Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The Danish Text is Just a Straw Dog

Delegates in Copenhagen are in an uproar about a draft for a political agreement on climate change leaked to the Guardian newspaper. The document, supposedly written by delegates in Denmark, the UK and the USA, is only a straw dog.

Anyone who has worked on a large committee or board knows that it is easier to get people to agree on what they do not like, rather than starting fresh. Whoever wrote this document expected it to be used as a starting place, not an ending point.

According to the Guardian, developing nations say the text is biased against them, and they object to its being created without their input. Others, including delegates for Environmental Defense Fund, point out that any draft document is only a starting point for negotiations.

Why this document was leaked is a mystery. Was the purpose to put all delegates at odds? Maybe to unite developing countries against the developed countries? I hope all delegates can put this behind them.


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