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COP26 climate negotiations go into overtime

Washington DC Bureau

'How do you deal with potential effects of severe weather events?'

WASHINGTON (Nexstar) — As negotiators worked past the final planned hours of the COP26 global climate conference, protests broke out as agreements were being finalized.

The goal of the conference is to save the world from the worst impacts of climate change. Simon Stiel, the climate minister for the island of Grenada, said, “We owe our children, our grandchildren. This is critical.”

World Resource Institute Director David Waskow noted there is an increasing scarcity of water. “How do you deal with potential effects of severe weather events?”

Those events could include entire communities getting wiped out by rising sea levels and severe storms, as well as heat and droughts so extreme they’re impacting global food and water supplies.

“We need to make sure major emitters reduce their emissions so that we keep 1.5 alive,” said European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans.

Some countries are reluctant to commit to ending the use of coal and stopping subsidies for other fossil fuels. COP26 negotiators also struggled to get commitments to fund two different global initiatives.

One would double the funds to help developing nations pay for infrastructure needed to deal with climate change.

“This is personal,” Timmermans said. “This is not about politics.”

The more contentious fund would ensure that countries that cause the most emissions — like the United States — pay a combined $100 billion a year for the loss and damage developing nations suffer from climate change because those nations created the least emissions.

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