news this morning is that this decade is shaping up to be “the hottest on record”. (They use “hotter” and “hottest” as a cheap trick to make it sound more dramatic – we’re talking tenths of one degree here.) Since the planet is emerging from the Little Ice Age, it’s a bit like saying “spring will be warmer hotter than winter”, and since “on record” means in the last 150 years, it ignores all previous warmings, such as the Medieval Warm Period, which were warmer, sorry, hotter.  In other words, Big Freaking Deal. And even then, none of this proves that the warming is anthropogenic, nor that cutting emissions will make the slightest difference.

But that doesn’t stop the moonbat media latching on to it to claim that it’s even more important that we strike a deal at Copenhagen:

“World’s hottest decade adds to pressure for climate accord”

The UN’s top weather expert warned Tuesday that the world is in its hottest decade on record as climate negotiators plunged into talks seeking a historic deal on cutting carbon emissions.

The prediction by the World Meteorological Organisation underlined the pressure for an agreement at a summit in Copenhagen, which was boosted when the United States said it would start to regulate carbon dioxide as a dangerous pollutant.

“The decade 2000-2009 is very likely to be the warmest on record, warmer than the 1990s, which were in turn warmer than the 1980s,” World Meteorological Organisation Secretary General Michel Jarraud told a press conference.

Jarraud also said that the year 2009 would probably rank as the fifth warmest since accurate records were started in 1850. (source)

Stating the Obvious: carbon cuts "could hurt economy"


Herald Sun

Herald Sun

But hang on… surely this wonderful new green economy will create thousands of jobs, billions of dollars of investment, and everything in the environmental garden will by rosy, right? That’s what we’ve been told over and over again by the Rudd government, despite the fact that a bit of common sense would tell you that taxing energy will cause huge damage to any economy. Seems that it takes this long for the media to catch up with common sense:

IMF experts say the global economy stands to benefit from action against climate change, but warn that aggressive curbs on emissions could jeopardise the recovery without careful planning.

Days before a major climate summit gets underway in Copenhagen, the experts at the International Monetary Fund said a global pact would help the world’s poorest who face the worst effects of rising temperatures.

“Greater climate resilience can promote macroeconomic stability and alleviate poverty,” Michael Keen and Benjamin Jones of the global lender’s fiscal affairs department wrote in a staff position note.

But they also called for caution. They warned that sudden, large hikes in the costs of carbon emissions blamed for global warming could generate “unwelcome pressures on production costs and household incomes, thus dampening prospects for recovery”.

Preventing developing countries from using fossil fuels will consign millions if not billions of people back into a life of poverty – it’s a simple as that. There is no green economy panacea – it’s a myth.

Read it here.

"Carbon intensity" – the new fudge factor


Tricked by carbon intensity

Tricked by carbon intensity

The media is full of headlines praising India and China for agreeing to cut carbon by this percentage or that percentage, but it’s only when you read down that you realise that they are referring to carbon intensity, which is carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP.

So when China says it will cut carbon by 40% by 2020, what it means is that it will actually increase emissions by about 25%, because GDP in developing countries such as China is going through the roof, but which is 40% less than it would have been.

And yet the media seem unable to see through the trick, reporting it as if it’s big news:

INDIA aims to reduce its carbon intensity by 2020 by up to 25 per cent compared with 2005, the country’s Environment Minister has announced, echoing similar commitments by China and the US before the Copenhagen climate change conference.

Jairam Ramesh reiterated India’s refusal to accept legally binding targets for reducing its carbon emissions or to agree to Western demands to set a date for when its emissions would peak. But he did announce a target for India’s unilateral efforts to reduce the quantity of carbon dioxide it produces per unit of GDP — known as its carbon intensity — and said that India would show flexibility at the summit.

The announcement was seen as a major shift in India’s negotiating position.

“The Planning Commission has concluded that we can have a 20 to 25 per cent reduction in emission intensity between 2005 and 2020,” Mr Ramesh said in a speech outlining India’s position at next week’s summit.

So whereas countries like the UK have unilaterally committed economic suicide by legislating an 80% reduction in actual emissions by 2050, India and China merely commit to increase emissions, but more slowly.

Read it here.

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