Hopes Dim For Climate Deal As Copenhagen Winds Down

12.17.09 | FL News Team

Hope for a climate change deal are dimming in Copenhagen even as world leaders prepare to take the stage. Dozens of premiers and presidents are descending on Denmark's capital for the two-week climate summit's grand finale on Friday. Speeches are expected from leaders such as President Obama, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Germany's Angela Merkel. But few of the environment ministers doing the heavy lifting over the negotiating table are holding out hope any longer that China will give up its relentless naysaying.

 In a nutshell, poorer countries don't want to cut their emissions and risk crippling their industries. They're led by China, the world's largest air polluter with one of the fastest growing economies. The developed nations include the U.S., which hopes to encourage up-and-coming economies to develop greener technology. The U.S. leads in per capita carbon emissions but lags China overall. The Chinese are pushing for some sort of political declaration at the summit's conclusion instead of a deal. The summit's purpose is to come up with a deal to pave the way for a new treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol that expires in 2012.