Barack Obama placed a telephone call to Meles Zenawi on Tuesday to discuss the climate negotiations. Hours later, French President Nicolas Zarkozy and Zenawi announced a joint appeal for a “Copenhagen Accord” that calls for substantially less ambition on both emission targets and funds for adaptation and mitigation than African delegations had previously demanded.
The African Union has shown tremendous solidarity so far at the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference (see Africa Provides Real Leadership). In fact, their unity has been so complete, that breaking it down has become priority number one for rich, developed countries (see Copenhagen Echoes WTO Dynamics). At least in the case of Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, the pressure seems to have paid dividends.