Paris climate talks: Do we agree or agree to disagree?

COP21 conference: A number of countries, including India, rose up at a Wednesday evening meeting to point out the problem areas in the draft text

Written by Amitabh Sinha | Paris | Updated: December 10, 2015 11:04 am
COP21, paris climate conference, paris climate talks, COP 21 conference, COP21 climate conference, france, climate change, india climate change, france climate change, paris climate change, United states, climate change in china NGO representatives gather next to on the mini red Eiffel Tower after a sit-in protest closed to the plenary session to denounce the first draft COP21 Climate Conference agreement, and put pressure to reach an international agreement to limit global warming, during the COP21, United Nations Climate Change Conference in Le Bourget, north of Paris, France, Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)

Climate negotiators had their first sleep-over at the Paris conference venue on Wednesday, poring over a draft agreement text that they agreed was better than all previous versions, but one that still needed lots of improvement.

A number of countries, including India, rose up at a Wednesday evening meeting to point out the problem areas in the draft text that had come out earlier in the afternoon.

Watch Climate Change Talks In Paris: How Close Are Countries to A Global Agreement On Climate Change

India’s Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the principle of ‘differentiation’ and acknowledgement of ‘historic responsibilities’ of developed countries in causing global warming had not been satisfactorily enunciated in the draft text. He was also unhappy with the provisions relating to mobilising of financial resources by the developed countries to help out developing nations in dealing with the impacts of climate change.

“On finance, it is deeply disappointing that on the one hand developed countries are not fulfilling their obligations and on the other hand, they are trying to shift their responsibilities to developing countries themselves. There is no indication of scaling up of finance nor a clear roadmap,” Javadekar said.

The minister said that while it was essential to raise the ambition of climate actions to be taken by the countries, it was also necessary to operationalise the principle of differentiation, which asks the developed countries to take the primary responsibility in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and also in helping the other countries fight climate change.

“Both (ambition and differentiation) are equally important. We cannot have one without the other. We are not suggesting that we remain stuck to the past. Surely, we must look forward and move steadily. But a durable agreement cannot be crafted by diluting historical responsibilities or by putting the polluters and the victims at the same level,” he said.

Several other countries and country-groupings also pointed out the provisions that they disagreed with and the improvement they would like to see in the last two days of negotiations left in the two-week conference.

G-77 plus China, the largest negotiating group with more than 130 members including India, said many of the proposals it had submitted did not appear in the text. It was extremely concerned with the “steady delinking” of the text from the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change of 1992, sort of a Constitution for these negotiations. This concern was expressed by Javadekar as well.

Developing countries want to see very explicit language stating that the agreement would operate under the Framework Convention. This is because the Framework Convention spells out the principles of ‘historical responsibility’ and ‘differentiation’ in very clear terms. Developing countries have often complained that the developed world has been trying to break away from the Framework Convention because it wants to run away from its responsibilities.

Speaking on behalf of the G-77 plus China group, South African minister Edna Molewa said there were “numerous inconsistencies” between the language in the Convention and the draft text.

Some developed countries like Switzerland and Australia also agreed that more balanced needed to be introduced into the draft.

After the countries had their say, French foreign minister Laurent Fabius, who is presiding over the conferences, said he was opening two consultation rooms, one chaired by himself and another by Manuel Pulgar Vidal, the minister of Peru who had presided over the last climate conference in Lima.

The consultation room chaired by Fabius was to discuss issues related to ambition of climate actions, differentiation and the issue of finance and technology transfer. The other consultation room was to take up issues of loss and damage, cooperative mechanisms, preamble of the agreement, and forests.

Fabius told the countries not to restate their positions on these issues at these two informal meetings but suggest “compromise wordings” to move ahead.

The meetings went on through most of the night, and would continue through Thursday as well. A new version of the draft text is expected to emerge in the evening on Thursday, which Fabius said should be the “penultimate” text, meaning it should only lead to the final agreement.

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  1. A
    Dec 10, 2015 at 10:30 am
    The development of industries involving various applications of energy lead to the global warming. Scientists predict the global destruction, if the warming results in the increase of two degrees more. The applications of energy and the development of scientific research in various directions resulted in the discovery of several artificial amenities. These amenities have been stamped with the higher status of life. To maintain these amenities, more and more money is needed. To earn more and more money, unlawful ways are invented, which formulate the network of corruption. As of result of corruption, the poor becomes poorer and the rich becomes richer. As a result of this increase in the gap, social revolutions have come and terrorism is one of those. Sin is the basis of corruption and this spoils even the life after death in the upper worlds. The controlled growth of science in ancient India developed very few amenities only, which could be available to everyone even with little money. Hence, the very basis of corruption was absent in those days. Today, scientists find that these amenities are responsible for the environmental pollution, leading to global destruction. Therefore, all the steps of this analysis end in the uncontrolled growth of science and technology. The growth of science leads to negligence of God, which is the basis for doing the sin without fear. In ancient India, very little development of science and technology was present, creating minimum number of amenities, which could be attained by everyone easily. There is no need of much argument in this topic because there is a clear practical resultant difference between the people of ancient times and the people of modern times that the ancient people lived with more longevity, with better physique and more mental peace and the exact contrast is seen in the modern people. The actual aim of science blessed by God was only to analyze the creation and realize that creator is beyond all this creation. Every item in this creation, including awareness was subjected to scientific analysis to arrive at the conclusion that no created item is the creator (neti neti… Veda). By this, it became easy to recognize that God was unimaginable. The faith in the existence of the unimaginable power, the God, was the basis of the establishment of the golden society without corruption and global destruction. Major portion of scientific analysis was only to understand that God is beyond this imaginable creation, rewarding the good deeds and punishing the bad deeds done by any human being in this society through His unimaginable power since God by Himself is unimaginable.
    1. Hemen Parekh
      Dec 10, 2015 at 11:07 am
      SAVING CURRENT GENERATION ? Dear Shri Javadekarji : Right now you are in Paris , negotiating the Climate Control deal with 196 nations Rich nations ( who are the root cause of today's looming threat ) , will tell you : " Prakash , You must convince your countrymen not to cut down trees , in order to get some fire-wood . By absorbing Carbon Dioxide and releasing Oxygen , trees are reducing the green-house gases and reducing global warming " I do hope your answer goes somewhat like this : " Big Brothers , In my country , some 400 million poor people will go hungry without food if they cannot use firewood for cooking You are worried about saving the coming generations - your great g children My countrymen need firewood to save themselves from getting extinct thru starvation I am duty-bound to help them But I don't have enough gas stoves , nor enough gas , to give them a subsute The day you gift me 100 million solar powered " Chulas ( Stoves ) " and 100 million power-generating by-cycles ( type Manoj Bhargava has invented ) , I will see to it that not a single tree gets chopped off in India Please come back when you are ready " ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- hemen parekh 10 Dec 2015 B2BmessageBlaster
      1. Prashanth Pulikkalparambil
        Dec 10, 2015 at 3:19 pm
        Good read.