Why is the G20 fiddling while the Earth burns? Last month, atmospheric CO2 (carbon dioxide) concentration exceeded 396 parts per million (ppm), rising at an accelerating rate from 370 ppm in 2000. The consensus view of scientists is that we do not have the luxury of decades to stabilize CO2 and other greenhouse gases. In fact, we are almost certain to exceed the internationally agreed target of 450 ppm by 2050, which provides only a 50 percent chance of limiting the global temperature increase to two degrees Celsius.
UN climate change negotiations are at a dead end, despite all the efforts to characterize them as moving forward. The negotiations are focused on two dimensions that are doomed to fail — binding national emission targets and financial transfers.