Clashes over fossil fuels, the Gaza conflict overshadows the COP28 climate summit

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By Valerie Volcovici, William James and Elizabeth Piper

DUBAI (RockedBuzz by way of Reuters) – United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged world leaders at the COP28 climate summit on Friday to plan for a future with out fossil fuels, saying there was no different technique to curb world warming.

Speaking a day after COP28 President Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber proposed to embrace the continued use of fossil fuels, Guterres stated: “We cannot save a burning planet with a fire hose of fossil fuels.”

“The 1.5 degree limit is only possible if we eventually stop burning all fossil fuels. We will not reduce. We will not cull,” she stated, referring to nascent applied sciences to seize and retailer carbon emissions.

The conflicting views sum up the difficulties of this yr’s UN climate summit in the oil-producing United Arab Emirates, the place divisions over fossil fuels, acrimony over monetary backlogs and geopolitical tensions round the struggle in Gaza have threatened to distract delegates from making progress.

King Charles III of Great Britain has referred to as on world leaders to make progress on the world climate agenda.

“Scientists have been warning for so long that we are seeing alarming tipping points reach,” he stated.

“Unless we quickly repair and restore the economy of nature, based on harmony and balance, which is our main supporter, our economy and our survival will be put in danger,” stated the king, who he has spent a lot of his grownup life preventing for the atmosphere.

Charles’ feedback seemed to be at odds with these of his authorities. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who introduced £1.6 billion ($2.02 billion) of climate finance, has rolled again a number of home measures set out by earlier governments to assist the nation attain its net-zero targets internet emissions for 2050.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi seems to have admonished wealthy international locations for his or her function in releasing the most climate-warming emissions since the industrial revolution.

“We don’t have much time to correct the mistakes of the last century,” Modi stated. “Over the final century, a small a part of humanity has indiscriminately exploited nature. However, all of humanity is paying the value, particularly individuals residing in the world south.”

A former president of the Marshall Islands, whose nation is dealing with flooding from climate-driven sea stage rise, resigned from COP28’s important advisory panel on Friday in protest at the UAE’s help for continued use of fossil fuels.

Hilda Heine stated in her resignation letter that she was “deeply dissatisfied” that the UAE would use its function in COP28 to dealer oil and gasoline offers. The UAE has strongly denied the allegations.

The UAE COP28 presidency stated it was “extraordinarily dissatisfied” by Heine’s resignation. “We have been completely clear, open and honest throughout this process,” the assertion learn.


Some world leaders took to the podium on Friday to criticize Israel’s bombing of Gaza, breaking a tacit settlement to avoid politics at UN climate summits.

Turkish President Tayyip Erodgan and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa accused Israel of committing struggle crimes in Gaza throughout speeches, whereas an Israeli official stated the military respects worldwide regulation and intends to destroy Hamas.

“South Africa is appalled by the merciless tragedy happening in Gaza. The struggle in opposition to the harmless individuals of Palestine is a struggle crime that should finish now,” Ramaphosa stated.

A gaggle of protesters at the convention, some carrying T-shirts studying “ceasefire,” chanted “Free Palestine.” Elsewhere, a show of sneakers was imagined to symbolize the hundreds of individuals killed in Gaza.


Away from the important stage, delegations and technical committees started working Friday on the monumental process of assessing their progress in assembly world climate objectives, notably the Paris Agreement aim of limiting world warming to 2 levels Celsius (3.6 levels Fahrenheit), above pre-industrial temperatures.

Scientists say an increase in world temperature past this threshold will set off catastrophic and irreversible impacts round the world.

The United Nations on Friday revealed the first draft of what might function a template for a last settlement from the COP28 summit, which ends on December 12.

The undertaking gives “building blocks” for a coverage end result and contains a number of choices to deal with the central query of whether or not, and to what extent, fossil fuels ought to play a task in the future.

One possibility contains commitments to “phase out” or “phase out” the use of fossil fuels, to maneuver away from coal-based vitality, and to triple renewable vitality capability by 2030.

Also on the desk is whether or not to section out fossil gasoline subsidies, which final yr amounted to about $7 trillion globally, and whether or not to incorporate provisions for carbon seize and elimination know-how.


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(Reporting by Valerie Volcovici, William James and Elizabeth Piper; Additional reporting by Alexander Cornwell. Writing by Katy Daigle; Editing by Miral Fahmy, Barbara Lewis and Jon Boyle)

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