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Four major issues to decide the success of COP-15



Copenhagen meeting just around the corner, the Chinese government announced to greenhouse gas emissions control target – by 2020 the national carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP dropped 40% to 45% than in 2005

Xie Zhenhua, deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission said the Chinese government has formulated a reduce carbon emissions targets which needs requires strenuous efforts of all Chinese people.

In recent weeks, the prospect of Copenhagen is flickering. The announcement of participation of United States President Barack Obama in the climate conference in Copenhagen, once again ignited the global success of this meeting expectations. Issue o

f climate change is an environmental issue on the surface, but actually, it relates to the political and economic issues. This meeting as well as the success of curbing global warming in the future depends largely on the extent of the following topics.
First of all, a clear (without condition) medium-term emission reduction by 2020 target from developed countries is the key

to reach a new agreement in Copenhagen. Otherwise, the international community cannot take the necessary action to address climate change, while developing countries do not believe the developed countries are willing to shoulder the responsibility. Currently, many developed countries have put forward their own emission reduction commitments, but often with additional conditions, attempting to evade or “pass” emission reduction targets, which laying a shadow for reaching a substantive outcome.

Secondly, how to resolve the serious differences between developed and developing countries will affect the integrity of Copenhagen a new agreement is reached. The core of contradiction between the North and South camps is the space of developing economic. Contention is on whether it follows the principle of equity, emphasizing the historical responsibility on climate change of the developed countries. It is clear that we cannot set the same standard for developing countries as developed countries, because developed countries was in “unlimited emission” era for their development.

Third, if the developing countries can have the voluntary emission reduction targets, and their targets could be recognized in developed countries, it may partially offset the defect which developing countries has no responsibility for emission reduction in the “Kyoto era”. The current situation, the continuation of “common but differentiated responsibilities” principle in Kyoto

Protocol is still the cornerstone of the two camps.  In a voluntary basis, if developing countries can make emission reduction target will partially mitigate the sharp confrontation between the two camps.  In particular, if the American people do not witness the strong willingness of cooperation from major developing countries, it is difficult to anticipate emissions bill through the Senate next year.On this issue, China brings hope to this climate conference by making high standards of voluntary emis

sion reduction targets. However, if the developed countries keep requiring developing countries to “mandatory emission reduction”, it will sharpen the contradiction between the two camps.

Finally, whether we can have a clear method of funding for developing countries, largely determine the breadth and intensi

ty of global emission reduction actions. Since the developed countries have a strong economic fundamentals, the scale of emissions reduction actions of the emerging economies is largely depend on the effective access to capital and clean technology through international cooperation. Currently, it is difficult to clarify the amount of funds and funding sources on each of the developed countries.

Now, these disputes could herald UNFCCC Copenhagen conference to reach a “political agreement” rather than “extensiv

e, legally binding” agreement.


近几周来,哥本哈根会议的前景一直不明朗。 美国总统奥巴马将参加哥本哈根气候会议的宣布,又点燃了世界对这次会议取

得成功的期待。气候变化问题表面上是环境问题,其实质却是关于政治和经济问题。 这次会议以及今后全球遏制气候变暖的成功与否,很大程度上取决于以下议题的解决程度。

第一点, 哥本哈根气候峰会新协议的关键, 是发达国家不附加条件地明确本国的2020中期减排目标. 否则, 世界其他各国就无法才取相应的应对气候变化的协议.而发展中国家也就因此不会愿意承担应有的责任. 照目前的情况来看,大多数发达国家已经提出了自己的减排承诺, 但基本都附加有条件,这明显就是有回避或者转嫁减排目标的企图, 因此为国际社会达到控制全球变暖的目标造成了阻碍.

第二,哥本哈根新的议定书的完整性,是建立在如何化解发达国家与发展中国家的严重分歧的基础上的. 全球南北两大阵营的核心矛盾在于对全球发展经济空间的争夺, 其焦点在于是否贯彻公平性的原则. 这个问题强调在于发达国家对于气候变化问题的历史责任问题. 发展中国家在这一点的立场方面表现的非常团结. 必然不能用发达国家的标准来要求发展中国间,毕竟当发达国家发展的时候是无限制排放的.

第三点, 要看发展中国间是不是愿意自己提出自己的减排目标,而且能否得到国际社会,尤其是发展中国家的认可, 尽量部分弥补京都议定书时期发展中国家没有承担任何减排任务的缺陷. 现在,南北两大阵营对话的立足点依然是京都议定书中提出的”共同而有区别的责任”. 国际社会希望发展中国家在自愿的基础上,各国各自做出减排承诺, 能很大程度的缓解双方的尖锐对立. 如果美国的人民群众了解了发展中国间的合作诚意,明年的在国会众的相关减排法案才能更有可能通过,同样的,如果发达国家一味的要求发展中国家也履行强制性减排的义务,必然激化两大阵营的矛盾.

第四点,全球减排行动的广度和力度决定于国际社会能否明确对发展中国间资金以及技术的供应方法. 发达国家拥有着雄厚的资金和基础,有着丰腴的经济基础,他们已经具备达到减排承诺的实力,而发展中国家,尤其是新兴的经济体则必须依赖于国际合作从而得到资金和技术. 照目前的情况来看, 将明确的资金和技术落实到每个具体的发达国家上,还有一定的难度.

因此, 这些种种困难将或许预示着哥本哈根气候变化峰会达成一个“政治协议”,而非“广泛的、具有法律约束力”协议。

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