Agnieszka's Feed
Dec 9, 2011

Climate talks mean life or death for island states

DURBAN (Reuters) – Nature does not negotiate.

So while climate change delegates haggle over deadlines, binding targets and finance, some of the world’s poorest states are warning that rising sea levels and storms will sweep them away unless the world agrees to tackle global warning.

“We will be one of the first countries to go under water,” said Foua Toloa, a senior politician on Tokelau, an island half-way between Hawaii and New Zealand that is no more than five meters above sea-level.

Dec 7, 2011

South Africa selects 28 projects for green power drive

DURBAN (Reuters) – South Africa has chosen 28 renewable energy projects as part of its drive cut its reliance on coal fired plants, and bidders have until June to prove the projects are financially viable, the energy ministry said on Wednesday.

The selected bidders were announced on the sidelines of a global climate summit in Durban where delegates from more than 190 nations are hoping to agree to a new deal to tackle greenhouse gas emissions, blamed by scientists for rising sea levels, intense storms and crop failures.

Dec 3, 2011

UN climate chief sees air clearing on cut pledges

DURBAN (Reuters) – The U.N.’s climate chief said on Saturday she believes countries can snap the deadlock that has lasted for years and sign up to fresh and binding commitments to cut greenhouse gases, after a week of climate talks between nearly 200 countries.

“Countries are now looking at how they might bring about a second commitment period and no longer if there is going to be a second commitment period,” climate chief Christiana Figueres told Reuters in an interview.

Dec 3, 2011

Finance questions raised in draft U.N. climate paper

DURBAN (Reuters) – Taxes on financial transactions, part of a $100 billion fund for climate change projects, were not present in a draft document of a major working group released on Saturday, raising questions about how the fund’s coffers will be filled.

The draft negotiating text is the first major paper produced from the U.N. talks among nearly 200 nations that started this week in the South African port city of Durban.

Dec 2, 2011

Brazil defends land bill at global climate talks

DURBAN, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Brazil on Friday defended a
proposed law to ease land-use rules which environmentalists say
could spur illegal tree-felling and put the Latin American
country’s emission targets at risk.

The new law, an overhaul of Brazil’s 1965 forest code ,
would reduce the amount of forest that farmers must
preserve, relax the conservation of hilltops, and give partial
amnesties for massive fines for past deforestation in Latin
America’s largest country.

Dec 2, 2011

From rags to riches at South Africa iron ore mine

KATHU, South Africa, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Life is about
to get a lot better for people like Christopher Mocwane, a
worker at one of the world’s largest iron ore mines outside this
dusty town in the middle of the Kalahari desert.

Thanks to an employee share ownership scheme, the
47-year-old, who earns 7,000 rand ($835) a month, is about to
receive a 576,045-rand ($68,700) windfall.

Dec 2, 2011

Games wake people up to climate change

DURBAN (Reuters) – When Pablo Suarez began teaching farmers, fishermen and emergency volunteers about rising sea levels and extreme weather patterns using scientists and a powerpoint presentation, people were falling asleep in their chairs.

Eventually he decided on a very different approach.

“I had to convey the idea of a storm, of an extreme weather event, and I had a Frisbee and I just threw it into the audience,” Suarez, a Red Cross associate director of programs, told Reuters on the sidelines of a global climate summit.

Dec 1, 2011

Short-term climate funds on track, doubts over future

DURBAN (Reuters) – Rich nations are on track to deliver on their promise to supply $30 billion in short-term climate financing by the end of next year to help poor countries tackle global warming.

But doubts emerged at the climate talks in Durban this week over whether donors will be able to ramp-up support to $100 billion a year by 2020 as part of a long-term fund to assist developing nations in their fight against climate change.

Nov 30, 2011

EU urges conclusion on climate fund, others want changes

DURBAN (Reuters) – The European Union said on Wednesday countries should agree to the draft of a new climate fund and not delay its progress, while others urged more work on a tool meant to help developing countries fight climate change.

More than 190 countries at the global climate talks in Durban are expected to sign off on the Green Climate Fund, meant to channel up to $100 billion a year by 2020 to help developing states tackle climate change that is leading to rising sea levels and crop failures.

Nov 28, 2011

Small island states “may disappear if no climate deal”

DURBAN (Reuters) – Small island states may disappear under rising seas if an international agreement to tackle climate change is delayed for another decade, an official said on Monday.

The European Union is calling for a global deal to be reached by 2015 and implemented by 2020, but the 43-member Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) said that would be too late to reverse rising sea levels that threaten to submerge the vulnerable states.