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Category Archives: In Our Own Words

The Sun has Set on Copenhagen and the COP-15

Actually, the sun set here in Copenhagen several hours ago, but it seems to have also set for the COP.  A new accord appears to have been reached this evening, but it falls short of most expectations.  This morning, President Obama flew in to deliver a disappointing speech in front of the UN and then […]

Activism Around the City

Here is a visual diary of things going on around Copenhagen yesterday (12/15) outside COP15: See more pictures here:

CMP Plenary: Report from the AWG for KP Track on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties

Breaking News: Meeting opens over 30 minutes late due to heightened security.  Brazil and India delegates upset about security, and both had difficulty getting into the plenary.  After several delegate statements, including a renewed call for action from Tuvalu, COP15 President Connie Hedegaard resigns.  Danish Prime Minister (PM) Lars Løkke Rasmussen is now also the COP15 […]

Al Gore et. al. Present New Report on Melting Ice

I just witnessed the unveiling of an important new report, sponsored and presented by Al Gore and Gro Harlem Brundtland (yes, that Brundtland), Greenland Ice Sheet – Melting Snow and Ice: Calls for Action. Other global heavyweights that presented were the world-renowned scientist Dorthe Dahl-Jensen, the Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller, Norwegian Foreign Minister […]

Beauty and the Beast and Tens of Thousands of Protesters

Renewable Energy Advocates Get Upclose Look at Middelgrunden Windfarm.

Denmark has been a leader in renewable and clean energy for over 40 years.  While some policies were perhaps misguided, like banning car use on Sundays in the 1970’s, slow but steady expansion of the country’s renewable energy portfolio has allowed the country to maintain its emission levels while boasting of continuing healthy economic expansion.  […]

And the Dance Goes On

After Tuvalu’s call for a suspension of the COP yesterday, Steffen Schmidt was assigned the task of meeting informally with the parties to reach some resolution, the details of which were to be announced during the afternoon plenary.  Unfortunately, and somewhat predictably, the parties could not reach resolution in the few short hours allotted. After announcing […]

How to Respond to a “Climate Change Skeptic”

With the “leaked email scandal” from last week that many climate change opponents have turned to as “proof” that scientists have been falsifying, exaggerating, or just plain lying about climate change data, I think it is important to reflect on just how proven human induced climate change is. If you aren’t convinced by the scientific […]

Most Vulnerable Nations Call for Financing Reforms

After a somewhat sleepy day yesterday, the discussions at COP15 are picking up in passion and intensity.  In this morning’s Plenary I (a meeting of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation or SBI), one of the main topics was the status of the Global Environment Facility, i.e., one of the most important mechanisms for financing climate-related projects […]

View From the Plenary

The Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) met today for the 1st Plenary II meeting.  (There are two major plenary, the other by the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI).)  The SBSTA’s agenda for the day included issues surrounding the development and transfer of technologies, research and systematic observations, and how to reduce emissions […]

Going Mobile in the Conference

So I’m experimenting with posting pics and videos on-the-fly.  If this continues to work, I’ll be bringing near-instant updates from relevant side events and happenings around the city. If you have something you’d like covered or want more detail on please leave it in the comments and we’ll try to accommodate! Check it out…

Initial Impressions

The Bella Center, where the conference is being held, is enormous and full of things to see.  There are green plant displays, internet stations, pamphlets on all aspects of climate-related issues, cafes, and more.  The variety of people from all over the world is exciting.  Standing in the “observers” line to get our registration badges […]

Getting Settled In

Most of us have made it to Copenhagen now.  A few travel snags, but nothing too serious.  The Bella Center is very well organized, and the registration/badge pickup has gone fairly smoothly.  We’re excited to have free passes for travel on all public transit in Copenhagen — trains, buses, Metro, etc.  They’ve really thought of everything.  […]

The Truth About Cap-and-Trade

Three cheers for Lesley McAllister! In a recent article, this empirically-minded law professor explains why so many cap-and-trade programs have not made any dent in the emissions they were meant to control (34 Colum. J. Envtl. L. 395, 2009). Ever since I read this article a few weeks ago, I have been pondering its implications […]

The View from Coal Country

The conversation about climate change revolves to a great extent around coal-fired power plants in the U.S., China, and around the world because of their enormous emissions of carbon dioxide and the alarming rate at which new plants are being proposed and constructed. Today was a day for absorbing many of the other ugly truths […]