… TWELVE (thousand) SUCKERS SHIV’RING”
As negotiations finally kicked off today on the twelfth day before decision time, an enormous band of Mr Greedy and Mr Nosey’s followers were left, quite literally, out in the cold as the delegate registration process at COP-15 all but collapsed under the strain of the crowds. Thousands of shivering observers were left lining the perimeter fence in a queue that only remained so orderly and polite because the body temperature of many had dropped below the point at which human interaction remains possible.
Meanwhile inside the negotiation halls some interesting scenes were developing. Those observers who had succeeded in breaching the security fence found themselves feeling naked as they were stripped of all technology and left to go into plenary sessions armed with nothing more than archaic pen and paper. This goes against all known modern techniques of following climate negotiations. When the discussion has been stuck on a single word for more than half an hour, what on earth is an observer supposed to do if they don’t have a laptop to play with? The negotiators themselves, having got over the shock of finding their sandwiches only half made, settled down to watch the lavish opening ceremony and wondered at what point they had become Olympic athletes.
Talk of the town was however the striking commitment made on Sunday by Little Miss Late, representing the Rainbow Nation and sneaking in as one of the last major players to announce a target at the eleventh hour before the talks began. The strong 34% intensity target from Africa’s most influential delegation, despite their current domestic power supply troubles, surprised many and serves to ratchet up pressure yet further on developed nations.
Some of those developed nations chose to react rather strangely. The European pairing of Little Miss Fickle and Mr Clumsy were characteristically confused in their messaging. At the same time as Mr Clumsy was saying that they wouldn’t switch their target from 20% to 30% because other nations had not committed strongly enough, Little Miss Fickle and her friends were saying publicly that the target should switch immediately. Everybody else scratched their heads and wondered whether to take them seriously.
And so the twelfth day before COP-mas drew to a close – what will happen on the eleventh day?