LIVE IN LIMA – DAY 12: UN COP20 climate change summit


Latest headlines:
Late deal in Lima saves UN climate talks from collapse

– Deal made after 7-hour backroom negotiations
– NGOs brand deal “weak and ineffectual”
– Some reporting requirements strengthened

0319 – Right, I’m Megan Darby and I have to go catch a plane. I’ll leave you with a few remarks from the closing press conference.

Laurent Fabius, who will preside in Paris, says the new wording on differentiation is “dramatic, new and very useful”. This is the phrase “in light of different national circumstances” that moves the issue on from a binary distinction between developed and developing countries.

UN climate chief Christiana Figueres finishes on this rallying cry: “We know we must address climate change; we know we can address climate change; we know increasingly as we move to Paris, we cement the fact we will address climate change.”

That’s it from Lima. Good night.

0247 – UK minister Ed Davey says the agreement “unites all nations” and unlocks the door to the world’s first global climate deal in Paris next year.

“The talks were tough but the Lima Call for Climate Action shows a will and commitment to respond to the public demand to tackle climate change.

“I am proud the UK has been leading the way – by our laws on low carbon energy and climate, by successfully championing ambitious targets to cut emissions in Europe and with our central role here in Lima.

“The next 12 months will be critical and the UK’s leadership will be needed more than ever in the difficult negotiations ahead – but we have to succeed because the threat to our children’s future is so serious.”

0231 – Malaysia, which brought up colonialism in this morning’s session, grudgingly accepts the text.

The negotiator has some praise for the transparency of the process, compared to previous years. “No tricks, no last minute take-it-or-leave-it.”

General consensus seems to be Peru did a good job of hosting.

*Groan* there is a joke about loss and damage – he hopes for compensation for his cancelled Cusco trip.

0223 – Antonio Marcondes, lead negotiator for Brazil, says: “It’s not perfect, but we are satisfied with the Lima outcome.  The adopted decision delivers the clarity needed to set the course for an agreement in Paris that is balanced, recognizing the needs of the developing world in the global fight against climate change.  Although we would have liked to see more ambition, today’s outcome provides enough flexibility to ensure that everyone is on board, and on the path to do more, not less.”

0220 – The speeches continue. Some countries are setting out some of their goals for Paris, but most confine themselves to thanking the presidency.

Civil society reaction ranges from anger to optimism.

Oscar Reyes, associate fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies, takes aim at US spin.

He says: “John Kerry rightly told the Lima conference that climate change means the world is ‘on a course leading to tragedy’. What he forgot to add is that the US is at the helm and steering us onto the rocks.

“The Obama administration talks a good game on climate change. But behind the scenes at international negotiations, we saw the US blocking more ambitious action to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.”

0214 – Liz Gallagher, climate diplomacy expert at think-tank E3G, says: “Lima was never meant to solve climate change. But it succeeded in creating a negotiation text for next year containing radical proposals to phase out of fossil fuels by 2050. The voices of mayors, bishops, companies and citizens were heard. This sets up the right fight for Paris.

“COP 20 succeeded in delivering basic guidance for the national plans that countries will bring to the Paris conference next year. There are no excuses for countries not tabling transparent and ambitious emission reductions next year.

“This agreement is good, but not perfect. It will rely upon the pressure from campaigners, citizens, progressive companies, legislators, mayors and faith leaders to hold our governments accountable to the spirit of the Lima outcome.”

Nick Mabey, CEO of E3G, adds: Lima will be remembered for the creativity, presence and money contributed by many Latin American countries. These parties punched well above their weight. With their pledges to the Green Climate Fund, Colombia, Peru, Mexico and Panama challenged the orthodoxy of the negative ‘you go first’ dynamic into a positive ‘can do’ attitude. This is exactly the diplomatic approach we need for success in Paris”

0207 – Congratulatory speeches continue.

An RTCC reader proposes an alternative name for the agreement. The Pentagonito is the local nickname for the military base hosting this conference.

0204 – Laurent Fabius, incoming president for Paris next year, expresses hopes to strike a global climate deal in 2015.

