Tue, 29 Nov 2022

Some 90 heads of state have been confirmed for next month's UN climate conference, with host country Egypt sending a warning shot to Britain - from whom it will inherit the Cop27 presidency - not to backtrack on its commitments to fight global warming.

An Egyptian government spokesperson said Cairo was "disappointed" by reports that King Charles III, who'd been due to give a speech at the event, had been told not to attend by British Prime Minister Liz Truss.

"The Egyptian presidency of the climate conference acknowledges the longstanding and strong commitment of His Majesty to the climate cause, and believes that his presence would have been of great added value to the visibility of climate action at this critical moment," the spokesperson said.

"We hope that this doesn't indicate that the UK is backtracking from the global climate agenda after presiding over Cop26."

Concerns over net zero

The comments come amid concerns that Britain's new leadership is less committed to the country's target of reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Truss is already looking to increase domestic gas supplies through increased North Sea drilling and ending a ban on fracking.

It is hoped that Cop27, taking place from 6-18 November in the resort city of Sharm el Sheikh, will see richer nations finally commit to financing climate adaptation and mitigation efforts in poorer countries already reeling from the impacts of rising temperatures.

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Egypt is pushing to include the so-called "loss and damage" compensation on the summit's formal agenda.

Securing that money is a thorny issue, with the United States and the European Union last year rejecting calls for a compensation fund at Cop26 in Glasgow.

"We strongly believe that we need all the political will and momentum and direction coming from heads of state to push the process forward," said Wael Aboulmagd, special representative for the Cop27 presidency, adding the funding issue had become "very, very adversarial".

Originally published on RFI

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