The city of Copenhagen ‘is a crime scene tonight, with the guilty men and women fleeing to the airport’. So said John Sauven of Greenpeace UK after the climate summit broke up. And he is right.
This is the biggest heist in history. As they poured carbon over snow-covered Denmark from their gas-guzzling jets, world leaders were congratulating themselves on securing a deal which will make their backers and financiers a trillion pounds a year. These riches will come from buying and selling permits, the so-called ‘carbon credits’ which allow industry and electricity generators in developed countries to emit carbon dioxide.
The frenzied negotiations we have just seen were never about ‘saving the planet’. They were always about money. At stake was this new ‘climate change industry’ which last year ripped off £129billion from the global economy and is heading for that trillion-pound bonanza by 2020 – but only if the key parts of the Kyoto treaty could be renewed.
The actual emissions don’t change, it’s merely a matter of how much you have to pay for them. For example, in 2006, the NHS spent £6million on carbon permits to keep patients warm.