“It is a great responsibility and a great honour to host a COP,” he says. “We will do our very best to be worthy of it…

“We hear things from outside that are sometimes unfair, as if we are delighted to sit here for hours listening to complicated text,” he adds, but negotiators give part of their lives to try and improve the climate.

0155 – The US head of delegation celebrates with some ice cream.

While on twitter, campaigners say it is not enough.

0151 – It’s all backslapping now. Bolivia, the European Union, Mexico thank the hosts, etc. All mercifully brief. Everyone is tired.

0142 – Pulgar Vidal thanks Molewa and the UK’s Ed Davey particularly for helping to make progress on finance.

He thanks the co-chairs, Kishan Kumarsingh and Artur Runge-Metzger and welcomes next year’s co-chairs.

0138 – Tuvalu is satisfied that phrase “inter alia” (among other things) means loss and damage will be added in Paris.

India’s Prakash Javadekar looks very cheerful. He urges parties not to leave everything to the last minute next year.

South Africa’s Edna Molewa congratulates the president and co-chairs. There are parts of this decision that may not be satisfactory to some of us, but we do accept this text.

0135 – I missed the third and fourth points, but they went down well.

0133 – Pulgar Vidal gets to his second point, asking the Peruvian team to come up to the stage. There is a standing ovation. This definitely has the feel of a closing ceremony, rather than a continuation of debate.

0131 – Jan Kowalzig from Oxfam Germany says that the text is “dangerously weak” and that Lima on finance risks being “pretty much a disaster” – a shame since there was a positive mood at the beginning of the week following the $10.2 billion worth of pledges into the Green Climate Fund.

The lack of detailed information on finance in this text means that developing countries will have to put forward their pledges to the new deal without knowing how they are going to fund them, he says.

And although there is an opportunity to do an aggregate assessment of promises to reduce emissions, there will be no discussion surrounding them or opportunity to respond to any weaknesses found.

Should countries negotiate further, then? “The question is how much more can we do at this stage,” he says.

“The things that are weak in the text are not impossible to get in Paris next year but we are on a very rocky path to Paris now.”

0129 – Manuel Pulgar Vidal wants everyone to agree four things:

  1. Let us call this document “The Lima call for climate action” (sustained applause)
  2. Ok, now he’s going on about having one planet and NGOs and ministers being on the same side…

0125 – Sam Smith, head of the WWF delegation, is not impressed with the draft, which she says has gone “from weak, to weaker to weakest”.

For example, the requirement that countries “shall” submit information being weakened. It will be down to civil society to maintain pressure on governments to deliver.

The plenary is starting. Pulgar Vidal leads a standing ovation.

0121 – Social movements from the global South say the text – which they assume will go through – has “no justice”.

More than 30 groups from around the world back a statement saying: “What we have seen in Lima is another in a series of yearly decisions that weaken international climate rules, failing people and the planet.”

Asad Rehman, Friends of the Earth, describes it as a “weak and ineffectual agreement”, saying it would be better to reject the text and convene an emergency meeting.

“The planet and the poorest people in the world require more than an empty political statements that contains lots of the right sounding words but very little in actual concrete commitments.”

It is “so far from what people need,” says Meena Raman, Third World Network, and “bodes badly for Paris”.

This came from the same coalition that held a die-in protest and singalong earlier today.

(Pic: Flickr/Friends of the Earth International/Luka Tomac)

(Pic: Flickr/Friends of the Earth International/Luka Tomac)

0109 – Indian minister Prakash Javadekar tells Alister Doyle of Reuters: “We’ve got what we wanted.”

He is happy with the references to common but differentiated responsibility and finance.

0059 – As it looks like the presidency may have produced a text everyone can accept, outsiders express scepticism.

0055 – Jake Schmidt from the Natural Resources Defense Council says: “It gets stronger in places and weaker in some. We have lost the stronger assessments but they are going to come under scrutiny anyway.

“I don’t think there is anything the US can’t accept in this CBDR stuff because it is what they already agreed with China.”

0053 – On the sensitive subject of differentiation, there is a new form of words that apparently satisfies both the US and China.

