Many countries and environmentalist groups have said the deal reached at the end of the marathon two-week UN talks in Qatar would fail to slow rising temperatures or avert more floods, droughts, heat waves and rising sea levels.
Plenty of dialogue, but no strategy - the Doha climate talks agreed that the world has a pressing obligation to fight global warming but still has no uniform plan of action.
The sole legally binding plan for climate change the Kyoto Protocol’s - main supporters are the EU and Australia. The US has never ratified the agreement and this year saw Russia Japan and China withdraw. Its main participants account for only 15 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.
This leaves 35 industrialized nations still obligated by Kyoto - the conference ended in a consensus called “the Doha climate gateway”, and the end result still no standard set for emissions goals - and really a decision not to make a decision."
But extreme weather and related global warming effects continue to increase. This year the US has experienced world fires, severe drought and extreme storms like hurricane Sandy - which obliterated much of the New Jersey coastline.
And global sea levels continue to rise - a new paper by science magazine this week reports the ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica are melting at an accelerating rate: 20 % of annual sea level rise; loss of 344 billion tons of glacial ice per year.
The World Bank reports global temperatures are set to rise by 4 degrees Celsius. The meetings had been scheduled to end Friday but discussions continued into Saturday - leaving an ever widening gap between the science and politics of climate change.