A number of observers are attributing the modest success of the Cancun climate change negotiations to the deftness of the Mexican leadership of the conference. Michael Levi of the Council on Foreign Relations concluded:
“By all accounts, the Mexican diplomatic team displayed great skill, giving all parties a voice while taking the reality of international power politics seriously. As a result, they eliminated silly procedural excuses for rejecting an agreed outcome, and in doing so appear to have established a much firmer foundation that the Copenhagen accord ever came close to enjoying.”
Levi is hardly alone in trumpeting Mexican prowess. I’m told that in their formal statements last week, diplomat after diplomat compared Mexico’s skillful handling of the negotiations with Denmark’s clumsy stewardship during the Copenhagen negotiations. The Mexican team received several standing ovations at the end of the process. Observers point to several things that Mexican diplomats did well.