“In light of different national circumstances” maintains the principle that rich countries do more than poor countries, without reinforcing the old annex 1/non-annex 1 divide.

That might not be enough to satisfy all the like minded developing countries, Meyer says.

The requirement on countries to provide upfront information has been watered down from “shall” to “may include as appropriate”.

0044 – “It represented the bare minimum” says Alden Meyer from the US Union of Concerned Scientists. A particular concern is the lack of a rigorous process to assess national contributions. What was a series of dialogues and workshops where countries could explain what and how they were doing has been “gutted”. Instead there’s a website.

0042 – Despite the presidency’s best efforts to make everything transparent, huddles are forming. But commentators seem to think this text will be agreed anyway.

0030 – Jennifer Morgan from the World Resources Institute says there is “something for everyone” in the latest version.

“It provides a lot of clarity” on what countries have to put in their national plans and includes a review of how well they collectively measure up against the 2C warming limit, ahead of Paris.

What national governments will not have to do is present their plans to the UN – but Morgan says that might not be too important as long as the information is publicly available for people to scrutinise.

Sophie Yeo spoke to Erwin Jackson, from the Climate Institute. His initial reaction was “better than we expected. I’m quietly positive”.

0007 – Ed King has some quick thoughts from inside the plenary:

– Loss and damage is back in this version of the text, albeit in the preamble

– Reference to the principle of common but differentiated responsibility has emerged fairly high up the text, in paragraph 3

– Specifics over what countries should include in a global climate deal are still in, but the wording has changed from “shall” to “may” include

– The assessment also looks like it has got tougher – and weaker

– All nationally determined contributions must be in by October 1 for a synthesis report that needs to be ready by November  1

– BUT, a “non-intrusive and facilitative dialogue” that was in the old text has now disappeared, weakening the assessment. This was a red line for the EU, so it will be interesting to see how they react.

0000 – A couple of speedy readers give their verdict. Loss and damage gets a mention, but only to recall what was said in Warsaw.

There has been some strengthening of reporting and assessment of emissions information.

2354 – Manuel Pulgar Vidal, conference president, is introducing the text. He places a lot of emphasis on the transparency of the process.

It is more focused, he says. “I am certain that with the text we have here today, we all win.”

The text adds language on adaptation, greater balance across elements, CBDR, finance, loss and damage, he says.

The session is suspended for an hour to consider the text. We will be getting some instant reaction.

2345 – They are distributing copies of the latest text in the room.

2329 – Delegates are filing into the chamber for the next round, webcast here. The latest version of the text should be available any minute, seven hours after the last session.

Nitin Sethi, journalist with the Delhi-based Business Standard, was told by a negotiator we can expect more references to “common but differentiated responsibility”. There will be no review of national pledges before Paris, a concession to China and India. But nothing on finance, either.

2311 – This does not inspire confidence for a swift conclusion. Also, bad luck catering staff.

2302 – A handful of activists have stuck around long enough to picket this final (hopefully) session. Friends of the Earth blame rich countries for dragging things out.

Dipti Bhatnagar, climate justice coordinator, says: “Developed countries and corporate polluters have once again paralyzed the UN talks with proposals that were utterly inadequate for developing countries needs.

“They have prevented our governments from focusing on the real solutions to the climate crisis by shirking their historic responsibilities.”

Jagoda Munic, chair, adds: “Rich developed countries came to Lima determined to protect their short term economic interests and demonstrated a shocking disregard of their historical obligations and a glaring lack of solidarity with the people affected by climate change.”

2251 – There is a new text. It will be distributed in 10 minutes. Are they going to allow delegations time to read it first, or go straight into plenary at 11?

2230 – Manuel Pulgar Vidal, president of these talks, is seen shaking hands with China head of delegation Xie Zhenhua. If China is happy, will the rest fall in line?

2039 – This is Megan Darby taking over. UN officials now say the talks will resume at 2300. That means there is still backroom haggling over revisions to the text.

1913 – One of the decisions that was gavelled through in the plenary just now was on long term finance, or how money will be scaled up between now and 2020. The paper had the potential to draw out a roadmap for the next five years, after which rich countries will have to donate $100 billion annually, but it’s fatally weak, says Jan Kowalzig from Oxfam Germany.

