Climate delegates in Copenhagen are buzzing about a leaked proposal from the Danish contingent.
The document, now being referred to as the Danish text, is a draft for a political agreement on climate change. It was leaked to the Guardian newspaper, which says it was written by delegates for a handful of developed countries including Denmark, the United Kingdom and the U.S.
Developing countries are reportedly furious because the text calls for them to take far more action to reduce global warming emissions than the Kyoto protocal did. According to the Guardian, developing nations say the text is biased against them, and they object to its being created without their input.
But others, including delegates for Environmental Defense Fund, point out that any draft document is only a starting point for negotiations.
According to EDF's climate specialist Gus Silva-Chavez:
It is far better to start with a strong proposal in the first few days then to start negotiations on something that has already been watered down. The leaked document clearly shows ambition, although there are clearly areas that are vague or need improvement, like the parts about compliance. It reflects a clear desire from the Danes to reduce global emissions as soon as possible, and with efforts from both developed and developing countries.
A counter proposal from the BASIC countries is expected to be announced today or tomorrow. That could help quell fears, reported in the Guardian, that the Danish text will be ramrodded through the treaty negotiations.
Gus will continue watching the situation, and we'll post updates as it unfolds.