Day 1: Everybody Wants Something at Cancun’s Climate SummitWritten by Alex Newman
Amid low expectations and widespread disillusion, thousands of “climate dignitaries” from around the world descended on the Mexican resort city of Cancun for the first day of global-warming negotiations, each hoping to get something. A massive security presence — over 3,000 extra police and soldiers, along with warships off the coast — was deployed to protect the event and its participants.
But judging by the number of expected attendees and the relatively tame media interest, the show will not be as big as last year’s snowed-in COP15 spectacle in Copenhagen. Over 50,000 people came to that one. This year, less than 20,000 are expected. On top of that, only a fraction of the amount of heads of state will attend this year.
Most analysts do not have high expectations for tough carbon limits either, or even concrete results. For one, the Copenhagen summit last year was almost a total failure in the eyes of global-warming alarmists. The “climate” crusade’s decline has only accelerated since then.
The economic crisis has also dealt a severe blow to the ability of governments around the world to foist new agreements that would further damage their nations’ economies on their populations. The ruling U.S. Democratic party’s monumental voter rebuke this November — like the backlash against other politicians around the world who have been trounced after their open support for global-warming hysteria — certainly won’t help the cause, either.
And then, of course, there is the elephant in the room: Climategate. Last November, right before the COP15, leading so-called “climate scientists” — responsible for much of the global climate alarmism — were exposed as frauds. Leaked e-mails showed them covering up data on cooling, plotting to use a “trick” to hide the decline in global temperatures, scheming to smear actual scientists who did not agree with their alarmism, and much more.
Since then, more and more people have become aware of these facts, despite most of the media’s best efforts. Polls also consistently show plummeting faith in man-made global-warming theories. But of course, none of this will get in the way of dictators like Fidel Castro, Robert Mugabe, and Hugo Chavez. Their goal is to get as much plunder from the “evil capitalist” countries as possible — largely to prop up their failing socialist regimes.
“If we don’t act to prevent climate change, the cost will be much higher to reverse its effects,” said Mexican President “His Excellency” Felipe Calderon (the UN really refers to them like that). “Approximately five to 10 percent of world GDP would have to be dedicated to alleviate the devastating changes,” he claimed.
In his opening speech, Calderon cited a hurricane, a drought, and other natural occurrences as evidence of the supposed need for a new, global climate regime. It’s for “the children,” of course, he added, expressing optimism that there would be “unprecedented decisions” made at the summit.
After “His Excellency” gave the opening speech, various administrative duties were taken care of. Summit participants went through the motions of electing the COP16 president, Mexican Foreign Minister Patricia Espinosa.
“It is time to make a concerted effort before it is too late,” Espinosa instructed the delegates. “We can only achieve the results if we commit to making progress.”
UN climate boss Christiana Figueres, who replaced disgraced former UN climate chief Yvo de Boer, also gave a quick talk. “Cancun will be successful if parties compromise, if they make sure that in the process of getting what they want, they allow others to leave with what they need,” she said without offering specifics. “Governments can reach a deal to launch action on adaptation, technology transfer, and forests … and they can create a new fund for long-term climate finance.”
The big climate-summit news from the United States, according to Reuters, was supposed progress made between American and communist Chinese global-warming negotiators. “We have spent a lot of energy in the past month working on those issues where we disagree and trying to resolve them," explained U.S. delegation boss Jonathan Pershing, adding that, despite Republican victories in the mid-term elections, Obama was still committed to slashing U.S. “emissions.”
“My sense is that we have made progress.... It remains to be seen how this meeting comes out," Pershing concluded.
One of communist China’s big qualms last year was the lack of a global population-control regime as part of the package to combat alleged warming. That government enforces a strict one-child policy, even forcing women to have abortions if they already have one child. According to the regime, this helps limits CO2 (carbon dioxide, also known as plant food) emissions.
“We've had a very candid, very open dialogue with our U.S. friends and I think both the U.S. and China would very much like to see a good outcome at Cancun," Pershing’s Chinese counterpart told Reuters. The term “good outcome,” however, was not defined.
So-called environmentalist groups, tin-pot dictators, developed-nation officials, and global bureaucrats all have their own pet projects — or “good outcomes” — in mind. Greenpeace, for example, identified another gas it wants to outlaw. UN-types want some sort of global tax — paid directly to them. Leaders of relatively prosperous countries like the United States and western European countries want an excuse to implement carbon taxes. And dictators, of course, want capitalist money to hold onto power a little longer.
With 10 days left, the outcome of the climate summit is still up in the air. There is some speculation that, with less media attention, it might be easier to reach an unpopular agreement. Most observers, however, anticipate another relative flop.
The New American will be covering COP16 developments, so stay tuned.