The Skywriter

Headed into the Cancun endgame (VIDEO)


Headed into the Cancun endgame (VIDEO)


It's the last official day of the climate talks in Cancun, though no one expects things to end today. Negotiators have been working into the wee hours of the night and will probably continue to do so tonight, with the potential for a final deal early on Saturday. Unfortunately, it is increasingly looking like whatever deal that may result will be reached not because of U.S. leadership, but in spite of U.S. obstruction.

Without anything concrete to offer on the policy front, the U.S.'s negotiating strategy has essentially been to run out the clock on the talks in an effort to wrest concessions from China and other large developing nations on measuring, verifying and reporting their emissions. The U.S. has gone so far as to block progress on the establishment of a global climate fund, which is critical to provide poor countries with the resources they need to adapt to climate change and transition to clean energy. Last night I managed to catch up with David Waskow, Climate Change Program Manager for Oxfam America, about this state of affairs -- take a look at the video below for David's take on the negotiations:

Of course a lot can still change -- past U.N. climate talks have always featured a flurry of eleventh-hour decisions and political shifts as countries finally relent on their entrenched negotiating positions, and Cancun will probably be no different. Still, it does not inspire confidence that the U.S. so far has been content to play political games rather than take a moral stand on these critical issues. We'll keep you posted as we head into the Cancun endgame.

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