Copenhagen – Not So Open City

 By Einar Du Rietz

Maybe not a hooliganA few days before the Copenhagen summit, both the hooligans and the police are mobilizing. The saboteurs are rounding up people on the Internet and claim to have assigned delegates to sabotage the proceedings. The Danish parliament has passed new anti hooligan legislation and bought new barbed wire cages, intended as temporary cells for those incarcerated. The chaos is on. Partly amusing on a safe distance.

On another note, the city council has urged all delegates and guests not to buy services from prostitutes (legal in Denmark) during their visit. This infuriated the sex worker’s union, which – as a protest – now offers free services to all delegates.

Regardless of the agenda, hooliganism and mindless violence is always the saddest part of these events. Alongside with excessive force by the nervous police. What to do? One idea would be to move the venue of all huge meetings to somewhere in the middle of nowhere. The so called world leaders have their own planes, and though you would have to fly in security too, at least the civilians would be spared the hassle. Though some people probably find a way to make a buck or two on IPCC, most Copenhageners are all but happy with the arrangements.

Or think twice before organizing these events. They are expensive and sometimes dangerous, and both the idea and the outcome can be questionable. IPCC in Copenhagen seems like just a big, expensive question mark.

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About the Author: Einar Du Rietz

Einar Du Rietz is a journalist and communications consultant based in Europe. He has authored several environmental reports for the Electrolux Group and written many blogs for the Center for the New Europe at CNE Environment.