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The Copenhagen Climate Summit concluded on 18th December 2009 was, by general consensus, a failure on all fronts. Despite hopes that it would produce a successor to the Kyoto Protocol of 1997, which set goals for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2012, the eventual agreement fell far short of expectations. The Copenhagen Accord was not a legally-binding international agreement negotiated by the 192 member states of the United Nations, but the product of a meeting between 5 countries – the United States, Brazil, South Africa, India and China. It was informally recognized by the remaining member states, but it failed to include specific targets for individual nations, and lacked a verification mechanism to ensure that all countries followed their promises through.

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