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World leaders arrive in Egypt for climate summit: COP27 update

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More than 100 world leaders started arriving in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh for the UN’s annual climate change summit, attempting to maintain momentum in the battle to curb planet-warming emissions.

Despite an early breakthrough to put the issue of compensating poorer countries for the impact of climate change on the summit’s agenda, delegates are downbeat on prospects for big new commitments to rein in planet-warming emissions. Rising energy prices, accelerated by Russia’s war in Ukraine, have led many governments to prioritise security of supply over the transition to cleaner energy.

Global emissions need to start falling rapidly before 2030 if the world has any chance of keeping global warming below 2 degrees. But they will likely hit a record this year. Countries from Pakistan to the US have been hit by unprecedented climate disasters.

Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, the new president of COP27, said the breakthrough on loss and damage was reached after 48 hours of intense talks.

“Inclusion of this agenda reflects a sense of solidarity and empathy with the suffering of the victims of climate-induced disasters,” he said.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak are among the biggest names expected at the start of the two-week event. US President Joe Biden and Brazil’s President-elect Luis Inacio Lula da Silva are due to appear later on. The most notable no shows are China’s Xi Jinping and India’s Narendra Modi, leaders of the world’s largest and third-largest emitters.

Latest developments

  • COP27 talks begin with deal to discuss climate reparations
  • China calls for more aid to developing nations
  • UN reports catalogs year of “climate chaos”
  • Methane cloud spotted near Indian waste site

Here are the latest developments. All times Egypt.

Africa Seeing Little Green-Energy Investment, Says BloombergNEF (6:30 am)

Africa is getting a “tiny share” of global investments in green energy, said Luiza Demor, head of energy transitions at BloombergNEF. The situation for emerging markets as a whole is little better.

“These countries are not seeing investment flows,” she said. Still, this is the “first time Africa is in the spotlight, together with emerging markets,” Demor said.

Lula’s Return Could See Brazil Regain Climate Leadership, Says CFR’s O’Neil (6:00 am)

Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro made Brazil “a pariah” on climate change, according to Shannon O’Neil, senior fellow for Latin America at the Council on Foreign Relations. With the return of Luis Inacio Lula da Silva from January, it can “regain that leadership.”

“It’s a really interesting moment for Brazil,” O’Neil said to Bloomberg TV. “You have an outgoing president who was very anti-climate change, who didn’t attend some of these summits and who definitely had a policy of deforestation and an anti-environmental approach.”

That contrasts with Lula, who talked about saving Brazil’s rainforests in his presidential campaign.

“Lula will have a lot of problems at home he needs to deal with — the end of Covid, a recovering economy,” O’Neil said. “But I think the environment is an issue that is dear to his heart and one he will be focused on.”

© 2022 Bloomberg

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