Language and inclusion of global warming limit delay agreement
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A consensual language on the creation of a compensation fund for damages, destined to countries vulnerable to global warming, and the control of it below 1.5 degrees Celsius prevent COP27 from closing its doors.

The deadline for concluding a final agreement at the United Nations Climate Summit in Egypt (COP27), scheduled for Friday, having been missed, the final text remains dependent on the success of the negotiators on the issue of setting up a compensation fund for damages, intended for developing countries most vulnerable to global warming, to be borne by developed countries that produce the most greenhouse gas emissions.

“Language” issues seem to be prolonging the discussions in the Babel that has become the Egyptian seaside resort on the Red Sea. French Energy Minister Agnès Pannier-Runacher described the situation: “There is a gap between what has been understood by some countries and what has been understood by other countries.”

“What is reflected in the agreement does not correspond to the common understanding of the document,” he added.

The European Union is pushing for the adoption of formal language in the agreement that allows for the expansion of the donor base in any new damages compensation program.

Several European voices insisted, on the other hand, that the final agreement to emerge from the UN climate talks must include a commitment to keep alive the global warming target of 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit), expressed in the Paris 2015.

“We need to get agreement on 1.5 degrees. We need strong words on mitigation [que na linguagem climática deve ser entendida como redução de emissões] and that’s what we’re going to push for,” said Irish Environment Minister Eamon Ryan, who is also the lead European negotiator for setting up the damages fund.

The German negotiator present at COP27, Jennifer Morgan, also called for keeping “1.5 degrees in sight”, in order to “keep losses and damages under control”.

A group of states known as the High Ambition Coalition, which includes the UK and Germany, has called for an agreement to be reached expressly setting the key objective of limiting global warming as part of the final outcome at COP27.

“We come together to say that we must leave COP27 with a set of results that keeps the 1.5 degrees benchmark alive and protects the vulnerable countries of the world”, summarized the Marshall Islands envoy to the summit, Kristina Stege.

The commitments made at the summit must be “grounded” in science, Stege said. Climate scientists have warned that if the earth warms more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, climate disasters will get significantly worse.

“This COP27 decision should put the world on a path towards the phasing out of all fossil fuels and an urgent and just transition to renewable energy,” he added.

This objective is, however, being misunderstood for some states present in Sharm El-Sheikh. “There is a very strong fossil fuel lobby…which is trying to block any language we produce,” explained Norwegian Environment Minister Espen Barth Eide.

The final plenary of the summit was once again postponed, it could happen during the early hours of Sunday, but there are those who are already willing to leave before the final signature, if a “language” is not achieved that embodies a fair agreement.

“We can leave, of course,” said Spanish Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera.

“We will not be part of a result that we consider unfair and ineffective to solve the problem we are dealing with, which is climate change and the need to reduce emissions”, said Ribera, expressing her “concern” that the final document could not include the reference to the limit for global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius, set in Paris, in 2015.

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