Durban Conference Going Into Endgame

The final day of the conference, and it is going to be a long one. 117 countries from the African Group, Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), the EU and Least Developed Countries (LDC) have joined together to push forward a roadmap for a new legally binding treaty. The EU has a joint statement with the LDCs and AOSIS on their website.

And a 21-year-old student interrupted a US statement at the conference yesterday. “I am speaking on behalf of the United States of America because my negotiators cannot.” A roundup of articles:

U.S. Climate Envoy Seems to Shift Stance on Timetable for New Talks

Facing sharp criticism from fellow envoys, environmental activists and one impassioned heckler, the chief American negotiator at a climate conference here on Thursday shifted his position — or at least his language — on a timetable for a new set of international talks.

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Alliance pushes for climate deal

The EU and some of the world’s poorest nations have launched a joint bid for a strong outcome at the UN climate talks. Ministers from rich and poor countries stood shoulder to shoulder at a news conference urging big emitters such as China and the US to move to a deal.

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A New Coalition of the Willing

Negotiating blocks, stalemates and impasses have characterized much of COP 17. The US, Canada, New Zealand, Japan and others have been blocking the road to meaningful agreement on almost every turn along the way, and the need for a breakthrough in these final moments is becoming increasingly exigent.

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Support grows for Durban climate deal

* Canada signals growing consensus on EU plan

* U.S. says backs EU plan for broader pact

* Small states sceptical about American stance

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Canada pulls out of Kyoto Protocol after seeing Durban conference facilities

Rumours were rife around Durban’s “International Conference Centre” today as it became apparent that Canada has expressed intention to pull out of the Kyoto Protocol having seen the state of the meeting facilities in the South African city. Already rattled by being told not to walk the streets after dark, the discovery that the delegation offices are in a bona fide underground car park was just too much for the reticent North American delegation. “I don’t care if they’ve put a carpet down and scattered a few pot plants”, said one senior delegate, “it’s still a f***ing parking lot. If that’s the best they can do then we’ve had it with Kyoto. We’re outta here”. On leaving they added “what’s more the wifi is rubbish. I can’t even facebook during KP plenaries”.

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