I guess it shouldn't come as a surprise, but it is now official: Copenhagen will not be the venue for a binding international agreement to address climate change [NYTimes.com]. As we've seen over the past months, the negotiations that should have set up the terms of such an agreement have systematically unravelled. To make matters worse, the USA has squandered its opportunity to be a leader in this arena by failing to pass climate and energy legislation. This despite the Democratic Party being in control of both houses of Congress and the presidency.
As expected, a few people -- notably the administration -- are trying to put a more positive spin on this story [LATimes.com]. Some say the Copenhagen meeting could still lay the groundwork for a real agreement next year, others suggest that getting some "commitment" from India and China might help the Senate pass climate legislation in the next few months.
My commentary is unnecessary, but just to be blunt: this is an inexcusable state of affairs. While the other parties have similarly failed to step up and and become meaningful leaders, my own feeling is that the USA has lost its chance to make a significant move to curtail global warming in the coming decade. These delays are damning humanity and uncountable species to suffer through the effects of dangerous anthropogenic climate change.