Fellows in the News

In detailing their much-scrutinized marriage and love story at the Democratic National Convention, former President Bill Clinton also took care to list his wife’s numerous legislative and foreign policy achievements.

Among them: "She put climate change at the center of our foreign policy. She negotiated the first agreement ever — ever — where China and India officially committed to reduce their emissions."

While Bill Clinton’s claim is largely accurate, he’s offering a rosy spin on the Copenhagen Accord of 2009, which was at the time and continues to be widely panned.

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In this sense, the accord "played a major role in breaking" the "firewall" between developed countries and developing countries when it came to climate action responsibility, according to  David Ciplet, an environmental studies professor at the University of Colorado Boulder who wrote Power in a Warming World: The New Global Politics of Climate Change and the Remaking of Environmental Inequality.

"However, whether the Copenhagen Accord was a positive development overall is definitely controversial," Ciplet told PolitiFact.

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