“It means nothing,” he said. “It does nothing that increases obligations on developed countries to provide predictable finance up to 2020. It’s not worth the paper it’s written on.”

All the new text does is repeat language from previous decisions and add in a couple of workshops, he said. And most of the delegates here did not know what was going on due to a lack of organisation around the issue.

1748 – In a relatively empty plenary room, the COP president stand-in is gavelling through a number of less controversial items, including the text on long term finance. There have been no objections and no drama: this is mainly housekeeping.

Former COP19 president Marcin Korolec is happy that his proposal on climate change and education has been accepted.

The text is here. Among other things, it calls on governments to incorporate climate change into the curricula as one means of promoting behaviour change.

1739 – I’ve been speaking to Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, vice-chair of the UN’s science panel, the IPCC. He says that a 1.5C target – significantly more challenging than the current 2C target – should not be disregarded just yet.

“Even if it would be difficult to stay under 1.5C given the institutional inertia and lack of big progress in the negotiations, it is too early to say it is not possible to reach it. Being an optimistic person, I think something that has not been demonstrated impossible is possible. But it will be very difficult.”

This will be welcome to small island states, for whom the revised target is a dear issue, due to their vulnerability to climate change and rising sea levels. The target is up for review, and could be revised in 2015.

1706 – I spoke earlier to Saleem Huq from the International Institute for Environment and Development. He came to Lima in a positive frame of mind, he said, following the pact between the US and China, and the momentum from the summit hosted by Ban Ki-moon in New York. But in the last week, everything has become bogged down as negotiators stick to their positions, he says.

Now, he says, it seems that more action is taking place outside the UN than within it, which is the wrong way around. And the financial and carbon costs of getting everyone here look like they could soon outweigh the benefit.

“The UNFCCC exists to reinforce action, not to constrain action. I am afraid negotiations are becoming a constraint on action. If they don’t get their act together by Paris, I am going to call it dead,” he says. “The purpose of having the treaty and the negotiations is for a collective decision that binds every one together. If they do don’t that, why come here?”

Even what was seen as the lowest level of action – the “pledge and review” system – has now been diluted, he says. It’s now “review and chat”. The text parties are working off at the moment is “rubbish” and the removal of loss and damage is like “a slap in the face” from rich countries to the poor.

But all is not lost quite yet. He adds: “They could still pull a rabbit out of the hat at the last minute.”

1606 – I’ve just had this update from the UN. There will be a plenary at 5pm, where they will gavel through the easy topics. Then at 9pm the plenary will resume, when they will take on the main topic at stake here: the draft decision.

1603 – Just saw Todd Stern hanging out by the pisco bar, although he was keeping off the drinks himself.

1600 – Jake Schmidt from the Natural Resources Defense Council just told me that success in the fight against global warming essentially comes down to country’s targets at home:

“No matter what the text specifically says, world leaders should expect a call from their counterparts if their targets aren’t credible. The draft decision will formalize some of those basic mechanics, but the writing on the wall should point clearly to any country that they can’t play games with their proposed targets.”

1512 – Here’s the full text of Marshall Islands minister Tony De Brum’s intervention earlier, which received an extended standing ovation.

“Mr President, Co-Chairs, we support your efforts to bring work in the ADP and at this this COP to a successful close. As he said, we cannot leave Lima with empty hands on the road to a successful Paris agreement.

“Let me be frank. There are parts of the text with which we are very uncomfortable, and parts that are very thin. We are of course not alone in this.

“For example, we expected a lot more to help us to assess and understand whether our INDCs next year put us on track to the long-term goal. But we will not allow this to stop our efforts. We will fight tooth and nail, and keep knocking on doors to make sure that this process happens, both in and outside these UN rooms.

“There is also language we have not seen yet before, including a reference to respecting national sovereignty. Yet it is not only the national sovereignty of those whose emissions are being assessed which must be respected, but also the sovereignty of countries like mine whose national sovereignty and existence is threatened by their emissions.

