Like many who took part in this year's UN climate talks, I leave Warsaw tired. Not as tired as those that spent two weeks talking, drafting, wrangling, redrafting and horse-trading, followed by an almost 40-hour marathon final session. But I do feel tired. I'm tired by the fact that all of that effort, energy and, in the main, goodwill has again resulted in so little progress.
Where does it go wrong? Nobody can now dispute that climate change is a threat to human society, to the planet as a whole. Nobody can genuinely be confused about what we need to do to reduce this threat. But still inaction seems to be an option, for some the preferred option.
Should we blame those tired negotiators and their governments? Did they draw too many red lines? Did they turn the negotiations into hopeless rhetorical tangles? Can we blame them for putting the interests of their citizens ahead of citizens from other countries or continents? Can we blame them for looking towards re-election? For remembering who put them in office? For reflecting on who donated the most to their campaign coffers?
Or should we blame the UN process? Are there too many voices at the table? Too much semantic hair-splitting, procedural squabbling and high-level posturing? Too much politics? Too many egos? Too much pride?
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