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Copenhagen digest 11/12/09

DAY FOUR: America under pressure; Japan demands action; Geo-engineering plans * The climate change summit as seen in the world’s newspapers, magazines and websites

Poor countries have demanded that the ‘US should spend as much on global warming as war’, according to the the Daily Telegraph, reporting that China has accused America of ‘endangering the world by refusing to hand over more cash’.

The United States’ chief climate change negotiator, Todd Stern is playing ‘Good cop, bad cop roles’, reports the New York Times. While being ‘blunt’ in attacking China ‘for not doing enough to reduce climate-altering emissions, the Europeans for demanding too much of the United States and the tiniest and poorest nations for demanding “reparations” from rich countries’, he is actually ‘generally accommodating, low-key and highly artful’.

‘Only geo-engineering solutions, such as covering the planet in artificial trees or reflecting sunlight back into space with mirrors, could save us’ if we do not make ‘drastic cuts in pollution by 2020, costing everybody on the planet up to £150 a year’, warns the Daily Mirror, however these technical solutions are ‘still on the drawing board without any proof they will work’.

The world’s largest postal companies have pledged to cut emissions by 20 per cent reports the Financial Times, noting the trend for companies and sectors to set emissions targets independently of the steps that countries take.

Japan threatened to drop a pledge to cut greenhouse emissions by 25 per cent by 2020 if emission reduction goals are not set for the United States and China,Reuters reports. Japanese Environment Minister Sakihito Ozawa said. ‘There’s no meaning to simply extending a Kyoto Protocol that doesn’t include the United States or numbers from China’.


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