South Africa slaps down African climate goals


It appears that South Africa may have broken ranks with the rest of the African continent over their joint approach towards the Climate Summit in Copenhagen, when news emerged from Pretoria that South Africa has joined such countries like China, India, and Brazil in being evasive over firm commitments in carbon output reduction over coming years.

Africa had tried, under the auspices of the African Union, to develop and then present a joint position in regard of firm climate goals, while at the same time also demanding that the developed world pay for the sins of their fathers, the fallout of which now manifests itself on a massive scale across the continent hit by rising temperatures, rapid advance of the great deser,t and a quickening cycle of drought and floods.

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The South African move to join China, India, and Brazil in rejecting the global goal of halving carbon emissions by 2050, compared with the 1990 baseline, will bring about more spanners in the works of the global advocacy community to achieve a lasting successor agreement to Kyoto in Copenhagen and will play into the hands of those other countries already wavering under the onslaught of a well-oiled PR machinery aimed to confuse the world that global warming does not exist.

A recent study commissioned by global audit and business consulting firm PriceWaterhouseCoopers in fact now pegs the threshold at an 85 percent reduction of the 1990 carbon output in order to avoid global warming reaching the crucial 2 degree increase, which would see the polar and Greenland icecaps shrink even faster, with all the consequences for countries like the Maldives, Seychelles, and the Indian Ocean shorelines from the Horn of Africa to the Cape.

It is understood that Africa Union diplomats are now engaged in last-minute talks with Pretoria to stay on board with the agreed African position and not undermine a deal, which could yield tens of billions of dollars for the continent in climate reparations and support to not just embrace green technologies in the ongoing process of moving from the developing nation status towards a more developed situation, but also to help Africa produce enough food in coming years and decades by using modern farming methods inspite of the rising temperatures and weather extremes the continent is now suffering from.