After 12 days of heated wrangling, world leaders should emerge from this meeting with a new treaty to combat global warming. Or maybe not: We wouldn’t be shocked if U.S. negotiators, spooked by the potential effect of carbon cuts on the fragile economy, refused to back a deal. (That’s the official reason that the planet’s No. 2 polluter — China is now No. 1 — never ratified the 1997 Kyoto Protocol.) A quick study of host nation Denmark might help allay American fears. The Scandinavian nation’s economy grew by 45% between 1990 and 2007, while carbon-dioxide emissions fell 13%, thanks to high energy taxes and generous subsidies for clean tech. Green energy is now a major moneymaker for the Danes: Its wind-power firms, which control 40% of the global market, generated a breezy $8 billion in exports last year. — TB
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