“But we all know that in this process, real leadership is being prepared to put aside our individual preferences and anxieties. I have fought for my country at the UN for three decades, beginning with our independence. I know the level of discomfort that is sometimes required to keep things moving forward.

“So even if we are unhappy about parts of the text, I am prepared to put aside those differences, to keep working on our new agreement, because without moving forward now, and without success in Paris, my country is on the line.

“We have a strong draft Paris agreement on the table, that everyone here has helped to build. Let’s take it forward.

“Mr Co-Chairs, Mr President, you have our support, we propose adopting the Co-Chairs’ proposed text as it stands right now.”

1504 – UN officials have just told me that the plenary is expected to resume at 9pm tonight. Between now and then, there will be closed-door talks between countries, and time to redraft the text.

The worst case scenario is that talks continue through the night and finish up tomorrow morning.

Whatever happens, there will be a press conference at the end with French minister and COP21 president Laurent Fabius, who is staying to the end.

1438 – The atmosphere here at the Lima conference has become more subdued: partly because countries are now presumably cloistered away in their hot offices trying to bash out some language that will salvage the outcome, but also because workmen have already started to take down the displays.

Only a couple of days ago, there were chefs whipping up pisco sours and a giant gorilla dancing around this in this room, where many of the countries have their pavilions. Now there is barely anyone here.

Pic: Sophie Yeo

Pic: Sophie Yeo

1418 – I just interrupted Jamie Henn from, who was on his way to pick up some Peruvian stash for his mother (NB to everyone else: you have about three hours to do this and it could be your last chance). He had this to say:

“Delegates are failing to build on the momentum that people have built on the streets. Lima is a midterm exam on the way to Paris but the final exam in Paris will be pass/fail. We will keep the pressure on the fossil fuel industry to help open up the progress.

“One positive outcome is it is the first time the long term target has been put in the text in terms of total decarbonisation, which is a direct confrontation to the fossil fuel industry. That means countries are finally admitting what has to be done to solve this problem, even if they are unwilling to take the steps to do it.” was behind the massive march that took place in New York and around the world ahead of the summit hosted by Ban Ki-moon back in September. Another march of around 15,000 people took place in Lima this week.

1405 – This is Sophie now taking over. I’ve been speaking to Jonathan Grant, who is here representing consultancy firm Pricewaterhouse Cooper. As parties disperse and the outcome of the talks appear to hang in the balance, he was still feeling pretty calm.

“Success in Paris does not hang in the balance here in Lima,” he said. “Countries are still in the technical stage of the negotiations while they are trying to agree on the language for the national pledges in the first nine months of next year.

“We will only see real success when it moves to the political stage of the negotiation process and that can still happen in Paris regardless of what happens here.”

1345 – This has been Megan Darby. I’m handing over to Sophie Yeo for reaction and analysis.

1341 – Manuel Pulgar Vidal, Peruvian environment minister and president of this meeting, sums up.

“I have heard people saying it looks like there are two different worlds…but there is only one planet. We need to work to find one solution for everybody.”

He will meet with all the negotiating blocs at 1430, he says, without exception. These meetings will be short: 10 minutes each.

It will take around 3 hours. Then they will need to redraft the text before the plenary resumes… it looks like that will be after Turkey’s deadline.

“We are all familiar with the red lines and red flags… We don’t need to come up with proposals that will raise other countries’ red flags, we need solutions.”

1332 – Time for a bit of reaction, before negotiations resume.

Sophie Yeo has been speaking to Pascal Canfin of the World Resources Institute. He says there is space for compromise.

“The fact that China has used the word ‘deadlock’ and the US is saying Paris is at stake is meaningful, because it has raised the stakes of what we are deciding here,” says Canfin.

The absence of loss and damage “could be a sign we are going backwards compared to Warsaw. This is symbolic and politically hard to accept for some countries”.

He is not concerned by weaknesses in the rules for reviewing national contributions, which he says will be assessed by NGOs, journalists and parties in any case.

1325 – Turkey threatens to veto if talks go on past 5pm.

I missed the last couple of speakers. Is it safe to assume South Korea and Senegal repeated things that had already been said?

The co-chair calls an end to the discussion, moves on to an administrative item.

