France’s top diplomat, who will preside over a year-end Paris summit tasked with inking a global pact to rein in global warming, warned Sunday of a looming planetary “catastrophe”.
With the key UN conference just three weeks away, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius also announced that Russia’s President Vladimir Putin would attend the November 30 opening.
Russia, a major oil producer, is seen as a deal-maker or breaker in the years-long attempt to negotiate the world's first truly universal pact to rein in global warming by curbing climate-altering greenhouse gas emissions.
“It is life on our planet itself which is at stake,” Mr. Fabius told journalists as ministers and climate envoys from 70 countries met in the French capital for pre-summit talks to iron out tough political questions.
“There is absolute urgency,” he added, in chasing the UN goal of limiting global warming to two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-Industrial Revolution levels.
The UN’s climate science panel has warned of an average temperature rise of “four, five, six degrees, if we do not act extremely quickly,” said Mr. Fabius.
Problems of peace
“This would have catastrophic consequences because there would be drought... and colossal migration problems, including problems of war and peace.”
The three-day ministerial gathering, from Sunday to Tuesday, must seek political convergence on key political issues still dividing nations negotiating for a climate pact.
It is meant to be inked by ministers at the end of a November 30-December 11 UN summit. The Paris agreement will be the first uniting all nations in curbing greenhouse gas emissions. — AFP
Vladimir Putin is expected to attend the global meet