Philippine typhoon adds drama to 2013 climate summit in Poland.

Guardian: “In terms of the business of this COP, much of it will be “housekeeping” – clearing the decks on various technicalities so that work can begin soon after on the draft text. But the Warsaw meeting has already provided more drama than was bargained for.” “It began just two days after the most powerful typhoon ever to make landfall devastated the Philippines, with the loss of thousands of lives. Yeb Sano, leading the country’s delegation, made an opening statement at the start of the discussions in which he broke down and connected the devastation wrought by typhoon Haiyan to climate change. His words had an effect on David Cameron, who also linked extreme weather to climate change.
Then, Japan came under attack for announcing that instead of aiming for a 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, it would increase its emissions by 3%, saying this was necessary after the Fukushima disaster. But many onlookers feared that it would lead to further backsliding – there are doubts over what Australia’s new climate-sceptic government will do about its existing agreements, and over the commitment of Canada and Russia to the talks.
What have the Polish hosts done about this? Mostly, attract their own controversy – by giving a two-day platform at the talks to the global coal industry and highlighting the role of coal in energy generation. Coal is the most carbon-intensive fossil fuel, but it supplies most of Poland‘s energy, and the government takes a hard line within Europe, resisting calls for more action on emissions.”