Tue, 29 Nov 2022

A draft climate deal published by the UN at Cop27 on Thursday has been heavily criticised by green groups for its "vague language", "lack of structure" and "gaping loopholes".

The 40-page document does not call for a "phase down" of all fossil fuels as advocated by India, the EU and the US, nor does it provide concrete steps on financing loss and damage reparations.

While last year's climate summit in Scotland called for a "phase down of unabated coal", the text presented in Egypt "ignores oil and gas and includes a loophole large enough to drive a drill rig through", the NGO Climate Action Network warned.

Meanwhile prominent climate scientist Bill McGuire declared the target of 1.5C of warming "officially dead and buried" because the draft - which will be reworked until tomorrow's deadline - offered "no commitments to bring down emissions".

"What planet are these people on?" McGuire asked.

The response from Greenpeace was that "climate justice will not be served if this sets the bar for a Cop27 outcome".

Colourful protests

As negotiators scramble to adopt a final declaration by midnight on Friday - with many of the contentious issues still unresolved - protesters are making their voices heard at the summit venue in Sharm el Sheikh.

Vegan groups, medical professionals, young people and those from countries bearing the brunt of climate change were among the activists staging theatrical protests in between the pavilions where countries are showcasing their green credentials.

While demonstrations have overall been muted - activists are restricted to a location that is separate from the main conference rooms and must clean up after themselves - they are no less passionate.

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Medical workers from various countries sounded a "code red for humanity" as they warned of the health consequences of global warming. "If 1.5 dies, our patients die too," they chanted.

Campaigners from Nepal called for debt justice as they voiced their opposition to poorer nations being offered climate loans from richer nations.

"You are forcing us to pay. Why do we need to pay for living in harmony and living with nature?" they asked.

"We are not poor ... you are poor because you do not have humanity. There will not be climate justice without debt justice."

Originally published on RFI

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