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Dark cloud hover over the 2011 Durban Climate talks

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Dark cloud hover over the 2011 Durban Climate talks 2011-11-13

By; Mrinalini Dasgupta,Citizen News from Delhi



New Delhi: The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties 17 (COP 17) is scheduled to begin at Durban on Nov 28, 2011. With the hard financial conditions prevailing in the Euro zone particularly Greece & Italy. Also considering that the US economy is passing though troubled times many are worried that the billions of money promised as an incentive by the industrialized countries to their poorer counterparts for adapting to climate change, might not see the light.


Prodipto Ghosh an expert and the former environment secretary at Govt. of India said that developed countries are in the process of camouflaging other development aids as climate finance. He added that there was no new money coming in from rich countries and that these countries have been re-labeling existing funds to help developing countries adapt to curbing of emissions.


EU finance minister on Nov 9 marked around USD 5.5 billion as short funding to help developing countries adapt to climate change. This has been termed as the ‘fast-start-finance’. However this money is a part of the commitment made in year 2009 during the Copenhagen summit. It was earmarked that USD 30 Billion would be provided to developing countries between year 2010 & 2012. At the 2010 Cancun climate summit, developed countries had re-confirmed a commitment to raise USD 100 billion annually by 2010.


NGOs like Oxfam & Greenpeace have termed this EU pledge as re-packaging of the regular development aid.


A senior Indian Govt. official confirmed that a 41 member delegation from India will be going to Durban. He added that the developed world had promised money in the last two conferences but till date we have not seen any money coming in. He added that money is going to be a major point of discussion from the Indian delegation. India’s official stand is that every thing depends on the fulfillment of the Cancun agreement.


“A few rogue organizations functioning in India will get a bad name for the whole country” said social activist and Chairman of SNSMT , Suparno Satpathy. He added , “There are a few mischief mongers who have been out rightly flouting pollution norms but then other institutes and companies in India have been doing a wonderful job with curbing emission with in the prescribed norms. I am afraid that these few rotten fish in the Indian basket will spread the stink every where. Because of these handful of rouges, many of our ‘aam admi’ (common people) have been suffering on multi fronts and now because of the wrong doings of the said handful, many of ours might possibly lose out on this climate finance”. To this situation some comfort can be derived from the communiqué issued after a G20 summit which took place early Nov 2011. The communiqué said, “We are committed to the success of the forthcoming Durban conference on climate change. We call for implementation of the Cancun agreement and further progress in all areas of negotiation, including the operationalisation of the Green Climate Fund, as part of a balanced outcome in Durban”.