"COPENHAGEN -- A plan to protect the world's biologically rich tropical forests by paying poor nations to protect them was shelved Saturday after world leaders failed to agree on a binding deal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Burning trees to clear land for plantations or cattle ranches and logging forests for wood is blamed for about 20 percent of the world's emissions. That's as much carbon dioxide as all the world's cars, trucks, trains, planes and ships combined." The Associated Press had the story Dec. 19, 2009.
Here is the transcript of President Obama's Dec. 18, 2009, press conference, after meetings held with leaders from China, India, Brazil, and South Africa. The text was released by the White House and published in the New York Times Dec. 18, 2009.
"A physicist whose work is often highlighted by climate-change sceptics is refusing to provide the software he used to other climate researchers attempting to replicate his results. Nicola Scafetta, a physicist at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, has published a series of papers over the past few years that suggest the sun played a much bigger role in warming over the 20th century than is generally accepted." Michael Le Page reports for the New Scientists Dec. 18, 2009.
"COPENHAGEN -- Sen. Jim Inhofe flew across the Atlantic and -- on little sleep -- braved the snow, the cold and the dark to deliver his skeptical message at the international climate conference. What he found when he got here: a few aides and a single reporter. 'I think he's going to be a little disappointed,' one of his aides remarked." Louise Roug reports for Politicovia Huffington Post Dec. 19, 2009.
"Six Republican members of Congress brought their questionable grasp of climate science to Copenhagen on Friday, hoping to capitalize on the fact that a final deal is still up in the air. Their mission, they said, was to inform the folks at the summit that the US doesn't plan to finalize a cap-and-trade plan anytime soon. But they spent most of their presser spouting off dubious, if amusing, views on climate science." Kate Sheppard reports for Mother Jones Dec. 18, 2009.
"COPENHAGEN -- After two weeks of delays, theatrics and last-minute deal-making, the United Nations climate change talks concluded here early Saturday morning with a grudging agreement by the participants to 'take note' of a pact shaped by five major nations. The final accord, a 12-paragraph document, was a statement of intention, not a binding pledge to begin taking action on global warming -- a compromise seen to represent a flawed but essential step forward.
But many delegates of the 193 countries that had gathered here left Copenhagen in a sour mood, disappointed that the pact lacked so many elements they considered crucial, including firm targets for mid- or long-term reductions of greenhouse gas emissions and a deadline for concluding a binding treaty next year." Andrew C. Revkin and John M. Broder report for the New York Times December 19, 2009, with Helene Cooper, Elisabeth Rosenthal, Tom Zeller Jr., and James Kanter.
"COPENHAGEN -- After an all-night session that nearly saw the U.N. Climate Change Conference collapse with no deal at all, delegates Dec. 19 finally agreed to “note” a version of the 11th-hour agreement brokered, in part, by U.S. President Obama. The decision by the plenary stops short of a formal approval, a reflection of the deep disappointment in the final text on the part of developing countries, but leaves the door open for more talks next year. Delegates told BNA that the unusual end to the negotiations increased the importance of the still-to-be-determined set of meetings in 2010, but they expressed doubts about whether the same degree of political will and worldwide attention—which failed to finalize an ambitious agreement in Copenhagen—can be summoned again in the coming months." Eric J. Lyman reports for World Climate Change Report Dec. 19, 2009. Free registration required.
"COPENHAGEN -- Around dawn, managers of climate talks here sought to get final approval of the Copenhagen Accord, a climate agreement shaped by the United States and four partners in the final days of climate talks. They faced blistering opposition from representatives of half a dozen countries, some banging their desks and one, from Venezuela, bloodying her hand while trying to be recognized. In the end, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon directly intervened, sending aides to round up the aggrieved delegations and meeting with them privately for an hour. The public scene in the plenary, leading up to the private meeting and the consensus to 'take note' of the accord, is recorded in the conference minutes below, which provide a window on the 'wild roller coaster ride' described by Robert Orr, Assistant Secretary General for Policy and Planning." Andrew C. Revkin publishes the raw notes on Dot Earth Dec. 19, 2009.