1315 – Countries are following the co-chairs’ urging to keep it brief. Things are going on a fair pace now.

Brazil speaks about the need to overcome the binary approach to differentiation.

“We still live in a world of deep inequalities,” says the negotiator. “Rather than do away with differentiation, we should harness it to promote increased ambition.”

Self-differentiation is not an option, as it will encourage backsliding and weak ambition, he says.

Brazil is committed to a deal in Lima and accepts the text with “minor surgical adjustments”.

1308 – The Cook Islands is disappointed in the absence of loss and damage, but endorses the text in order to move things forward.

The Philippines, speaking for itself, also wants loss and damage to be in there, plus language on human rights it added yesterday.

But it supports the text on the basis these things can be worked on before Paris.

1305 – South Africa promises to play a constructive role in improving the text.

The BASIC group (Brazil, South Africa, India, China) has some minor adjustments that could resolve the issues, she says.

1302 – The co-chairs promise there will be no huddle. Meanwhile, in welcome news for weary media, giant bean bags that had been put away have come out again.

1301 – Oman has difficulties turning on the mic. Nicaragua complains about having to wait 45 minutes for the floor. It’s been a long old slog.

They both want to reopen the text.

Nicaragua: We live in a differentiated world. We have been feeling the consequences of climate change year after year; a disaster we did not create. We are very aware of the historic responsibilities.

He adds that Nicaragua does not want this to end in a “huddle” and asks the co-chairs to refer the text to the presidency for amendment.

1257 – Belarus reminds delegates how blunt the existing basis of differentiation is.

It is included in annex 1 (developed countries with obligations) but is a transition economy and has a GDP six times lower than some of the countries which are not under annex 1.

Belarus supports the text as a roadmap to Paris.

1253 – Japan is ready to support text. Cuba and Pakistan are not.

Cuba: This must not be a transfer of responsibilities [from developed to developing countries].

Pakistan: This is not a balanced document… Nobody wants to go home empty-handed, but it is a question of future generations.

And of course, people in the room are complaining about the heat.


1245 – The co-chair urges everyone to keep their comments brief.

New Zealand: there are “dead rats that we have to swallow”, but supports text. Shares concern about amputation rather than light surgery.

A bit of instant reaction to the US intervention:

1239 – Now the US stresses that it, too, has made concessions. “There are many things in this text that do not reflect our strongly held views.”

Urges countries to keep their eyes on the prize. “We have no time for lengthy new negotiations. I am not saying there are no modifications possible, but we have to be mindful… the hourglass is running out.”

Everything that other countries have raised concerns about is included in the draft elements text for Paris, he says.

A Paris deal based on national contributions would be “fully differentiated”, he says, based on “solid rules-based accountability and reporting”. It would encompass a commitment to large-scale finance.

“Let us not throw away what we have achieved and what we can achieve.”

1233 – Paraguay objected. Ah, here we go: China.

“The differences in points of view are considerable.” China supports the positions of Malaysia on behalf of the like minded group, Sudan on behalf of the Africa group and Tuvalu on behalf of small island developing states.

The text “remains very unbalanced” and does not reflect the principle of “common but differentiated responsibility” nor the urgency of actions that need to be taken before 2020.

“We need a Lima consensus, but given the current situation, we have deadlock.

“How can we emerge from this deadlock? We hope that the president of the conference will be able to play an appropriate guiding role to harmonise the positions.”

1227 – Argentina, Uganda and Singapore also raise concerns with the draft text as it stands.

Singapore appeals to those who have objections to be focused and not just submit a wishlist.

He extends the surgery metaphor that has been raised a few times, joking: “If you are submitting for circumcision, be careful it does not become an amputation.”

We have yet to hear from the US, China or Brazil – big hitters in all this.

Meanwhile, the side venues are being dismantled.

1221 – Yeb Sano, the popular Filipino negotiator who was dropped from this year’s team without explanation, urged developing countries to stand their ground.

He has been tweeting support and encouragement throughout the talks, as well as highlighting the threat to his people from last week’s typhoon Hagupit.

