The Copenhagen Agreed Outcome: Form, Shape and Influence

Economic & Political Weekly, 28 November 2009

This article explores first, why a legally binding instrument is unlikely to emerge from the UN conference on climate change at Copenhagen, and next, whether it matters and if so, why. In the process, it examines the terms "politically binding", and "legally binding", and explores the space between and within politically and legally binding agreements. It also discusses the form and shape that a political deal could take at Copenhagen, and the influence it could have in the development of a future climate regime.