Kobenhavn, Denmark - The much anticipated Climate Summit is finally underway in Copenhagen. All the speeches and posturing by participants leading up to the summit are now history, and the serious business of the summit is about to begin.
The first day of the summit produced little output, however, as the day was given over to taking care of the arrival of the dignitaries with such activity as handing out agendas for the international conference.
Once the big jumbo jets had landed, dignitaries queued up curbside at the airport patiently waiting their turn for the limousine ride to the conference center, some few miles from the airport. Upon their arrival at the hotel complex where the conference will be held, attendees were handed a traditional "gift bag."
Conspicuously missing from the gift bags were the traditional souvenir pens and notepads conference attendees have become accustomed to, as well as the ubiquitous bottled water. In an effort to "go green" such high carbon producing gifts had been eliminated by planners. Besides the plain brown paper bags containing the conference agenda, attendees were handed a flyer, where they learned that the long line of bicycles lines up at the airport had been placed there for their use.
The weather Monday was unseasonably warm, though local meteorologists insisted the weather conditions had little to do with the hot air from the attendees. "We don't expect to see the effect of that until later in the week," said one weatherman. "No," he continued, "the warm weather is directly attributable to the partly cloudy conditions in the atmosphere. The clouds, which are made mainly of water vapor, are the major contributor to the warming today. Water vapor, as you may know, is a greenhouse gas." The weatherman then quickly left the interview, mumbling something about going to grind his axe somewhere else.
Some attendees were hot under the collar at the long waits they encountered at the conference center. One attendee, declining to be identified, complained that there appeared to be more U.S. Secret Servicemen than conference attendees. "For Pete's sake," he said, "the President won't be arriving for ten days." He went on to carp about the lack of beef on the menu at the cafeteria. "They say its production creates more greenhouse gasses than chicken. Well, I hate chicken."
Meanwhile, while waiting to be registered for the conference, a group of attendees stood outside the center and admired the ice sculpture of a huge polar bear that had been placed there. It was unclear whether or not the sad expression apparent on the face of the polar bear was a bit of "anthropomorphizing" on the part of the sculptor or was the result of the sun shining down for most of the morning. It was clear, however, with the sunny forecast, that by conference end the statue would likely morph down to about the size of a baby seal.
More as story develops.
For our American readers, Copenhagen is located on that little spit of land hanging down below Sweden, just above Germany. Germany is in Europe.