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IN THE PRESS

An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2009-12-08

China recalls past glory during warm periods of history

INTERNATIONAL PRESS REVIEW: Some climate experts in Beijing claim Chinese civilization has flourished throughout history when temperatures have been at their warmest.

China has kept meticulous climate records for thousands of years
which has allowed some experts to conclude that Chinese civilization has flourished when temperatures have been at their warmest and declined as the climate cooled, says today’s South China Morning Post. The Hong Kong-based newspaper interviewed Professor Xie Zheghui on the matter. The Deputy Director of China’s International Centre for Climate said, “In my opinion the sooner the temperature increases the better. The longer it takes, the more extreme weather we will have to face. Extreme weather is the hallmark of transitional periods.”

The Han and Tang dynasties both coincided with particularly warm periods in history. While most climate change experts are warning that growing seasons will become shorter in China if temperatures increase, others such as Xie say that more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would perhaps accelerate the growth of crops. Higher temperatures would also benefit regions such as Inner Mongolia which is currently too cold to cultivate crops.

Chinese records show that the temperature would stabilize after a sharp climb, Xie says. “Mother Earth has a lot of mechanisms to adjust herself to a new equilibrium.”

The Independent leads with the opening day of the Copenhagen conference where the head of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Dr. Rajendra Pachauri told delegates, “We won’t let skeptics hijack climate talks.”

The summit opened with top scientists hitting out at the theft of emails from the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia.


These emails have been used by climate skeptics to allege that global warming is not man-made, says the Independent. There has been widespread speculation that the timing of this was designed to destabilize the summit.

The Guardian runs a double page showing the 56 papers around the world that carried the editorial its journalists were key to coordinating. It was an unprecedented move – papers across the world spoke with one voice in favour of tough action in Copenhagen to tackle climate change.

“Alan Rusbridger, the paper’s editor-in-chief says ‘No individual newspaper editorial could hope to influence the outcome of Copenhagen but I hope the combined voice papers speaking in 20 languages will remind politicians of what’s at stake and persuade them to rise above their rivalries.”

Other articles in today’s international papers:

International Herald Tribune
Students and militia do battle in Iran

Teheran Times
Students day observed in Iran

Liberation
“No more Mr. Brown Eye”

The Daily Telegraph
Father Christmas abandons traditional whip in Estonia

 

By James CREEDON

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