By Patrick Bond
Looking back now that the dust has settled, South Africa’s COP17 presidency appears disastrous. This was confirmed not only by Durban’s delayed, diplomatically-decrepit denouement, but by plummeting carbon markets in the days immediately following the conference’s ignoble end last Sunday.
Of course it is tempting to ignore the stench of failure and declare Durban “an outstanding success,” as did South African environment minister Edna Molewa. “We have significantly strengthened the international adaptation agenda,” she explained about the near-empty Green Climate Fund. “The design of the fund includes innovative mechanisms for bringing private sector and market mechanisms into play to increase the potential flow of funding into climate change responses.”
Because the $100 billion promised by Hillary Clinton in Copenhagen two years ago is apparently fictional (aside from minor commitments by South Korea, Germany and Denmark), Molewa’s two crucial albeit unintended words are ‘play’ and ‘potential.’ In our new book, Durban’s Climate Gamble: Trading Carbon, Betting the Earth, critical researchers show why emissions markets are as comatose as the Kyoto Protocol. Only a casino drunkard would put money – much less the planet – on the odds of a death-bed resurrection. Jatka lukemista Durban’s climate Zombie tripped by dying carbon markets