Negotiations heat up in closing stages of Lima climate talks

World Today

As the United Nations climate change summit draws to a close in Peru’s capital of Lima, representatives from nearly 200 countries  are trying to negotiate a draft text which will form the basis for a binding, global climate change deal to be signed in 2015 in Paris. CCTV America’s Dan Collyns reported.

Negotiations heat up in closing stages of Lima climate talks

As the United Nations climate change summit draws to a close in Peru's capital of Lima, representatives from nearly 200 countries are trying to negotiate a draft text which will form the basis for a binding, global climate change deal to be signed in 2015 in Paris. CCTV America's Dan Collyns reported.

In the 11th hour of the climate change talks, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, injected a sense of urgency into flagging negotiations.

“This is not just another policy issue measured against the array of global threats we face today: terrorism, extremism, epidemics poverty, nuclear proliferation, all challenges that know no borders. Climate change absolutely ranks up there equal with all of them,” Kerry said.

Kerry was a key figure in forging a carbon-cutting deal between the U.S., China and the European Union last month which set the tone for this summit.

As the multi-billion dollar costs of climate change emerge, key funding commitments are falling short.

The Chinese delegation reminded developed nations of their obligations.

“The developed countries are committed to raise $100 billion by 2020. What we are asking is that they need to honor the commitment so that mutual trust can be built between countries and the international community can have confidence that the new agreement will be met,” leader of Chinese delegation Xie Zhenhua said.

Observers said developed nations are more focused on cutting their emissions than helping poorer nations cope with climate change.

Also, many believed rich countries still need to do more, with climate funds at just a tenth of the 2020 target.

“If you think about the amount of money that governments were able to mobilize during the financial crisis, we were all saving a bunch of banks, it’s pretty clear that we must also be able to mobilize funds for climate change which is a much bigger much broader much more threatening disaster in slow motion,” WWF’s global climate and energy initiative Samantha Smith said.

Delegates representing nearly 200 countries are working to draft an outline agreement which includes commitments from each country on how it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and financial pledges from developed countries. It could then be signed at a meeting next year in Paris.


Kate Sheppard discusses the progress of Climate talks in Lima
CCTV America interviewed Kate Sheppard, the environment and energy editor at The Huffington Post, about the progress in Lima, and what happens if no agreement is reached.

Kate Sheppard discusses the progress of Climate talks in Lima

CCTV America interviewed Kate Sheppard, the environment and energy editor at The Huffington Post, about the progress in Lima, and what happens if no agreement is reached.


Lima Climate Talks: countries overcoming rift over climate funds

Debate continues at the U.N. climate change conference in Lima. Delegates from more than 195 countries are seeking agreement as to how to reduce carbon emissions, and mitigate the effects of climate change. CCTV America’s Stephen Gibbs reported this story from Lima.

Lima Climate Talks: countries overcoming rift over climate funds

Debate continues at the U.N. climate change conference in Lima. Delegates from more than 195 countries are seeking agreement as to how to reduce carbon emissions, and mitigate the effects of climate change. CCTV America's Stephen Gibbs reported this story from Lima.

The argument is that the old world grew wealthy before anyone worried about climate change, but the new world asked why should it pay for the sins of others.

“The truth is the [the huge contribution to] stock of carbon in the atmosphere, historically, has been by countries which are now rich. So there is that legacy of damage. And the fact that countries are now rich because they did develop in a certain way means there is a certain obligation to aid others on clean development pathways,” U.N. Development Programme Helen Clark said.

In the debates, Europe and U.S. have been pushing for tighter restrictions on carbon emissions, while the developing world wanted more clarity on who pays for what.

India said that its fight to reduce poverty for its citizens, should not be threatened by climate change commitments it cannot afford.

“If I have to change my current technology, if I have to look to futuristic things, it is going to cost, and someone has to pay this cost. The cost should be borne by people who have also enjoyed the fruits of their development, and, historically, have occupied a lot of space with the carbon emissions; this space has to be left for other people to grow,” Indian government delegation Ashok Lavasa said.