Paris (France), Nov.30 : World leaders are all set to begin their round of talks on Monday with the objective of achieving an elusive agreement to counter global warming, which has reached calamitous levels.
According to media reports, Monday’s summit has kicked off in the back drop of bitter negotiations on emission limits that have largely been blamed for climate change.
Some 150 world leaders, including from China, India, Russia and the US, will use the secured venue north of Paris to come to some sort of understanding of what needs to be done to arrest dangerous and uncontrolled emissions.
Negotiators are on record as saying that they will come up an ambitious deal.
The event will commence with a minute’s silence to the memory of the 130 people killed in the November 13 bombing and shooting attacks in Paris at 11 a.m.
French President Francois Hollande had earlier said that the fate of humanity is at stake in this conference and told the French daily newspaper “20 minutes” that the leaders would meet in Paris “to reaffirm their solidarity with France” and to “assume their responsibilities in the face of the warming of the planet”.
Scientists warn that unless action is taken soon mankind will endure ever-worsening catastrophic events, such as droughts that will lead to conflict and rising sea levels that will wipe out low-lying island nations.
United States President Barack Obama’s first act after touching down in the early hours of Monday was to visit the scene of the worst carnage at the Bataclan concert venue.
The summit is “an opportunity to stand in solidarity with our oldest ally… and reaffirm our commitment to protect our people and our way of life from terrorist threats,” Obama said in a Facebook post before flying to Paris.
The United Nations has been hosting annual summits to tackle the vexed global warming issue since 1995, but all previous efforts have foundered, primarily due to deep divisions between rich and poor nations.
Many poor nations insist rich countries bear the most responsibility for tackling the problem, because they have burnt the most fossil fuels since the Industrial Revolution on their way to prosperity.
But the United States and other developed nations insist more must be done by China, India and other emerging countries, which are burning increasing amounts of coal to power their fast-growing economies.
Potential stumbling blocks in Paris range from finance for climate vulnerable and poor countries, to scrutiny of commitments to curb greenhouse gases and even the legal status of the accord.
Still, important progress has been made ahead of the meeting. One of the key successes has been a process in which 183 nations have submitted voluntary action plans on how they would tackle global warming.
Two degrees C is the threshold at which scientists say the worst impacts of global warming will be inevitable.
The US and France said 20 countries will also pledge on Monday to double their investments in clean energy. (ANI)