It takes little more than five minutes in one of the sessions going on at the COP 14 negotiations in Poznan to realise that the UN’s process for fixing the climate problem is a non-starter. In these meetings which constitute the diplomatic process of the so-called UNFCCC, hours and hours are wasted on wholly irrelevant debate. The dismal intellectual level, the grinding supremacy of bureaucracy and protocol over common sense are immediately and painfully obvious.
The reasons for failure mainly lie with the fact that the political mandate is weak, the calibre of individuals involved is insufficient, there are too many participants and too much scope for spoilers, and the quality of leadership is lacking. Society’s leaders are running countries and companies, religions and fashions. They are not in Poznan.
Inviting some 180 nations to attend and forge an agreement is a wasteful attempt at political correctness and international bonhomie. Millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money are thrown at it, but it is doomed to failure.
Cutting to the chase, the climate problem is too serious and too urgent to waste time listening to bureaucrats from small countries waffle on about “sharing experiences” from implementation of adaptation measures or engaging in the debate about climate change and gender issues.
If we want actually to do something about the planet, then the only way for anything to happen is to junk the sclerotic and profligate UNFCCC process.
The newly engaged USA, the EU, and China need to spend time over the next few months to come to an agreement quite separately from the UNFCCC. Once it is in place, they should take it to India with an option to join in.
Thereafter, these parties should post the terms onto the internet, and any other party can sign up online if it wants.
It would get a workable agreement way quicker, saving valuable years and scarce taxpayers’ money.