Copenhagen Summit and Beyond

After days of false start, many drafts texts, weeks of tough negotiations and decades of work, the Copenhagen conference ended with no legally binding treaty to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, due to major differences on emission targets and finance between industrialized and developing countries. But the talks yielded an accord, a last-minute text from outside the formal negotiating process, that allows countries to set their own emission reduction goals until 2020. The so-called Copenhagen accord recognises the scientific case for keeping temperature rises to no more than 2°C, but does not contain commitments to emissions reductions to achieve that goal. The accord also includes a financing package of US$ 100 billion per year by 2020 to assist developing countries to adopt to climate change. Additionally it was agreed to set up an emission verification system and reduce deforestation, particularly in heavily forested developing nations such as Brazil and Indonesia.
However, much of the hard work still lies ahead. The Copenhagen accord leaves a long list of issues undecided such as the emission targets of the industrialised countries and the amnounts of climate finance they will offer.
For all its limitations, however, the Copenhagen Accord is the first real step to fighting climate change and low carbon future in the 21st century. As all first steps, difficult and hard and we have much further to go.