December 1 Earthgauge radio podcast: the Durban climate summit special
Click the audio player to listen to the latest edition of Earthgauge radio, which is a bi-weekly broadcast every other Thursday morning from 7-8 AM on CKCU 93.1 FM in Ottawa. You can also right click here to download the show.
On today’s show, a special program on the climate change summit that started this week in Durban, South Africa. Interviews with Andrew Weaver, Canada Research Chair in Climate Modeling and Analysis at UVic and one of the key authors of several of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports and with Felix Von Geyer who is a sustainable development journalist based in Montreal specializing in climate change politics. We’ll also hear a very interesting perspective from South Africa courtesy of our friend Alex Smith who runs the syndicated radio show EcoShock. He had a discussion recently with Patrick Bond of the University of KwaZulu Natal, director of the Centre for Civil Society in South Africa.
What is this Durban Summit on climate change all about? It is formally known as the 17th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, quite a mouthful so people just call it COP 17 for short. As you may have heard already, expectations for Cop 17 are low. The summit is widely expected not to result in any new international climate change agreement, so I’m not sure if the organizers of COP 17 were trying to be ironic or wildly optimistic when they chose the slogan ‘Saving Tomorrow Today’ for this year’s summit. In any case, on today’s show, we look at the reasons why many people think COP 17 and indeed the entire international climate change negotiation process is on life support and is doing anything but saving tomorrow today.
If the international climate change negotiation process is fundamentally broken, where do we go from here? And what role has Canada played in undermining global action on climate change? Well, it’s more than you might think as we’ll hear. As we all know well, the Cdn government has a considerable vested interest in seeing that tar sands developments continue unabated so, since the arrival of Stephen Harper in 2006, the government has shown very little enthusiasm for the climate change issue. This is no different this time round in Durban.