Climate change conference World leaders fail to act again
Little headway was made at the un climate change conference held in Nairobi, Kenya, from November 6 to 17, 2006. The most important issue, mandating commitments to cutting carbon emissions, was stonewalled, with the us refusing to budge from its stated positions, as expected, and the European Union pushing for emission cuts across the board. The developing world, especially China, India and Brazil, refused to countenance proposals that could jeopardise their growth push, given the North's reluctance to make the drastic cuts necessary to meet the climate change challenge. The only major area in which there was some progress was in setting up a fund to help developing countries adapt to climate change. But even then only a beginning was made, with negotiations getting mired in North-South differences.
What did emerge, incontestably, was that the international community still refuses to address the problems of climate change and global warming despite the fact that scientific evidence is piling up (see graphs: High on growth). It is becoming increasingly clear, virtually by the day, that now is the time to deal with greenhouse gases. And it is not just the scientific evidence. Economists, too, have been weighing in with studies that show that if dealt with now, the costs will be far lower than previously estimated and that arguments counterposing economic growth and profitability of big industrial enterprise with emission control are fallacious.
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