Wednesday, December 23, 2009

copenhagen aftermath

Back from Copenhagen, two days of proper sleep and yes, I should do a write up of all I saw. I'll try to get round to that in the next few days, but you know what the festive season can do to your timings and workrate.

From where I was we didn't get much of a handle on the wranglings at the talks, we were out on the streets in demos and actions, for which the police were very well prepared.

The new Danish Police Act is extraordinary. It allows them to encircle a large group of people and cart them off to detain them in big cages for 12 hours. No evidence of anything needed, and it's not even a formal arrest so there's no paper trail that even proves you were arrested, which neatly prevents anyone suing the police after.

Doesn't the European Convention on Human Rights protect people from arbitrary detention? And when those detained are forced to sit in a stress position with their hands tied behind their backs on stone pavements in sub-zero temperatures for hours on end, doesn't this qualify as inhumane treatment?

Anyway, this new I Don't Like Your Face (Or That Of 800 People Near You) Act was used with as much aplomb as their pepper sprays. The batoning of delegates trying to leave the talks to come and join our Reclaim Power demo was another notable illustration of how well prepared and ungiving of a fuck they were.

For the big stuff, well, in essence, the talks were the disaster everyone says. But even the best things suggested before they began weren't enough. We need a deal that matches what the science demands, and a deal that is just, and that was never anywhere near the table.


We are being made the victims of something that has nothing to do with us at all. The industrialised countries caused the problem, but we are suffering the consequences. We are on the front line of climate change through no fault of their own, and it is only fair that people in industrialised nations and industries take responsibility for the actions they are causing. It’s the polluter pays principle – you pollute, you pay

Panapase Nelisoni, Secretary to the Government of Tuvalu, in 'High Tide: News from a Warming World', Mark Lynas, Flamingo, 2004, p97

2 comments:

Evey said...

Looking forward to your analysis. Here are a couple of interesting articles from the Guardian:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/dec/22/copenhagen-climate-change-mark-lynas
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/dec/20/ed-miliband-china-copenhagen-summit
Lots of blame flying about.

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