The UN and the international community have acted swiftly, decisively and aggressively to tackle one of the gravest threats facing humanity. Not global warming, obviously, but the far more serious risk posed by any protest that might hurt the feelings of climate change diplomats.
While the various players gathered at the latest round of Bonn climate talks appear congenitally incapable of agreeing on anything that matters, they have all united this week in condemning the protest at the last Bonn meeting that culminated in a nameplate bearing the name of Saudi Arabia being broken, thrown into a toilet bowl, and then photographed.
The protest was staged as an expression of frustration at the Saudi's decision to block a proposal put forward by small island states for the UN to study what will happen to them if global temperatures rise by more than 1.5 degrees Centigrade.
Last week, WWF and Oxfam admitted their involvement in the protest and prostrated themselves at the feet of the UN and the Saudi Arabian delegation begging clemency for their heinous crime.
Oxfam International's executive director Jeremy Hobbs told delegates gathered in Bonn yesterday that the act "was repugnant and antithetical to the values of Oxfam", while WWF president Yolanda Kakabadse said the incident had been gravely offensive "to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, to all the Parties and the secretariat".
The rogue WWF employee responsible for the ill-conceived prank has now left the organisation, presumably at a rapid rate of knots, while the Oxfam representative has been suspended after taking part in conversations that led up to the protest.
With tremendous graciousness the Saudi Arabian delegation has accepted the apology and withdrawn a request that two of the world's most respected NGOs be banned from the talks for five years. "Saudi Arabia is a forgiving society, and our culture allows us to forgive whoever commits a wrong against us, as long as he or she admits it and apologises," said Saudi Arabian lead negotiator Mohammad Al-Sabban, apparently managing to keep a straight face.
However, this was not before UN climate change chief Christiana Figueres had taken the offending charities to task, cutting the number of WWF delegates permitted to attend the next climate summit to two representatives and reducing Oxfam's delegation to three people.
Dusting off her best headteacher impression she said: "I welcome the responsible, respectful and constructive participation of civil society in the UNFCCC intergovernmental process. My experience has been that this is the norm, which is why infrequent and isolated incidents like these have no place here... I trust that such incidents will never be repeated in future sessions."
All of which brings to an end one of the more bizarre episodes in the history of the UN climate talks - an incident that leaves any sane observer untouched by the collective madness that appears to grip the talks to ask what would happen if the assorted diplomats were decisive when dealing with the future of the planet as they have been tackling the question of who upset the Saudis.
Of course, it hardly needs saying that the whole incident was a horrible mis-step from the WWF and Oxfam employees involved. Their frustration at the Saudi stance was entirely understandable and would have garnered a lot of sympathy amongst many other negotiating teams. But such a juvenile protest was always going to attract entirely deserving condemnation. Where was the dignified boycott of the Saudi delegation, the silent sit down protest in opposition to its intransigence? Even a stand up row with the diplomats responsible for blocking the island states' desperate plea for the world to pay attention to their fate would have been more dignified than the Rag Week-style antics involving a Polaroid, a nameplate and a toilet.
But at the same time the incident provides a timely reminder of the extent to which the UN-backed climate talks carnival appears to be have lost all perspective on what it is trying to achieve.
It is telling that the most powerful language and decisive action coming from the negotiating process in the past six months involves a toilet bowl rather than a negotiating text.
The reason there was optimism in the run up to the Copenhagen Summit was due to the fact that for once the seriousness of the climate change threat got a fair airing. There was an undeniable sense that world leaders accepted something had to be done. Sadly, Copenhagen failed to deliver the breakthrough that was required and since then we have returned to the circuitous negotiations about treaties and procedures that often have more to do with power games and legalese than the actual curbing of greenhouse gases. Apparently gradual progress is being made but there is an urgent need for a repeat of the kind of urgency that characterised the build up to the Copenhagen Summit.
Regardless of the green NGOs recent misjudgement, what these talks need is not less representation from civil society, including the businesses that will ultimately build the low carbon economy, but far, far more.
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