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UN meet calls for ‘highest political commitment’ to fight climate change

The high point of the conference was the declaration that the world has an “urgent duty to respond” to global warming.

india Updated: Nov 19, 2016 00:55 IST
Chetan Chauhan
Chetan Chauhan
Hindustan Times
United Nations,climate change,Marrakech Proclamation
The UN flag waving at the venue of CoP 22 in Marrakech, Morocco.(AP Photo)

A UN climate conference, dominated by US President-elect Donald Trump’s threat to withdraw from the Paris accord, sought “highest political commitment” to fight “warming of the climate at an alarming rate”.

The high point of the conference was the declaration that the world has an “urgent duty to respond” to global warming.

As many as 196 countries agreed upon the Marrakech Proclamation, which welcomes a balanced view on combating climate change. The participating countries, however, failed to reach any conclusion on the compensation mechanism — Loss and Damage — at the conference, which would now be concluded by March 2017.

The compensation mechanism was the bone of contention at Marrakech, with rich countries expressing unwillingness to provide adequate funds for the setting up of a system to counter climate change.

The rich nations want private sector tools like the climate risk insurance to be part of the mechanism, which the developing countries had opposed.

“We call for strong solidarity with those countries most vulnerable to the impact of climate change, and underscore the need to support efforts aimed to reduce vulnerability,” the declaration said.

The Paris deal has set a limit of average global warming at 2 degree rise over pre-industrial age by cutting green house gas emissions by 50-80% by 2100.

The target could be achieved only if the three biggest emitters — US, India and China — shift to renewable sources of energy for reducing their emissions.

However, Trump during his campaign promised to overturn Barack Obama’s decision to reduce emissions from fossil fuels. He had also said he would pull out from the Paris deal and described climate change as a “Chinese hoax”.

At the conference, India pushed for sustainable lifestyle with minimum carbon footprint and a clear mention of flow of funds in the draft of the proclamation.

First Published: Nov 19, 2016 00:52 IST