How was it? How are you feeling now? Have you recovered from COP yet? Your do not seem too depressed like previous years… those are all variations of comments I heard from people around me post-COP19 and even though it has been a while, I am only just beginning to answer them. It doesn’t even feel like I’ve been hit by COP so that I need time to recover and I am certainly feeling more ambivalent than I ever have about the process and everything around it.
I questioned my reasons for going and this time around, I didn’t really have any except for my own self-torturing pleasure of watching old men in suits making very questionable decisions about my future and the future of this planet and not being able to do anything about it. Besides, seeing old friends and meeting some pretty rad people (and enjoying the 3:00 pm sunset in grey Warsaw), here are some of the highlights or lowlights if you wish, of COP.
Canadian negotiator pledging $100: of course, they actually meant $100 million but they can say whatever they want, it is not like there is someone who will actually hold them accountable. Or they can just backtrack next year.
Australians showing in pajamas: no I don’t mean some youth or NGOs action, that was actually the Australian negotiating team’s way of giving UNFCCC the finger!
“Youth are the problem”: according to Christiana Figueres, if youth stop shopping and traveling to conferences, it will all be fine and we can solve climate change. Never mind all those “old” people in suits travelling to conferences that greatly outnumber youth. Oh by the way, has anyone heard about coal, oil, gas, fracking, mining, and all that stuff.. Oh wait, they are not youth, they do not count.
Saudi wants to be compensated for lost oil revenue: they actually said that out loud at a climate conference and got away with it. So how do we still expect countries to take this process seriously and to take their responsibilities as they should. Also, the Saudi negotiator killed a spider using his wallet while on the floor – that was just funny!
Let’s save the world in Peru: while we hope for an agreement to Paris that will go into effect in 2020 – while we’re at it, let’s drink pisco and vodka, I mean we are already here anyways.
Chocolate can apparently save the world: if we spend a ridiculous amount of money to give it away for free and some more money for someone to plant trees on our behalf of offset it. True story! Someone had the brilliant idea of getting a very unsustainable bean, turning it into milk chocolate bars, package it in tinfoil and paper, wrap and ship 28,000 boxes of 14 bars each so that they are given away for free to busy, hungry and sleep-deprived people hanging out in the stadium in grey Warsaw for two weeks. So when I tried to understand the significance, apparently it will be all worth it, if 10% of the people (who have likely received 3 or 4 chocolate bars at least) read the message that this organization is planting trees to offset emissions (created by shipping endless boxes of chocolate – okay I am overdoing it here but you get the point), we will solve climate change. Never mind the fact that it is individual action and it is using exactly the same system that created the problem. Oh but the chocolate was fair trade – I guess that does it! But the overarching question remains, do I wanna know who paid for all of that?
Vegans: according to the supreme master of the vegan cult which is apparently a thing, switching to a diet of heavily processed and packaged soy beans simply ends the troubles of this world.
And on that note, I conclude the highlight (lowlights) of COP19. Any questions?