Papua New Guinea shames the Bush Administration…and wins

After years of denial, equivocation, obfuscation, and obstruction on the environment, the Bush Administration has finally been pressured into giving some ground…by Papua New Guinea.  The (economically) small island nation had no problem piling the shame on the U.S. delegation to the U.N. environment conference in Bali.  The delegate from Papua New Guinea told the United States to etiher lead or get the hell out of the way and stop trying to prevent other nations from making progress.  It was great, and worked.  To be certain, all they got was an agreement by the U.S. to allow negotiations to continue, which isn’t much, but with a short speech they managed to accomplish what so many others have failed at. 

From the Guardian UK:



    Late-night drama pushes US into climate deal

It

overran by a day and the American delegation found itself being roundly

booed, but a compromise deal on saving the planet has been hammered out

at the climate change conference. Juliette Jowit, Caroline Davies and

David Adam in Bali report

After tears, jeers and a dramatic eleventh-hour U-turn by the United

States, a compromise deal for a new international climate change agenda

was finally struck in Bali yesterday, just as talks appeared on the

brink of collapse.

Amid extraordinary and emotional scenes, which

at one point saw the American delegation booed at the UN climate change

conference, ministers from more 180 countries thrashed out agreement

after days of wrangling.

The resulting ‘Bali roadmap’ is a

global warming pact that starts a two-year process of negotiations

designed to agree a new set of emissions targets to replace those in

the Kyoto protocol.

But the road was extremely rocky. Talks

stalled as Paula Dobriansky, head of the US delegation, signalled that

America opposed calls from poorer countries for technological and

financial help to combat climate change. It seemed any agreement was

doomed. Then Papua New Guinea took to the floor and, in a highly

charged speech, its delegate challenged the US: ‘If you’re not willing

to lead, get out of the way.’

Minutes later, in an astonishing reversal, Dobriansky returned to

announce, to cheers from the hall: ‘We will go forward and join the

consensus.’

Read the full article here

Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.