A Climate Committment That’s Not A Treaty?
The Guardian has a leaked copy of what it’s calling “the Danish text” (see it here). Apparently, this draft was developed by the Danes along with other developed countries including the United States and the United Kingdom in the hope that it might become the basis for whatever instrument emerges from Copenhagen. As widely expected, the instrument is framed as a “political agreement” rather than a treaty. Hostility to the instrument has not centered (so far), however, on its form, but rather (a) on its reliance on the World Bank in lieu of existing UN fora for overseeing the new regime as well as (b) its imposition of new commitments on emissions for developing countries that they were apparently not expecting.
The Guardian reports that the leak of the Danish text has thrown the talks into disarray, and makes it sound like the talks are already in danger of failing just as they’ve begun. My own sense is that we’re only at the beginning of a two week process, and I’d expect that there’s still time to get the train back on track toward some consensus on a political commitment. That said, a leak like this will certainly require a fair bit of posturing on all sides before negotiators can get back to that goal. Meanwhile, we’re hoping to have a number of guest bloggers weigh in in the days ahead on Copenhagen, so keep an eye here for future updates as they arise.
Hat Tip: Foreign Policy’s Passport Blog