Obama Ready To Consider Extreme Weather Compensation For Developing Nations?

climate debtRich nations at UN climate talks are said to be edging towards a compromise on the thorny issue of loss and damage. Poorer countries want compensation for extreme weather events that they link to large scale carbon emissions. But the US and EU have long resisted this idea, fearing an endless liability running into billions of dollars. However a clarified proposal from the US … was said to concede that the Warsaw Mechanism should be extended and made permanent. They would also “respond to the concerns of developing countries”. –Matt McGrath, BBC News, 4 September 2015

The developing nations are not stupid. They have ensnared the West in a climate trap that green politicians set for themselves. To meet the growing pressure by the West, developing countries are demanding $200- 400 billion dollars ‚Äì per annum ‚Äì for so-called climate compensation and adaptation measures, together with billions worth of technology transfers. It is difficult to see how the West, already heavily curtailed as a result of the economic crisis, would be prepared to transfer such an astronomical amount of money. Even in good times it would have been a foolish idea. Most likely, all efforts of reaching a binding climate agreement will fail in coming years. The pressure of lowering expectations of a green utopia will therefore increase. –Benny Peiser, Copenhagen and the Demise of Green Utopia, Die Weltwoche 23 December 2009

A coalition of the world’s richest countries appears to have accepted that there is a need to address loss and damage from extreme weather events in a UN climate deal, set to be agreed in December. The US, EU, Switzerland and Australia are working on separate proposals on how the contentious issue could be included in the Paris pact, and are expected to deliver their vision at UN climate talks in Bonn on Friday. Two observers monitoring the negotiations have told RTCC this text will recognise the importance of helping poor countries cope with climate-influenced events. –Ed King, Responding to Climate Change, 3 September 2015

Climate change is a “pressing” global challenge and the poor people are ‘most adversely’ affected by it, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said and suggested a shift of the discourse on the issue from ‘climate change to climate justice.’ “In my view, the most adversely affected by climate change are the poor and the downtrodden. When a natural disaster strikes, they are hit the hardest. When there are floods, they are rendered homeless. During a quake, their homes are destroyed. “During droughts, they are affected and during extreme cold too, the homeless suffer the most. We can’t let climate change keep affecting people in this manner. Which is why I believe the discourse must shift focus from climate change to climate justice,” Modi said. —Press Trust of India, 3 September 2015

The Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) will call on the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases to compensate all Pacific Islands that are affected by climate change. At the PIDF meeting yesterday, the forum agreed that compensation will be a key component in the Suva Declaration which will be adopted today at the conclusion of the meeting. PIDF Interim Secretary-General Amena Yauvoli said “those who are responsible for emitting the most greenhouse gases should pay” as their actions contradicted what they had agreed upon in the United Nations Framework on Climate Change (UNFCC). Given the need to address the seriousness of climate change, the UNFCC has set up a Green Climate Fund worth $US100billion. “Its purpose is to fund those nations affected by climate change, the question now is how we can access those funds,” said Mr Yauvoli. –Sikeli Qounadovu, The Fiji Times, 4 September 2015

The two most senior officials in the United Nations Climate Change Secretariat have called on countries at the latest round of talks in Bonn to put forward draft texts for a global deal, as fears grow that the negotiations are once again stalling. At the latest round of talks in Bonn, countries yesterday raised the alarm that time is running out before the Paris Summit at the end of this year where they will be expected to sign a global deal to tackle climate change. –Jessica Shankleman, Business Green, 3 September 2015

The EU has pledged that 27 percent of its energy will come from renewables by 2030 — but now the fight is over how individual countries are supposed to pitch in to reach that goal, addressed in a draft proposal issued by Luxembourg this week. Some countries, especially the U.K. and central and eastern Europeans, want a soft, non-legislative approach which would not interfere with their right to decide their energy mix. In other words, it would allow the U.K. to continue building nuclear power plants and exploring for shale gas, while coal would continue to play an important part in Poland’s power generation. But other countries keener on slashing emissions and switching to solar and wind, like Germany, Denmark and Sweden, want a tougher system to ensure that everyone is doing their fair share. –Anca Gurzu, Politico, 3 September 2015