by Geena Berry
On Mondays it’s often a little harder to get out of bed, and today was definitely one of those mornings. I started out in a bad mood, got confused by our room situation and then changed three different times before actually figuring out what to wear. All this on top of like five hours of sleep … which is a lame way to start the day. I get to breakfast, eat by myself and head for the bus. Not-so-good mood continues when I realize that the entrance to the conference center is a GIANT line … by line I mean giant blob with everyone waiting in it. Which was okay at first, but actually got a little better. Mostly the giant line and blob of people were just confused, but it is funny that in all that madness there is this joint hatred that: 1) the Bella Center is not correctly designed for mass entrance in the morning 2) observers cannot get into the conference center until 8 anyway 3) 20,000 more people have been accredited than the building can hold and 4) there is no good coffee anywhere! I love it. I love that the mass blob of people in the morning make me happier than anything else. It’s amazing. Hopefully any of the mad Monday vibes will not infest the delegates that have a lot of work to do. (NEIL that is directed at you!)
Reflections from the weekend Actions are amazing. Protests/marches with thousands of other people, even better. I hope all of you have been following what has been going on in the sad amount of media coverage that is around. (Just to clarify, the march on Saturday was peaceful except for a small number of people who were probably not in the march to bring attention to the climate change issue.) It was amazing to walk though the streets of Copenhagen with all those people; so energized, so much energy! Although. Saturday really made me wonder if we should be doing much more in the way of real actions … existential question for the weekend … should we be working in the system, or just really draw lots of attention outside, where all of this talk needs to make a difference?
A few of the COA students and alumni working toward a strong climate change treaty in Copenhagen. Back row (standing): Nina Therkildsen ’05, Michael Keller 09, Cory Whitney ’03, Juan Hoffmaister ’07; sitting: Andrew Louw ’11, (on edge of couch) Taj Schottland ’10 (directly in front of him), Richard van Kampen ’12, Oliver Bruce ’10, Mers, Noah Hodgetts ’10, Matt McInnis ’09; front row: Barry (a New Zealand friend), faculty member Doreen Stabinsky, Sarah Neilson ’09, Emily Postman ’12, Geena Berry ’10, Lindsay Britton ’11.
On a different note: College of the Atlantic is great! Having multiple large dinners with our delegation, friends and alums was amazing this past weekend. I thought COA was pretty cool before – but actually seeing how we are involved, what alums are doing and how open and welcoming our community is, is such a nice feeling.
The week ahead This week is really what matters. Yes, there have been painful and intense moments in the past week, but that is not where much of the work is done. Delegates will be joined by heads of state and other important people. The text will be torn apart, reformed and then changed according to what is happening in side discussions. Now is the time to draw attention to what we need in order to craft some sort of agreement, and what it will look like to individual countries. In the end, we hopefully won’t let too many people drown, be displaced, or die of famine and/or disease.
RECAP If you have a bad Monday mood, go stand in a long line with a bunch of people. COA is totally cool. Week two of COP15 will be a much scarier place.