Devastating floods throughout the whole week in South Africa have left at least 395 people dead by Friday and countless families displaced from their homes. While relief work continues, weather forecasts are anything but encouraging.
Canada’s decision to withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol is surprising and regrettable, the United Nations climate change chief Christiana Figueres said on Tuesday, calling on developed countries to meet the commitments they recently made at the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa.
* By Lord Julian Hunt. The main aim of the UN climate summit at Durban, which concluded unsuccessfully on Friday/Saturday morning, was to produce an agreement about targets for emissions by developed countries, and longer term commitments from developing countries.
Climate negotiators agreed a pact that would for the first time force all the biggest polluters to take action on greenhouse gas emissions, but critics said the action plan was not aggressive enough to slow the pace of global warming.
The main aim of the UN climate summit at Durban, which began on November 28 and finishes on December 9, is to produce an agreement about targets for emissions by developed countries, and longer term targets from developing countries.
The forthcoming Durban (Climate change) conference comes at a major crossroads in international relations, with continuing economic malaise in the West being counterpoised with the increasingly rapid shift of power to emerging economies. Mirroring this structural change is a fundamental shift in the centre of gravity of the global climate change debate that few have yet to recognize.