Climate pact process stumbles as countries bicker

May 25, 2012
Giant tabular icebergs surrounded by ice floe drift in Vincennes Bay in the Australian Antarctic Territory, 2008. Less than six months after the world agreed to craft a new climate pact by 2015, negotiations stumbled at a crucial preparatory phase as rich and poor countries butted heads.

Less than six months after the world agreed to craft a new climate pact by 2015, negotiations stumbled at a crucial preparatory phase on Friday as rich and poor countries butted heads.

The concluding session of an already troubled 11-day haggle in Bonn ran into delays as clashed over who will chair the long negotiations, which aim at a post-2020 deal to roll back greenhouse-gas emissions.

"The window of opportunity is very slowly closing down on us," conference chairwoman Sandea de Wet warned delegates at what was supposed to be a final meeting but was postponed for several hours.

The world is divided between developed and on apportioning responsibility for curbing global warming.

Fast-growing countries like China insist the West, which has been polluting more for longer, should shoulder more of the mitigation burden.

The latest dispute concerns the leadership of a group known by its initials ADP -- for ad-hoc talks on the so-called Durban Platform.

The ADP will lead the process agreed in South Africa last December to draft a new pact binding all nations, not just rich countries as is the case now.

China and its allies want India to chair the ADP, on the grounds that it is the Asia-Pacific bloc's turn to steer a subsidiary body under the UN Framework Convention for (UNFCCC).

The other candidates are Norway and the Caribbean state of Trinidad and Tobago.

"This is a sad state of affairs," South African climate ambassador Nozipho Joyce Mxakato-Diseko told delegates as she announced that for the first time since the UNFCCC was created 20 years ago, a lack of consensus may force an election to be held.

"All parties have confirmed to me they do not want to go this way, it is not in the culture of this structure, consensus is the norm," she said.

An EU delegate informed the gathering that informal corridor talks had flagged a possible settlement, and asked for more time to explore the options.

On Wednesday, Europe warned the process was in danger of floundering, and participants accused China of blocking the ADP negotiating process.

The Asian giant responded Thursday that it was the United States, Europe and other rich states that were applying the brakes, trying to "evade legally binding commitments" by shifting the focus away from already existing emission targets to as yet undefined commitments under the Durban Platform.

Explore further: China hits back at claims it is blocking climate talks

Related Stories

UN climate talks on edge heading into final hours

December 9, 2011

(AP) -- The United States, China and India could scuttle attempts to save the only treaty governing global warming, Europe's top negotiator said Friday hours before a 194-nation U.N. climate conference was to close.

2015 climate 'roadmap' idea well received, says EU

November 6, 2011

The European Union's top climate diplomat said on Saturday the bloc's proposal for upcoming UN talks to lay down a new "roadmap" leading to a comprehensive global deal by 2015 has been well received.

UN talks take first steps on 2015 climate deal

May 17, 2012

UN members on Thursday took their first steps in a marathon to negotiate a new global pact by 2015 that for the first time will place rich and poor under a common legal regime to tackle climate change.

Conference in overtime on future of climate talks

December 10, 2011

(AP) -- Deep into overtime, negotiators from 194 nations worked straight through a second night, parsing drafts and seeking compromises to map out the future pathway to fight global warming.

Recommended for you

Mountain glaciers shrinking across the West

October 22, 2017

Until recently, glaciers in the United States have been measured in two ways: placing stakes in the snow, as federal scientists have done each year since 1957 at South Cascade Glacier in Washington state; or tracking glacier ...

Carbon coating gives biochar its garden-greening power

October 20, 2017

For more than 100 years, biochar, a carbon-rich, charcoal-like substance made from oxygen-deprived plant or other organic matter, has both delighted and puzzled scientists. As a soil additive, biochar can store carbon and ...

Cool roofs have water saving benefits too

October 20, 2017

The energy and climate benefits of cool roofs have been well established: By reflecting rather than absorbing the sun's energy, light-colored roofs keep buildings, cities, and even the entire planet cooler. Now a new study ...


Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

3 / 5 (4) May 25, 2012
Of course they're bickering; when you bicker you don't actually have to do anything. It's a way to drag your heels and avoid committing to anything.
2 / 5 (4) May 25, 2012
"WE" are not going to do much about the changes that humanity is inserting into earth's climate until we have significantly less distributed government.
Good luck to all of us, on that count.
..... or... .damned if you do and damned if you don't.
3.3 / 5 (7) May 25, 2012
This will be used as just one more reason to motivate 'progressives' to impose a world govt.
After all, 'progressives' are soooo smart and know what is best for the ignorant masses.
2.3 / 5 (6) May 25, 2012
RyggTard doesn't seem to notice that the political decisions being made in Greece are having considerable economic effect on America.

America is already a province of a global government thanx to the very free trade that Tard Boy and his Libertarian Brethren promote.

Tard Boy just can't being his cowardly ass to accept it.

"This will be used as just one more reason to motivate 'progressives' to impose a world govt." - RyggTard

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.