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Earth News

UN Summit Strikes Climate Deal Promising "Damage Aid" To Poor Nations 212

Hugh Pickens writes writes "BBC reports that UN climate talks in Doha have closed, with a historic shift in principle agreed to by nearly 200 nations, extending the Kyoto Protocol through 2020 and establishing for the first time that rich nations should move towards compensating poor nations for losses due to climate change. Until now rich nations have agreed to help developing countries to get clean energy and adapt to climate change, but they have stopped short of accepting responsibility for damage caused by climate change elsewhere. 'It is a breakthrough,' says Martin Khor of the South Center — an association of 52 developing nations. 'The term Loss and Damage is in the text — this is a huge step in principle. Next comes the fight for cash.' U.S. negotiators made certain that neither the word 'compensation,' nor any other term connoting legal liability, was used, to avoid opening the floodgates to litigation – instead, the money will be judged as aid. Ronny Jumea, from the Seychelles, told rich nations earlier that discussion of compensation would not have been needed if they had cut emissions earlier. 'We're past the mitigation [emissions cuts] and adaptation eras. We're now right into the era of loss and damage. What's next after that? Destruction?' While the United States has not adopted a comprehensive approach to climate change, the Obama administration has put in place a significant auto emissions reduction program and a plan to regulate carbon dioxide from new power plants. 'What this meeting reinforced is that while this is an important forum, it is not the only one in which progress can and must be made,' says Jennifer Haverkamp, director of the international climate programs at the Environmental Defense Fund. The disconnect between the level of ambition the parties are showing here and what needs to happen to avoid dangerous climate change is profound.'"
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UN Summit Strikes Climate Deal Promising "Damage Aid" To Poor Nations

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @10:26AM (#42233257)

    With this, we see their real purpose.

    Climate change.... Well, it's always changing, so the money will always have to flow. Another unending stream.

    What a shock.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @10:51AM (#42233411)

    What an idiotic comment. Rich countries have generally contributed to the problem far more than the rest, but the rest will (and are) facing the brunt if the problems. Sandy was bad, but others have had it worse. This principle has been around for decades but rich countries have dragged their feet in doing anything I even this latest deal doesn't amount to much. The charade is the rich countries pretending that they are concerned.

  • Annnnnd.... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by HappyCycling ( 565803 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @11:49AM (#42233765)
    This is why people think climate change is just a huge scam masquerading as an environmental cause.
  • by rubycodez ( 864176 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @12:16PM (#42233907)

    yes, they and you are that stupid. Name one disaster due to AGC

  • by khallow ( 566160 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @12:23PM (#42233957)

    Do you seriously think that these negotiators are so stupid that they cannot distinguish between natural and anthropomorphic climate change?

    Well, a large portion of them probably are that stupid. Most of the rest are looking for loot.

    The only shock here is that one individual believes that they are more intelligent and have a better grasp of the environment, economics, and politics than the thousands of people who (directly or indirectly) contribute to these negotiations.

    What's sad here is that the individual is probably right. When you have a revenue stream of tens to hundreds of billions per year, then that's plenty of incentive to be as wrong as you can get away with. It's interesting how this move followed a round of discoveries which claim harm of global warming is worse and more urgent than first claimed,

    Maybe there's a real threat from AGW, but this looks to me more like a bunch of corrupt scientists sexing up their research (and possibly just making stuff up) in order to justify a transfer of wealth large enough to make the oil industry envious.

  • by rubycodez ( 864176 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @12:28PM (#42233983)

    hypocrite. the use of coal and oil fueled western civilization and increased average human lifespan by over two times, Modern material, medicine, health, food, all the blessing of hydrocarbon fuel. you are alive and well fed because of it. without it you would likely be dead already.

    yes, we need to go to something else with little pollution, like well designed nuclear power reactors. but the planet has been made better for humans by fossil fuel

  • by flaming error ( 1041742 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @01:32PM (#42234399) Journal

    "this looks to me more like a bunch of corrupt scientists sexing up their research (and possibly just making stuff up) in order to justify a transfer of wealth large enough to make the oil industry envious."

    As you evaluate the various competing claims before you, consider that perhaps laymen swayed by appearances and compelled to impute motives on strangers might not have the intellectual high ground over people who have studied and debated the topic for decades and live by the scientific method.

  • Re:Screw Africa (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @01:52PM (#42234563) Journal

    What a hideous distortion. First of all the "First World" has been plundering sub-Saharan Africa for over five centuries, and second of all a good deal of the economic woes of the region are due directly to those policies.

    Third; you're an ignoramus (and probably a crypto racist). There were sub Saharan kingdoms of a fairly sophisticated nature.

  • by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @01:57PM (#42234631) Journal

    A short term improvement that directly leads to long term devestation is not a benefit. At any rate, the benefits of cheap hydrocarbons are now being outweighed by the dangerously ill effects.

  • by lennier ( 44736 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @05:20PM (#42236409) Homepage

    It's always, nakedly, been about wealth redistribution.

    Oh, the humanity! Those nasty, wicked, impoverished nations teeming with starving people who have all the money and social rank and political power and weapons will force - at gunpoint, even! or maybe just with their hectoring, angry words! or their faces! - a tiny beseiged elite of virtuous billionaires to solve a problem facing everyone and which just drowned New York. But the problem can't be solved, because drowning countries is right and just and honourable and we all know it. And yet they pass bad laws like this. It's horrible, that's what it is. But oh well. It's not like educated billionaires who own mega-corporations have any power in the world, is it? Always they're the ones who get downtrodden and stepped on by the naked jackboot of the filthy masses. All those poor people, swarming everywhere! Eating and breeding and voting! Every day, vote vote vote! Like it's a democracy or something! Filling the world's governments with twisted, perverse policies that benefit the middle-class! Don't the billionaires get any say at all? Those long-suffering saints! One day things must change! One day, just once, a billionaire will stand up and say "No!" to a poor person! One day Atlas must shrug!

    Yeah, I don't think that's how the balance of social power actually works anywhere outside Ayn Rand or Paul Ryan's mind.

Can anyone remember when the times were not hard, and money not scarce?