Day 5 – Breaking news from COP17

By Tierney Smith, John Parnell and Ed King
RTCC in Durban

Welcome to Responding to Climate Change’s live coverage of COP17 in Durban. Our team of Ed King, John Parnell and Tierney Smith will keep you updated on the talks all day – every day.

Breaking news will initially appear on our Twitter feed below, together with pictures and gossip from the conference. We’ll also be updating this page on an hourly basis with the latest developments.

You can contact our team in Durban via email or through Twitter. Check our interviews at the UNFCCC Climate Change Studio analysis from delegates, diplomats and ministers. We’re also offering live webcasts at 1230 (1030 GMT) every day.

Friday, December 2

1942 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_edking That’s it from the team in Durban tonight folks. Thanks for following our live blog throughout the day. @rtcc_tierney will be posting the Daily Respond Storify summarising what we have seen and heard today.

But just remember – it’s only week one, and as a former UNFCCC chief told me today, the REALLY interesting developments are happening behind closed doors. We’re back same time tomorrow….and as I write that the rain starts falling in Durban. Summer…who’d have thought it.

1819 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_tierney: Heard a lot of talk today about Angelina Jolie’s appearence in Durban…maybe that is why the press room is so quiet this afternoon.

Check out what the ambassadors had to say when they visited the Occupy COP17 movement today.

1732 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_john: Just received a press release from an NGO, they are expecting 30,000 protestors to march to the conference centre tomorrow as part of a network of protests across the globe. Let’s hope it passes by without incident.

1620 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_john: Today’s fossil award will be given out shortly. I’d like to award the anti-fossil of the day to Australia. They took part in a carbon trading side event earlier today, something they are entitled to do given the recent announcement of their carbon price scheme.

They also stood up last night in favour of a new globally binding deal, despite the massive heavy industries and exports within their economy. Kudos.

1548 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_john: Just come out of the US press conference. Their first since Monday. Tusday and Wednesday were cancelled and they didn’t bother scheduling one on Thursday.

Mainly reiterated their stance on their conditions for a global deal: “Other big, developing economies must take part.”

1400 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_tierney: Martin Kaiser from Greenpeace Germany has slammed the EU for taking a back seat at the negotiations and hiding behind the limited ambition of other countries such as the US.

Occupy COP17 today was joined by Ambassador Williams (Grenada), Ambassador Moses (Nauru) and Ambassador Jumeau (Seychelles) to talk about the impacts of climate change on the Small Island States and what they will be pushing for over the next week.

1248 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_john: Abyd Karmali, Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s global head of carbon markets tells the joint RTCC and International Chamber of Commerce side event that there is already $97 billion of climate finance flowing. The numbers being floated around for the Green Climate Fund don’t look so unrealistic in that context.

Karmali also says he is working on a “Rainforest Bond”…more later

1227 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_tierney: Farrukh Iqbal Khan, lead negotiator for Pakistan told Adopt a Negotiator “the urgency is enormous” in Durban as vulnerable countries have already started to feel the impacts of climate change.

Don’t forget our live webcast will be taking place any minute looking at the role of the youth in policy negotiations at the COP17.

1120 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_tierney: EU chief negotiator, Arthur Runge-Metzger has said he is “pleasantly suprised” by China’s climate change action and called for collective pressure to be placed on the US.

Bolivia have opposed the REDD+ scheme saying it reduces forests to being simply carbon stocks and doesn’t take into account their other services.

Outside of the conference centre the Occupy COP17 General Assembly meeting at 1pm local time is expected to be joined by Ambassador Williams (Grenada), Ambassador Moses (Nauru).

0947 (GMT+2)

@rtcc_tierney: Last night brought the rain and storms to Durban. While temporarily bringing some relief to the weather the same cannot be said for the debates going on in the plenary, which continue on as fierce as ever.

The biggest news is still the countries that are lacking in co-operation during the talks. America has helped Canada out over the last couple of days, taking most of the limelight following their intense opposition of the Green Climate Fund.

But the talks go on, and as we settle into to the daily routine at the ICC and work our way into the darkest depths of the conference centre and find our bearings we’ll continue to bring you all of the latest news.

Top stories:

  • Australia supported a new legally binding replacement for Kyoto. Venzeuala said the lack of a second commitment period should be considered a “wrongful act”
  • Informal talks and consultations of the Technology Executive Committee begun.
  • REDD+ talks moved forward at speed with some delegates suggesting bringing forward issues that had been intended for consideration by COP18.

Today I will be spending a little time focusing on REDD+ today, keep an eye out for my latest feature on the forestry sector, followed by a more detailed looked at projects in Tanzania. Keep up-to-date at @rtcc_tierney.

@rttc_john will be exploring the role of the international business community and SMEs in the climate fight and hopefully, getting the latest from the US delegation, if they don’t cancel their press briefing again.

Some fascinating interviews over the last few days from the Climate Change Studio. Check out this moving interview with four members of the Indigenous Peoples Africa Committee. Follow @rtcc_edking for all the latest.

And don’t forget to tune in to our webcast from 12:30-1:00 SA time (10:30-11 GMT) where we will be looking at the role of youth groups in influencing policy.

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