A U.S.-led gathering of major economies in Paris this week concluded, as previous meetings have done, with little progress. The 17 countries bashed President Bush’s climate speech for a while, then argued about whether to set a goal of halving global greenhouse-gas emissions by 2050. (Guess who’s against it?) French president Nicolas Sarkozy made himself quoteworthy, saying that climate change would make Darfur “just one crisis among dozens of others” and urging international private investors to “massively redirect financial flows toward [a] new low-carbon economy.” After vaguely agreeing that future deals should include sharing clean technologies and setting emissions goals for specific industries, delegates agreed to meet again in May and June. Meanwhile, G8 business chiefs met in Tokyo to spar about industry’s role in tackling climate change, finally concluding that companies should not be “unduly penalized by unbalanced policy measures that would divert resources away from investments in innovation.”

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.