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Firewall Remains But Compromise Breaks Deadlock At UN Climate Talks

Associated Press

Developed countries and fast-growing economies have reached a last-minute compromise to avert a breakdown of U.N. climate talks in Warsaw.

China and India had clashed with the U.S. and other developed countries Saturday over the wording of draft decisions with guidelines on when countries should present commitments for a new pact to fight global warming.

The talks were deadlocked after China and India insisted on wording that would keep a firewall between rich and poor countries that the U.S. and other developed countries want to get rid of.

However, a compromise was reached in which the word “commitments” was replaced by the weaker “contributions,” allowing the talks to continue Saturday.

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Update: The last minute compromise amendment introduced by the Indian delegation confirms the firewall between rich and poor countries, i.e. the agreed Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) will remain under the UNFCCC Convention and guided by the principles of common but differentiated responsibilities. Moreover, the agreed national ‘contributions’ (whatever that means) are undefined, voluntary and not legally binding. In short, the can has been kicked into the long grass  again while the chances for a legally binding agreement remain close to zero. –Benny Peiser