Year 2, Month 12, Day 10: There’ll Be A Lot Of Changes Made, Once We Get Organized

Bla, bla, bla. Same ol’ same ol’. USA Today:

DURBAN, South Africa – An all-encompassing climate deal “may be beyond our reach for now,” the U.N. chief said Tuesday as China and India delivered a setback to European plans to negotiate a new treaty that would bind all parties to their pledges on greenhouse gas emissions.

The European “road map” toward a new accord that would take effect after 2020 is a centerpiece of negotiations among 194 countries at a U.N. climate conference in the South African coastal city of Durban.

It has been presented as a condition for Europe to renew and expand its emissions reduction targets under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which expires next year.

“We must be realistic about expectations for a breakthrough in Durban,” said U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as he opened the final ministerial stage of the two-week conference. “The ultimate goal for a comprehensive and binding climate change agreement may be beyond our reach for now.”

Some days I feel like a conscious brain cell in the head of Nicholas Cage’s character in “Leaving Las Vegas.” Sent December 6:

Ban Ki-moon’s grimly accurate assessment of the political environment complements his words on the planetary climate crisis. Our planetary addiction to fossil fuels is building the concentration of greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere to catastrophic levels — and like any other addict, the world’s biggest carbon burners are in various stages of denial about their role in the problem and their responsibilities in the remedy.

American politicians — almost without exception under the financial sway of enormously powerful corporations — are rendered impotent in the face of impending disaster. Even those who privately acknowledge the reality of the crisis are unable to discuss it in public for fear of electoral consequences. The inability of negotiators in Durban to reach meaningful agreement on greenhouse emissions is a symptom of our poisonous financial culture, just as rising levels of atmospheric CO2 are a symptom of our addiction to toxic sources of energy.

Warren Senders

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