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COP26 latest: Negotiators under pressure to strike deal as summit goes into overtime

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Luxembourg negotiator Andrew Ferrone runs inside the venue of the COP26 UN Climate Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, Friday, Nov. 12, 2021.
Luxembourg negotiator Andrew Ferrone runs inside the venue of the COP26 UN Climate Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, Friday, Nov. 12, 2021.   -   Copyright  AP
By Euronews

COP26 was due to wrap at 7pm CET today but there is still no white smoke for a final agreement as we're writing.

If the almost 200 countries involved in the talks are unable to strike a deal this evening, it is likely COP26 will be extended over the weekend.

Negotiators worked all night long on a new draft decision that was published early on Friday morning. But a number of sticking points remain - including climate finance.

COP26: Here is what you need to know from Day 12

  • The latest draft decision has watered down the language from the previous text calling to end all use of coal and phase out fossil fuel subsidies completely.

  • "The new final decision text could be better, it should be better, and we have one day left to make it a lot, lot better," said Greenpeace chief Jennifer Morgan.

  • On a more positive note, she said there was "wording in here worth holding on to." "We’ve moved from richer nations largely ignoring the pleas of developing countries for promised finance to tackle climate change, to the start of recognition that their calls should be met," Morgan tweeted.

  • Egypt and the United Arab Emirates will host the next COPs in 2022 and 2023 respectively.
  • "A small number of key issues remain which require our urgent collective attention,” said COP26 chairman Alok Sharma this afternoon as he urged “a final injection of can-do spirit” to deliver on an ambitious climate deal.

  • In case you weren't able to follow along on Thursday, here are five key takeaways from Day 11.

COP26 live updates

11.12.2021
20:17

Gabonese minister says US, EU holding talks back

Climate talks in Glasgow are at a “bit of a stalemate” and the United States, with support from the European Union, is holding back talks, according to Lee White, the Gabonese minister for forests and climate change.

White said on Friday there's a lack of trust between rich and poor nations over payments from rich countries to the poor for damage from the worst effects of global warming, funds for adapting to climate change and carbon markets.

Developing nations went to a meeting on Thursday thinking they had come to an agreement to create an independent fund for loss and damage finance. But Gabon's White said rich countries weren’t ready and felt that they hadn’t been consulted enough. “They said, we never agreed to that. It won’t work. It’s too complicated.”

White said rich countries are reluctant to create a new fund, and developing nations feel that existing climate finance mechanisms are already overstretched. “So, we’re at a bit of a stalemate ... The US  is reluctant to give money for adapting to climate finance, and want it to be purely voluntary.” White added that the EU is supporting the American stance.

11.12.2021
18:43

EU chief holds picture of grandchildren in emotional COP26 speech

European Union’s climate chief Frans Timmermans told fellow negotiators on Friday that he had received a picture of his grandson in the morning.

“If we succeed, he’ll be living in a world that’s livable,” Timmermans said. “If we fail, and I mean fail now in the next couple of years, he will fight with other human beings for water and food. That’s the stark reality we face.”

“This is personal,” he stressed, noting that the consequences of climate change would be even more dire for representatives of low-lying Pacific islands and other nations vulnerable to flooding “because you’re standing with your feet in the water.”

Timmermans called for “strong action on coal power and subsidies for fossil fuels” to be included in the final agreement, and called for holding all major emitters accountable.

With AP

11.12.2021
18:32

UK PM urges 'cash on the table' to secure climate deal

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says coming up with more money for countries at greatest risk from climate change is key to securing a deal at COP26

As negotiators strained to reach consensus among almost 200 nations, Johnson said the developing world “needs to see the cash on the table.”

He said: “That’s what needs to happen in the next few hours. People need to see that there’s enough cash to make a start, and there’s enough commitment to make a start.”

Johnson, who is not in Glasgow, said he is pressing world leaders to do more. He spoke on Friday with Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

He urged countries to agree to the draft text of the final summit agreement, which is still being tweaked. The conference is scheduled -- but unlikely -- to end at 7pmCET on Friday.

“We either find a way of agreeing it or we risk blowing it,” Johnson said.

He said: “If they can have the courage to do this deal, to agree the cover decision that’s on the table today, then we will have a road map that will enable us to go forward and start to remove the threat of anthropogenic climate change.”

With AP

11.12.2021
16:01

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11.12.2021
15:57

Activists concerned about 'loopholes' on carbon markets text 

Climate activists expressed concerns about possible loopholes in agreements for international cooperation on emissions reduction, which includes the rules for carbon markets.

Businesses are particularly keen to balance out excess emissions by paying others not to emit a similar amount.

“The invitation to greenwash through carbon offsetting risks making a farce of the Paris Agreement,” said Louisa Casson of Greenpeace.

“If this goes ahead, governments are giving big polluters a free pass to pollute under the guise of being ‘carbon neutral’, without actually having to reduce emissions.”

With AP

11.12.2021
15:54

What does the draft decision say about climate targets? 

The draft cover deal released this morning has retained a core request for countries to set more ambitious climate targets next year. 
But this request uses weaker language than the previous draft, saying the upgraded pledges should take into account "different national circumstances."
"We’ve gone from ‘urging’ countries to strengthen their 2030 emissions targets in line with the 1.5C goal to merely ‘requesting’ they do so by 2022. It wasn’t good enough before, it’s even weaker now and that needs to change," said Greenpeace chief Jennifer Morgan. 


 
11.12.2021
15:36

READ: Why does a Glasgow river have fewer rights than a new €14 company?

Lawyers and environmentalists at a COP26 Coalition event called for ecocide to be made punishable in international law.
11.12.2021
15:07

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Cocker says the climate crisis is moving to the centre of public consciousness.
11.12.2021
14:56

France joins alliance to end public financing for fossil fuels by 2022

French Environment Minister Barbara Pompili announced on Friday that France was joining a coalition of about 30 countries committing to end public financing for fossil fuels by the end of 2022. 
"The fight against climate change means leaving fossil fuels behind. I am announcing today at COP26 that France is joining the agreement to end foreign financing of fossil fuel exploitation projects by the end of 2022," Pompili said. 
Paris was criticised for initially staying out of the coalition launched last week by the UK.
"Better late than never!", tweeted environmental group France Nature Environment. 

Additional sources • AP, AFP