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Interesting read: How do I know China wrecked the Copenhagen deal? I was in the room
In the end, though, the Western nations did fail. This notion of everybody waiting for a deal where they can commit to the least amount possible (being what’s agreed to by everyone) isn’t going to work. Some country (or set of countries) is going to have to lead by example. I still don’t understand why no one talks about the economic impact of tight emissions restrictions forcing massive technological innovation, which can then be sold to the other countries. Sure, I’d assume some negative economic impact in the short term might be possible but the long-term impact could be staggering.