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I thought you would be interested in this article from environment: YALE magazine, the Journal of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.
By Angel Hsu and Yupu Zhao
The U.N.-led climate talks in Cancún last December were largely touted as a success. Countries reached near consensus on critical issues, such as technology transfer and the creation of a new Green Climate Fund to help developing countries adapt to global warming. The standing ovation for the Mexican hosts that erupted in the summit’s final plenary session came in stark contrast to the Copenhagen summit’s glum finish behind closed doors.
Another marked change in Cancún was China’s tone and communications strategy, which were criticized during and after Copenhagen. Copenhagen was a watershed event for China. In the run-up to the Copenhagen summit, Beijing voluntarily committed to reducing carbon intensity by 40 percent to 45 percent by 2020, compared to 2005 levels, breaking a precedent of avoiding specific emissions targets. By making this pledge, as well as by recognizing that it would not be first in line to receive financial assistance from developed countries for adaptation and mitigation measures, China stepped into a leadership role. Despite these efforts, the country’s relative lack of experience in climate diplomacy doomed it to be Copenhagen’s scapegoat.
“China was surprised by the emphasis on MRV (measurement, reporting and verification of emissions reductions) in Copenhagen and the negative media attention it received, since it felt like it had brought a lot to the table by agreeing to reduce its…
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