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Negotiators, activists and officials ramp up the urgency as climate talks enter final days

by Michael Nguyen
2 comments
Climate Negotiations

As climate negotiations at the United Nations enter their final days, there is a growing sense of urgency among negotiators, activists, and officials. The task at hand is to determine how the world will effectively limit planet-warming emissions and mitigate the most severe consequences of climate change. The pressure has intensified as new drafts of key summit outcomes are anticipated.

Simon Stiell, the executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, addressed journalists on Monday, emphasizing the gravity of the situation. He referred to the pressing issue as “climate wolves” knocking at the world’s doors as negotiations reach their climax during the summit. Stiell stressed that there is no time to spare in this critical final stretch, and sleep has been in short supply for everyone involved. He pointed out that the scope of negotiation options has significantly narrowed, particularly concerning the reduction of planet-warming emissions and the necessary support mechanisms for this transition.

When questioned directly about the possibility of negotiators departing Dubai without an agreement, Stiell did not rule out this outcome. He cautioned against an attitude of “I win, you lose,” emphasizing that such an approach would lead to collective failure.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is expected to return to the talks on Monday, reiterating the call for countries to commit to substantial reductions in fossil fuel usage and efforts to limit global warming. He warned that the world is on the brink of a climate catastrophe and stressed the pivotal role of this conference in charting a new course.

COP28 President Sultan al-Jaber echoed the urgency for an ambitious outcome aligned with the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit). He made it clear that failure, lack of progress, or any attempt to weaken ambition is not acceptable.

The Global Stocktake, which assesses the progress of countries in achieving their climate goals and strategies, remains a contentious issue. While many nations, including small island states, European countries, and Latin American nations, advocate for a complete phase-out of fossil fuels, others seek more lenient language that would allow continued use of oil, gas, and coal with some form of pollution capture. The critical aspect will be how the term “unabated” is defined in this context, as it will determine the feasibility and cost of such measures.

It is important to note that Big Big News’ climate and environmental coverage is supported by various private foundations, and the AP is responsible for all content related to this initiative.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Climate Negotiations

What is the main focus of the U.N. climate talks mentioned in the text?

The main focus of the U.N. climate talks is to decide how to cap planet-warming emissions and combat the worst effects of global warming.

Who is Simon Stiell, and what message did he convey during the talks?

Simon Stiell is the executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. He emphasized the urgency of the negotiations and referred to the pressing issue as “climate wolves” knocking at the world’s doors, stressing that there is no time to spare.

What did U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres emphasize regarding the climate conference?

Antonio Guterres emphasized that the world is on the brink of a climate disaster and called on countries to commit to substantial reductions in fossil fuel usage and efforts to limit global warming, highlighting the significance of this conference as a turning point.

What is the desired outcome for the climate talks in line with the Paris Agreement?

The desired outcome for the climate talks is to achieve an ambitious result that aligns with the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit).

What are some of the key points of contention in the Global Stocktake mentioned in the text?

The key points of contention in the Global Stocktake include the debate between many countries advocating for a complete phase-out of fossil fuels, which are responsible for most of the Earth’s warming, and others seeking more lenient language that would allow continued use of oil, gas, and coal with pollution capture measures. The definition of the term “unabated” is crucial in this context.

More about Climate Negotiations

  • United Nations Climate Change: The official website of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change provides detailed information about climate negotiations and related initiatives.
  • Paris Agreement: Learn more about the Paris Agreement and its goals to combat climate change.
  • COP28: Information about the 28th Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC, where climate negotiations are taking place.
  • Antonio Guterres on Twitter: Follow U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Twitter for updates on climate and environmental issues.
  • Big Big News Climate Coverage: Explore climate and environmental coverage by Big Big News, supported by private foundations.
  • E3G: Visit the official website of E3G, where Lisa Fischer, mentioned in the text, serves as program lead for climate-related issues.

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2 comments

ClimateWatcher22 December 11, 2023 - 11:42 am

hey, so the UN climate talks, they rly seem super urgent rn, ya kno? like, they gotta decide how 2 stop global warming n stuff. Stiell guy says no time 2 lose, no sleep 4 them! Guterres back on mon, big deal on climate disaster. COP28 prez wants no weak stuff, gotta stick 2 Paris deal. Global Stocktake, some say no more fossil fuels, others want them still.

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EarthAdvocate December 11, 2023 - 9:43 pm

This article shows the pressure and urgency at the U.N. climate talks. Stiell’s words highlight the critical nature of the negotiations. Guterres’ call for action is vital. COP28’s commitment to the Paris Agreement is a beacon of hope. The debate over fossil fuels in the Global Stocktake is a significant challenge. Climate action is essential now.

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