BY | November 30, 2011

By Joydeep Gupta

Durban, The annual climate summit got into stride here Wednesday, with bureaucrats from 192 countries making some progress over the vexed issue of transferring green technologies to poor nations at cheap rates.

But the negotiators remained deadlocked on the most troubling issue of the extent to which each country should reduce its carbon emissions. At best, this summit could reach a weak agreement that would not help much in combating global warming, nor in adapting to its effects, delegates said.

The stalemate that has been going on for years continued to dog the Nov 28-Dec 9 summit of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in this South African port city, with developing nations insisting that rich countries be legally bound to reduce the emissions that are warming the world, and meeting with refusal from countries like Canada, Japan and Russia unless emerging economies make similar pledges.

At stake is the future of the Kyoto Protocol, which legally binds rich countries to reduce emissions, but whose first commitment period runs out in another year. Conference President Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, South Africa’s minister for International Relations and Cooperation, said: “Durban will be the decisive moment for the Kyoto Protocol.”

Asked if it wasn’t high risk to stake conference success on negotiations that have been stalled for years, she replied: “I’m not the one saying this. Parties (countries) are saying it’s the only legal mechanism to fight climate change and we shouldn’t give it up. It’s particularly important for the CDM.” The CDM, or the Clean Development Mechanism, is the main source of money for green projects in many poor countries.

Nkoana-Mashabane said the other “central decisive step” she hoped to take here to improve people’s “resilience to climate change and a low carbon (development) path” was to limit global temperature rise “to a level the world can cope with”. At a previous UNFCCC summit, countries have decided to limit this rise to two degrees Celsius, but the minister did not refer to this number.

Current emission reduction pledges fall 40 percent short of this target, and Nkoana-Mashabane did say: “All party members should be worried about the low level of ambition” to combat global warming that is already affecting farm output, making droughts, floods and storms more frequent and more severe, and raising the sea level. (IANS)

RELATED

Lucknow: Authorities Sunday deployed drone cameras to keep peace in Uttar Pradesh's Saharanpur district where communal violence claimed three lives and left over a dozen critically injured. Officials admitted the situation in the district was still tense although there had been...

It seems first sign of beginning of achche din. Shiv Sena MP force feeds Muslim employee despite the man of Maharashtra Sadan observing Ramadan fast New Delhi: A Shiv Sena MP, who was seen in a video clip trying to force food into the mouth of a Muslim staffer of Maharashtra...

shiv sena mp force feed muslim

Shiv Sena MPs force feed a Muslim staffer at Maharashtra Sadan while the person was on fast. The news has come as a shock and seems to be an effort to terrorize Muslims. But minority affairs minister Najma Heptullah has refused to speak a single word condemning the incident....

For Delhi's clogged road this may be godsend. Researchers develop new software to provide real time traffic data. It is accurate, inesxpensive. Just think that you have to reach an important place or your office on time and you have no idea which route to take. By mistake you...

delhi pollution

By C Uday Bhaskar After considerable vacillation that brought little credit to the world's largest democracy, the Indian parliament is now set to discuss the violence and bloodshed in Gaza on Monday, July 21. Earlier, even as the spiral of violence continued, the Indian...

Picture courtesy Aljazeera