Pressure grows at U.N. climate talks for clearer deal outline

Tue Jun 9, 2015 1:50pm EDT
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By Megan Rowling

BONN, Germany (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Negotiators at U.N. climate talks in Bonn are under growing pressure to speed their efforts to slim down the draft text for a new global climate deal due in Paris in December, so that ministers can start working on it this summer.

Ten days of discussions on the 90-page draft document are due to conclude on Thursday, amid expectations they will produce a shorter working version that retains all the options now on the table.

"Everyone is concerned that (the process) needs to be quicker," Jennifer Morgan, director of the Global Climate Programme at the World Resources Institute (WRI), told reporters.

"There is just an imperative that by Thursday they have a text that ministers can engage on this summer ... that has clear options," she said.

Jonathan Grant, director for climate change and carbon markets with consultancy PwC, said the climate negotiations felt "a world away" from the Group of Seven summit in Bavaria, where G7 leaders agreed on Monday to abandon fossil fuels by the end of the century and backed a 2050 goal to cut emissions.

Divisions persisted at the U.N. climate talks between rich, poor and emerging economies, while the discussions were bogged down in line-by-line reviews of the negotiating text, he added.

"Everyone is operating under the pretence that editing and streamlining for long enough will actually produce a coherent and short text with clearly defined alternatives for ministers to review," he said.

The focus on shaping the wording meant few real negotiations were likely to happen this week in Bonn, experts said.   Continued...