Copenhagen Climate Pledges May Not Be Enough
Wednesday, 3 February 2010
The January 31 deadline for nations to submit their emissions reduction pledges has passed, but the UN feels that it may not be enough to keep the Earth’s temperature from rising beyond the approximately two-degree target temperature established during the Copenhagen climate conference held in December. Fifty-five nations, including China, the US, India, as well as the European Union, have submitted their goals in reducing emissions. Together they produce about 78 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions and have varying commitment letters pledging to reduce emissions anywhere from 17 percent to 45 percent by 2020. Developed countries also made commitments supporting financial assistance to less developed countries to adapt to climate change. Despite the efforts being made by nations worldwide, some analysts believe that efforts have fallen short as a result of emissions not being cut enough and the lack of a legally binding treaty. Regardless of both the positive and negative reviews, UN climate chief Yvo de Boer believes that the pledges sent in by the January 31 deadline should at least help to reinvigorate negotiations toward a stronger agreement on climate and hopes that a more binding pact can be completed at the UN climate conference in Mexico City at the end of this year.