On the path to „Seal the deal“

Today ’s summit on climate change in New York City will hopefully help to unite industrialized nations  towards a more effective climate agreement in Copenhagen.

UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon scheduled a special meeting to address the urgent issue of climate change, the „Summit on Climate Change „. It is the first and only high-level meeting in which heads of state or their representatives of all nations get together to focus explicity on reaching a just and effective climate agreement for Copenhagen, outside of the UNFCCC negotiations. The summit can be followed life here.

The purpose of the summit is „to focus plolitical attention at the highest level on the need for accelerated action on climate change.“ Once heads of state find a mutual understanding for the urgency of effective action, they can transfer this understanding and new committment to the official negotiators for Copenhagen. Hopefully, this will strengthen the political will to reach an agreement, and will thus provide the means necessary to avoid uncontrollable and irreversible climate change.

The attendence is amazing: Just in the first two hours , speakers include Ban Ki-moon (Secretary-General of the United Nations), Dr. Rajendra Pachauri (Chair, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; IPCC), Barack Obama (President of the United States of America), Hu Jintao (President of the Peoples Republic of China), Nicolas Sarkozy (President of France), and other presidents and high representatives. Even a 13-year old child will be allowed during the first two hours as an important sign that the world listens to our children.

But time is limited: within one day, pressed between luncheon, press conferences, and probably a large number of interviews, within the roaring city of NY, the world’s leaders are supposed to find the tranqility to come to an agreement. But can that be achieved within one day, in a city as distant from nature and tranquility as one can imagine?

We’ll see.

Maiken Winter

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