Talking about a deal at the COP21, President François Hollande said last night that there was still “resistance”. “But it is time for decisions”, he added on French TV. With less than two days to go before the end of the COP21, progress has been made, but, again, divisions remain. Indeed, the new climate text shows many hurdles to a deal. Which deal are we talking about anyway? A minimalist one or an ambitious one? A group of 100 countries dubbing themselves the ‘high ambition coalition’ demanded that the current draft negotiating text be strengthened, declaring they will block any attempt to impose a “minimalist” agreement. One hurdle is money. Progress has been made there, too, as the US pledges to double climate funding for poor countries.
Quote of the day
“We will not leave the most vulnerable nations among us to, quite literally, weather the storm alone.”
Secretary of State John Kerry, in the Hill’s story US pledges to double climate funding for poor countries
Factbox: New climate text shows many hurdles to Paris deal
Hosts France proposed a slimmer draft text at global climate talks on Wednesday that leaves major issues unresolved, including finance for developing nations. The new text is 29 pages, against 43 on Saturday.
The radical idea that’s gaining momentum at the Paris climate talks
By Chris Mooney – Washington Post
Even as some experts are questioning the extent to which it’s even possible, more and more voices at the U.N. climate change conference here are standing up for at least trying to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, rather than the more commonly cited 2 degrees C.
Paris climate talks: delegates warn of flaws in ambitious proposals for deal
By Suzanne Goldenberg, John Vidal and Lenore Taylor – The Guardian
Nearly 200 governments honing in on a deal to fight climate change have set lofty aspirations for protecting vulnerable countries from rising seas, but delegates said there were still gaps in the latest draft of an agreement.
‘High ambition coalition’ vows to strengthen Paris text
By James Murray – BusinessGreen
A group of 100 countries dubbing themselves the ‘high ambition coalition’ have demanded the current draft negotiating text at the Paris climate summit be strengthened, declaring they will block any attempt to impose a “minimalist” agreement.
***LB: Also in this story “The group announced late this afternoon that it has grown to include the US, alongside the EU and a raft of developing and climate vulnerable states, including the Marshall Islands, Mexico, Colombia and Gambia. However, China, Brazil, India, South Africa and a host of other emerging economies are notably absent from the group.”
US pledges to double climate funding for poor countries
By Devin Henry – The Hill
Secretary of State John Kerry pledged Wednesday that the United States will double its spending on climate change grants for developing nations.
Australia signs up for clear carbon trading rules, hinting at policy change
By Lenore Taylor – The Guardian
Australia has signed a Paris declaration calling for new clear rules for international carbon trading in a signal the Coalition’s six-year carbon pricing policy veto could be softening as it prepares to review its climate policy in 2017.
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Off the radar? Shipping, aviation dropped from Paris climate text
By Susanna Twidale and Jonathan Saul – Reuters
The global airline and shipping industries appeared to win a symbolic reprieve from the growing global drive to reduce carbon emissions on Wednesday, cut from a new draft climate change pact being negotiated in Paris.
VW says CO2 emissions scandal not as bad as feared
By Andreas Cremer – Reuters
Volkswagen understated carbon dioxide emissions on many fewer vehicles than initially feared, it said on Wednesday, providing some relief to the automaker as it battles a wider diesel emissions scandal affecting up to 11 million cars.
Carbon Markets Are Making a Slow, But Steady, Comeback
By Alex Nussbaum, Ewa Krukowska and Matthew Carr – Bloomberg News
Two decades ago, Richard Sandor had a grand plan to reduce the pollution that causes global warming — and maybe get rich in the process.
Natural gas / coal
Iran halves natural gas flow to Turkey – Haberturk
Iran has halved the volume of natural gas flows to Turkey, citing an increase in domestic consumption due to severe winter weather, Turkish newspaper Haberturk reported on Wednesday.
Russia’s Power Grip Over Baltics Ending With Billion-Euro Cables
By Marek Strzelecki, Jesper Starn and Milda Seputyte – Bloomberg News
A quarter of a century after breaking free from the Soviet Union, the Baltic states are finally getting rid of their electricity dependence too.
Nasdaq launches German wind index futures
Nasdaq Commodities said on Tuesday it has launched German wind index futures contracts that will allow power producers, utilities and investors to hedge risks from inconsistent output.
China offers bonus to coal power plants to meet emissions rules
Getting China’s cash-strapped coal-fired power industry to comply with tough emissions rules and tackle choking smog that has recently blanketed the capital and other major cities will take incentives as well as fines.
Ethiopia Faces Worst Drought in 50 Years, Millions Affected
By William Davison – Bloomberg News
A worsening drought in Ethiopia means 10.1 million people, a 10th of the population, are facing food shortages next year in the Horn of Africa nation, Save the Children said.