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A "political agreement" from COP15?

16 November 2009

by Mark Kenber
Policy Director, The Climate Group

Yesterday in Singapore Danish PM Lars Rasmussen joined President Obama and APEC heads of states for a quickly-arranged breakfast focused on climate change.

At the meeting PM Rasmussen told assembled leaders that Copenhagen should be viewed as the first step toward the international binding climate agreement that many had hoped would be achieved at COP15.  The PM said that he would seek at Copenhagen a political agreement covering all major elements of negotiations.  President Obama is said to have voiced support for this approach.

The press is now portraying this as a ""major blow" that puts a global deal on climate change in jeopardy.

But all hope is not lost.

What was discussed in Singapore was not necessarily a race to the bottom, but a realistic assessment of why we won't see a legal agreement finalized in Copenhagen. 

Focusing on the core elements of a global, countries are already closing in on agreement on key issue, such as targets, financing and technology.  

We remain positive and optimistic that constructive discussion in Copenhagen will, because it must, lead to a strong global deal on climate change.

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