The 18th Conference of the Parties or COP18 ends today in colossal failure. Not only have the negotiations failed to produce any meaningful emissions cuts, but ‘Hot Air’ permits that allow countries like Poland and Russia to maintain their heavy industries may even result in more emissions. Talks have stalled for a host of reasons, though most developing nations blame rich countries like the United States, Canada and Japan for refusing to sign an interim successor agreement to the Kyoto Protocol that would bind them to emissions reductions.

COP18, global warming, climate change, emissions cuts, Hot Air, Kyoto Protocol, Doha, Qatar, greenhouse gases, loss and damage mechanism, environmental news, Iwan Baan, New York Magazine

Finance continues to be a contentious issue. At the COP15 meetings in Copenhagen, rich nations agreed to building a $100 billion annual fund by 2020 that would help developing nations cope with the effects of escalating climate change. The EU has offered interim funding but the US has failed to commit, citing the global economic crisis as justification. The Loss and Damage mechanism would require rich nations responsible for the highest emissions to compensate the countries that are most vulnerable, but the BBC reports that nobody wants to agree to any terms because of admission of guilt such a move would imply.

Meanwhile, Qatar has come under fire for its soft leadership. Instead of compelling other Arab countries to reach a meaningful agreement to slash emissions, the emirate agreed to build an Institute for Climate Studies. The president of the conference, Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah, told BBC News that he didn’t have luck creating a joint Arab position on the issue. “I want us to move together on climate change but I can’t get consensus on this.” Another UN climate meeting comes to a close without any substantial consensus as scientists issue increasingly grave warnings about the state of the earth. In short, COP18 was a colossal #FAIL.

Via BBC News

Lead image via Penny.Yi.Wang, flickr, Blacked out Lower Manhattan by Iwan Baan