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Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Have world leaders failed again on climate legislation?

December 18th, 2009
01:42 PM ET

“There is no time to waste. Now I believe it's the time for the nations and the people of the world to come behind a common purpose. We are ready to get this done today, but there has to be movement on all sides." 

Can President Obama’s arrival in Copenhagen save the day?

Can President Obama’s arrival in Copenhagen save the day?

President Obama's speech after arriving on the final day of the U.N. climate summit in Copenhagen might have raised the mood of delegates, but expectations that world leaders will agree a meaningful deal to put the world on the path towards a less polluting future remain muted.

His talk of a "common purpose" is already looking shaky to say the least. Speaking Friday afternoon, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Obama was like "an emperor who arrives in the middle of the night" before adding: "If the climate was a bank it would have been saved already."

One cannot help concluding that another climate conference will pass up the opportunity to reach a global consensus.

But whatever comes of today, the final frantic day of negotiation, how should we feel? Disappointed at another failure? Or should we be reflecting more positively on the progress that has been made – it is widely predicted that a deal to protect the rainforests – through the U.N.-REDD (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) – will be agreed. Small steps maybe, but important nonetheless.

Does the lack of agreement mirror the mood of the wider world. Everyone knows that they should be more environmentally conscious but how many people are really prepared to change their lifestyle?

Citizens elect political leaders to lead. Has Copenhagen shown the signs that they are, at last, doing just that? Or will they be remembered for missing one of the last opportunities to act decisively on climate change? Let us know what you think.


Filed under:  General