Sano said the biggest mistake would be to accept a deal that focused on emissions, without addressing the vulnerabilities of poor countries to the effects of climate change.

1214 – India: “Every climate action has a cost and the poor have to pay… Instead of making polluters pay, let us not make the poor pay.”

As part of the like minded group, it is asking for the text to be reopened.

1212 – Australia is up. It got the Climate Action Network’s “colossal fossil” award yesterday for being the most unhelpful player in the talks.

There is no booing today, but no applause either, as Australia accepts the text.

1210 – El Salvador says it is clear from the interventions so far the draft decision “only meets the need of the half of the planet that probably needs it the least”.

It does not meet the needs of those most affected by climate change, he says.

The Solomon Islands makes a plea for the reintroduction of loss and damage to the text. It is one of the island groups expected to be swamped by sea level rise.

COP20-Newsflash copy
1205 – An hour and a half into this morning’s session, it is clear we do not have consensus yet.

The European Union, Belize, Switzerland, Mexico, Chile and the Marshall Islands support the latest text in spite of its perceived shortcomings.

But the like minded developing group, which includes India, Malaysia, Venezuela and Saudi Arabia, has aggressively rejected the text. They say it does not do enough to recognise the different responsibilities of developed and developing countries.

The Africa group also objects to the text, on the basis it does not give a high enough profile to adaptation, technology transfer, capacity building and finance.

They are asking the presidency to consult them and resolve these issues in a new version.

1159 – Marshall Islands: There are parts of this text with which we are very uncomfortable.

It is one of the small island states whose existence is threatened by sea level rise. But he supports the text so things can move forward in Paris. Extended applause.

1155 – Russia: diplomacy is an art of the possible. We are “deeply disappointed” that the conference has once again gone beyond the established programme of work.

Last night, negotiations were “on the verge of crisis” but moved towards a decision Russia finds acceptable.

Applause as Russia supports the text.

1153 – Democratic Republic of Congo’s ministers left yesterday evening, in line with the official programme. It is hard for countries with smaller delegations to slug it out to the end.

DRC says it faces a challenge, with economic growth and population growth, to limit emissions. Needs support.

The text is not acceptable as it stands, but DRC is committed to working together to make Lima “an overwhelming success”.

1146 – Nigeria endorses comments from Sudan and Malaysia.

Algeria speaks for Arab countries, as well as reflecting Africa and like minded countries. Reiterates concerns about differentiation and lack of emphasis on adaptation.

1138 – Saudi Arabia and Venezuela go next, also hammering home the principle of “common but differentiated responsibility”.

It doesn’t look like this is going to be resolved in the current session.

1133 – Malaysia was speaking for the so-called like minded developing countries, by the way, which includes Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Iran and India.

A leaked copy of their strategy brief showed they were prepared to walk away with no deal rather than accept a deal against their interests.

1127 – Malaysia gets a laugh. He was booked on a flight to Cusco this morning, to see Machu Picchu. Instead, he finds himself in the negotiating room, which coincidentally they have named Cusco.

But he has serious words from for those who dismiss concerns about differentiation. “We come from different starting points. Many of you colonised us.”

He claims Malaysia tried to compromise and make constructive suggestions, but they were ignored.

There is a list of specific examples, but they all come down to the same thing: differentiation is not sufficiently recognised.

Calls on the presidency to perform some “surgery” on the text to meet these concerns.

1116 – Chile, speaking on behalf of ILAC, supports the text. “We have all given up something, but I like to think this is a text where we all win something as well.”

Like Belize, he says postponing could lead to a weaker agreement. There is a year until Paris, to discuss adaptation concerns.

1112 – Belize strongly urges parties to accept the document, expressing fears it will only get worse. “Every time we do an iteration of this document, we get less and less,” he says.

1109 – The European Union supports the text.

Tuvalu is “very disappointed” by the exclusion of loss and damage from the text – compensation for those who lose their homes or livelihoods due to climate change.

“It would be an absolute tragedy if we denied the needs of the poorest. I implore everybody in this room not to let this be the COP we denied the poorest in the world.

There is around of applause.

1102 – Mexico also accepts the text. But Sudan, on behalf of the Africa group, is not happy.

