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EWEA's Features

COP15, weekend round-up



14 December

News of the Copenhagen climate summit over the weekend is dominated by protests and arrests, as well as the lack of a break-through (although not unexpected) at the talks.

While the vast majority of proterstors were peaceful and just wanted to express their support for decisive political action on climate change, Denmark's Politiken reports that a total of 233 activists were detained on Sunday, while on Saturday nearly 1,000 demonstrators were held only to be released the next day.

Britain's The Times reports that the protesters were set to target Danish shipping giant Moller-Maersk, but police, who said the protest was illegal since they had not received prior notification, moved in quickly before activists could reach their target. A Times reporter was detained by the police who later said there was no violence.

France's Le Monde, on the other hand, describes the police reaction as a true demonstration of force, Greenpeace recounts events from its point of view in a blog with video highlights from around the world, and the treehugger.com has a colourful image gallery of the demonstrations.

Turning to the negotiations, in its Green Inc. blog the New York Times reports that, “amid a flurry of negotiating texts for a pact, alternative texts and somewhat secret alternatives to the alternatives, familiar stumbling blocks quickly emerged,” - which largely boil down to climate financing terms and emissions cuts. The blog entry goes on to describe the strong negotiating stance adopted by developing countries, and the war of words between China and the US on climate financing.

WWF in its blog writes that a two-track approach – a strengthened Kyoto Protocol with a second agreement bringing the US on-board - to a global climate treaty is a “possible outcome” of the summit.

Campaign group Tcktcktck has sent an 'open letter to world leaders', published in this weekend's Financial Times. “We need a breakthrough, not a breakdown”, the letter says, calling on leaders to agree to a deal that sees emissions peaking within the next eight years and commit to financing to help developing countries fight climate change.

The FT Weekend also reports that Unilever and Coca-Cola, two of the biggest companies in the world, have launched an emissions-cutting plan. Other multi-nationals are expected to follow suit, the paper says.

Lastly, Poltiken has an entertaining cartoon satire of the COP events last week.

As the second week of negotiations dawns, the world waits to see what texts and agreements, as well as demonstrations, will rock Copenhagen and the climate summit negotiators.


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