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With COP27 countdown timer on, who pays what for climate crisis remains unanswered

With COP27 countdown timer on, who pays what for climate crisis remains unanswered

With COP27 countdown timer on, who pays what for climate crisis remains unanswered
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By Akriti Anand  Nov 18, 2022 5:35:06 PM IST (Updated)

"There are still a lot of gaps remaining" in the draft decisions regarding financing, said delegates at the COP27 summit.

The COP27 climate, which is scheduled to end around 9:30 pm (IST) on Friday, might get dragged on to Saturday as leaders ponder over the most contentious issue for mankind time immemorial  — financing. Who will shell out the money for loss and damage caused due to climate change?

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A draft negotiating text of the deal that delegates at the COP27 summit are hoping to agree on in the coming days did not spell out the proposed solution to provide funding to developing countries suffering catastrophic climate events. Instead, it contained placeholder text, indicating delegates were still seeking consensus on the matter, Reuters reported.
"There are still a lot of gaps remaining" in the draft decisions, said some delegates at the COP27 summit.
Developed Vs developing nations at COP27
The fiance angle has once again become the hot topic of discussion at the climate summit between developed and developing nations with the latter demanding rich members like the US and China to agree to the New Collective Quantified Goal on Climate Finance (NCQG) — which, they say, should be in trillions as the costs of addressing and adapting to climate change have grown.
However, the United States and other rich nations were wary of this idea, saying these rapid funds are better channelled through existing programs. Meanwhile, the island nation of Antigua and Barbuda had said China and India, being major emitters, must also pay for losses suffered by smaller nations due to climate disasters.
This issue emerges to be the main agenda of the summit. However, talks on what to do next have made little progress.
EU proposes a middle ground
Late on Thursday, the European Union made a proposal aimed at resolving the impasse. It proposed to set up a special fund for covering loss and damage in the most vulnerable countries - but funded from a "broad donor base".
"What we would propose is to establish a loss and damage response fund for the most vulnerable countries," EU climate policy chief Frans Timmermans told the COP27 summit. The conditions in the offer included that countries must agree to phase down all fossil fuels and phase down unabated coal-fuelled power generation as soon as possible - with countries submitting progress reports to make sure this gets done.
This, however, implied that high-emitting emerging economies like China would have to contribute, rather than having the fund be financed only by rich nations that have historically contributed the most to warming, Reuters reported.
The overarching deal text, time-stamped at 03:30 AM reflecting the intensity of the final negotiations, reaffirmed key points in last year's COP26 deal in Glasgow and the Paris 2015 agreement on limiting the rise in global temperatures.
The text said the conference: "Reaffirms the Paris Agreement temperature goal of holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels."
Draft omits India's proposal
The informal draft published by the UN on Thursday didn't mention phase down of all fossil fuels — a proposal put forth by India and supported by the European Union and many other countries at the ongoing UN climate summit.
It, however, encouraged "the continued efforts to accelerate measures towards the phase down of unabated coal power and phase out and rationalize inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, in line with national circumstances and recognizing the need for support towards just transitions."
Surprises in the draft decision?
Some negotiators said the draft decision proposed by host Egypt for this year’s UN climate talks includes ideas never previously discussed at the two-week talks, the news agency AP reported. One of the ideas in question is the call for developed countries to attain "net-negative carbon emissions by 2030".
"It seems unlikely this language will make it into the final decision, as it seems to be asking developed countries to reach net zero by 2030, instead of 2050 as they are planning," an analysis by the Guardian read.
The overarching deal text reaffirmed key points mentioned in the last year's COP26 deal in Glasgow and the Paris 2015 agreement on limiting the rise in global temperatures.
(With inputs from agencies)
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