Coming Out of Copenhagen

The big question now, as the dust settles and media and world leaders alike bring their presence and focus back from Copenhagen to the world at large: what next?  Absent universal agreement and legally-binding legislation to show us the path forward on climate change solutions, where are we and where do we go from here?

The answers are as varied as the participants at Copenhagen themselves: some remain optimistic, others are discouraged and despondent.  It’s true that COP15 didn’t produce the real and concrete outcomes many were hoping for … but like many, we’re choosing to regard it not as the end of an effort, but the beginning of an important path forward.  Through the lens provided by our COP correspondent team of Olivia Zaleski and Gabriel London, we observed plenty of disparities of words and actions among leaders and nations … but we also witnessed the power of the individual demanding (sometimes violently) to have a voice.  By all accounts, the number of engaged citizens that gathered in Copenhagen over the last two weeks — some in the spirit of goodwill, others in animosity – was staggering.  Regardless of their view or voice, they were all there in the name of an issue they care deeply about …and that’s the kind of personal passion that gives us hope as we look to the future and contemplate what’s next.

Regardless of the climate conference outcome, there are things we can and should be doing as part of our commitment to Earthkeeping – from making environmentally-conscious decisions about the products we buy and the energy we use, to participating in local community greening initiatives, to urging our legislators to support climate change solutions.  For our part, Timberland will continue to push to reduce our impact on the environment — and continue to encourage others to do the same.  We didn’t entirely expect a global agreement coming out of Copenhagen, and we don’t need one to keep on as we have been, modifying our operations and our products to lessen our carbon footprint and create positive environmental action.  The lack of agreement in our post-Copenhagen reality doesn’t derail our efforts or stall our progress or diminish our passion for creating global standards for greenhouse gas emissions … nor does it prevent us from being optimistic that COP15 wasn’t the end of the road, but rather the starting line for an important journey still ahead of us.

Share your thoughts with us about all things Copenhagen here … how was our coverage, what are your thoughts about the outcome, how hopeful are you about the future?  And then please stay tuned — we look forward to sharing news of our progress and projects for 2010 with you soon.

  • David Wilson

    well, looks like I get the honour of the first comment

    not surprising that people are mum, I am personally devastated, internal landscape looks something like the aftermath of a nuclear war – I don’t mean I am walking around squirming or shrieking or anything like that – but I have a deep sense that it is, quite simply, all over, that not only will our governments not act but that they will do what they can to ensure that they and their close friends spend a month every year in a 3,000$ a day condo in the Maldives until the Maldives are gone forever

    that seems to be where it’s at in Canada, they are setting up to serve the oil company shareholders yet again with what amounts to subsidies on tar sand development … and call me a cynic if you like but I don’t feel particularly cynical, that is simply the fact of what is happening …

    it is interesting that the most imaginative of my muggle friends now begin to think of buying a hidey-hole up somewhere in Alaska, or maybe Newfoundland, where they can just pass the time – actually it is not such a bad idea, even better I guess is to get on the real inside with the rich and powerful who will be thinking the same way and commissioning secure enclaves … step on their threshold without a password and get instantly turned into a crispy critter

    in the last segment of The Stupid Show from Copenhagen, Franny Armstrong was musing about revolution – but as she quickly figgured out it is way too late for revolution

    me? I made up 5,000 “350″ buttons of which I only managed to distribute (one at a time mind you) about 2,000, maybe 1,800, so I figgure to get closer to my aquaintances at the Climate Action Network and see about getting rid of the remaining 3,000 – I don’t like waste and I refuse to trash them

    there will be profit in this for the head shrinkers and anti-depressant manufacturers I warrant …

    I mean, if somebody got beside me and asked me to help with this or that political action I would probably go for it – but … well … the Canadian RCMP killed a guy in cold blood more than two years ago in the Vancouver airport, Robert Dziekanski, and the wheels are still turning even to get these killers a slap on the wrist – TWO YEARS PLUS, dig it!

    I have been listening to this all day –

    seems to help, be well.

  • Constance Blackwell

    thank you for asking for my reaction.
    Honestly I think Copenhagen was as important as the establishment of the UN
    perhaps more – people from all over the world were aware of the very real problem of global warming -
    it is very unlikely there would be an agreement – yet – there will be – however I do believe that the technology is not quite there for governments to commit themselves – Solar energy is one example of a method that is too expensive -
    perhaps in say 4-8 years it will not be –
    It solar energy were not too expensive the countries around the equator would fly out of poverty -
    The important thing is for all governments to do what they can to make renewable energy affordable – this is a very very exciting time
    thank you for your efforts.
    Constance Blackwell


    Ancient Latins in Italy said: FESTINA, SED LENTE!
    COP15 has been the beginning of something very important.

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