LE BOURGET, France: Angry developing nations warned on Thursday (Dec 3) that increasingly tense UN talks aimed at averting catastrophic climate change would fail unless a bitter feud over hundreds of billions of dollars was resolved.
Negotiators from 195 nations are haggling in Paris over a planned universal accord to slash greenhouse-gas emissions that trap the Sun's heat, warming Earth's surface and oceans and disrupting its delicate climate system.
Taking effect from 2020, the pact would target emissions from fossil fuels such as coal, oil and gas - the backbone of the world's energy supply today - as well as from the cutting down of rain-forests.
The question of finance to help developing countries make the shift to cleaner energy sources is "make or break", said South African negotiator Nozipho Mxakato-Diseko, who spoke on behalf of the G77 group of 134 developing and emerging countries, plus China.
"It has to be clearly understood that finance is critical," she told a news conference.
At stake is hundreds of billions of dollars that would need to start flowing from rich to developing nations from 2020.
- However the developed nations have yet to fully commit to the financing deal.
- With frustrations at the conference mounting, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on the world's leading economies to honour the financing pledge they made at the last major climate summit six years ago.
- "I have been urging the developed world leaders that this must be delivered," Ban told reporters at UN headquarters in New York. "This is one very important promise."
- Of the US$100 billion to be mobilised by 2020, US$62 billion has been raised so far, he added.
More than 150 world leaders including President Barack Obama launched the talks Monday, seeking to build momentum for the tough negotiations ahead with lofty rhetoric about the urgency of the task.
But after three days of grinding discussions over a hugely complex 54-page draft pact, bureaucrats unveiled a document just four pages shorter and with vast stretches of text yet to be agreed.