Down to the wire – Was the Lima decision better than nothing?

As you likely have heard, the COP20 talks wrapped earlier this morning at around 3:30 AM.  The deal was done in seconds following the break for countries to review a new text tabled by the President just before midnight.  He then suspended the session to give parties an hour to read the new draft.  The final decision is four pages long.  It should be understood not as a new “deal” for the climate, but as a 12-month work plan leading to COP21.

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Fanfare and backrooms

As the available hours for negotiations wind down, we have entered the usual phase at such negotiations of high-level speeches extolling negotiators to finish the work and deliver on our obligations to future generations while the negotiators themselves seem no closer to the finish line than they were days ago.

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Climate march in Lima and fresh ideas in talks

The COP20 talks are taking place in an unlikely venue  - a military base outside of town.  Despite the reporting of its carbon footprint, being built from scratch to accommodate ten thousand people, it is working well as a venue. Depending on your viewpoint, it could be seen as bizarre or appropriate that the COP is ringed around by a military training obstacle course.

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Canada’s dismal presence

Leona Aglukkaq has been in Lima at COP20 arriving on the same flight I took to Peru. She was in first class so I didn’t see her, but I was reliably informed by a friend in the front cabin that she was there. It has been no easier to find her at COP20 than it was through the “iron curtain” between first class and economy on the flight from Toronto.

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Climate talks at national and sub-national levels

Sorry. That has to be my least inspired blog title ever.  Chalk it up to being immersed in UN-speak all day. But read on to find out where the more positive discussions are happening...

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What’s at stake in Lima?

I am in Lima, Peru for the 20th Conference of the Parties (COP) of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). COPs within the UNFCCC are the on-going process working to develop a comprehensive treaty to ensure greenhouse gas (GHG) levels to do not rise more than 2 degrees C global average temperature above pre-industrial revolution levels. 

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