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Money or the climate?

February 5, 2009

With heads of states still raw from Davos, the globe’s economic woes were high on the agenda at the Sustainable development Summit in Delhi today. The theme, “Towards Copenhagen: an equitable and ethical approach” was dominated by discussion about whether developing countries could, would and should adapt to climate change. Sen John Kerry warned that although the US position had radically changed, the Senate would not sign a treaty that doesn’t involve developing countries making some kind of contribution to climate change. Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary General of the UN, said he had been encouraged by his conversations with Obama that the US would take climate leadership in Copenhagen, something that Kerry agreed with, triumphantly stating: “America is back. America intends to lead by example on these issues.”

For poor Anote Tong, President of Kiribati, a Pacific atoll, it is already too late because of the se-level rise we are already committed to. “Allow us to migrate to your countries,” he asked the presidents and heads of states. “If any of you have an island you want to sell, let us know because we will buy it off you.”

Tomorrow, African nations get the stage. They are fearful of being entirely left out of the dialogue, which concentrates on developing nations like India, China and Brazil.

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