He says the scope of national plans does not include enough on adaptation, finance, technology transfer and capacity building. Aspects of the text “compromises differentiation”.

Co-chair asks other parties to reflect on Africa’s concerns in their interventions.

1053 – It’s started. Switzerland goes first, on behalf of the “environmental integrity group”.

They are ready to accept the text, he says, “not because we believe it is fulfilling all our ambitions… but because we believe it may be the most ambitious common agreement we can reach here in the room”.

1030 – The UN climate body’s official responsible for next year’s talks, Halldor Thorgeirsson, seems confident an agreement is near.

1019 – While we wait for the action to start, this article by Naomi Klein in Nation linking the climate debate with the slogan of Ferguson rioters #blacklivesmatter is worth a read.

Pilita Clark of the Financial Times has an interview with the activist and writer commonly described as “polarising”.

Naomi Klein is calling for global movement to tackle climate change (Pic: Flickr/

Naomi Klein is calling for global movement to tackle climate change
(Pic: Flickr/

1010 – The plenary is a bit late starting, as usual, but parties are flooding in.

0931 – Half an hour to go until countries will offer their views on this draft agreement. One huge issue is likely to be how this text came together. It seems the co-chairs and the presidency did not consult all parties, especially those who they felt could be hostile to what is, in effect, a watered-down deal. Rumours in the conference centre suggest the US and China were the main architects of this agreement. If so, will their collective power be enough to drive this deal through?


0924 – Green groups are not happy with the text that was delivered last night – here’s a round-up of the latest views…

Christian Aid’s Senior Climate Change Advisor, Mohamed Adow: “The co-chairs of the ADP have only themselves to blame for the shambles we now find ourselves in. They have been ineffective and allowed governments to stall the progress. They have failed to resolve the big issues around how to fairly share the global effort to tackle climate change and deserve to be blamed for tonight’s breakdown.

“The latest text released during the night was left completely bare. Climate finance, loss and damage and meaningful assessment of contributions have been removed meaning almost no progress would be made at Lima and all the work punted down the road to be fought over next year in Paris.

“By consulting with only the major powers like the USA and China and ignoring the African countries and other small developing nations they have effectively redrawn the map of the world. What’s so offensive is that it is the countries suffering the most from climate change who have been sidelined in a process which should be helping them.”


0911 – If you want to cross-check today’s draft text with previous versions, have a look at this great piece of kit from the team at Adopt a Negotiator…


0901 – The draft text is 4 pages long. It has lost the annexes that offered details on what national mitigation and adaptation pledges could include. My first thoughts…

– The up front information countries will need to offer when making their pledges to a 2015 climate deal looks fairly comprehensive, more so than other weaker options that were on the table. A simple number won’t be enough. Countries will need to offer baseline years, details of how they calculate greenhouse gas emissions and also how they feel a pledge is deemed “fair and ambitious”
– There will be an assessment, starting in June 2015. This looks like it could be weak; the wording is a “non-intrusive and facilitative dialogue, respectful of national sovereignty.” But it’s nonetheless significant that China has agreed to that.
– Where is “differentiation”, the concept that developed and developing countries need to offer different types of pledges? It’s not there. Instead there are regular references to ‘under the convention’ referring to the original 1992 climate agreement that said the rich should bear most of the burden to tackle climate change.
– On finance, few developing countries will be pleased. Developed countries are “urged” to offer more support. Others “willing to do so” are asked to “complement with support”
– There is no reference to the concept of loss and damage or compensation to vulnerable countries for climate-related weather events. I understand the small island states were happy this was removed, as they don’t want to see loss and damage consumed by talks on the 2015 deal.

0835 – Who said climate talks were meant to be simple? Not the delegations taking part, that’s for sure. There has been a hectic night’s negotiations at the UN conference in Lima, which resulted in the delivery of a new draft text that could form the basis of an agreement. You can find the link above – I’m Ed King, and I’m going to start digging my way through the document and picking out some of the headlines, plus finding out what observers here in Lima think about it.

Feel free to drop me an email on [email protected] or send me a message on twitter, @rtcc_edking

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