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Zuma talks climate change

by BuaNews Online
on 31 Oct 2011
BuaNews Online
BuaNews Online

With less than a month to go before COP 17, President Jacob Zuma has warned that if parties fail to renew and sign the Kyoto Protocol, this would be a major setback for the world.

Speaking at a Socialist International Commission on the priorities and targets for the 17th Conference of Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Zuma said the summit would require special effort to reach consensus.

"In Durban, together we will have the difficult task of ensuring that the international negotiations stay on track, and that we continue pursuing a global solution to the climate change challenge that nations of the world face," said Zuma.

He encouraged role players to mobilise to protect the poor, as they were the most vulnerable to natural disaster.

Zuma wanted the parties in Durban to continue working towards the clarification of the legal framework of the envisaged binding legal outcomes of the conference, while acknowledging progress made on existing agreements.

"South Africa seeks a global regime that ensures that climate change does not reach dangerous levels, while recognising that priority for developing countries is to address poverty and socio-economic development," said Zuma.

He added that South Africa would push to ensure that the outcome in Durban was balanced, fair and credible, and one that preserved and strengthened the multilateral rules-based response to climate change.

Zuma said the process would need to be informed by the principles that form the basis of UNFCCC climate change negotiations.

"These principles include multilateralism, environmental integrity, fairness (based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibility and respective capabilities, equity) and the honouring of all international commitments and undertakings made in the climate change process."

Others issues include the Cancun Agreements, which must be operationalised, including the establishment of the key mechanisms and institutional arrangements reached in Cancun, as well as adaptation, which he labelled as a key priority for many developing countries - particularly small island developing states and least developed countries and Africa.

The current fragmented approach to adaptation, Zuma said, must be addressed in a more coherent manner and give equal priority to adaptation and mitigation. - BuaNews


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