Durban Dispatch: December 2, 2011

Read all of ThinkProgress’s COP17 Durban coverage.

Activists used hundreds of LED emergency lights to spell “climate fail” across the Canadian Parliament lawn in huge, illuminated letters to send Prime Minister Stephen Harper the message that he must listen to people, not polluters. [Greenpeace]

Canada’s right-wing National Post said Archbishop Desmond Tutu “should shut his trap when it comes to the oilsands,” calling his criticism “unwarranted hysteria from naïve environmentalists.” [National Post]

Canadian climate denier Rex Murphy attacked the Durban conference, saying Archbishop Desmond Tutu “should be ashamed” for criticizing Alberta tar sands mining. [CBC]


Canada’s Northerners are already witnessing the effects of climate change and world leaders should heed their warnings, says a group of representatives from the territories visiting Durban. [CBC]

The African Group at COP17 in Durban says it needs $500 billion to $600 billion annually to finance its emissions reduction efforts and adaptation to climate change, rather than the $100 billion target for the Global Climate Fund set last year in Cancun. [IOL]

The European Union has taken a hardline stance that Durban needs to adopt a clear mandate to negotiate a new legally binding agreement that covers China and other developing countries. [Guardian]

There is a clear consensus around the forest preserving scheme REDD+ and it offers the best chance for progress on U.N. climate change negotiations to be held in Durban next week, said Louis Verchot, scientist with the Center for International Forestry Research. [CIFOR]


Durban has served as another forum for state representatives to air their grievances about the European Union’s pending application of its cap-and-trade system to non-EU airlines while avoiding any binding commitments to offset aviation’s carbon footprint. [The Conversation]

“The increasing amounts of carbon dioxide that we emit into the atmosphere every day are changing our oceans, steadily increasing their acidity, and dramatically affecting marine life,” said Professor Dan Laffoley. [IndyBay]

US climate negotiator Jonathan Pershing argues that the members of his team “agree with the science” and can “solve the problem” of keeping “emissions consistent with being below 2 degrees and adapting to the consequences that are unavoidable.” [Treehugger]

Happy talk by Jonathan Pershing about “infinite pathways” to limit global warming below 2 degrees “is just bullshit,” says Jeff Goodall. [Rolling Stone]

The Nairobi Work Programme aims to help countries — particularly developing ones — understand and assess vulnerability to impacts of climate change, and to help countries make informed decisions on practical adaptation actions, including ecosystem-based approaches. [Conservation International]