Obama's Climate Negotiator: Don't Expect Much from Copenhagen

Platts and Cleanskies are reporting that lead US climate change negotiator, Jonathan Pershing told a National Academy of Sciences panel yesterday that this year’s UN-sponsored climate talks are likely to be “inadequate.”

He said that they will not “fail,” but that more legwork will need to be done at next year’s UN meeting.

The context of Pershing’s remarks is not clear from the news reports, but any delay in forging a comprehensive global climate agreement will be not only expensive, but hazardous.

The Platts report did quote Pershing as saying a Congressional passage of the cap-and-trade bill will improve Copenhagen’s prospects, so perhaps he is trying to push Senate action. The Senate is scheduled to vote on their version of the House bill in September.

On a more positive note, Brazilian president Lula da Silva, expressed confidence yesterday that Copenhagen will produce an agreement.