But what of Tuvalu?
It’s been something of a blizzard of “leaked” texts and drafts here in Copenhagen these past two weeks (and before). Each text proffered ostensibly aims to help forge a deal, but ultimately causing accusations of back-room dealing, most often on behalf of developed nations at the expense of developing nations.
Yesterday I attended a press conference with the Prime Minister of the tiny island nation of Tuvalu – whose delegation has been quite vocal here during the COP15 conference – who emphasized that without an aggressive and binding deal limiting average global temperature rise to within 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of the 21st century, his nation was in peril. Prime minister Apisai Ielemia spoke eloquently of his nation’s fight for survival, saying the meeting in Copenhagen was about Tuvalu’s “future existence,” adding that he and his countrymen have “nowhere to run.”
Juxtaposed against the Prime Minister’s urgent plea comes the latest “leaked” text, this time a UN internal document, that indicates the deal being struck in Copenhagen may doom Tuvalu and her sister small island nations to extinction. The target specified in the document targets a 3 degree rise in average global temperatures by the end of the century, twice that needed, in the words of the Prime Minister, to keep his nation from “disappearing.”