The Conference of Parties (COP) under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that is meeting in Cancun, Mexico, will conclude officially on Friday, but it could continue until late, meaning Saturday night Vietnam time. We are now just past the halfway point. The negotiations are in a very critical phase, just prior to the arrival of most ministers who will need to do the final negotiations and reach agreements. That means the negotiators must give documents to them that have some clear options that need to be assessed, discussed, and agreed. In Copenhagen last year there was never a clean and clear enough document that would enable a comprehensive set of decisions by the COP, let alone the hoped for comprehensive new treaty. But this time it has started to look a bit more positive. Parties are negotiating all the main topics of the so-called Bali Action Plan. They are nearing agreement on at least some of the core aspects, especially (a) a long-term vision of what must be achieved, for example, in 2050 in fighting climate change; (b) actions on adaptation to climate change effects; (c) actions on mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions by developed and also…
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