I stayed up late last night (UK time) to watch Barack Obama deliver his 2015 State of the Union address to the United States Congress. I was particularly interested to hear what he had to say about climate change. In the event he said the word "climate" four times. Apparently that's a new record.
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According to the UK's Department of Energy and Climate Change:c
Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker will both be attending the second week of the COP18 negotiations in Doha, commencing on 3rd December
The second week of the "18th session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC and the 8th session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol" starts tomorrow at the Qatar National Convention Centre in Doha, Qatar.
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Regular readers will know that the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change begin in Durban, South Africa in less than a week. At the same time and place the 7th Session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol will also take place. The question now is what if anything all these discussions will achieve apart from a modicum of global warming from all the hot air that will doubtless be emitted by the attendees?
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In a report on the UNFCCC climate change conference in Bali last December, David B. Sandalow of the Brookings Institution, the influential Washington based think tank, pointed out that:
The most important outcomes of the Bali climate change conference didn’t make the headlines… yet Bali produced three important outcomes. First, developing countries stepped up to the table… Second, a new consensus on deforestation emerged… Finally, “adaptation” moved toward center stage. Today the world faces a sobering reality: even the most aggressive plans will not prevent some amount of global warming in the decades ahead. The consequences for poor developing countries are predicted to be most severe.
Mr. Sandalow quoted Nobel peace prize-winner Al Gore as saying in Bali:
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Barack Obama gave a speech on Monday in Lansing Michigan, an area very familiar with the decline in the US automobile industry. He took the opportunity to outline his current energy policy, and he started out by laying his cards on the table:
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Pope Benedict XVI arrived in Australia on Sunday after a flight from the Vatican that lasted over 20 hours. Having rested for three days he gave his first public address at the World Youth Day festival in Sydney earlier today. According to UK newspaper the Daily Telegraph, Pope Benedict used his speech to urge the 150,000 pilgrims gathered around Sydney harbour, and Catholics around the world, to work harder to protect the planet:
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