Articles Comments

Dickinson to Durban » Climate Change, Environmental Politics » The Nuts and Bolts Bringing Hope

The Nuts and Bolts Bringing Hope

Hope for the World?













By: Esther Babson

It may be the last day but I finally went to my first COP! I actually went earlier this week but it is definitely the highlight of my experience here. With all the side events, interviews and press briefings it was amazing I even found a COP during a time that I was free! After trying over and over again to get into meetings, only to be kicked out, I tried not to get my hopes up as I walked over to the “Honey Bucho Room” where the planery was. The meeting was a contact group with the Technology Executive Committee-Draft Decisions on Modalities and Procedures. Ok, so I know this does sound like the most boring event ever and it may have been on other days but the day I went turned out to be the final day of the group! The first group meeting had been on Monday and essentially they had been trying to agree on the wording of a section of text(paragraph 6 to be exact). There had been controversy between the U.S. and the G77/China so they had been arguing and working with the text attempting to come to a consensus. They showed the old and new text options and had the U.S. read out the new text slowly with punctuation included! After all the work this semester where the emphasis on wording seemed unimportant I finally was able to see how important it actually is!  A comma or certain word can really change the entire meaning of a sentence and in extension the paragraph.

The group went through each section of the paragraph and after each section was put up, the speaker would ask if there were any objections before banging the gavel and proclaiming it “adopted”. After going through everything the speaker said since they had accomplished their goals that “I declare this contact group now closed” and banged the gavel again! Even though the meeting was incredibly short for negotiations (half an hour, if that) and it clearly was not the most important meeting, it was incredible to be there! It was such a thrill every time the gavel came down on the table, knowing that the decisions being agreed are what is really behind these negotiations! Yes, it was only the nuts and bolts but that nuts and bolts are what hold negotiations such as these together! Not only was it exciting to be in the room when decisions are finalized but it was just such a positive experience! As we are on the last day of negotiations all the talk is about how it will be in the last hour(or few hours early Saturday morning) that will decide what comes out of this COP. All the talk tends to leave me so pessimistic about any sort of agreement. Yet this meeting, no matter the importance level, was proof that agreements can be made! With so much doom and gloom at a conference about climate change and the impending(but also current) impacts, having hope can be difficult. But in the end that hope is what I (along with everyone at this conference and even across the world) need in order to, as the saying goes, “keep calm and carry on”.


Written by

Filed under: Climate Change, Environmental Politics · Tags: , , ,

One Response to "The Nuts and Bolts Bringing Hope"

  1. C White-B says:

    Absolutely right! Nuts and bolts can be boring compared to marches and shouting but it IS what actually creates the logistics for change.

Leave a Reply