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Recording reveals dramatic Copenhagen closing

German newspaper Der Speigel has obtained a secret recording of a meeting between heads of state on the final day of the Copenhagen climate-change summit last December. The recording appears to confirm suspicions that China, India and the United States played a wrecking role at Copenhagen. In the recording, Chinese and Indian representatives make it clear that they will not accept any deal that includes concrete global reductions of greenhouse-gas emissions for 2020 and 2050. The United States then uses this as an opportunity to move towards the non-binding approach to reducing emissions that it favours.

The recording features an angry disagreement between French President Nicolas Sarkozy and a Chinese Foreign Minister, He Yafei – who attended the meeting in place of Premier Wen Jiabao – in which Sarkozy accuses the Chinese of hypocrisy. The intervention of US president Barack Obama, who is heard to propose seeking “..opportunities for its resolution outside of this multilateral setting” then effectively ends any chance of reaching a global, legally binding deal at Copenhagen.

The United States, China and India, with assistance from South Africa and Brazil, would go on to craft the Copenhagen Accord, a non-binding, political agreement, in a separate meeting later that evening.

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匿名 | Anonymous

共同的责任

德国《明镜报》取得了一段各国元首的秘密录音,这段录音的真实性我们先不讨论,仅仅通过碳政治博弈过程中的一个场景来判断是谁造成了哥本哈根国际法进程的停滞,未免太过天真!从各国(公约附件一国家)提交的2020自愿减排清单可以明确看出,不论是基期的选择还是减排比例的大小,各国的分歧都是很大的,并非只有中美等国是所谓“破坏性作用”的推动者,从国际法的角度来看,中国在《公约》框架下本就没有强制减排义务,而美国并非《京都议定书》的缔约方,作为附件一成员的欧盟反倒是迟迟没有建设性诚意,例如:将减排与其他国家减排挂钩,例如萨科奇利用碳关税试图同时违背WTO和UNFCCC两套国际法机制等等。因此,不要再对碳博弈的某方吹毛求疵了,看看中美推动达成的《哥本哈根协议》能否落实,才是拯救应对气候变化多边机制的重点

李威,华东政法大学

Common responsibility

The German newspaper "Der Spiegel" has obtained secret recordings of talks between heads of state of several countries. We don't want to discuss their validity at the moment, but we would like to determine, by observing a few scenes in the carbon politics game, who is responsible for the rather artless stagnation of the international law progress in Copenhagen.
From the list of countries (included in the Annex I of the convention) that have to submit to the 2020 carbon emissions reduction pact, we can clearly see that no matter the period of time selected or the proportion of carbon emission reductions, the divergences between countries are very big anyway. Not only China, America and other countries are called the promoters of "destructive actions", but we can see how China, from an international law perspective, being in the last volume of the convention framework, is not compelled to any carbon emission reductions obligations. At the same time, America is not one of the contracting parties of the Kyoto protocol. However, the EU, as a member of Annex I, has not had any constructive sincerity. For example, their emission reductions are linked with that of other countries, while Sarkozy tries to use carbon tariffs which also goes against the WTO and UNFCCC mechanisms of international law, etc.
Therefore don't be so nitpicky, what's important for saving the multilateral mechanisms for dealing with climate change is whether the "Copenhagen agreement" that China and the US pushed forward will work.

Li Wei, East China University of Political Science and Law