After returning home to their respective countries, global leaders carried on with agendas and political issues that require completion prior to the end of the year. The Copenhagen Accord is not one of them, nor does it require immediate attention until the next summit, which is to be held in Mexico.
Show me the Money
Billions were offered and nobody took up the offer. With that kind of money available to poorer countries, there was a potential lightning rod for much needed economic stimulus and they should have grabbed the opportunity. Instead they squandered it by asking for more and didn't know how to lobby other nations to support the proposal offered. In some African countries that could prove to be their undoing. These countries missed a golden opportunity to catch up to developing countries like India with infusions of new stimulus. African leaders are going to have to work harder prior to the next summit or surely they will fall even further behind.
Sign here... why bother?
What came out of Copenhagen was an Accord that isn't even legally binding. As President Obama stated in his post conference press released when asked the question:
Q Does it require signing, is it that kind of agreement?
THE PRESIDENT: You know, it raises an interesting question as to whether technically there's actually a signature -- since, as I said, it's not a legally binding agreement, I don't know what the protocols are. But I do think that this is a commitment that we, as the United States, are making and that we think is very important.
Technology: nowhere to be found at Copenhagen
Innovation, technology and science were not at the forefront of the conference. In internal meetings held in Copenhagen, the talk was about accountability, time lines and give and take on how to get a document structured. But nowhere in any of the discussions or documents was what technology, science and research would make the Accord work. The document does refer that signatories to the Accord will continue to use the Kyoto Protocol framework. Nowhere in it, are technology solutions, only emissions tracking and scientific methods used.
The Kyoto Accord of 1992 was never ratified by the United States. As it turns out, it wouldn't have made any difference. Congress would have never passed it and most nations that did sign it blew passed the targets they set within the framework anyway. In the 18 years since Kyoto, no country has developed or found a solution to the greenhouse gas problem, unless you call putting trash underground a technological achievement (it isn't) and realistic (hasn't even been tested yet) and cost effective (capture, condense, transport and deposit) and ensure that it works (anybody got a gasket?) and is safe. There is substantial opportunity for science to find solutions, question is; can they be found before another 18 years pass.